Lina Tucker Reinders


Lina Tucker Reinders headshotI am a public health professional with expertise in partnership development, policy and advocacy, strategic planning, and intersectoral collaboration. I have 25+ years of experience across public health, both in discipline and setting. I’ve held positions in academia, government (local & state), international organizations, and the nonprofit sector, and volunteered within APHA, my local board of health, and the University of MN.

In my current role as Executive Director of Iowa Public Health Association, I maintain a statewide policy perspective, while building relationships with public health professionals and supporters across Iowa’s communities.

During the pandemic and the workforce strain that accompanied it, my three priorities were to be the independent voice of public health; to call attention to the need for a healthy equity lens in our pandemic response and recovery; and, to advocate for the workforce. This required both a top down and grassroots approach to trust building. I was in regular contact with our state leadership and our membership, bridging communication between 99 county health departments and the Iowa Department of Public Health. During this time I was appointed to the State’s Infectious Disease Advisory Council to advise on an equitable vaccine rollout and gave countless media interviews about COVID in general, and specifically about our state’s policies, which at times conflicted with CDC guidance.

I also saw the need for our local public health administrators to have a neutral space where they could commune on their experiences. I started a weekly local public health administrator's Zoom call. While they shared their frustrations and concerns, I realized I was witnessing a deteriorating workforce. I partnered with the Midwestern Public Health Training Center to prepare a workshop in August 2020 on equipping public health leaders to address stress and burnout among their colleagues. I leveraged that work to raise funds to refine the workshop and take it across the state to LPHAs at their worksites, and most recently, have secured additional funding to develop a digital campaign.

The work of public health evolves and responds to community needs. So must a public health leader and organizations that represent public health. I take seriously my role as a mentor, thought leader, cheerleader, and advocate. It’s where I excel and what my colleagues across the state deserve.

Candidate Statement

I believe that intentionality is the key to equity. I strive to be known as one committed to inclusivity, a trust-worthy thought leader, and a pragmatic optimist, all so that I can inspire others to work toward an equitable society.

As the Executive Director of Iowa Public Health Association, I am uniquely experienced with membership development, conference management, advocacy & media engagement, and budgeting & fundraising. My experience managing an Affiliate during the pandemic, including the funding influx that is now waning, will be essential as the APHA navigates the same.

Within the all the duties of this position, I am especially interested in three areas of work:

Diversifying our investors
The sustainability of APHA includes attracting diverse investors. Public health is relevant to corporate DEI plans and social responsibility values. We need to adjust our fundraising frame from “giving” to “investing” and present a value proposition that resonates beyond traditional public health funders.

Public Health Workforce

Many are working to address alarming rates of attrition from governmental public health. We must also remember that people may be leaving their jobs, but not their public health lens or skills. It will behoove our profession to examine workforce trends and leverage the opportunity to curate public health ambassadors across sectors and industries, and develop innovative partnerships, alliances, and investors.

Affiliate/Sector Engagement
State Affiliates are critical partners of sections, forums, and the Student Assembly. I have served as the Affiliate Staff Representative to the Council of Affiliates (2022-2023) and will bring to the Executive Board my knowledge of Affiliate challenges and opportunities, and champion efforts to leverage the work of all APHA communities.

In closing, I thank the members of the Nominations Committee for their trust in me and all candidates. It would be an honor to serve APHA in this capacity.

View Lina Tucker Reinder's CV (PDF)

Response to Written Questions for Candidates (PDF)