Staff

Mario Gutierrez

Mario Gutierrez

Executive Director

Mario Gutierrez is executive director of the Center for Connected Health Policy. 

Mr. Gutierrez joined CCHP in May 2010 as a senior policy associate, and brings with him more than thirty years of experience in California’s nonprofit health and health philanthropy sectors.

Mr. Gutierrez served as a program director with The California Endowment for twelve years prior to joining CCHP, where he led several major health care initiatives including the foundation’s ten-year, $20 million investment in telehealth deployment throughout California.  He also served as the Endowment’s lead person for Rural and Agricultural Worker Health Programs and Policy.  Previously, he served for six years as a senior program officer with The Sierra Health Foundation.

In recognition of his achievements in the field, Mr. Gutierrez received the prestigious 2007 Terrance Keenan National Leadership Award in Health Philanthropy.

Mr. Gutierrez currently serves on the board of directors of the California State Rural Health Association, a nonprofit, nonpartisan, grassroots organization that works to improve the health of rural Californians and the quality and accessibility of the heath care they receive.

He also serves on the board of directors of OCHIN, one of the nation’s largest and most successful non-profit health information networks. OCHIN is nationally recognized for its innovative use of Health IT to improve the integration and delivery of health care services across a wide variety of practices, with an emphasis on safety net clinics and small practices, as well as critical access and rural hospitals.

He currently serves as chairman of the Rural Policy Research Institute (RUPRI) Rural Human Services Advisory Panel, which provides agencies of the federal government with policy analysis and recommendations to promote livable rural communities.

Thomas S. Nesbitt, M.D., M.P.H.

Senior Telehealth Advisor

Thomas S. Nesbitt, M.D., M.P.H., is the Associate Vice Chancellor for Strategic Technologies and Alliances and is responsible for advancing the UCD Health System’s excellence in telemedicine. Nesbitt works closely with industry leaders developing partnerships with hospitals, clinics and centers to expand access to quality health care and create a broadband telehealth network. He ensures that faculty and staff excel at using innovative technologies to provide high-quality, state-of-the-art medical care.

Throughout his career, Nesbitt has focused his scholarship and leadership on improving access to health care and developing the health-care workforce for California, the nation and the world. He is internationally known and regarded as a pioneer using telecommunications technology to deliver a broad spectrum of health-care services and health professional education in rural areas. He established UC Davis’ first telehealth link in 1992; today, UC Davis’ Center for Health and Technology is recognized as a global leader in using telehealth and distance learning to meet the needs of populations in remote and underserved regions.

Nesbitt has received numerous awards for his innovation and leadership. He received the 2012 Justin Ford Kimball Innovators Award, one of the highest honor given by the American Hospital Association for outstanding contributions to health care, and the 2010 Leadership Award from the American Telemedicine Association for his pioneering work to advance telemedicine. He has many awards from the Cal Aggie Alumni Association, including the Distinguished Public Service Award, the Distinguished Alumnus Award and, most recently, the Distinguished Achievement award, presented in 2012. 

Mei Wa Kwong, JD

Policy Advisor and Project Director

Mei Wa Kwong joined CCHP in March 2010, where she works on public policy issues as they impact telehealth on the state and federal level.  She is also the project director for the National Telehealth Policy Resource Center.

For CCHP, Ms. Kwong manages projects, provides policy technical assistance to state and federal lawmakers, industry members, providers, consumers and others, oversees the CCHP policy staff and works closely with CCHP’s partners and consultants.  She has authored several articles published in peer review journals and has presented at national conferences. 

Prior to joining CCHP, Ms. Kwong was a public policy analyst for Children’s Home Society of California, working on child care and early education issues on the state and federal levels. She also worked extensively with the Child Development Policy Institute, a statewide public policy organization, and was recognized by them in 2004 for her work in the early care and education field.  She was also at the National Association of Real Estate Investment Trusts in Washington, DC working on federal tax issues, and administered the association's political action committee. Ms. Kwong holds a BA in International Affairs from George Washington University, and a JD from George Washington University Law School.

Christine Calouro

Program Associate II

Christine Calouro joined CCHP in October 2012.  She assists with the project coordination of the National Telehealth Policy Resource Center.  Specifically, this includes providing policy technical assistance on a nationwide basis and assisting in policy analysis and tracking of both state and federal laws, regulations and Medicaid policies.  She also assists with grant writing, reporting and special research projects.

Prior to joining CCHP, Ms. Calouro worked in various nonprofit organizations, including the Consumer Federation of California and the Santa Barbara Chamber of Commerce.  She also spent a year in Africa working on public health policy advocacy with Health Development Initiative-Rwanda, a local nonprofit striving for sustainable health in the region.  She advocated for increased women’s reproductive rights and raised awareness on AIDS prevention measures in rural areas of the country. Ms. Calouro holds a master’s degree in international relations from San Francisco State University.

Laura Stanworth

Laura Stanworth

Program Administrator II

Laura Stanworth joined CCHP in May 2009.  Ms. Stanworth has over fifteen years of experience working to create and maintain office workflow in a nonprofit setting. For the Center for Connected Health Policy she oversees all areas operations for the organization, including budget monitoring, projections, grant tracking, contracting, report submissions, website management, hiring of new staff and acting as the primary liaison between CCHP and its fiscal intermediary, The Public Health Institute.