Melanie Herrera Bortz
Focus Areas: Access to Care, Behavioral Health, Healthy Children and Adolescents
Melanie’s Colorado roots run deep: she is a proud sixth-generation native. Her favorite region is Zapata Falls in the San Luis Valley, where she grew up, but her dedication to the health of Coloradans reaches every corner of the state.
Melanie is driven by the knowledge that if everyone in Colorado had access to high-quality, culturally responsive, integrated health care — not only would they live happier lives — but the state would spend less of its budget on health care costs. In Melanie’s opinion, that means that the Foundation’s mission is not only value based, but also practical and fiscally responsible.
Before she joined the Foundation in 2015, Melanie worked on health policy and advocacy issues, culminating in the implementation of the Affordable Care Act in Colorado and at the national level. Her entire career has been in the nonprofit sector. She is especially committed to her current work because she is able to work directly with communities to help achieve the Foundation’s mission to improve the health of Coloradans.
Melanie is also passionate about mentoring and leadership in the Latino community. In 1998, she co-founded the Colorado Organization for Latina Opportunity and Reproductive Rights (COLOR). She also started a mentoring program for Latino students at the University of Denver.
Her greatest joy of all is being Philip’s mom and married to her high school sweetheart, Matt. After that, she relishes another kind of domesticity: watching the Bravo “Real Housewives” shows.
BA Psychology — University of Denver
Master of Public Administration, Health Policy — University of Colorado at Denver
Latino Leadership Institute Fellowship, Daniels School of Business — University of Denver