Suzuho is a health equity and cultural inclusivity consultant capitalizing on a unique combination of intuitive and analytical skills to support individuals, teams, and organizations in improving their effectiveness and efficiency in serving diverse populations. Suzuho understands that health and public health organizations are challenged to realize their aspirations of providing high quality and equitable care to all of their community members due to limited resources and the dynamic world of health care reform. Through the services of CARE Equity, Suzuho facilitates organizational capacity building as a means to addressing inequities across the social determinants of health, improving the availability of culturally and linguistically appropriate services for underserved communities of color and guiding organizational leaders in creating transformational changes that ensure the vitality of their organizations.
Prior to starting CARE Equity, Suzuho served as Co-Director of The Colorado Trust’s Equality in Health Initiative at The Partnership for Families & Children. Through this seven-year $13.1 million initiative, Suzuho provided guidance to twenty-six health service organizations across Colorado in their efforts to develop their organizational capacities to provide more inclusive services to racially and ethnically diverse populations. This process required a comprehensive approach including: coaching staff and board through their own personal journeys; providing resources to and facilitating dialogues among organizations to develop equity-focused goals, strategies, and evaluations; fostering a peer-to-peer learning community for organizational leaders; and engaging clients and community members to solicit their input and involve them in organizational decision-making. Suzuho’s role in the initiative also included creating and holding a vision for the work, identifying innovative approaches to addressing health inequities, and ensuring that all services and interactions with grantees and communities were adapted to fit their individual contexts. Currently, in addition to the work through CARE Equity, Suzuho serves as the Deputy Director for Pitkin County Public Health.
In addition to experiences in developing and evaluating organizational changes, Suzuho has also facilitated system-level changes to address health inequities. Suzuho has helped organizations strategically leverage the health equity provisions of the Affordable Care Act and played an integral role in the passage of HB-1088 which changed the Office of Health Disparities to the Office of Health Equity while expanding its scope of work to serve a greater diversity of populations experiencing health inequities.
Invested to being a life-long learner, Suzuho has earned a Doctor of Public Health at the Colorado School of Public Health. Additionally, Suzuho graduated from the Advanced Leadership Training Program of the Regional Institute for Health & Environmental Leadership (RIHEL) and has earned a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology with a minor in Community and Regional Development from the University of California, Davis and a Master of Public Health in Health Services Policy and Management from the University of California, Los Angeles.
Center for Health Progress, Board of Directors (2019-Present), Board Co-Chair (2021-Present)
Colorado Public Health Association, Board of Directors (2011 – 2019), President (2017-2018)
Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, Health Equity Commission (2013 – 2015)
The Denver Foundation, Basic Human Needs Committee (2013 – 2015)
The Denver Foundation, Inclusiveness Project Committee (2011 – 2015)
Mile High Japanese American Citizens League, Board of Directors (2009 – 2016)
Asian Pacific Development Center, Board of Directors (2011 – 2012)
National Association for Asian American Professionals Colorado, Professional Development Coordinator (2009 – 2010)
California American Cancer Society, Diversity and Disparities Team (2006-2008)
Shimasaki, S. Health Equity and Racial and Ethnic Workforce Diversity. The Colorado Trust. 2013.
Shimasaki, S. Health Equity and Race and Ethnicity Data. The Colorado Trust. 2013.
Sadler, G.R., Branz, P., Fager, M., Seegers, S., Shimasaki, S. Health promotion via Deaf-friendly ministries. Journal of Cancer Education. 27:606-611, 2012.
Nguyen, D.H., Shimasaki, S., Stafford, H.S., Sadler, G.R. Health journalism internships- a social marketing technique to address health disparities. Journal of Cancer Education. 25:371-376, 2010.
Schultzel, M., Saltzstein, S.L., Downs, T.M., Shimasaki, S., Sanders, C., Sadler, G.R. Late age (85 years or older) peak incidence of bladder cancer Journal of Urology. 179:1302-1305, 2008.
Stafford, H.S., Saltzstein, S.L., Shimasaki, S., Sanders, C., Downs, T.M., Sadler, G.R. Racial/ethnic and gender disparities in renal cell carcinoma incidence and survival. Journal of Urology. 179:1704-1708, 2008.