How we identify

How we identify

Group Health Foundation staff pose for a group picture at our Seattle office.

At Group Health Foundation, we believe it is important to recruit, hire, and support staff and board members who are representative of the diverse communities we serve. Our multifaceted identities and experiences inform and strengthen our work as a foundation.

We also believe it is important to hold ourselves accountable by showing the identities represented within our organization and shedding light on opportunities to deepen our efforts. As a funder, we ask grant and sponsorship applicants to share demographic information about their board and staff, and endeavor to hold ourselves to the same expectations.

We asked our current staff (which included 36 people at the time) to complete an open-ended survey to share more about their identities and lived experiences. The survey results were collected (anonymously) and are compiled and presented here. We will keep updating this information as we continue to grow.


Staff identify as the following races:

  • African American (one)
  • American Indian (two, including one who identifies as multiracial)
  • Alaskan Native (one who identifies as multiracial)
  • Asian (one)
  • Asian American (one)
  • Black (eight, including two who identify as multiracial)
  • Caucasian/White (ten, including four who identify as multiracial)
  • East Asian (three, including one who identifies as multiracial)
  • Latina (one)
  • Latino (two)
  • Latinx (five)
  • Middle Eastern (one who identifies as multiracial)
  • Native American (one)
  • Pacific Islander (two who identify as multiracial)
  • South Asian (one)
  • Southeast Asian (two)

Twenty-nine of our 36 current team members identify as people of color.


Staff identify as the following ethnicities:

  • Tlingit (one who identifies with multiple ethnicities)
  • Chinese (five, including one who identifies with multiple ethnicities)
  • Chinook (one)
  • Dravidian (one)
  • Eritrean (one)
  • Slavic (one who identifies with multiple ethnicities)
  • English (two who identify with multiple ethnicities)
  • Afro-Caribbean (one who identifies with multiple ethnicities)
  • African American (two)
  • Ghanaian (one who identifies with multiple ethnicities)
  • Irish (two who identify with multiple ethnicities)
  • Dutch (one who identifies with multiple ethnicities)
  • Alaskan Native (one who identifies with multiple ethnicities)
  • American (four)
  • Guatemalan (one)
  • Filipina (one who identifies with multiple ethnicities)
  • Welsh (one who identifies with multiple ethnicities)
  • Korean (one who identifies with multiple ethnicities)
  • Portuguese (two who identify with multiple ethnicities)
  • Italian (one who identifies with multiple ethnicities)
  • Libyan (one)
  • Mexican (seven, including one who identifies with multiple ethnicities)
  • Salvadorean (one)
  • South American/Bolivian (one)
  • German (two who identify with multiple ethnicities)
  • Scottish (one who identifies with multiple ethnicities)
  • Samoan (one who identifies with multiple ethnicities)
  • White (one who identifies with multiple ethnicities)
  • Taiwanese (one)
  • Vietnamese (two)
Immigrant Experience
  • Seven staff identify as immigrants, from Taiwan, Portugal, India, México, Mozambique, Eritrea, and China.
  • Twenty staff have immigrant family members or come from an immigrant family, from México, Ireland, Bolivia, Eritrea, Guatemala, El Salvador, Taiwan, Japan, Vietnam, England, South Korea, China, Libya.
Refugee Experience

No staff identify as refugees themselves. Four staff have family members who identify as refugees, from Libya, Eritrea, and Vietnam. 

Public Assistance

Sixteen staff have used public assistance before, including but not limited to Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) and Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP). Twenty-three staff were raised in families or households who used public assistance. 


One staff considers themselves court-affected (formerly incarcerated, under parole, paying court debt, etc.).
One staff is the child of an incarcerated person.


Eight staff identify as being disabled or having a disability. One person has a disability but does not identify as a disabled person. Disabilities shared include hard of hearing, hard of hearing/Deaf, clinical depression, anxiety, generalized anxiety disorder, partial blindness, ADHD, and learning disability.

Sexual Orientation

Twenty-seven staff identify as straight or heterosexual, two identify as queer, one identifies as lesbian, one identifies as not straight, and five identify as gay.

Gender Identity

Staff identify as female (two), non-binary (one), women (two), men (three), cisgender women (seventeen), woman and genderqueer (one), and cisgender men (eleven).


Nine staff are younger than 30 years old, fourteen staff are in their 30s, ten staff are in their 40s, and five staff are in their 50s.


Staff describe their households as: single, single family, single parent, married with no children, two-person, two-person with dog, domestic partnership, multi-generational, non-married/partnered, same-sex married, sometimes with parents/sometimes with partner, and two-parent with children.

Sixteen staff are renters. Twenty-two staff are homeowners.

Grew Up

Staff members grew up in the following places:

  • Papua New Guinea
  • Cuba
  • Puerto Rico
  • Alaska
  • Washington
  • Oregon
  • Alger, WA
  • Bay Area
  • California
  • China
  • El Centro
  • Federal Way, Washington
  • India
  • Australia
  • Tampa, Florida
  • Houston, Texas
  • Lancaster, Pennsylvania
  • Seattle, Washington
  • Pasco, Washington
  • Manica, Mozambique
  • Trafaria, Portugal
  • Manson, Washington
  • Southwest Washington
  • Wenatchee, Washington
  • Olympia, Washington
  • Minneapolis, Minnesota
  • Everett, Washington
  • Renton, Washington
  • Spokane, Washington
  • Tacoma, Washington
  • Toppenish, Washington
  • Tri-Cities, Washington
  • White Center/Burien, Washington
  • Ohio
  • America
  • Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
  • Georgia
  • Portland, Oregon
  • San Jose, California
Currently Consider Home

Staff members currently consider the following places home:

  • Central Washington
  • China
  • Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
  • Spokane, Washington
  • Kitsap County, Washington
  • Seattle, Washington
  • Portland, Oregon
  • Georgia
  • Manson, Washington
  • United States
  • Willapa Bay, Washington
  • San Francisco, California
  • Shoreline, Washington
  • Pasco, Washington
  • Edgewood, Washington
  • Steilacoom, Washington
  • Spanaway, Washington
  • Zillah, Washington
  • Kaneohe, Hawaii
Formal Education

Two staff members completed some college. Two staff completed an associate’s degree, twenty-one staff members completed a bachelor’s degree, and fifteen completed a master’s degree.

First Generation College

Nine staff were the first ones in their family to go to college. Two staff members had siblings who went to college but whose parents did not. One staff member was the first female in their family to go to college.

Formal Education of Parents

The level of formal education our staff members’ parents received includes:

  • Elementary school (three)
  • Middle school (five)
  • High school (thirteen)
  • Associate degree (three)
  • Technical degree (one)
  • Some college (one)
  • Bachelor’s degree (twelve)
  • Master’s degree (five) or other graduate degree (five)
  • MD (three) or PhD (two)
Religion and Spirituality
  • Atheist (one)
  • Agnostic (seven)
  • Buddhist (one)
  • Buddhist-ish (one)
  • Christian (five)
  • Catholic, raised (two)
  • Catholic, practicing (two)
  • Catholic, non-practicing (three)
  • Christian, non-denominational (one)
  • Muslim (one)
  • Native American Spirituality (one)
  • None (six)
  • Spiritual (two)
  • Spiritual but not religious (one)
  • Tamanawas, the aboriginal religion of the Chinook/Coast Salish People (one)
  • Unitarian Universalist (one)