Heather Britt portrait

Wilder welcomes Dr. Heather Britt as next executive director of Wilder Research


The Amherst H. Wilder Foundation is pleased to announce that Dr. Heather Britt will join the organization as executive director of Wilder Research effective June 13.

As the independent, nationally recognized research unit of the Wilder Foundation, Wilder Research partners with nonprofits, communities, government agencies, and policymakers across Minnesota and the country to provide them with the information they need to understand issues and develop data-informed solutions. In her role as executive director, Britt will guide the work of Wilder Research in support of Wilder’s mission to uplift people, families, and communities in Saint Paul and beyond.

“We’re thrilled to have Heather join our team,” says Wilder President and CEO Armando Camacho. “Our community will benefit from her experience as a researcher, investigator, and leader, as well as her close ties to Saint Paul. I’m excited to work with her to expand Wilder Research’s capacity to help organizations and communities achieve their goals and improve lives.”

Britt has 25 years of experience in applied research focused on public health, health equity, and education. She comes to Wilder from Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Minnesota, where she helped evolve analytics and data teams toward improved service delivery. She has held research and leadership positions at the Minnesota Hospital Association, Allina Health, the Minnesota Department of Education, and the Urban Coalition. She holds a bachelor’s degree in biology from Cornell University, a master’s degree in public health from the University of North Carolina, and a doctorate in epidemiology from the University of Minnesota.

“I have admired the Wilder Foundation for years, both as a researcher interested in community health and as a longtime resident of Saint Paul,” says Britt. “This role is an opportunity for me to combine my professional experience with my personal value of community service. I believe in Wilder Research’s purpose to turn information into impact, and I can’t wait to contribute to the life-changing work of the foundation.”

Britt succeeds Dr. Paul Mattessich, who has served as Wilder Research’s executive director for 40 years. During his tenure, Wilder Research became a nationally renowned research practice and expanded from a group of 12 people to more than 80 staff members dedicated to applied research and evaluation.

“I’m honored to build on the legacy Paul and the amazing Wilder Research team have established,” says Britt. “I look forward to working with staff, partners and community members to shed light on the most important issues we face so we can develop solutions together.”