John leverages over 25 years of public service focused on reducing inequities in health and housing as well as extensive training and experience as a professional coach to support change agents working in many roles and sectors.

Photo Credit: Leo Carmona

He founded Gilvar Consulting in 2019 following a long career working for change at the intersection of community healthcare, housing, homeless services, and Public Health. John’s coaching and consultation work supports change agents in all these fields and others. His approach focuses on bridging a commitment to equity with a leadership path centered on service, bravery, and care for team members and clients alike.

Prior to founding his coaching and consulting business, John served as the administrator of Seattle-King County’s Health Care for the Homeless Network (HCHN).  Comprised of three Federally Qualified Health Centers and seven other agencies, HCHN was developed to integrate behavioral health, physical health, housing, and social services for homeless residents. It serves over 21,000 unduplicated homeless individuals annually with over 450 healthcare providers teamed with outreach, case management, social work, care coordination, and navigation professionals.  John’s leadership of HCHN and other Health Care for the Homeless (HCH) programs in Washington State and Texas have afforded him broad and deep expertise across the health and housing service delivery continuum.

In addition to community health center management skills, John’s success in his various leadership positions required extensive knowledge of the operational, financial, and policy drivers impacting an array of community partners, including hospitals, medical respite programs, substance use disorder providers, community mental health centers, shelters, supportive housing providers, and social services agencies.  His many successful efforts to expand the revenue and scope of his health center’s programs built upon and accelerated his work to strengthen community partnerships and integrate physical health, behavioral health, and housing services.

John holds a BA from Georgetown University and an MA from the University of Texas at Austin. A proud parent of two grown children, he lives in Baltimore, MD with his wife Kate.

Presentations On Health And Housing Equity


Reaching Underserved Populations Through Mobile Health Care: Lessons Learned From the Field, Health Outreach Partners, 2012

Health Centers & Managed Care Organizations: Working Together to Meet the Health Care Needs of Those Experiencing Homelessness, Association for Community Affiliated Plans, 2015

Strategies to Increase Outreach to Homeless Populations: County Experiences with Medicaid Expansion, RTI International, 2015

Homelessness as a State of Emergency, National Alliance to End Homelessness, 2015

Healthcare and Housing – Creating a Floor for Optimum Health, Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), 2016


Collaborative Leadership Techniques for HCH Executives, 2009

Taking Integrated Behavioral Health Care to the Streets, 2011

Testing Assumptions about Medicaid Expansion and Access to Care for Previously Uninsured Homeless Patients with Complex
Needs, 2015

Homeless State of Emergency Declarations, 2016

A seat at the table: Influencing state health care delivery system reforms & aligning internal HCH operations, 2016

The Best (and Worst) of Both Worlds — Public Entity HCH Programs, 2018

Expanding Access to Housing & Health Care Through Policy & Community Collaborations, 2018

People Living in Encampments, Streets, and Vehicles: Three Municipal Policies and the Public Response, 2019