Who We Are

California Health Report is a news site covering health and health policy throughout the state, with an emphasis on disadvantaged communities and populations. We’re non-partisan, grant-funded and editorially independent.

The mission of California Health Report is to find and tell stories about Californians who are disproportionately affected by growing income inequality, the uncertainties surrounding access to health care and the effects of generational poverty. Our goal is to ensure these stories aren’t lost amid dwindling newsroom budgets or the general chaos of our tumultuous political moment.

We tell stories that may not otherwise be reported or are underreported and our work has spurred legislative action.

As the only journalism organization dedicated exclusively to covering health in low-income communities, we are a trusted source of information about the state of health and health care across California. Our reporting has been reprinted in national, statewide and local outlets.

Our Staff

Heather Tirado Gilligan, Executive Director and Editor

Heather has reported extensively on issues affecting disadvantaged populations and communities. She was an editor at California Health Report for five years before she assumed the position of Executive Director and Editor in March 2017.

Heather’s byline has appeared in publications including Slate, The Nation, HuffPost, Modern Farmer, the Sacramento Bee and the Dallas Morning News. She has won awards and fellowships for her reporting, including the Kaiser Institute for Health Policy/UC Berkeley Fellowship and the UC Berkeley-11th Hour Food and Farming Fellowship.

Before starting her career as a journalist in 2007, Heather was faculty at the University of California, Santa Barbara. She holds a Ph.D. from Rutgers University and a Masters of Journalism from the University of California, Berkeley.

She lives in Oakland with her wife and daughter.

Hannah Guzik, Assignment Editor

Hannah edits stories about children’s health and aging, and writes investigative stories and features.

As a woman, mother and native Californian, Hannah brings to her work a diverse understanding and moral obligation to do good work. Her recent reporting has focused on disadvantaged populations. An investigative story she wrote in 2014 revealed that doctor directories given to people in California’s low-income health program were highly inaccurate. It spurred a state audit and legislation. With an investigative reporting grant, she wrote an In These Times cover story about how fracking disproportionately impacts California’s poor.

A fellowship through the Maynard Institute allowed her to write about how indigenous farmworkers have little access to mental health services. She also received a 2013 California Endowment Health Journalism Fellowship through USC’s Annenberg School of Journalism to write about health challenges faced by farmworkers.

Via the Associated Press, her articles have been published in the Los Angeles Times, The Sacramento Bee and other newspapers nationwide. She previously worked as a reporter at the Santa Barbara News-Press, Ventura County Reporter, Ashland Daily Tidings and Medford Mail Tribune. She was also a regular contributor to the Ventura County Star. In 2011, she won five Oregon Newspaper Publishers Association awards, including one she shared with a colleague for Best Enterprise Reporting for a series on a catastrophic wildfire.

She lives in Ventura County with her husband and their two children.

Mary Flynn, Managing Editor

Mary covered a broad array of health-related issues for the California Health Report, as well as managing the publication’s social media presence, before assuming the role of Managing Editor in 2017.

Hailing from the highly-underrated state of Wisconsin, Mary is a combat veteran. She spent eight years in the Wisconsin Army National Guard, and she served two year-long deployments working in public affairs as a broadcast journalist, telling stories from the soldier’s perspective. Eventually, she became Media Relations team leader for the Joint Task Force in Guantanamo Bay.

Mary is a graduate of the documentary program at UC Berkeley’s Graduate School of Journalism, where she honed her skills in journalism and film production. She’s had a hand in the production of films for the Center of Investigative Reporting (now “Reveal”), HBO, and Stanford’s Clayman Institute of Gender Research, among others.

She cheers on her beloved Green Bay Packers from her home in the Santa Cruz mountains, where she lives with her husband, two children, and a lovable old, stinky dog.

Statement of Editorial Independence

We are a grant funded organization, but our news judgments are made independently and not on the basis of donor support. We retain full authority over our editorial content. We accept no advertising and our content is available to other news organizations free of charge.

Our donors

Current and former donors include Blue Shield of California Foundation, Lucile Packard Foundation for Children’s Health,  The California Endowment, The California Wellness Foundation, Sierra Health Foundation and The SCAN Foundation.

California Health Report is a member of the Institute for Nonprofit News.

We are a fiscally-sponsored project of Tides Center, a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization and the nation’s largest fiscal sponsor. See the most recent Tides Center form 990 here.

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