Shannon Breitzman is an agile public health professional with expertise in marijuana legalization, opioid abuse, injury and violence prevention, and behavioral health promotion. Trained in collective impact and lean facilitation methods, Shannon has a collaborative approach. She bridges mindsets and jurisdictions, crafting solutions to address shared risk and protective factors across multiple public health issues.
Shannon coordinated the development and implementation of statewide violence and injury, mental health, and substance abuse prevention and intervention initiatives for the Colorado Department of Public Health for 15 years. As branch chief, she led the development of the nation’s first state retail marijuana education and prevention program and campaign, now an award-winning national model. Shannon understands the complexities of legalizing recreational marijuana and how to proactively mitigate potential post-legalization outcomes.
Stakeholder engagement is a specialty. Shannon rallied human services, healthcare, business and education partners statewide to embrace a child abuse prevention project that changed the paradigm from intervening with troubled families to building strong families through system and policy change. She brought together law enforcement, treatment and public health officials with previously divergent points of view to develop a coordinated plan to counter the state’s growing heroin epidemic.
An accomplished grant writer with a 90 percent success rate, Shannon generated more than $20 million in federal and foundation funding to advance state public health education and prevention programs in Colorado. She has conducted focus groups and supervised large scale public health data collection and surveillance projects, researching child fatality, sexual violence, youth suicide and men’s mental health.
Shannon has two master’s degrees from Notre Dame de Namur University in California and a bachelor’s degree from the University of the Pacific.
The mother of four young boys, Shannon spends her “free time” in gyms or at baseball fields, or driving to gyms and baseball fields.