Staff Spotlight: Lori Joubert
Lori grew up in New Orleans, LA during a time when segregation was still pervasive and education opportunities were limited and not well supported. She and her sister were raised by a single mother who didn’t have the opportunity to finish high school in the traditional sense and received her GED.
“My mother was determined to ensure that her children received a better education than she did. I am one of the first generation and first woman to complete post graduate level education at a 4-year accredited University.”
Her mother raised her and her sister with strong core values for honoring the innate gifts of all people in our family/community. “She promoted love, humility, humor and generosity providing me and my sister a path toward abiding authenticity and care for others,” she said.
With the strong foundation provided by their mother, Lori, her sister and eventually her niece all have solid educational backgrounds and built careers in health care to give back to their communities.
Education and background
After her family moved to Texas, Lori finished school and began working in retail. Her position as a retail sales manager then brought her to Atlanta and an opportunity in advertising brought her to Seattle. Lori said, “It was a big move for me to leave Atlanta and much further from my family in Houston.”
She received her AA degree from Seattle Central Community College and later went to the University of Washington for her BA and master’s degrees in speech communication with a focus on interpersonal and organizational communication. She supported herself through school by working in childcare and later as a bank representative for Chase Bank (formerly Washington Mutual), a position that afforded her some flex time to finish her master’s degree.
Once she graduated, she was promoted to a Sr. Administrative Assistant at Chase where she was able to apply her education to her work by teaching listening skill development to her colleagues and managers. It was in this position that she began to volunteer at Harborview Medical Center where her manager was on the Board.
“It was during my time as his assistant that I started to volunteer at Harborview with my peers to support their annual events like the HMC Children’s Holiday Party and Harborview Golf Classic fundraiser,” she said. “I also volunteered for the Jr. Achievement Bowling Classic and AHA Heart Walk during the 11 years I worked at Chase bank.”
After her time at Chase, Lori came to UW Medicine as the executive assistant for the VP of Medical Affairs and Airlift Northwest, finding an opportunity to advance her career as well as use her skills as an administrative professional, community volunteer and communication/listening scholar.
She has been with UW Medicine nearly 16 years, serving in administrative and education positions within the University and the School of Medicine, including her current role within Cardiology for the past 6 years.
Throughout her career, she has completed several master trainer courses and certifications to expand upon her skill set, including: Certified Listening Professional Certificate, Crucial Conversations Train the Trainer Course, Restorative Justice Practice Facilitator Training through UW Health Equity Office and the Center for Ethical Leadership Values-Based-Leadership (VBL) Stewards Program.
Division of Cardiology
In her position as program coordinator in the Division of Cardiology, Lori is responsible for managing administrative activities and program events for the Electrophysiology and Cardiac Imaging Subspecialty Programs across UW Medicine clinical sites.
“We are growing,” she said, “and it’s exciting to learn about new partners at our neighboring sites and learn new ways to bridge our work for the greater good and care of the patient.”
As a member of the division’s administrative team, she contributes to division policies, procedures and operational decision making, serves as a peer resource, collaborates with colleagues in programs within and outside the institution and supports teaching and research activities.
She also utilizes her education and training in listening skill development to facilitate monthly listening circle cafés to build team connection and networking by creating safe spaces for dialogue and connection with our peers and the sharing of resources.
In working with many diverse programs and colleagues, she enjoys finding creative solutions and unifying priorities through streamlined communication and processes.
“I love the teamwork across our departments and programs that builds collaboration, honors our collective diversity and strives to care for the patients we serve and well as the team members that support the academic and clinical needs of the units.”
Lori’s skill and passion for relationship-oriented communication make her an essential partner within the Department and School of Medicine for creating an environment of inclusion and belonging.
She, along with Shinetra Pryor (Gerontology and Geriatric Medicine), is one of the new Bias Navigators within the Department of Medicine Bias Navigator Program. Bias Navigators help to provide a safe space to express concerns, can help to navigate through the resources and options available and provide conflict resolution coaching.
She serves as the Cardiology Staff Diversity Champion on the DOM Diversity Council, and as a Restorative Justice Practices Facilitator for the UW GME Program Director Development Series. She is also a WAG (White Anti-Racist Group) Co-Facilitator through UW Healthcare Equity, a role she says is important to her “to stand in unity with all members of UW Medicine and help sustain an environment of inclusion and belonging.”
She also will be working with the DOM’s Year Up Interns in collaboration with Sean Greenlee and Department staff.
“I’m excited to support the career aspirations for future URM professionals that take an interest in working in health care at UW Medicine.”
There is a lot of art, music and creativity within Lori’s family and together they love bringing people together to share meals and laughter. She will often find ways to either join or bring people together in her local community to share a meal, dance or visit when time allows.
“I can be found attending Freeform Dance at Northgate Community Center on Saturday mornings to connect with our dance community as a way to restore my energy and connect with our larger community after the work week.”
She also writes poetry just for fun, “following the footsteps of my grandmother who also wrote poetry as a hobby.” One of her poems, “The Sound of Trees”, will be published in an upcoming free, digital anthology, The Art of Listening, which will be out later this year. “This will be the first time one of my art hobbies will be shared publicly,” she says.
During summer weekends, she drives up to Acme, WA in Whatcom County where her significant other is spending part of his retirement years building a cabin and retreat space. In true fashion, Lori hopes this will one day serve as another opportunity for bringing people together and community building.
“In the future we hope to invite small groups of friends, family and/or professional colleagues to experience listening in nature retreats,” she said. “We have a mission to help others improve the quality of life by living restoratively in their personal and professional lives.”