Denise E. Herrera, PhD, joined the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation in 2013 with the Research-Evaluation-Learning unit. She employs her extensive training in program design and evaluation in her work across all RWJF areas of focus. As she puts it: “RWJF has a stellar reputation of providing valuable, evidence-based information that can impact individuals and communities nationwide.” She describes the best part of her job as “connecting with partners and grantees in creative ways to disrupt the status quo and improve population health.”
Previously, Herrera served on the UT-Austin leadership development team which developed and implemented worksite wellness strategies among Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) staff statewide. She has served as a senior program manager on various initiatives throughout New Mexico, Arizona, and Texas—and has provided expertise in program planning, implementation, and evaluation at local, state, and national levels.
Herrera’s experience includes proposal writing, consulting, and collaborating on a host of federal and statewide initiatives. She has provided expertise on community development and civic engagement efforts in rural and urban areas in the United States and abroad.
Herrera received a BS in Health Education from the University of New Mexico; an MS in Family Studies and Human Development from the University of Arizona; and a PhD in Health Education from the University of Texas–Austin. From 2010 to 2011 she was a Robert Wood Johnson Evaluation Fellow and is also a Ronald E. McNair Scholar.
Born and raised in Albuquerque, N.M., Herrera credits her parents with instilling in her a deep appreciation for family, core values and principles, and education. She is a first generation college student and the first person on both sides of her family to complete a doctoral degree. She enjoys visiting family and friends, especially during the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta. She also enjoys international travel, community service, cooking, and photography.