Dr. Paris Thomas is the Executive Director of Equal Hope where she oversees Equal Hope’s strategic vision and leads business decisions to increase Equal Hope’s community reach and impact. Paris is a Chicago native with experience in promoting health equity through health system transformation and improvement. Paris is a health and racial equity leader and researcher whose work focuses on promoting health through intersectionality to eliminate disparities for historically marginalized communities through culturally competent interventions. Her passion for health equity is motivated by her family’s experiences with the healthcare system and the role it has played on their health outcomes.
Paris’ career has focused on leading community-focused health efforts to develop innovative strategies to improve access to care for under-resourced communities. Paris earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Physiology from Grand Valley State University, a Master of Science Degree in Public Health Education from the University of Cincinnati, and a PhD in Health & Human Sciences from Northern Illinois University. Her dissertation explored the lived experience of high-risk Black men exposed to community violence in Chicago and their health challenges and behaviors in highly violent communities.