The Government Relations department works with policy decision-makers and government officials at the local, state and federal levels to promote the mission of Parkland. They accomplish this in part by maintaining relationships with government organizations and community partners and through public advocacy. They also serve as a conduit for Parkland staff to communicate with state and federal legislative officials.
Parkland’s Government Relations team advocates legislative priorities that save lives, promote a healthier Dallas County and help maintain a safe workplace and health care environment for our patients and staff. To learn more, see Parkland's legislative priorities for the 85th Texas Legislature.
Katherine spent more than 15 years working at the Texas Capitol in both the legislative and executive branches. Prior to joining Parkland, she was an advisor to Governor Rick Perry for health policy for four years. During her tenure, she provided budget and policy recommendations to the Governor on health and human services related issues. She was also responsible for overseeing the policy direction and budgets for the Health and Human Services Commission, Department of Family and Protective Services, Department of Assistive and Rehabilitative Services and the Department of Aging and Disability Services to ensure the dissemination of the Governor’s agenda.
Prior to her work in the Governor’s Office, she was a senior policy analyst for the Senate Committee on Health and Human Services. In that capacity, she advised Chairman Jane Nelson regarding legislative and special issues related to human services and assisted the Chair with the health and human services budget and appropriations decisions in her role on the Senate Finance Committee. In addition, she served as Chief of Staff to former Texas State Rep. Suzanna Hupp of Lampasas.
Katherine received her undergraduate degree in government from the University of Texas at Austin.
Elisa has worked in Government Relations at Parkland since 2012. In her role, Elisa advocates for Parkland’s legislative priorities and educates lawmakers and staff about policy issues affecting essential hospitals. She ensures policy issues relating to Parkland are monitored and managed for legislative agenda building at the federal, state, and county levels. Additionally, she serves as the liaison between Parkland and the Dallas County Commissioners Court. Elisa is a native of San Antonio and has more than nine years of experience in the nonprofit and public sector. She has worked as a Development Assistant for a federally qualified health center, CentroMed, in San Antonio. She also served as the Grant and Special Events Coordinator for American Sunrise- founded by former HUD Secretary Henry Cisneros.
Elisa has a Master of Public Health, with a focus on Management and Administration, from The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston’s School of Public Health-Dallas campus. She also has a Master of Arts in International Relations from St. Mary’s University in San Antonio and a Bachelor of Science from Colorado State University in Fort Collins, Colo.
To learn more about the work Government Relations does on behalf of Parkland, please contact:
Katherine Yoder, Vice President
Elisa Hernández, Public Policy Advisor
Parkland’s Government Relations team is available to speak to your organization on a variety of topics related to the work we do. For more information or to request a speaker, contact the Parkland Speakers Bureau.