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Calondra D. Tibbs, MPH

Memphis and Shelby County Health Department

Memphis, TN  38105

 

Biography

Calondra Tibbs received her Bachelors of Science in Health Science Education (BSHSE), with a concentration in Worksite Health Promotion, from the University of Florida in 1999.  Ms. Tibbs later matriculated through the Masters of Public Health program at Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University (FAMU), where she concentrated in Environmental and Occupational Health.  After successfully achieving her MPH Ms. Tibbs worked for the Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals, Office of Public Health, Section of Environmental Epidemiology and Toxicology as a Disease Cluster Investigator.  She then later became the Program Manager/Supervisor for the Louisiana Environmental Public Health Tracking program, looking at creating linkages between environmental and health data.

 

After working for two (2) years with the Louisiana Department of Health, Ms. Tibbs moved to Memphis, Tennessee to join the emergency response and epidemiology team at the Memphis and Shelby County Health Department.  Ms. Tibbs served as the Environmental Epidemiologist for Shelby County, Tennessee for three (3) years where she was responsible for responding to environmental public health threats throughout the county.  Ms. Tibbs now serves as Program Coordinator for the Healthy Start Initiative, as Health Resources and Services Administration program, where she is currently applying her skills in epidemiology, leadership and environmental health to serving high-risk pregnant women and children in Shelby County, Tennessee.

 

Ms. Tibbs is currently enrolled in a PhD in Public Health program, with an emphasis on Epidemiology, at Walden University.  Ms. Tibbs hopes to use her skills in epidemiology, environmental health and leadership to address public health concerns locally, nationally and globally.

Leadership Development Opportunities

As I reflect over the past year, I recognize that this has been a very rewarding experience.  Since starting with the program I have learned a lot about my strengths and weaknesses as a leader.  More importantly, I have learned how to use my strenghts to overcome weaknesses and become a well rounded leader.  As one of the fellows with minimal leadership experience I feel this program has benefited me greatly in that I identified my leadership goals early before developing inappropriate leadership behaviors.  I feel this program, with additional training, has prepared me for the leadership role I currently have and future leadership roles I hope to achieve. 

 

I found this experience very enlightening, and learned that no one trait, skill or behavior will be the making of a leader, but knowing what my individual traits, skills and behaviors are and how to use them can make me a more effective leader.  Since 2000, I have known that I would play a role in environmental health, and it is hard to know exactly what that role will be.  This fellowship has allowed me to see all of the possiblities and understand areas I would need to grow in to be an exceptional leader in the field.   It has been amazing to see the lightbulbs go off in my head, and amongst my classmates, when we learned new theories, processes and procedures to become the leaders of tomorrow’s environmental health workforce. 

 

I plan to use this experience, the people I have connected with, the incredible resources to help advance my career in public health and to address environmental health issues.  The EPHLI coordinators, instructors, and mentors should be commended for putting together a comprehensive program that not only focuses on teaching leadership skills but putting people in touch with their on inherit abilities to be a leader.  Also, a key component of the program which should not be forgotten is the development of partnerships within our communities, whether local, state or national.  The ability to network and collaborate with people in my community has strenghtened public health relationships with our partners.  I feel the program has had a profound affect on how I view leadership now and how others will view leaders advancing through this program in the future.  I can only end with a job well done to all.