President, Institute for Climate and Peace
Kealoha Fox is a Kānaka Maoli from Hawaii who aims to apply a deep understanding of climate injustice, health disparities and ancient Indigenous culture to modernize the U.S. healthcare system.
She began her career in public school-based behavioral health programs and underwent clinical training at a community health center in Waianae, Hawaii. She spent nearly 10 years working for the state Office of Hawaiian Affairs, followed by a five-year stint at the Obama Foundation, before committing to the healthcare industry.
Fox is senior manager of social health integration at AlohaCare, a health insurance company with 85,000 Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries in Hawaii. She is also the president of the Institute for Climate and Peace, a think tank focused on long-term solutions to the global climate crisis that engages researchers, policy experts, Indigenous elders and business leaders.
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“Climate change is one of the greatest public health threats of our time. And so while I work on more near-term solutions, like making sure people get their Medicaid and Medicare coverage, I volunteer and ensure that my time is also looking at those systems changes that will, for better or for worse, change entire generations,” Fox said.
At AlohaCare, Fox leads efforts to integrate behavioral health and social services into benefit design and oversees programs for 15,000 Native Hawaiian Medicaid beneficiaries. She has secured state and federal approval to cover traditional Native Hawaiian healing practices through Medicaid, along with creating other initiatives for this population.