Guest Speaker Biographies
Aaron Beighle is a former elementary physical education teacher and he holds a Ph.D.
from Arizona State University and specializes in the areas of physical education and
physical activity for youth. He is currently a faculty member in the Department of
Kinesiology and Health Promotion at the University of Kentucky where he trains future
physical educators and conducts research in the area of physical activity promotion for
youth. Dr. Beighle has consulted with school districts, recreation programs, and youth
sport organizations across the country in their efforts to maximize physical activity
experiences and promote physical activity for youth. This has included physical
education faculty training, after-school staff training, daycare staff, youth sport coaches
training, and presentations to parent regarding the importance of physical activity.
Dr. Beighle is the author and co-author of numerous research-based and practical
articles pertaining to school-based physical activity promotion and physical education. In
addition, he is a co-author on several national documents including the CDC’s Physical
Education Curriculum Analysis Tool and Comprehensive School Physical Activity
Promotion: A position statement. Beighle is also a co-author of four books (Promoting
Physical Activity and Health in the Classroom, Pedometer Power, Pedometer Power 2nd
ed., Dynamic Physical Education for Elementary School Children 16e.).
Mary Beth Bigley, DrPH, MSN, ANP is currently acting Director of Communications in
the office of the Surgeon General. The primary purpose of the Office of Science and
Communications (OSC) is to review and approve all scientific and medical publications
of the Office of the Surgeon General. Surgeon General documents disseminate
scientific information regarding issues of public health importance that contain the most
comprehensive and up to date information concerning topics of significant public health.
Prior to going to the Office of the Surgeon Genera she was an assistant professor at
George Washington University, School of Medicine and Health Sciences, serving as the
program director of the Nurse Practitioner Program. She received a master of science in
nursing degree from George Mason University and is certified as a nurse practitioner.
Through a post-master's fellowship, she was awarded a Teaching Certificate from the
University of Pennsylvania. She received a doctoral degree from the School of Public
Health at George Washington University, with a concentration in health service
Jessica Donze Black is the National Director of the Healthy Schools Program for the
Alliance for a Healthier Generation – a joint initiative of the American Heart Association
and the William J. Clinton Foundation. As such, Jessica leads a team of over sixty
people in thirty-seven states who are helping schools make healthy and sustainable
changes in their environments, policies, and practices. Prior to coming to the Alliance,
Jessica served as the first Executive Director for the Campaign to End Obesity – a non-
profit organization focused on bringing together key stakeholders in order to drive
national policy toward reversing the obesity epidemic. Jessica’s other past work
includes directing obesity initiatives for the American Heart Association, managing
national nutrition policy for the American Dietetic Association, serving as a health policy
fellow for Senator Jeff Bingaman, and practicing medical nutrition therapy at DuPont
Hospital for Children. Jessica is a Registered Dietitian with a Bachelor of Science from
the University of Wisconsin – Madison and a Master’s Degree in Public Health from the
University of Maryland – College Park. She lives in Arlington, VA with her husband, two
boys, and two crazy dogs.
Jeanne Davidson Booth, Ph.D. Prior to joining the Lynchburg College faculty in 2000,
Dr. Booth worked with the Lynchburg City School system as an English teacher,
professional school counselor, and guidance director.
A proud Lynchburg College alumna, Dr. Booth is currently the coordinator of the
College’s graduate Counselor Education Program and an assistant professor of
education and human development. In addition to teaching at the graduate level, Dr.
Booth teaches undergraduates enrolled in the College’s teacher preparation program. A
nationally certified parent education facilitator, Dr. Booth also serves on the staff of the
College’s Center for Family Studies and Educational Advancement. She has made
presentations at the national, state, and local levels on issues related to counseling,
human development, parenting issues, and family dynamics. Dr. Booth also provides
consulting services and workshops for school divisions and public and private
organizations throughout the commonwealth.
Victoria Kumpuris Brown is the Industry Director for the Alliance for a Healthier
Generation, a joint venture of the Clinton Foundation and American Heart Association
addressing the childhood obesity epidemic. Victoria leads the Alliance’s efforts
implementing current voluntary agreements with the food, beverage and healthcare
industries while exploring new business ventures with industry partners to combat the
childhood obesity epidemic.
Victoria joined the Alliance in early 2007 as the inaugural Healthcare Director where she
spearheaded and launched the Alliance Healthcare Initiative, a national collaboration
between national medical associations, insurers and employers to offer first ever health
benefits for childhood obesity prevention and treatment while evaluating their impact.
Prior to the Alliance, Victoria was the Senior Policy Analyst in the Director’s Office of the
Arkansas Department of Health and Human Services. Her efforts included launching
the Centers for Disease Control Coordinated School Health Program and working on
numerous children’s health issues such as the Early Periodic Screening Diagnosis and
Treatment program under Medicaid and establishing a Systems of Care for children’s
behavioral health. Before working in state government, she did research and evaluation
in the Department of Social Science and Health Policy at Wake Forest University
School of Medicine. Victoria led the site relations team for the Robert Wood Johnson
funded national evaluation of Free to Grow, a program addressing substance abuse and
domestic violence in fifteen Head Start sites across the country. She also co-facilitated
the ECHO Council a diverse group of community leaders convened by the Winston-
Salem Foundation to build and promote social capital.
Victoria holds a Master of Public Affairs degree from the Lyndon B. Johnson School of
Public Affairs at the University of Texas at Austin and a B.A. in public policy from
Washington and Lee University in Lexington, Virginia.
Judy Caplan is a registered dietitian with over twenty five years of experience in the
field of health and nutrition. She grew up in Cleveland, Ohio and to escape the cold
weather attended the University of Arizona where she received both her undergraduate
and graduate degrees in Human Nutrition, Foods and Dietetics.
Judy began her career as a health educator for the Pima County Health Department
then moved on to be the Director of Nutrition Services at Canyon Ranch Resort in
Tucson, AZ. Along the way she assisted Jane Fonda with Jane Fonda’s Workout Book;
worked in the border town of Nogales, Arizona teaching Hispanic, pregnant women to
eat healthier; managed a large level one trauma center hospital kitchen that produced
over 3000 meals a day. She was recently involved in creating the Fairfax County
Vietnamese Meals-on-Wheels program.
Today she is the owner of her own firm, Nutrition Ammunition, which advises
individuals, families, schools, and corporations on how to “keep fit in a fattening world.”
The common thread throughout these diverse experiences has been to foster health
promotion/ disease prevention and spread the word about the power of a healthy
lifestyle. She has written three books, the latest, Gobey Gets Full – Good Nutrition in a
Nutshell, cracks the code to good nutrition for young children and their parents.
Christopher Carpenter has been involved with food in many forms throughout his life.
He was raised partially in the hills of Missouri where his father’s family were famers. At
a young age, through early adulthood, he was involved in the growing and processing of
vegetables and meats, while also being the community baker in Graff, Missouri. During
his restaurant career he was an owner, consultant and a well regarded chef who used
local ingredients in his cooking endeavors. He then went on to work in the young
Virginia wine industry where he served various winemakers as a pruner, asst.
winemaker and special event chef. During that time he also began to assist
winemakers and owners in purchasing local cheeses and meats for their tasting rooms.
Christopher Carpenter has been at Washington and Lee University since 2006 where
he has served in the position of Special Projects Coordinator. His job, among others
duties, has been to develop the W&L local foods acquisition program. Here he has
overseen the local food purchases of W&L go from 0% to aprox. 30% in the
Marketplace, which is the student‘s main dining hall.
He is the co-chair of the Shenandoah Valley Local Farm and Food Workgroup and vice
chair the Virginia Food System Council whose work has included the development of
local foods infrastructure and sustainable farmer development in the region and state.
He also is a founder of the Rockbridge Farmers Market and its parent 501c3
organization Rockbridge Grows. Rockbridge Grows is a new community group
dedicated to building a sustainable farmer’s network, educational programs in food
production and value added processes for the disabled and disadvantaged as well as
for all students and adults in Lexington, Rockbridge County, its surrounding counties,
the Shenandoah Valley and the State of Virginia. He was instrumental in working with
school districts in acquiring food for the first Farm to School Week in Virginia. He was
instrumental in assisting with the purchasing of local beef by five school districts in the
Shenandoah Valley. This purchasing cooperative served as a model to encourage two
other school districts to seek information about joining the local beef purchasing group.
Diane Cole is the Manager of the Education and Support Services and the Breast
Program at the University of Virginia Medical Center. In addition, she currently serves
as co-chair for the Virginia Cancer Plan Action Coalition. She received her Masters of
Public Health from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and her
undergraduate degree in education from Longwood University. Diane has been working
with cancer patients for 22 years and had the pleasure of serving as a member of CPAC
since its inception in 1998.
Jeannette Cordor is a philanthropic entrepreneur and businesswoman. Mrs. Cordor is
the founder, along with her husband Jeramin Cordor, chairman and chief executive
officer of The Faces HOPE, Virginia’s first non-profit that provides direct in-home
physical activity & nutrition education to the entire family. The organization is based in
A national community leader cited by the community for her work to educate, equip,
and empower families, especially low-wealth communities across America, and an
advocate with The American Heart Association as one of their power to end stroke Go
Red for Women Ambassadors.
Born in Kosciusko, Mississippi, Jeannette saw firsthand how the lack of health
education can affect a family. Her mother lost the battle after 4 strokes, she was only
46. One year before that her grandmother lost her life after one massive stroke, she
was 64. Jeannette Cordor is today a businesswoman and social entrepreneur who has
traveled the world tirelessly promoting a sense of HOPE, self-esteem, dignity, and
opportunity to OWN your journey in life.
Jeannette has a background in public health and received training from Springfield
College and the American Red Cross Disaster Service Team. Mrs. Cordor is also a
graduate of the Center for women and Enterprise Business program and Outreach
training institute in Massachusetts.
Pam Dannon is the Registered Dietitian for the Williamsburg-James City County Public
School System. Her position is funded by the Williamsburg Community Health
Foundation, through its support of the School Health Initiative Program (SHIP). SHIP’s
mission is to increase healthy eating and physical activity in the schools. She has also
worked for the American Egg Board at the Egg Nutrition Center, SAIC a health
information system contractor, Ecosure, Children’s Hospital of the King’s Daughters,
and she was a science and PE teacher.
Pam earned her B.S. in Human Nutrition and Foods at VA Tech and completed her
dietetic internship at Medical College of VA. Her master’s degree in Education is from
Pam lives on a hobby farm in Williamsburg, VA and enjoys fresh eggs from her
chickens. She has installed 16 raised beds to expand her vegetable garden and to
enjoy farm-to-fork items with her family.
Carrie Fesperman, MPH, MRP is a health planner for the Alexandria Health
Department and currently staffs the Partnership for a Healthier Alexandria – a
community coalition of non-profit organizations, schools, municipal agencies, local
businesses, government and community leaders, and concerned citizens joined
together to promote and preserve a healthy Alexandria community. The Partnership
received an ACHIEVE grant and has been investigating environmental and policy
strategies to decrease early childhood obesity. Current obesity prevention interventions
underway include a partnership with public housing to provide gardening opportunities
for low-income residents, a “healthy preschool network” of preschool and daycare
providers working to create healthier environments for preschoolers, and a community-
wide awareness raising campaign on healthy eating and active living.
Ms. Fesperman previously led the American Planning Association’s Planning and
Community Health Research Center where she conducted research on topics at the
intersection between urban planning and public health. Her past work includes a multi-
year effort, in partnership with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the
National Association of County and City Health Officials, to increase communication and
collaboration between health officials and city planners in order to plan for healthier,
more family-friendly cities. Ms. Fesperman holds dual Master’s degrees in public health
and city planning with a concentration in transportation from the University of North
Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Charles Green is the Director of the Division of Marketing at the Virginia Department of
Agriculture & Consumer Services (VDACS). The Division’s goal is to assist Virginia’s
wide array of growers and agribusinesses in moving more product into both domestic
and international markets. The VDACS Marketing Division includes International
Marketing, Commodity Services, Domestic Sales and Market Development, Promotions,
and Livestock Marketing. Charles has been with VDACS since 2005.
Prior to joining VDACS, Charles served as head of the International Marketing Office at
the North Carolina Department of Agriculture & Consumer Services (NCDA). He was
also the Corporate Logistics Manager for Coastal Lumber Company, the largest
privately owned hardwood lumber company in the United States.
Charles holds an undergraduate degree from Virginia Tech and a Masters in Business
Administration from Campbell University. Charles lives in Henrico County with his wife,
Marcy and children, James and Katherine.
Carole Havrila is a Registered Dietitian and Certified Oncology Specialist at University
of Virginia Cancer Center in Charlottesville. She has been a dietitian since 1988.
Carole works with those receiving cancer treatment as well as those considered high
risk and others working toward prevention of recurrence. As part of the Integrative
Medicine Program in the Cancer Center, Carole counsels patients on the safety and
efficacy of supportive diets and supplements. Carole mentors dietetic interns
throughout the year as well as exercise physiology interns who work with patients in the
Amy Stringer Hessel, MSW has been a program officer with the Missouri Foundation
for Health (MFH) in St. Louis since 2003. Ms. Stringer Hessel is the team leader of the
Healthy & Active Communities Initiative that has invested $15,000,000 towards active
living/healthy eating in the state. She participates on the Missouri Council on Obesity
and Nutrition which is working to implement Missouri’s state obesity plan, and she is
active with a St. Louis coalition committed to combating youth obesity . Prior to joining
MFH, Ms. Stringer Hessel was director of community economic development for United
Way of Greater St. Louis. In that position she managed numerous funding and asset
development projects and programs. Stringer Hessel has a master’s of social work from
Washington University in St. Louis.
Anjali Jain, MD is a senior researcher at The Lewin Group in Falls Church, Virginia, a
health and human services research and policy organization. She is also an Assistant
Professor in Pediatrics and and Health Policy and practicing general pediatrician at
Children’s National Medical Center and The George Washington University in
Washington, DC. Dr. Jain’s research and clinical practice has focused on obesity
prevention and policy, particularly among low-income and minority families. She is
particularly interested in parenting and how clinicians and policies can support parents
in their efforts to have healthy children and families. She has also examined some of
the effects of media and marketing on obesity-related outcomes and published broadly
in both the medical literature and for general audiences. As a current Maryland
resident, Dr. Jain serves as the Chair of the Healthcare Subcommittee for the Maryland
Childhood Obesity Committee and as an Associate Editor at the journal Academic
Pediatrics. She is a Fellow of the American Academy of Pediatrics and a Fellow of The
Previously, Dr. Jain worked as a physician editor for the British Medical Journal
Publishing Group in London, UK, and as an Assistant Professor in Pediatrics at the
University of Chicago. Anjali received a B.S. with honors in Chemical Engineering and
her M.D. from the University of Virginia. She was a resident and Chief Resident in
Pediatrics at the University of Chicago and completed additional training as a Robert
Wood Johnson Clinical Scholar at Yale University.
Dr. Jain is married and has two daughters, ages 9 and 14, with whom she tries—with
some but not complete success—to practice what she preaches regarding healthy
Jeff Jordan - In 2001, Jeff Jordan founded Rescue Social Change Group (RSCG), a
social marketing agency in Las Vegas, NV. Jeff has fueled the group’s growth to
become a nationally recognized agency now based in San Diego, CA. Jeff has led
RSCG’s most important achievement to date, the creation of “Social Branding” in 2003.
As the founder of “Social Branding”, Jeff and RSCG are focused on the national
dissemination and application of the Social Branding strategy. To this goal, Jeff has
participated in numerous conferences as both workshop presenter and keynote speaker
and in 2004 the National Association of City and County Health Officials named Social
Branding a Promising Practice. As the President of RSCG, Jeff has been recognized for
his leadership and innovative thinking. In 2005, the US Small Business Administration
named him the Young Entrepreneur of the Year for Rhode Island and New England.
Colleen A. Kraft, M.D., FAAP is an Associate Professor of Pediatrics at the Virginia
Tech Carilion School of Medicine, and Transitional Year Program Director, Carilion
Clinic. Dr. Kraft is a primary care pediatrician with Carilion Pediatric Medicine, and
Medical Director of Medical Home Plus, a non-profit organization that extends the reach
of the Medical Home by connecting families with community resources. Dr. Kraft has
worked with the Virginia Foundation for Healthy Youth since 2002, replicating
prevention programs that have reached thousands of children throughout the
Commonwealth in schools and child care centers. She is a coauthor of the book
Managing Chronic Health Needs in School and Child Care, published by the American
Academy of Pediatrics in September, 2009.
Dr. Kraft attended Virginia Tech as an undergraduate, and completed her M.D. at the
Medical College of Virginia. She trained in Pediatrics at the Medical College of Virginia
Hospitals, and served as a primary care pediatrician in private practice in Richmond,
Virginia before her faculty appointment at Virginia Tech Carilion. Dr. Kraft also serves
on the Board of the Virginia Early Childhood Foundation.
Dr. Kraft is a past president of the Virginia Chapter of the American Academy of
Pediatrics. She currently serves on the Executive Committee of the Council on
Community Pediatrics and the Medical Home Project Advisory Committee. Dr. Kraft
writes the “Children’s Rights Success Stories” series for the Section on International
Child Health at the AAP. Dr. Kraft’s professional interests include Early Childhood,
Children with Special Health Care Needs, Community Pediatrics, and International Child
Mark Lilly is the owner of Farm to Family, a local food distribution concept that sources
local organic food and brings it into the urban landscape, while educating the
community on healthy eating habits and food security. This is accomplished on an old
school bus converted into a mobile farmers market. The inside bus theme is that of an
old country store with old reclaimed barn wood, chicken wire, wicker baskets and
burlap. It takes people back to a special place in time.
Mark was born and raised in Richmond, VA, and spent three years in the US Marines,
three years in the US Army and worked in the food industry for 20 years. Mr. Lilly has a
BFA in fine arts from Virginia Commonwealth University and was most recently enrolled
in a Masters program at the University of Richmond. Mark enjoys traveling and has
lived in San Diego, NYC and currently resides in Richmond with his wife Susan.
Catherine MacLean, MD PhD is Staff Vice-President of Clinical Quality Interventions at
WellPoint where she leads the Center for Quality Measures and Improvement. Her
responsibilities include facilitating the development and implementation of programs to
improve the quality of care for WellPoint members. In this role she serves as a liaison
between national medical specialty societies, national quality organizations, community
groups and WellPoint. A current priority for her unit is the development of programs
within WellPoint and through collaboration with provider and community partners to
reduce overweight and obesity. She is an active participant in the national performance
assessment arena having served on numerous quality–related panels and committees
including the National Committee for Quality Assurance’s (NCQA) Obesity
Measurement Advisory Panel. She has also served on panels and committees for the
National Quality Forum (NQF), the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the Centers for
Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), and the AQA Alliance.
Prior to joining WellPoint, Catherine spent 15 years in academic medicine at UCLA,
RAND and the Greater Los Angeles Veterans Health Care System as a clinician and
health services researcher. She was the principal investigator or investigator on
numerous NIH and Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality-funded projects with a
focus on developing and assessing the validity of quality metrics. She retains
appointments at RAND, UCLA and the Greater Los Angeles VA where she continues to
see patients as an attending physician. Catherine obtained her B.S. in Pharmacology at
the University of California, Santa Barbara, her M.D. from Washington University in St.
Louis and her PhD in Health Services from the University of California, Los Angeles.
She trained in internal medicine at the Harbor-UCLA Medical Center and completed her
rheumatology fellowship at UCLA’s Center for the Health Sciences. She is board
certified in rheumatology and a fellow of the American College of Rheumatology.
Barbara Martin has been a part of Food and Nutrition Service since 1972. As Deputy
Director for the Schools, Summer and Nutrition Education section, Barbara has oversight
responsibility for the School Breakfast, School Lunch, After School Snack, Seamless
Summer, Summer Food Service, Fresh Fruit and Vegetable, Food Service Equipment
and the Farm to School Programs.
She works with state and local agency personnel to ensure that all children have access
to the Child Nutrition Programs they need. Since the early 1990s she has facilitated
nutrition education efforts, and promoted healthy eating initiatives, including Team
Nutrition, MyPyramid, Eat Smart Play Hard, American Culinary Federation chef initiatives,
the Healthier US School Challenge and cross program state nutrition action plans.
She leads a staff of 13 who oversee operations in a 9 state region, including Virginia
where the region directly administers the school meals and summer food service
Barbara earned a Bachelor of Arts from Russell Sage College in 1972 and completed
FNS’s Leadership Institute Program in 2001. In 1997 Barbara received a Presidential
Medallion from the American Culinary Federation for her efforts on the School Lunch
Challenges. In 2006 and 2007 Barbara received the Secretary of USDA’s Honor Award
for her work with the Healthier US School Challenge and the State Nutrition Action
Amy Paulson has over twelve years experience in public health program management.
Ms. Paulson is currently the Executive Director of the Consortium for Infant and Child
Health (CINCH), a 17 year old regional child health coalition, and an Instructor at
Eastern Virginia Medical School in Norfolk, Virginia. Ms. Paulson also serves as a
consultant for Coalitions Work providing coalition training, consultation, and special
workshops to groups locally, and across the country. As the Executive Director of
CINCH, she is responsible for coalition development, fundraising, grant writing and
management, program development and implementation, staff supervision, and general
operations and administration.
Ms. Paulson holds Bachelor’s degrees in Business in Health Care Administration and in
Psychology, both from Appalachian State University, and is completing her Masters of
Public Health at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Her background is in
public safety, prevention behavior, chronic disease research and programming, and
organizational restructuring. She is interested in research in health promotion,
behavior, and social justice as it applies to community systems, particularly in under-
served populations. Mrs. Paulson has consulted and presented locally and nationally
on a variety of topics related to coalition development and maintenance, community
leadership building, strategic development, action planning, group dynamics, health
policy advocacy, chronic disease, and pediatric health.
Jasmine N. Hall Ratliff is a Program Officer on the Childhood Obesity team at the
Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. Her programs include leading the team’s New
Jersey childhood obesity work and managing the RWJF Center to Prevent Childhood
Obesity. Prior to joining the foundation in 2008 she was a Program Officer at the
Missouri Foundation for Health in St. Louis, MO where her responsibilities included the
Healthy & Active Communities initiative. Jasmine received her Master’s in Health
Administration from the Saint Louis University School of Public Health and her Bachelor
of Arts from the University of Virginia. Jasmine is a Virginia native and is married with
an infant daughter.
Dr. Karen Remley was appointed Virginia’s Health Commissioner in January, 2008.
She is the principal public health advisor to the Governor, Secretary of Health and
Human Resources, the Virginia General Assembly and the Board of Health. Dr. Remley
supervises an agency with an annual budget of $535 million.
Prior to her appointment as Virginia’s Health Commissioner, Dr. Remley was Vice
President of Medical Affairs for Sentara Leigh Hospital in Norfolk, Virginia. She directed
medical staff relationships with 500 physicians and advanced practitioners. She also
was responsible for Infection Control, Clinical Effectiveness, Risk Management, Health
Information Services, Radiology, the Medical Care Management Department and the
Palliative Care Program.
Previously, Dr. Remley was Medical Director for External Quality at Anthem Blue Cross
Blue Shield of Virginia, leading efforts to improve patient safety and care in hospitals;
she served as Chief Executive Officer of Physicians for Peace, an international medical
education organization with programs in over 20 countries; and she was the Chief
Medical Officer for Operation Smile. She has been a practicing physician and
emergency pediatrician for 25 years.
Dr. Remley received a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Biology with Distinction from the
University of Missouri-Kansas City and her Doctor of Medicine from the same
institution. She completed her Pediatrics Residency at St. Louis Children’s Hospital.
She holds professional certifications from the American Board of Medical Examiners,
the American Board of Pediatrics and Pediatric Emergency Medicine and is a member
of the American Academy of Pediatrics. She also received a Master of Business
Administration degree from Duke University.
Stephanie W. Smith is a certified instructor through League of American Bicyclists and
has been promoting bike and pedestrian-friendly communities in Virginia for nearly
seven years. In addition to teaching safe cycling, she is the organizer for the Virginia
Safe Routes to School Network, a coalition of organizations and agencies supporting
efforts to make our communities safer for children to walk and bicycle to school. She is
also director of Active Williamsburg Alliance, an advocacy group in the Williamsburg
area, and is active in her local bike club, Williamsburg Area Bicyclists. Prior to moving to
Virginia, she lived in many different bike-friendly communities across the U.S. and often
did not have a car. She lives in Williamsburg with her husband and 8-year-old daughter.
Jenni Thompson, RN, MS, MPH is the Director of Health and Wellness Services for
the Faces of H.O.P.E. She has BS in Health Sciences from James Madison University
and received her RN certificate from Bon Secours Memorial School of Nursing. She has
worked as a Cardiac Surgery ICU nurse at the VCU Health System since 2002 and
received her Master’s degrees from VCU in December 2009. Jenni became involved in
childhood obesity prevention for a course assignment in graduate school and turned
that knowledge into passion, a research project with the Virginia Foundation for Healthy
Youth, and ultimately, a career with the Faces of HOPE.
Sandy Thompson, R.N., MSN (Board Member- Prince William Health Partnership and
Co- Chair- Northern Virginia Healthy Kids Coalition) has 24 years experience in
education, and the development and management of comprehensive school health
programs. As Supervisor of Administrative Services for Manassas City Public Schools,
her expertise in the development and management of successful school health and
wellness programs help assure that research and policy analyses reflect critical
institutional, community, and policy needs and issues. Mrs. Thompson became a Fellow
of the Virginia Coordinated School Health Leadership Institute in June 2008, which
distinguishes her as a leader in school health and understands the importance of health
and well-being for academic achievement.
Mrs. Thompson has received numerous honors and awards including the American
Hospital Association’s Nurses Make a Difference Award, Alexandria City Public Schools
Special Education Award for Outstanding Achievement, and the Virginia Association of
School Nurses- School Nurse Administrator of the Year. She currently chairs the
Manassas City School Health Advisory Board, and is committed to maintaining
productivity through disease prevention and the encouragement of lifestyles that enable
students and staff to maintain their highest level of wellness and well-being. She served
as the Principal Investigator for a Quick Fit Activity Program implemented at 4
Manassas City Public Schools during the 07-08 school year which provided additional
physical fitness gains compared to the traditional physical fitness curriculum. Mrs.
Thompson is currently in Leadership Prince William and will graduate in June 2010.
Chef Christine Wansleben is the Owner & Culinary Director of Mise En Place Culinary
Center. She graduated from the Institute of Culinary Education in New York City in
1997 and has worked in some of the Manhattan's top kitchens before moving to
Richmond. Her culinary career in Richmond began as a catering chef for A Sharper
Palate Catering Company, one of Richmond's top catering companies. Mise En Place
opened it's doors in late 2004 and is now Richmond' premier destination for creative
cooking classes, team building events, kids cooking classes and wine courses. Mise En
Place has been featured in Virginia Business Magazine, The Richmond Times Dispatch,
WCVE CBS 6 Richmond This Morning, Style Weekly, skirt! and Richmond Magazine.
Barbara Yager, RD, MEd is the co –chair of the Community Obesity Task Force that
she helped to start in 1999 in response to the high prevalence of childhood obesity in
the Charlottesville/Albemarle schools. Barbara also works as the WIC Coordinator for
the Thomas Jefferson Health District which today has one of the lowest rates of obesity
for 2-5 year olds in Virginia.
Barbara has a BS. degree in Community Development from University of New
Hampshire, a Masters in Nutrition Education from Lesley College, Cambridge Mass.
and is a registered dietitian. She is certified in Adult Weight Loss Management by the
American Dietetic Association