About John

Photo Credit: Leo Carmona

John Gilvar founded Gilvar Consulting in 2019 following 20 years of transformational leadership 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.

John’s leadership of Health Care for the Homeless (HCH) programs in both Texas and Washington State have afforded him broad and deep expertise across the health and housing service delivery spectrum. Prior to founding his coaching and consulting business, John served as the administrator of Seattle-King County’s network of three Federally Qualified Health Centers and seven other health care providers developed to integrate behavioral health, physical health, housing, and social services for homeless residents. The Health Care for the Homeless Network (HCHN) serves over 21,000 unduplicated homeless individuals annually with over 450 full-time and part-time providers and a budget of over $25 Million.

John’s success in managing this network and in his prior leadership positions required extensive knowledge of the operational, financial, and policy drivers impacting not only primary care providers, but also hospitals, medical respite programs, substance use disorder providers, community mental health centers, shelters, supportive housing providers, and social services agencies. Under John’s leadership HCHN’s budget grew significantly as did the strength of its community partnerships and influence on public policy.

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 Tacoma, WA 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