James E. Bloyd, M.P.H., is a member of a team responsible for leading a community health improvement and planning process at Cook County Department of Public Health. He has worked in local public health departments in Los Angeles County, California, and in Lake and Cook Counties in Illinois. His background includes work in tobacco prevention, school health, prevention and treatment of sexually transmitted infections, health equity, and collaborative staff development. In 2009, Mr. Bloyd was chair of the Food and Nutrition Section of the Illinois Public Health Association. He is presently a member of the School Network of the Illinois Caucus for Adolescent Health and a fellow in the Public Health and Equity Cohort of Human Impact Partners. He is a member of the Health Equity & Social Justice Strategic Direction Team of the National Association of County and City Health Officials. In 2011, he presented “A Strategic Assessment of the Illinois Fresh Food Fund: Working Towards an Ideal National Initiative” at the 139th Annual Meeting of the American Public Health Association. Mr. Bloyd was drawn to public health because of its underlying value of social justice. He is committed to eliminating large and unfair health inequities by building strong relationships between public health and residents of communities of color and low-income communities. He holds a degree in Spanish from San Francisco State University and an M.P.H. from the University of California, Los Angeles, which he received in 1990. He is writing his dissertation for the Dr.P.H. degree at the University of Illinois School of Public Health.
Melissa Lim Brodowski, Ph.D., M.S.W., M.P.H., is currently on detail as acting senior advisor for policy and outreach with the Office of the Surgeon General (OSG) at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). In this role, she supports the implementation of the National Prevention Strategy and other related OSG initiatives. Prior to this assignment, she was a senior child welfare program specialist at the Children’s Bureau within the Administration for Children and Families at HHS. She has overseen several grant programs, technical assistance, and research and evaluation activities related to early childhood, prevention, and child welfare services, and supported various federal and nonfederal interagency initiatives. Dr. Brodowski has more than 22 years of experience working in the field of child welfare and human services at the local and national levels. She received her master’s degrees in social welfare and public health from the University of California, Berkeley, and her Ph.D. from the University of Maryland, Baltimore, School of Social Work.
Marna Canterbury, M.S., R.D., is director of community health at Lakeview Health Foundation. She brings more than 25 years of experience in community health leadership, nutrition programs, and health message design to her leadership role with the Lakeview Health Foundation, part of the HealthPartners family of care in Minneapolis, Minnesota. As director of community health, Ms. Canterbury leads the development, implementation, and evaluation of PowerUp, a long-term, community-wide initiative designed to make better eating and physical activity easy, fun, and popular so that youth can reach their full potential. She works in partnership with multiple community stakeholders through numerous community health advisory groups and collaboratives. Ms. Canterbury also provides leadership for Lakeview’s Community Health Needs Assessment and Implementation Plan. Her previous experience includes leadership and development of health improvement efforts for health plans, clinics, nonprofits, schools, hunger relief organizations, and chronic disease prevention. Her previous roles also include community nutrition manager at HealthPartners, executive director of United Way, health communications consultant for the General Mills Foundation, and senior wellness consultant at UCare Minnesota. Ms. Canterbury received her bachelor’s degree in nutrition and biology from Concordia College in Moorhead, Minnesota, and completed her training as a registered dietitian at the University of Iowa. She received her master’s degree in community health from Minnesota State University, Mankato.
Debbie I. Chang, M.P.H., is enterprise vice president of policy and prevention and a corporate officer for Nemours, an operating foundation focused on children’s health and health care. Nemours is a founding member of the
Partnership for a Healthier America and the National Convergence Partnership, a unique collaboration of leading foundations focused on healthy people and healthy places. Ms. Chang works to leverage Nemours’ expertise and experience to spread what works through national policy and practice changes to improve the health and well-being of children nationwide. She co-directs Moving Health Care Upstream, a national collaborative network whose mission is to test, develop, and spread innovative population health strategies. She was founding executive director of Nemours Health & Prevention Services, an operating division devoted to using a comprehensive multisector, place-based model to improve children’s health in Delaware. Ms. Chang serves on the Institute of Medicine’s (IOM’s) Board on Children, Youth, and Families and the IOM Roundtables on Population Health Improvement and on Obesity Solutions, the University of Michigan Griffith Leadership Center Board, and the Winter Park Health Foundation Board. She has more than 27 years of federal and state government and private sector experience in the health field. She has held key government positions including deputy secretary of health care financing at the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, with oversight for Maryland’s Medicaid program and national director of the State Children’s Health Insurance Program (SCHIP) when it was first implemented in 1997 at HHS. Her work on population health, child health systems transformation, Medicaid, SCHIP, and Nemours’ prevention-oriented health system including its Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Pioneering Innovation award-winning statewide childhood obesity program has been widely published. Ms. Chang holds a master’s degree in public health policy and administration from the University of Michigan and a bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
Susan B. Damour, was appointed regional administrator for the U.S. General Services Administration’s (GSA’s) Rocky Mountain region, effective October 26, 2009. As regional administrator, she oversees all of GSA’s activities in Colorado, Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Utah, and Wyoming, including management of federal real estate and a wide range of acquisition support. She is responsible for an inventory of 165 government-owned buildings and 491 active leased buildings that house nearly 50,000 federal employees. More than $350 million in procurements, primarily for the U.S. Department of Defense, pass through her region every year. In her current role, Ms. Damour serves as GSA’s representative on the President’s National Prevention Council, an organization comprising 20 federal agencies that promotes wellness nationwide. She is a founding member of the West Metro Sustainability Partnership, a collaborative effort dedicated to sharing sustainable practices throughout the community. Participating organizations include GSA, the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Renew-
able Energy Laboratory, the City of Lakewood, and Red Rocks Community College. Previously, Ms. Damour served as regional administrator for the Rocky Mountain region from 1998 to 2001, at which time she helped coordinate the then-largest wind energy purchase by federal agencies to celebrate the 30th anniversary of Earth Day. Before returning to GSA this time, she worked with the Rocky Mountain Climate Organization, where she led stakeholder outreach and expanded statewide membership as director of outreach. Ms. Damour holds a bachelor’s degree in liberal arts from Colorado Woman’s College.
William (Bill) H. Dietz, M.D., Ph.D., is a consultant to the IOM Roundtable on Obesity Solutions and director of the Sumner M. Redstone Global Center on Prevention and Wellness at the Milken Institute School of Public Health at George Washington University. He was director of the Division of Nutrition, Physical Activity, and Obesity in the Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion at the CDC from 1997 to 2012. Prior to his appointment to the CDC, he was a professor of pediatrics at the Tuft’s University School of Medicine and director of clinical nutrition at the Floating Hospital of New England Medical Center Hospitals. Dr. Dietz has been a councilor and president of the American Society for Clinical Nutrition and president of the North American Association for the Study of Obesity. From 2001 to 2003, he served as a member of the Advisory Board to the Institute of Nutrition, Metabolism, and Diabetes of the Canadian Institutes for Health Research. Dr. Dietz has received numerous awards and honors, including the William G. Anderson Award from the American Alliance for Health, Physical Education, Recreation, and Dance, as well as recognition for excellence in his work and advocacy by the Association of State and Territorial Public Health Nutrition Directors (2000); honorary membership in the American Dietetic Association and the Holroyd-Sherry Award for his outstanding contributions to the field of children, adolescents, and the media (2002); the George Bray Founders Award from the North American Association for the Study of Obesity (2005); the Nutrition Award from the American Academy of Pediatrics for outstanding research related to nutrition of infants and children (2006); the Oded Bar-Or Award from the Obesity Society for excellence in pediatric obesity research (2008); and a Special Recognition Award from the American Academy of Pediatrics’ Provisional Section on Obesity and the Outstanding Achievement Award from the Georgia Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics (2012). Dr. Dietz is the author of more than 200 publications in the scientific literature and the editor of 5 books, including Clinical Obesity in Adults and Children, and Nutrition: What Every Parent Needs to Know. He received his B.A. from Wesleyan University in 1966 and his M.D. from the University of Pennsylvania in 1970. After completing his residency at Upstate
Medical Center, he received a Ph.D. in nutritional biochemistry from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Dr. Dietz is a member of the IOM.
Mary Beth French, M.Ed., is a physical educator and district physical education and health content chair for the Christina School District in Delaware. She is currently vice president of physical education for the Delaware Association for Health, Physical Education, Recreation, and Dance (DAHPERD) and is in her third year chairing the DAHPERD State Conference Planning Committee. She continues to serve on the Christina School District Wellness Committee while also chairing the Wellness Committee of her school, Brader Elementary. Brader is in its sixth year of participating in Nemours Health & Prevention Services’ (NHPS’s) Make School a Moving Experience. Brader Elementary has been awarded the Delaware State Pilot Program, Safe Routes to School Grant. It was recognized by the Alliance for a Healthier Generation, Edith Vincent Award Committee and received the Healthier U.S. Schools Challenge Award for its work in creating a healthy school environment for its students. Ms. French earned a B.S. degree in physical education at the University of Delaware and an M.S. degree in curriculum and instruction at McDaniel College.
David D. Fukuzawa, M.Div., M.S.A., is program director for health at The Kresge Foundation. Mr. Fukuzawa has more than 20 years of experience in philanthropy, with a special focus on vulnerable children and youth. His experience as a youth worker and community organizer in Detroit and Chicago taught him that health and well-being are profoundly affected by the condition of the communities, schools, and environments in which people live. Those lessons have informed the efforts he has led to re-envision and redesign Kresge’s approach to health grantmaking. In 2002, Mr. Fukuzawa helped develop and then manage the Special Opportunities Initiative. This initiative focused on building the capacity of high-impact organizations that reached underserved populations but were uncompetitive in Kresge’s bricks-and-mortar challenge program. From 1990 to 1999, Mr. Fukuzawa was a program officer at The Skillman Foundation in Detroit, where he focused on child and youth health. He was responsible for a major initiative addressing the lack of safe and accessible out-of-school opportunities for Detroit youth, a major factor in the city’s high incidence of violence, delinquency, substance abuse, and teen pregnancy. He also helped develop Michigan’s first statewide childhood immunization registry. Before his career in philanthropy, Mr. Fukuzawa served as director of human needs at New Detroit, Inc. (NDI), where he was responsible for policy analysis and development, particularly in the areas of welfare reform and health care reform. He drafted NDI’s policy statement for health care reform and was NDI’s liaison to the Michigan Legislature regarding liability/tort
reform and its effect on physicians in Detroit. Mr. Fukuzawa also administered a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation grant that established the first school-based health centers in the Detroit public schools. A Yale University graduate, he also holds a master of divinity degree from Catholic Theological Union in Chicago and an M.S. degree in administration from Central Michigan University.
Sue Hedlund, P.H.N., M.A.L., retired in June 2014 as deputy director of the Washington County Department of Public Health and Environment, Stillwater, Minnesota. She is a current member of the Lakeview Foundation Board and chair of its Health and Wellness Committee. Ms. Hedlund has 31 years of experience in local governmental public health work as a public health nurse and administrator. She holds a degree in nursing from Gustavus Adolphus College, St. Peter, Minnesota, and an M.A. degree in leadership from Augsburg College, Minneapolis, Minnesota.
Donald Hinkle-Brown is president and CEO of The Reinvestment Fund (TRF), a national leader in rebuilding America’s distressed towns and cities through the innovative use of capital and information. With more than 20 years of experience in the Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFI) industry, Mr. Hinkle-Brown is widely recognized as an expert in developing new programmatic initiatives, raising capital, and creating new products to meet market demand. He previously served as president of community investments and capital markets at TRF, leading the Fund’s lending during a period in which it lent or invested more than $1.3 billion. Mr. Hinkle-Brown also has provided his underwriting and capitalization expertise to many community development loan funds and organizations, including the Hope Enterprise Corporation, Opportunity Finance Network, and the Low-Income Investment Fund, and as adjunct faculty at the Center for Urban Redevelopment Excellence at the University of Pennsylvania and University of New Orleans. He serves as the Community Development Trust’s founding board member and until recently was on the board of the Housing Partnership Network and its affiliated CDFI. Mr. Hinkle-Brown also has served as adjunct faculty in Temple University’s Geography and Urban Studies program and the University of Pennsylvania’s City Planning department. He holds an M.B.A. in real estate and urban planning from the Fox School at Temple University, as well as a B.A. in economics.
Jeff Holt has been involved in economic and community development for more than 20 years. His past accomplishments include financing, contract management, and construction management for two community health facilities, totaling $7.5 million. He has been project lead in the creation of a multi-million dollar housing site, designed and created from 300 acres of
farm land. Mr. Holt is responsible for annual funding for road projects in excess of $1 million annually. He is also active in economic relations with Canada. He was appointed by the governor of Michigan to a Workforce Investment Board. Mr. Holt serves as chairman of the Sault Ste. Marie Economic Development Commission and the Eastern U.P. Dispute Resolution Center as a state-certified mediator. He is a board officer for Michigan Works and for the Eastern Upper Peninsula Planning Commission, as well as a board advisor for the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Farm Service Agency.
Shannon Laing, M.S.W., is program coordinator for Tribal Health and Wellness in the Center for Healthy Communities at the Michigan Public Health Institute. Over the past 10 years, she has designed and coordinated more than 25 projects with tribal communities. Her work focuses primarily on supporting tribes and tribal organizations carrying out community health assessment, population health surveillance, community health improvement, and culturally tailored evidence-based interventions through community-based and participatory evaluation, training, technical assistance, and facilitation. Currently, Ms. Laing serves as local evaluation team lead for multiple tribal organizations working on CDC-funded projects implementing policy, systems, and environmental change interventions to improve community health. She is also project coordinator for a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Public Health Services and Systems research study exploring the organization and capacity of tribal public health systems. Ms. Laing holds a master of social work degree in organizational and community practice from Michigan State University. She is trained and experienced in applying technology of participation facilitation methods and strategic planning through the Institute of Cultural Affairs.
Jeffrey Levi, Ph.D., is executive director of the Trust for America’s Health (TFAH), where he leads the organization’s advocacy efforts on behalf of a modernized public health system. He oversees TFAH’s work on a range of public health policy issues, including implementation of the public health provisions of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) and annual reports assessing the nation’s public health preparedness, investment in public health infrastructure, and response to chronic diseases such as obesity. TFAH led the public health community’s efforts to enact, and now defend, the prevention provisions of the ACA, including the Prevention and Public Health Fund and the new Community Transformation Grants. In January 2011, President Obama appointed Dr. Levi to serve as a member of the Advisory Group on Prevention, Health Promotion, and Integrative and Public Health, which he chairs. Dr. Levi is also professor of health policy in George Washington University’s School of Public Health, where his research
has focused on HIV/AIDS, Medicaid, and integration of public health with the health care delivery system. In the past, he has served as associate editor of the American Journal of Public Health and deputy director of the White House Office of National AIDS Policy. Beginning in the early 1980s, he held various leadership positions in the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender and HIV communities, helping to frame the early response to the HIV epidemic. Dr. Levi received a B.A. from Oberlin College, an M.A. from Cornell University, and a Ph.D. from George Washington University.
Rear Admiral (RADM) Boris D. Lushniak, M.D., M.P.H., is acting surgeon general of the United States. He also oversees the operations of the U.S. Public Health Service’s (USPHS’s) Commissioned Corps, comprising approximately 6,800 uniformed health officers who serve in locations around the world to promote, protect, and advance the health and safety of the nation. RADM Lushniak served as deputy surgeon general from November 2010 until July 17, 2013, when he assumed the duties of acting surgeon general. He began his USPHS career in 1988 as a lieutenant, entering as part of the CDC’s Epidemic Intelligence Service (EIS), and initially was stationed with the CDC’s National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) in Cincinnati, Ohio, where he conducted epidemiological investigations of workplace hazards. In 1990, he was accepted for the CDC’s long-term training program and completed a 3-year residency in dermatology at the University of Cincinnati, after which he established an occupational skin disease program at NIOSH. During his time at the CDC, RADM Lushniak also served on special assignments and disaster response activities in Bangladesh, Kosovo, Russia, and St. Croix, and was part of the CDC/NIOSH team at Ground Zero (World Trade Center) and the CDC team investigating the anthrax attacks in Washington, DC. In 2004, he transitioned from the CDC to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as chief medical officer of the Office of Counterterrorism. In 2005, he was appointed FDA assistant commissioner, counterterrorism policy and director of the Office of Counterterrorism and Emerging Threats within the Office of the Commissioner. While at the FDA, he was deployed after Hurricane Katrina to serve as HHS representative in San Antonio and served as FDA deputy incident commander for the 2009 pandemic response. RADM Lushniak is a member of many professional organizations and has received numerous USPHS awards. In addition, he has received the American Medical Association’s Dr. William Beaumont Award in Medicine and the Association of Military Surgeons of the United States Sustaining Member Lecture Award, as well as HHS Secretary and FDA Commissioner awards. RADM Lushniak completed his B.S. degree in medical sciences in 1981 and obtained his medical degree in 1983. In 1984, he received his master of public health degree from Harvard University. He
completed a residency in family medicine in 1987 at St. Joseph Hospital in Chicago and a residency in dermatology at the University of Cincinnati in 1993. RADM Lushniak maintains board certifications in dermatology and preventive medicine (occupational). He served as a staff physician in dermatology at the National Naval Medical Center in Bethesda and is adjunct professor of dermatology at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences.
Mary Kate Mouser, M.S., is operational vice president of Nemours Health & Prevention Services (NHPS), an operating division of Nemours, one of the top pediatric health care systems in the nation. NHPS is focused on population health and has been recognized nationally for pioneering work in prevention of childhood obesity and for innovation in linking clinical practice and community-based prevention. Ms. Mouser joined Nemours in 2011, bringing 20 years of expertise in advocacy, government and community relations, and communication, most recently with the Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt. Her background also includes extensive experience in strategic planning and capacity building for nonprofit organizations, as well as work in fundraising, market research, product development, and financial management. At NHPS, Ms. Mouser is responsible for the administration of the overall operation, including personnel communications, marketing, and public relations; 60+ employees; and an annual operating budget of $12 million. She currently serves as principal investigator on major grants awarded to NHPS by the CDC and the Center for Medicare & Medicaid Innovation. Ms. Mouser also oversees NHPS’s partnership engagement strategy to foster alliances with external partners, in addition to working with other Nemours operating divisions to support an integrated approach to achieving the goal of optimal health for all children in Delaware. Ms. Mouser has a long history of personal engagement in community activities, having served on a wide variety of boards and committees focused on health, children’s issues, and human services. She holds an undergraduate degree from the University of Kentucky and an advanced degree in human and organizational development from Vanderbilt University.
Donna Norkoli, is project coordinator for the Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians’ Community Transformation Grant project. She has worked in public health for 19 years, coordinating regional efforts to promote physical activity, healthy eating, and tobacco-free lifestyles, as well as developing and implementing programs designed to increase active transportation. Ms. Norkoli holds a B.S. degree in public health education and health promotion from Central Michigan University and is a national certified health education specialist.
Debra Oto-Kent, M.P.H., has been executive director of the Health Education Council (HEC), which is dedicated to providing access, education, advocacy, and training to empower individuals toward a healthy life, for more than 20 years. Ms. Oto-Kent founded the HEC in 1991 after working for more than 13 years in the nonprofit health sector. Her two primary areas of interest and expertise are coalition building among diverse stakeholders; reaching consensus on common goals; and public health education, with an emphasis on reducing health disparities among underserved populations, including communities of low socioeconomic status and diverse ethnic populations. She has written and spoken extensively on the latter topic. She has served on boards and committees of local and statewide health and research organizations including the California Tobacco-Related Disease Research Program and the Breast Cancer Research Program. She continues to serve on Communities, Adolescents, Nutrition, and Fitness (CANFIT) and the External Advisory Board for the National Center for Reducing Asian American Cancer Health Disparities, and is founding board member of the Capitol Health Network. Under Ms. Oto-Kent’s leadership, HEC has developed model programs focused on increasing access to health and education resources and reducing health disparities in preventable causes of death.
Russell R. Pate, Ph.D., is professor of exercise science at the Norman J. Arnold School of Public Health, University of South Carolina, Columbia. Dr. Pate’s research interests and expertise focus on physical activity measurement, determinants, and promotion in children and youth. He also directs a national postgraduate course aimed at developing research competencies related to physical activity and public health. Dr. Pate is involved in the CDC-funded Prevention Research Center at the University of South Carolina. His research includes studies on preschoolers’ physical activity levels and how schools can influence these levels, as well as multicenter trials on the promotion of physical activity among girls of middle and high school age. Dr. Pate was a member of HHS’s Physical Activity Guidelines Advisory Committee and served on the 2005 Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee. He is a past president of both the American College of Sports Medicine and the National Coalition on Promoting Physical Activity. Dr. Pate served as a member of several IOM obesity-related committees, including the Standing Committee on Childhood Obesity Prevention, and was chair of the Committee on Fitness Measures and Health Outcomes in Youth. He received a Ph.D. in exercise physiology from the University of Oregon.
Nico Pronk, Ph.D., is vice president for health management and chief science officer for HealthPartners, Inc. Dr. Pronk is also a senior research
investigator at the HealthPartners Institute for Education and Research; adjunct professor for social and behavioral sciences at the Harvard School of Public Health; visiting research professor in environmental health sciences at the University of Minnesota, School of Public Health; member of the Task Force on Community Preventive Services; and founding and past-president of the International Association for Worksite Health Promotion. His research expertise lies in the areas of population health improvement, the role of physical activity in health, and the impact of multiple health behaviors on health outcomes. Dr. Pronk is particularly interested in improving population health in the context of the employer setting; the integration of health promotion with occupational safety and health; and the integration of health promotion, behavioral health, and primary care. He is senior editor of the American College of Sports Medicine’s Worksite Health Handbook, 2nd ed. (2009), and author of the scientific background paper for the U.S. National Physical Activity Plan for Business and Industry. Dr. Pronk received a Ph.D. in exercise physiology from Texas A&M University and completed postdoctoral studies in behavioral medicine at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center and the Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic in Pittsburgh.
Bill Purcell, J.D., is an attorney in Nashville, Tennessee, and an adjunct professor of public policy at Vanderbilt University. While he was serving as mayor of Nashville (1999 to 2007), his accomplishments as a civic leader earned him Public Official of the Year honors in 2006 from Governing Magazine. Elected to five terms in the Tennessee House, he held the positions of majority leader and chair of the Select Committee on Children and Youth. After retiring from the General Assembly, Mr. Purcell founded and became director of the Child and Family Policy Center at the Vanderbilt Institute of Public Policy Studies. From 2008 to 2010, he served as director of the Institute of Politics at the Harvard Kennedy School of Government. He was then appointed special advisor and co-chair of the Work Team for Allston in the Office of the President at Harvard University. Mr. Purcell has previously served in various capacities on IOM obesity-related committees, including as a member of the Committee on an Evidence Framework for Obesity Prevention Decision Making, as vice chair of the Committee on Accelerating Progress in Obesity Prevention, and as a member of the Standing Committee on Childhood Obesity Prevention. He graduated from Hamilton College and Vanderbilt University School of Law.
Amelie Ramirez, Dr.P.H., M.P.H., is director of Salud America! and professor of epidemiology and biostatistics at the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, where she also is founding director of the Institute for Health Promotion Research. In addition, she co-directs the Can-
cer Therapy & Research Center’s cancer prevention and population science research program. Over the past 30 years, Dr. Ramirez has directed many research programs focused on human and organizational communication to reduce chronic disease and cancer health disparities affecting Latinos, encompassing cancer prevention and risk reduction, obesity prevention, healthy lifestyles, and more. She directs two national research networks, including Salud America! The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) National Research Network to Prevent Obesity among Latino Children, which is building an evidence base, creating bilingual multimedia content, developing the field of researchers, and empowering communities to reverse the obesity epidemic among Latino children. Among several honors is her 2007 election to the IOM. She also is a member of the board of directors for the Lance Armstrong Foundation, C-Change, and the RWJF Health & Society Scholars Program, as well as a member of the San Antonio Mayor’s Fitness Council, which has overseen the implementation of healthy lifestyle programs that have lowered local obesity rates.
Bonnie Renée Rateree is a community advocate for Cook County PLACE MATTERS (Chicago). She was born in the working class community of Harvey, Illinois (a suburb of Chicago), where she still resides. She received her education in Public School District #147, where she serves as an elected school board member and vice president of the board. A lifetime of volunteer service has given Ms. Rateree an opportunity to witness inequities in educational and health opportunities for women and people of color. Her professional work as director of a nonprofit community organization, regional director for an international social change organization, and assistant to the mayor of the City of Harvey has kept her in close touch with the people most affected by unfair social policies. As a master gardener with the University of Illinois Extension and an environmentalist, Ms. Rateree has dedicated her life to collaborative work with her local governmental and community organizations to bring about systemic change through open, honest dialogue that includes the voices of those most affected by national and local policies. Ms. Rateree is vice president of the West Harvey/Dixmoor Board of Education; a member of the National School Board Association; and the Native American, African American, and Hispanic Caucuses. She also is acting director of the Human Action Community Organization serving the south suburbs of Chicago. Her involvement with the Cook County PLACE MATTERS team has proven to her that place really does matter and that the inequities she has witnessed in her neighborhood are not only a reality but by design. Ms. Rateree’s philosophy can be summed up in two phrases: “work hard/stay humble” and “think globally/act locally.” The Harvey of her childhood, where there were at least two jobs for every household, is now a place where half of
the housing stock is vacant. She often compares her hometown to a Third World country.
Helen Riley is executive director at St. Michael’s School and Nursery in Wilmington, Delaware. A recognized expert and visionary in the early education industry, Ms. Riley often is called upon to be a spokesperson for young children’s issues. She has been a driving force for legislation and effective regulations covering early childhood academics, health, and safety. Professionally, she was a kindergarten teacher for 18 years at St. Michael’s School before becoming executive director in 1988. Founded in 1890, St. Michael’s is widely acknowledged as a trailblazer in innovative and exemplary early childhood education for children from birth through age 8. During his recent visit to the school, U.S. Secretary of Education Arnie Duncan called St. Michael’s a model for the nation. The school holds the highest attainable designation, Level 5, in the DE STARS quality rating program. It has won the Governor’s Award for Excellence in Early Education and the Delaware Academy of Medicine’s Public Health Award in recognition of its outstanding contribution to the health and well-being of the community and its children. St. Michael’s was the pilot site for the first Nemours Health & Prevention Services (NHPS) project in Delaware and has been a partner ever since. More than 70 percent of St. Michael’s children receive help from the school’s private financial aid program; nearly $1 million must be raised annually to provide these scholarships. Next year, the school, which is one of the oldest in the United States, will celebrate its 125th anniversary. Ms. Riley is a graduate of the University of Delaware, where she pursued studies in education and psychology.
Sylvia Rowe, M.A., is currently president of SR Strategy, providing communications and management consulting on a broad range of health, nutrition, food safety, and risk issues. Ms. Rowe also is an adjunct professor at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, and the Tufts Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy. Previously, she served as president and chief executive officer of the International Food Information Council (IFIC) and IFIC Foundation in Washington, DC. IFIC’s programs are supported primarily by the broad-based food, beverage, and agriculture industries. Ms. Rowe’s leadership resulted in national public–private partnerships and coalitions between IFIC and preeminent government agencies and health organizations committed to developing science-based consumer communications on healthful lifestyles. Ms. Rowe’s background in media and expertise in issues management are reflected in her professional history as a producer and on-air host of several television and radio talk shows covering social, political, economic, and consumer issues. She also previously held positions in public relations, marketing, and membership development
for several diverse associations. Ms. Rowe is a distinguished Institute of Food Technologists speaker and contributing editor of Nutrition Today. She has served on numerous boards and advisory committees. She also is a member of the International Women’s Leadership Forum and the National Press Club, among other professional groups. Ms. Rowe received a bachelor’s degree from Wellesley College and a master’s degree from Harvard University.
Pamela Schwartz, M.P.H., joined Kaiser Permanente in 2001 and became part of its Community Benefit Program in 2007 as director, program evaluation. In that capacity, she directs multiple cross-site evaluations of Kaiser Permanente’s Community Benefit efforts, including the Community Health Initiative, a national initiative to improve health in Kaiser Permanente communities through multisectoral, place-based efforts focused on environmental and policy change. This initiative is a critical element of Kaiser Permanente’s comprehensive approach to preventing obesity and obesity-related diseases. Ms. Schwartz also directs Kaiser Permanente’s Thriving Schools evaluation effort, aimed at documenting the impact of a key component of Kaiser Permanente’s Total Health strategy. The Thriving Schools initiative is intended to improve the health of students, teachers, and staff, primarily through improvements to the school environment within communities served by Kaiser Permanente. In addition, Ms. Schwartz leads a program-wide strategy aimed at supporting and improving Kaiser Permanente’s needs assessment processes and products and increasing effective use of needs assessments in Community Benefit decision making. Prior to becoming part of Community Benefit, Ms. Schwartz led the cross-site evaluation of The California Endowment’s Partnership for the Publics Health, a $40 million initiative partnering 39 communities with their local health departments throughout California. Before coming to Kaiser Permanente, she directed a 5-year evaluation of a substance abuse and pregnancy prevention project for adolescent girls at Boston University’s School of Public Health and a multi-million-dollar longitudinal research project studying adult children of alcoholics at Arizona State University. She has worked abroad in Guatemala with indigenous populations and in Israel with Ethiopian populations and studied in Mexico and Spain. In addition, she has held various positions with Planned Parenthood. Ms. Schwartz holds a master’s in public health degree and has 20 years of experience in public health and evaluation, and is the author of several journal articles. She is also a graduate of Kaiser Permanente’s Executive Leadership Program at Harvard Business School.
Brian Smedley, Ph.D., M.A., is co-founder and executive director of the National Collaborative for Health Equity, a project that connects research,
policy analysis, and communications with on-the-ground activism to advance health equity. In this role, Dr. Smedley oversees several initiatives designed to improve opportunities for good health for people of color and undo the health consequences of racism. From 2008 to 2014, Dr. Smedley was vice president and director of the Health Policy Institute of the Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies in Washington, DC, a research and policy organization focused on addressing the needs of communities of color. Formerly, he was research director and co-founder of a communications, research, and policy organization, The Opportunity Agenda, which seeks to build the national will to expand opportunity for all. Prior to helping launch The Opportunity Agenda, Dr. Smedley was a senior program officer in the IOM’s Division of Health Sciences Policy, where he served as study director for various reports on diversity in the health professions and minority health research policy. Dr. Smedley came to the IOM from the American Psychological Association (APA), where he worked on a wide range of social, health, and education policy topics in his capacity as director for public interest policy. Prior to working at the APA, he served as a congressional science fellow in the office of Rep. Robert C. Scott (D-VA), sponsored by the American Association for the Advancement of Science. Dr. Smedley has received several awards and distinctions, most recently the American Public Health Association’s Cornely Award for social activism (2013). He holds an undergraduate degree from Harvard University, as well as an M.A. and Ph.D. in clinical psychology, both from the University of California, Los Angeles.
Lawrence Soler, J.D., is president and chief executive officer of the Partnership for a Healthier America (PHA). Prior to joining PHA, Mr. Soler was chief operating officer for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF). He oversaw the bulk of JDRF’s activities, including all fundraising and local chapters, marketing and communications, information technology, government relations, and international development. Mr. Soler originally joined JDRF in 1998 as a senior legislative counsel. Among his signature accomplishments at the Foundation, he is credited with leading efforts that resulted in securing $1.75 billion in mandatory federal funding for research on type 1 diabetes, the only disease that receives such funding. He also created and chaired the Coalition for the Advancement of Medical Research, an organization comprising 100 nationally recognized patient groups, universities, scientific societies, and foundations that successfully overturned a pending federal ban in a leading medical research area. Additionally, Mr. Soler served as executive sponsor of JDRF’s Artificial Pancreas Project, an ambitious effort to accelerate the development of closed-loop insulin pumps and glucose monitoring systems, which impacted reimbursement policy, regulatory policy, research strategy, and industry partnerships.
As part of his responsibilities with the project, he negotiated joint product development deals with several companies to create cutting-edge devices and new pharmaceutical solutions for treating type 1 diabetes. Mr. Soler previously worked for 8 years in federal relations positions at the Association of American Universities, focusing on education, health, and immigration issues. He received a B.A. with honors from Clark University and his J.D. from George Washington University. He is a member of both the Maryland and Washington, DC, Bar Associations.
Marion Standish, J.D., is senior advisor in the Office of the President at The California Endowment, where she leads the foundation’s multiple philanthropic partnerships, provides strategic guidance for the Health Happens Here Campaigns, and provides programmatic support to Impact Investing activities. Ms. Standish serves as lead officer for many of the Endowment’s funding initiatives including the Partnership for a Healthier America, the First Lady’s Let’s Move Campaign, the National Convergence Partnership, Let’s Get Healthy California Task Force, collaboration among California’s Community Transformation Grant recipients, and the newly formed international Global Alliance on the Future of Food. Before assuming her role as senior advisor, Ms. Standish was director of community health for the Endowment, a role in which she created and managed multiple grantmaking initiatives focused on addressing health disparities and environmental factors that contribute to the poor health of underserved communities. In that capacity, she created the Partnership for the Public’s Health, a 5-year program designed to build strong, effective partnerships between government public health agencies and the communities they serve, including projects focused on reducing environmental triggers for asthma among school-aged children and on supporting local and regional community coalitions in developing and implementing policies and programs to reduce obesity. In 2012, Ms. Standish served as a loaned executive to the Public Health Institute and the State of California for the launch of CA4Health, the state’s 42-county Community Transformation Grant program. Before joining the Endowment, she was founder and director of California Food Policy Advocates (CFPA), a statewide nutrition and health legal, research, and advocacy organization focused on federal food programs and improving access to nutritious food for low-income families. Before launching CFPA, she served as director of the California Rural Legal Assistance Foundation, a statewide advocacy organization focused on health, immigration, housing, education, and labor issues facing farmworkers and the rural poor. She began her career as a staff attorney with California Rural Legal Assistance, a federally funded legal services program. Ms. Standish is the recipient of numerous public service awards, has published articles on health disparities, and is a regular speaker at state and national conferences.
She currently serves on the board of directors of the Food Research and Action Center, and is a member of the Advisory Board of the San Francisco Community Boards Program, focused on dispute resolution and mediation. She received her J.D. from the University of San Francisco School of Law and both her M.A. and undergraduate degrees from New York University.
Maha Tahiri, Ph.D., is chief health and wellness officer at General Mills, Inc., and heads the Bell Institute of Health and Nutrition. Dr. Tahiri leads a group of dedicated nutrition and food scientists, dietitians, and public health nutritionists whose mission is to excel at nourishing the world. The Bell Institute integrates nutrition science, regulatory expertise, and communication skills to deliver strategic innovation in health and nutrition for all of General Mills’ businesses globally. Her professional experience is in the food industry, developing global health and nutrition innovation strategies for a variety of food companies covering several regions, including Europe, Asia, the Middle East, and North Africa. Dr. Tahiri serves on the Executive Board of Directors of the International Food Information Council and on the Board of the European Food Information Council. She is an active member of the International Life Science Institute and a member of the IOM Food Forum. She holds a Ph.D. in human nutrition from the National Institute of Agricultural Research, France.
Felipe Tendick-Matesanz, M.S., is national high road programs coordinator at Restaurant Opportunities Centers United, where he is tackling the challenge of creating a sustainable food economy in the United States. He is a public health scientist focused on building participatory and community-driven sustainable food systems. He also works with various academics in the fields of occupational and environmental health sciences, urban planning, engineering, and public health on the topics of environmental health, complex systems evaluation, and occupational health and safety. Mr. Tendick-Matesanz has presented at various conferences and lectured on such topics as the current state of food deserts; labor equity in sustainable food systems; justice for food service workers; and negative effects of genetically modified organisms and pesticides on food safety, biodiversity, and human health. His overarching philosophy emphasizes cooperative collaboration over isolation-driven individualism. Mr. Tendick-Matesanz holds a B.A. degree in Spanish literature and international business and an M.S. degree in environmental and occupational health sciences.
Mildred Thompson is senior director and director of the PolicyLink Center for Health Equity and Place, where she leads the organization’s health team, whose work focuses on access to healthy food, improving the built environment, and the systemic integration of health equity. A significant component
of her work involves exploring community factors that impact health and identifying effective solutions. Prior to joining PolicyLink, she was director of community health services for Alameda County’s Public Health Department, director of Healthy Start, and director of the San Antonio Neighborhood Health Center. Ms. Thompson holds degrees in nursing, psychology, and social work. She has taught at Mills College and San Francisco State University, and also worked as an organizational development consultant. She is a frequent speaker on topics related to health equity and serves on several boards and commissions, including the Zellerbach Family Foundation, and she is co-chair of the IOM’s Roundtable on the Promotion of Health Equity and Elimination of Health Disparities.
Brigette Ulin, M.P.H., is director of the Office of the National Prevention Strategy in the CDC’s Office of the Associate Director for Policy. In this role, she coordinates the activities of the National Prevention Council across 20 federal departments and the implementation of the nation’s first National Prevention and Health Promotion Strategy. Authorized by the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010, the National Prevention Strategy envisions a prevention-oriented society in which all sectors recognize the value of health for individuals, families, and society and work together to achieve better health for all Americans. Previously, Ms. Ulin worked in the CDC’s National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion; National Center for Injury Prevention and Control; National Center for HIV, Viral Hepatitis, STD, and TB Prevention; and National Center for Infectious Diseases. A significant focus of her research and work has been planning and evaluating community-based prevention initiatives, behavioral and health education initiatives, national campaigns, and health education curricula. She began her career at the CDC in 1997 as a presidential management fellow. During her tenure at the CDC, she has served as the civil servant representative of the Public Health Service’s Scientist Professional Advisory Committee, co-chairperson of an institutional review board, member of the National Advisory Board for Outreach Prevention, member of the Community Health Education Team of the Emergency Communication System, member of the Emergency Anthrax and SARS Prevention and Control Teams, and chairperson of the Behavioral and Social Science Workgroup. Ms. Ulin holds a master’s in public health degree in behavioral science from Emory University and a bachelor’s degree in neurobiological science from the University of Florida.
Donna Zimmerman, M.P.H., is senior vice president of Government and Community Relations for HealthPartners, Inc., a nonprofit, consumer-governed health care organization in Bloomington, Minnesota. HealthPartners, Inc., provides health care coverage to 1.5 million members and health
care services for more than 1 million patients each year. Ms. Zimmerman is responsible for developing and managing federal and state public policy and regulatory relationships, community affairs, and community partnerships to improve population health. She works in all areas of government and reform product strategy, encompassing Medicare, Medicaid, and individual products. She was previously director of government programs, with responsibility for the health plan Medicare and state public programs. Her background is in community health administration and policy, with leadership and executive experience in the public and nonprofit sectors. She holds a master’s in public health degree from the University of Minnesota and a bachelor’s degree in nursing from St. Olaf College, Minnesota.