Sandra Harris Howard
Sandra Harris HowardSenior Trainer and Facilitator

Sandra Harris Howard, Ph.D.

Sandra Harris Howard, Ph.D., has more than 25 years of experience specializing in addressing issues of equity and inclusion while working with diverse communities on facilitation, qualitative research and nonprofit leadership.

Sandra’s broad expertise includes experience working with African American, Latino, American Indian, and mixed racial and ethnic groups, as well as rural, urban and suburban residents and people of different cultural groups, diversities of incomes, sexual orientations and religions. Her focus has included efforts to eliminate the health disparities disproportionately affecting black and brown communities.

In 2018, working with Rose Community Foundation, Sandra co-designed and facilitated customized executive director training for early-stage leaders of color in Denver. She also recently facilitated a series of sessions with Denver’s Sun Valley community to help it maintain momentum in terms of community safety and crime prevention as its Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grant funding came to an end. Before coming to JVA, Sandra held leadership roles at the YMCA of the USA, Assets for Colorado Youth, Compassion International and the Colorado Governor’s Office—working directly within communities of color and across other underrepresented groups to drive toward shared growth and prosperity. Sandra is also currently a professor in nonprofit administration at Metropolitan State University of Denver.

JVA Experience

Some of Sandra’s other recent engagements for JVA have been the following:

  • Exploring potential earned-income streams for First Children’s Finance through a market analysis and exploration of potential business models and structures. Facilitation of this process provided a high-level assessment of four potential earned-income opportunities.
  • Designing and developing training, a template and a guidebook for corridor management plans for Colorado Byways.
  • Facilitating strategic planning for organizations including the Organization of American Kodály Educators, Denver Indian Health and Family Services, and Almost Home Inc.


Sandra has a bachelor’s degree in biology from Boston University, a master’s degree in human services from Springfield College, and a Ph.D. in human services from Capella University.

Community Involvement

Sandra is a facilitator for the Kingdom Group and a professional development consultant for The Potter’s House of Denver. She recently served as a board member for the House Community Development Corporation and was the ministerial alliance director and taught Christian education at the Rehoboth Apostolic Worship Center.

Fun Fact

Sandra and her husband, Ernie, collectively have eight children and 11 grandchildren.