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WHA Leadership Academy

Educate. Motivate. Succeed.

“Angelina did a great job and the class was just what I needed at the right time. Thank you!”

– Brian Heersink, IT Director for San Luis Valley Health 

About Leadership Academy

It can be challenging to ensure quality training for healthcare leaders in our rural communities. Often times staff will have to travel far for expensive classes while managing their very busy schedules.

Western Healthcare Alliance (WHA) has been bringing healthcare leadership education to its members for over 10 years. We listen and respond by providing leading experts in relevant topics for today’s healthcare leader.

The WHA Leadership Academy focuses on different areas geared toward improving performance and motivating staff to be the best they can be. Classes are based on member feedback and suggestions.

Who should attend? Newly appointed managers or existing managers with leadership/ performance goals, individuals with a demonstrated long-term commitment to their organization, individuals with high potential for future leadership roles, and existing managers looking to hone their skills or re-energize their role in the workplace. Featuring in-person classes in Grand Junction, onsite custom classes at your facility and webinar sessions, WHA’s Leadership Academy is guaranteed to take your leadership skills to the next level.


Bobbie Orchard
Marketing & Program Development Director
Email Bobbie

Class Booklet

Leadership Academy Portal

Custom Workshops

Taught by Angelina Salazar, Chief Executive Officer of WHA

Learn more about Angelina Salazar

Do you have a need for onsite education, customized just for your team? WHA can help! We now offer the following classes onsite at your facility. If you have any questions or would like to discuss hosting a class, please contact Bobbie Orchard at

Reality-Based Leadership Philosophy – Ditching the Drama & Turning Excuses into Results

The Reality-Based Leadership Program is founded through research which proved that a tremendous hit to any organization’s bottom line is waste – more specifically, the emotional waste of drama. Emotional waste shows itself as resistance to change, entitlement mentalities, complaints about workload, over-dependence upon management, lack of nimbleness and adaptation, and using circumstances or the environment as excuses for missed goals.

Emotional waste erodes business cases for new implementations, slows growth of organizations, and drains much of the margin on even the best business concept. And yet, most financially-minded leaders and investors ignore the incredible opportunity to reduce emotional expenses in favor of more concrete reductions in spending on expenses.

As with any waste, the best way to reduce that waste is through implementing great processes and engaging great people. Reality-Based Leadership provides leaders with the competencies necessary to change the mindsets of their teams, teach great mental processes that eliminate emotional waste of drama while ensuring top engagement and accountability. This philosophy isn’t just about raising morale, but about turning talent into productivity. The philosophy truly captures the value that leaders can bring to the organization and ensures that value is visible throughout the organization.

The learning objectives of the Reality-Based Leadership Program offerings are to help leaders become fluent in proven techniques and strategies to:

  • Conserve team energy and direct leadership resources to issues with the highest possible ROI
  • Reduce stress and conflict in their own life and the lives of their teams
  • Enhance engagement and accountability of human resources
  • Utilize development opportunities to enhance the capabilities of their talent
  • Avoid the most common things leaders do to create barriers to their own change efforts
  • Understand the new employee value equation – the way in which employees truly add value in the workplace
  • Understand and be able to use a new metric for assessing talent based upon the value the employee adds to the organization as a whole, including emotional expensiveness
  • Enhance the leaders’ ability to hire, coach and reward those who can truly impact the mission of the business
  • Learn simple yet powerful strategies to help employees move from a mentality of learned helplessness to personal accountability
  • Understand the key elements of development and coaching along with many strategies for fast-tracking the development of future and diverse leaders
  • Build a performance expectation of “thrivability” for each employee
  • Gain fluency in strategies to rally teams to align willingly to organizational goals
  • Learn to utilize a variety of Fast Track tools of to move through resistance and begin problem-solving

Leading Change When Change is Tough

Change. The mere mention of the word can cause some to feel uncomfortable. Resistance can be seen in the manager who procrastinates, or the stressed-out employee who keeps adding more to his plate. An effective leader must take on the challenge of change with skill and a sense of humor. This workshop brings together best practices from John Kotter, a leader in organizational change, as well as the work of Chip Heath and Dan Heath, whose research highlights the impact of the rational and emotional sides of our brain and how they must come together for change to occur. Through interactive exercises, participants will learn about the components of change, how to diagnose problems in a change effort, understand the emotional and rational sides of the brain and develop a plan to ensure an intended change endures.

Participants will learn to do the following:

  1. Identify Kotter’s eight key areas of change: Explore a sense of urgency, form powerful guiding coalitions, create a vision, communicate that vision, empower others to act on the vision, plan for short-term wins, consolidate improvements and keep the momentum for change moving, and institutionalize new approaches.
  2. Diagnose problems in a change effort you are currently undergoing to bring about the right solution
  3. Understand the role of the emotional and rational sides of the brain in change and how both must be engaged to be successful
  4. Create a plan to turn your change effort into something that lasts

Managing Conflict: Skillful Conversations to Build Trust

Do you struggle to manage your frustration or avoid difficult conversations entirely? Do you know how to effectively reach a resolution when approaching a conflict? This workshop focuses on common challenges people have with communication: being assertive, speaking with clarity, managing emotions, reflective listening, body language, recognizing “triangulation”, and communicating with different ‘conflict styles’. After this course, participants will have a solid foundation to demonstrate assertive communication and ensure that they get their message across in a confident and professional manner.

Participants will learn to do the following:

  1. Self-assess for discovering your natural “conflict style”, exposing you to potential new styles for different situations
  2. Recognize “triangulation’’ and how to avoid it
  3. Implement tools to improve “A-to-B’’ communication
  4. Help others improve their conflict resolution results

Mind Matters: How Perceptions Impact Success

Your subconscious holds the beliefs or programs that ultimately create the reality that you live every day. Do you look outside of yourself to explain what’s wrong with your life? Would you like to increase your confidence, improve your communication, handle conflict, dispel anxious feelings, create rapport with others, understand and use body language, and overall, be more effective in your life? Change the program and you change the result. Learn how to view yourself from the outside in and use your perceptions to be a conscious leader.

Participants will learn to do the following:

  1. Learn how the conscious and subconscious mind work
  2. Learn how perceptions are formed
  3. Obtain tools to examine and reprogram areas of your life where you want change
  4. Determine your work values to better create a successful environment

Angelina Salazar, MA
Chief Executive Officer

Angelina is the Chief Executive Officer of WHA and its affiliated companies, Healthcare Management and the Community Care Alliance.  Working with the Board of Directors, key stakeholders, and the executive management team, she establishes long-range goals, strategies, plans, and policies for the overall benefit of rural healthcare in Colorado and eastern Utah.  She joined the WHA team in May, 2016 to strengthen and lead the marketing and communications programs. In January 2019 she was named CEO after stepping into the interim role in July 2018.

Angelina started her career in education quickly advancing her role from Outreach Coordinator to Regional Development Director for a national nonprofit.  After many years of developing programming and support, Angelina was recruited into the realm of healthcare. She started in marketing for a Critical Access Hospital in western Colorado, quickly advanced to Director of Customer Service, Marketing, Community Relations, and Development.  Before leaving the hospital to join WHA, she held the executive position of Vice President of Business Development.  In that role, she oversaw all communications, volunteers, marketing, physician services and identified business development opportunities.  She established and implemented the infrastructure to support the organization through state and federal grants, fundraising events, and the establishment of a foundation.

In addition, Angelina is active in her community having served as both board and committee member for several local nonprofit entities including Marillac Clinic, United Way, Riverside Education Center, Rotary and the Grand Junction Economic Partnership.  Her dedication to solving rural healthcare challenges and building strong relationships in the community have helped to build visibility, impact and financial stability.

Angelina possesses a Bachelor of Arts Degree in English with a minor in Spanish, two Master of Arts Degrees in Language Acquisition and Psychology as well as a certification in mediation and conflict resolution.