Rachel Bowyer

Research and Policy Analyst

I Do This Work Because

I believe there is a great need for evidence-based health policy work. The investment in behavioral health from the recent federal stimulus bills, the COVID-19 pandemic, and the push for evidence-based decision making at the state level (such as SB21-284 Evidence-based Evaluations for Budget) offer an opportunity to establish a strong precedent for data-driven practices that will impact the health of Coloradans for generations to come.

Favorite Quote

“Everyone tells a story about themselves inside their own head. Always. All the time. That story makes you what you are. We build ourselves out of that story.” 
— Patrick Rothfuss

Favorite Place in Colorado

Great Sand Dunes

Hometown Fun Fact

Twin Falls, Idaho, is home to the world's largest yogurt factory and where Evel Knievel attempted to jump over the Snake River on a rocket motorcycle.

Rachel Bower is skilled in quantitative and statistical analysis, data visualization, project design, programming, statistical software, and technical and scientific writing. Her background in astrophysics has honed her skills in quantitative and statistical analysis and gives her a unique ability to assess and understand complex systems. At CHI, she has worked projects that include a roadmap for promoting behavioral health for individuals involved in Colorado's criminal justice system, the Blueprint to End Hunger Data Dashboard, and an analysis of Coloradans' prescription medication needs and affordability challenges.

As a Fellow in the Colorado Science and Engineering Policy Fellowship Program, Rachel worked with Senators Chris Hansen (D) and Bob Rankin (R) on an evidence-based policy proposal for behavioral health needs in criminal justice reform designed to increase funding for alternative-to-police responses, such as co-responders and community response teams. This work involved conducting key informant interviews with stakeholders from local and state government agencies, advocacy nonprofits, and behavioral health providers.

Rachel was previously Lead Teaching Assistant at the Center for Teaching and Learning at University of Colorado Boulder and Director of the university's Multiculturalism at the Observatory Outreach Program, where she won a grant to establish bilingual English and Spanish outreach programs for the Sommers-Bausch Observatory. In this role, she led a team that developed and promoted public outreach events to teach astronomy and raise awareness of the achievements of Latin American astronomers. As a graduate student, she also led a team of professors and accessibility experts across the university to redesign astronomy laboratory curriculum to be more inclusive for students with disabilities. 

She holds a master's in astrophysical and planetary sciences from CU Boulder and a bachelor's in astrophysics from Rice University.

When not studying, Rachel enjoys whitewater rafting, hiking, cross-stitch, and taking her dog, Fawn, to the dog park.

Skills: quantitative and statistical analysis, data visualization, project design, programming, statistical software, technical and scientific writing, grant writing, presenting, and public speaking

Focus Areas:

  • Behavioral Health
  • Health Policy
  • Criminal Justice Reform
  • Health Equity

Sample Projects:

Contact Rachel