Wasilla, Alaska – The Mat-Su Health Foundation (MSHF) has announced the hiring of three new staff members and the promotion of another. The new hires are Ashley Peltier as director of Connect Mat-Su, Brian Tiefenbrun as Connect Mat-Su community resource specialist, and Kailey Gamble as communications specialist. Kathryn Swartz is being promoted into the position of Healthy Aging program officer.

In her role as director of Connect Mat-Su, Peltier leads a team utilizing partnerships and technology to ensure delivery of quality, warm, and responsive customer service to meet individual information and referral (I&R) needs and facilitate connections to service providers. She was previously director of health promotion for the American Lung Association in Alaska. Peltier earned a master’s degree in sociology from the University of North Dakota.

Tiefenbrun joins MSHF as the Connect Mat-Su community resource specialist. In this role he serves as the first point of contact for Connect Mat-Su, providing resource navigation and referral tailored to individual needs. He spent the past two years as an investigator for the Office of Children’s Services where he focused on clients struggling with trauma and substance abuse. Tiefenbrun is a veteran of the U.S. Army and has also worked at North Star Behavioral Health. He earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in psychology from American Military University.

As communications specialist, Gamble works to support the foundation’s strategic communication initiatives in order to advance the foundation’s mission. She came to the foundation from the University of Alaska Anchorage where she served as communications specialist and managed the public relations, marketing, editorial and social media facets of the College of Business and Public Policy. Gamble holds a master’s degree in public relations and marketing from the University of Denver and a bachelor’s degree in English from Western Washington University.

As the new program officer for the Healthy Aging focus area, Swartz’s responsibilities will include reviewing and approving funding recommendations; providing project and grantee technical assistance; and interacting with other grant-makers, not-for-profit leaders and public and private stake holders whose work intersects with that of the foundation. She has been with the foundation for more than three years in the role of special assistant to the CEO and board liaison. She begins her new position on May 4, 2020. Swartz previously worked for the World Bank providing operational support to development projects and performing research and writing. She earned a Master of Arts degree in international development studies and anthropology from George Washington University and a Bachelor of Arts in sociology/anthropology and Spanish from Kalamazoo College.


Mat-Su Health Foundation (MSHF) is the official business name of Valley Hospital Association, Inc., which shares ownership in Mat-Su Regional Medical Center. In this capacity, MSHF board members and representatives actively participate in the governance of Mat-Su’s community hospital to protect the community’s interest in this important healthcare institution. The MSHF mission is to improve the health and wellness of Alaskans living in the Mat-Su and the tools it uses include grantmaking, convening of local partners, and policy change. The foundation’s work has resulted in significant improvements in systems that support the health of Mat-Su residents in areas such as behavioral health, child welfare, crisis response, community connections, workforce development, transportation, housing, and senior services. More information is available at .