Janelle Meyers Ullrich
Vice president of marketing, Adventist Health
Janelle Meyers Ullrich, in reflecting on the dedication of frontline health care workers during the coronavirus pandemic, says she had “never felt more connected to the meaning and purpose of my work that I’m supporting behind the scenes. … I was literally supporting heroes.”
Meyers Ullrich, 34, is the vice president of marketing at Adventist Health, a faith-based nonprofit health care provider with a corporate office in Roseville. Throughout the early pandemic months, Adventist Health faced the great responsibility of being a provider of information as well as health care. The uncertainty of that time had people looking to hospitals for recommendations in navigating the scary, then-new world of COVID-19. Disseminating the right information at the right time, and reaching both current and prospective customers by exclusively digital means became paramount objectives for the marketing department.
As vice president of the 30-person team, she leads marketing strategies that enhance patient experience and promote the visibility of the brand “so the organization can thrive and grow.” Meyers Ullrich’s days are spent building campaigns to reach potential customers within Adventist Health’s markets, which include 22 hospitals and 300 clinics throughout California, Oregon and Hawaii. “A lot of our markets are really rural, and we’re serving the underserved, so it’s really meaningful work,” she says. Meyers Ullrich works from both the corporate office in Roseville and from her home in Lodi.
“I really believe that the greatest investment of time and energy we can make is in growing others.”
Throughout the pandemic, Meyers Ullrich helped develop crucial messaging, like: “Don’t delay your care.” With the stay-at-home order, she says they noticed that many patients were struggling at home with conditions that required treatment. “It came to a point where heart attacks aren’t stopping, strokes aren’t stopping, appendicitis isn’t stopping,” she says. “But we’re not seeing them in the emergency department.” Her team responded by creating messaging to urge people to visit a hospital or clinic for urgent health concerns, and educated the population around virtual visits for non-urgent care. As Adventist markets have opened back up, she says the message has shifted back to the importance of screenings and prevention.
Her current role is her fifth position within the Roseville-based company. Before landing her “dream job” at Adventist Health, Meyers Ullrich grew up in Lodi, earned her bachelor’s in communications studies from Azusa Pacific University in 2008 and then earned her MBA from Pepperdine Graziadio Business School in 2018.
Meyers Ullrich says she likes being part of a changing company, which has grown considerably since she started in 2016. The health system is currently expanding, building programs in communities that address social determinants of health, homelessness and poverty. It also recently acquired Blue Zones, the project that seeks to transform communities by modeling itself after the original Blue Zones — rare longevity hotspots around the world where people are thriving into their 100s.
With each ever-shifting demand of marketing, Meyers Ullrich says she follows the principle of authentic leadership. “To me, that means showing up as my whole, authentic self and leading others in that way. And most of the time, that means being vulnerable, which can be really hard.” Whether it’s speaking her truth to senior leaders and peers with an unpopular opinion, or acknowledging that a situation is not ideal, she says she values the bravery that authenticity requires and seeks to pass on the same leadership style to the people she mentors. “I really believe that the greatest investment of time and energy we can make is in growing others.”
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