Our Team



Matt Staff 2017Matt Slonaker, J.D., Executive Director 
Matt, after a year as Medicaid Policy Director, became UHPP’s Executive Director in September 2013. Matt’s unique background includes growing up on the Flathead Indian Reservation in Montana, working in D.C. and New York City, and marrying a Spaniard! Educated at the University of Montana, Matt took an early interest in policy and government, first studying political science and economics, then going on to complete a law degree. Shortly after law school, Matt joined Governor Brian Schweitzer’s budget team in Helena, MT working as an economist and tax policy analyst.  Washington, DC was the next career stop when Matt began work for Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus.  While serving as nonprofits policy adviser and outreach coordinator, Matt had the opportunity to work on two pieces of landmark legislation: the Affordable Care Act and the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.  Matt went from political staffer to community advocate upon taking a position in New York City at Care for the Homeless.  At Care for the Homeless, he helped coordinate a coalition of providers of health care for the homeless in dealing with vast changes to state Medicaid policy.   When he isn’t chasing his little girl Olaia around stores, parks and other sundry public places, Matt is working hard with his team and partners in the community to develop strategies that strengthen Utah’s health care system. Email: matt@healthpolicyproject.org
Randal Serr, Take Care Utah Director Randal Staff Photo 2017
Randal is the Director of Take Care Utah, a network of nonprofit organizations focused on connecting people to health insurance. He has worked at Utah Health Policy Project for over six years. Randal received a BA in Political Science from BYU and a Master of Public Policy degree from the University of Utah and now co-teaches Family Consumer Health at the U of U in the Spring semester. He also studied Spanish at the University of Valencia, Spain. Before coming to UHPP, he worked with the homeless and low-income populations for three years at Fourth Street Clinic in client services and Central City Community Health Center as anenrollment specialist. Email: randal@healthpolicyproject.org
Stacy Sanford, Health Policy Analyst
Stacy Stanford began volunteering with UHPP in 2014 as an advocate for Medicaid expansion, and came on board as a health policy associate in May of 2017. Stacy received a BA from Westminster College in Disability Justice, a customized degree program combining political science, sociology, and justice studies. Stacy has been active in disability rights for many years, and has organized more than two dozen healthcare-defense events. Before she went back to school, Stacy worked in long-term care as a recreational program director. In her spare time, Stacy enjoys relaxing with her husband and their herd of dogs and cats, cooking, and watching as much college football as possible. Email: stacy@healthpolicyproject.org 




Alyse Horton, Operations Coordinator
Alyse joined UHPP in August of 2016 to manage the organization’s administration, financial, and accounting operations. She is a 2016 graduate of Westminster College with a B.S. in Public Health and a minor in Business. Alyse’s work at UHPP allows her to pursue her goal of working in nonprofit and health administration. In 2016 Alyse was crowned Miss Murray 2017 and has spent the past year promoting her personal platform Use Only as Directed: Prescription Drug Abuse Prevention. In partnership with the Miss America Organization, Alyse has completed over 500 hours of service and prevention education surrounding this important health issue. Email: alyse@healthpolicyproject.org

Luis Rios, Navigator 
Luis Rios is a Navigator and Volunteer Coordinator at UHPP, where he helps individuals and families sign up for health insurance. He first came to UHPP through AmeriCorps in 2013, where he focused on lowering the uninsured rate for Utah children by enrolling them in Medicaid and CHIP as part of United Way of Salt Lake’s Promise Neighborhood program. After his one-year term with AmeriCorps, Luis joined the enrollment team at UHPP as a navigator and volunteer coordinator for Take Care Utah. Luis is one of the most experienced navigators in the state, where he primarily serves Utah’s Hispanic community, while also assisting individuals leaving the criminal justice system. As a volunteer coordinator, Luis organizes students from the University of Utah to assist Take Care Utah with the program’s outreach efforts. Luis is currently a student at the LDS Business College. He and his wife live in Tooele with their three daughters, a dog and three ducks. Email: luis@healthpolicyproject.org
Julie Staff Photo 2017Julie Contreras, Navigator
Julie was born in Chicago, IL, grew up most of her life in Mexico City and for the last 15 years she’s resided in Utah.She has an associate degree in the general education from Salt Lake Community College. She started at UHPP through AmeriCorps in 2014 as a Certified Application Counselor. Because of her desire to empower and inform communities about health issues, she decided to join the UHPP team as a Navigator in 2015 to help and guide the underserved through the lengthy and sometimes complicated process of health insurance enrollment. She is part of a program call Bringing Communities and Clinics Together, this program oversees the low rate of the insurance population in South Salt Lake and Glendale areas. Julie and her four children live in Salt Lake City, Utah. Email: julie@healthpolicyproject.org
Laura Holdrege, CHIP and Medicaid Enrollment Coordinator 
Laura joined UHPP in July 2016 to increase the number of Latino children and families enrolled in healthcare coverage. She supervises a handful of AmeriCorps stationed at various nonprofits in Salt Lake valley who also work to enroll children into health insurance. Since starting, she has established partnerships with organizations throughout Salt Lake County. Laura Graduated from St. Olaf College in Northfield, MN with a major in Social Work and a minor in Management Studies. Most recently, Laura served with AmeriCorps to direct the Read. Graduate. Succeed. program at Roosevelt Elementary School in the Granite School District–managing 125 long-term volunteer tutors. Laura spends her free time volunteering as a Court Appointment Special Advocate (CASA), playing a lot of volleyball, and exploring Utah’s outdoor playground. Fluent in German, Laura also speaks conversational Spanish and French. laura@healthpolicyproject.org
María Guadarrama, Navigator
María was born in Mexico, migrated to the U.S with her family at the age of five. She grew up in Logan, Utah. She graduated from Utah State University with a Global Communications major where she found a passion for the nonprofit sector. Soon after graduating she moved to Salt Lake City where she joined AmeriCorps, in 2015 and served at UHPP as a Certified Application Counselor. After her year of service at UHPP, she joined the Association of Utah Community Health as a Community Health Worker. Her role as a liaison was to assist clients in connecting, listening and advocating for their health. She had the opportunity to become a Community Outreach Coordinator for Molina Healthcare where she strengthened her relationship with organizations and community leaders. Because of her experience and passion with nonprofit organizations María has enrolled at Westminster for her Graduate program in Masters of Arts in Community Leadership (MACL). The program has an amazing focus in civic engagement and grass root projects, both which María is fully committed to learn more of. María has a drive in working with the Latinx community and hopes to continue working in the nonprofit sector. She has joined UHPP again as a Navigator and is excited for her journey in being a part of empowering the community. Email: maria@healthpolicyproject.org
Jude Schmid, NavigatorJude Staff Photo 2017
Jude was born in New York City and has made her home in Utah for the past 30 years.  She has a B.A. from the StateUniversity of New York at Binghamton and a Masters in Business from the University of Utah.  She has worked with underserved and vulnerable populations throughout her career and retired from Salt Lake County government in 2015.  Since that time, she has been working with refugees at the Refugee and Immigrant Center – Asian Association of Utah.  While there  she worked in several capacities as a work readiness ESL coordinator, a neighborhood center assistant and also helped facilitate emergency rental assistance to the refugee population in the community.  She joined UHPP in November 2017 as a Navigator.  When not at work, she enjoys camping, hiking, running and cats. Email: jude@healthpolicyproject.org
Andrea Hoffman, Certified Application Counselor and AmeriCorpsAndi Staff Photo 2017
Andrea (Andi) joined UHPP in October of 2017 to work as a Certified Application Counselor (CAC) through theAmeriCorps program. Andi spent a couple years studying in Hawaii and eventually made it out to Utah to finish her degree at Brigham Young University. She graduated from BYU in 2015 with a bachelor’s of science degree in Public Health and an emphasis in Health Promotion. Before arriving to UHPP, Andi worked and volunteered with the Utah County Health Department, the Ministry of Health in Suva (the capital of Fiji), Sustain Haiti, Wasatch Mental Health and the American Foundation for Suicide. Most recently she returned from living in Bolivia where she became fluent in Spanish. Born and raised in Washington State, Andi loves and staying active through outdoor activities like running, hiking, camping and soccer. Email: andi@healthpolicyproject.org
Rae Esquer, Certified Application Counselor and AmeriCorpsRae Staff Photo 2017
Rae (Rei, Ray, Rey, 霊) joined UHPP in October 2017 as a Certified Application Counselor through the AmeriCorps program. Rae is currently studying video game design at the University of Utah and plans to become a video game programmer and/or translator. He loves to draw, write, and generally be creative. He also enjoys reading and playing video games, watching cartoons, and spending time with his friends. Rae is proud to join a team dedicated to guiding, teaching, and serving his fellow community members because he knows that connecting people to essential resources is very important, but often difficult to obtain. Rae’s dream is to have his own little home with a nontraditional family and network of friends, and just enjoy life. Email: rae@healthpolicyproject.org