The briefing was hosted by Rep. Bonnie Watson Coleman (D-NJ), a congressional leader who advocates for affordable healthcare, protections for vulnerable Americans, and a long-time supporter of the REACH program. Watson presented the Society for Public Health Education with a proclamation in honor of their long-time advocacy work on the REACH program.

The event included a panel of diverse perspectives that captures the REACH program. Dr. Ruth Petersen, director of CDC's Division of Nutrition, Physical Activity, and Obesity (DNPAO) shared insight into the progress and success the REACH program has made over the past 20 years. Three REACH champions shared their unique experience on how the REACH program has impacted and addressed health disparities in their communities. The panel included Charmaine Ruddock, project director, Bronx Health REACH, LoVina Louie, consultant, Coeur d'Alene tribe, and Kathy Ko Chin, president & CEO, Asian and Pacific Islander American Health Forum.

The briefing was an opportunity to educate congressional staffers and other professionals working in health equity on the importance of the REACH program. Over the past 20 years, the REACH program has made monumental impacts to address health disparities in racial and ethnic communities. In order, for the REACH program to continue making strides in communities across America it is crucial the program receives necessary funding.

The Society for Public Health Education continues to advocate and celebrate 20 years of the REACH program.  

About The Society for Public Health Education (SOPHE) is a nonprofit organization founded in 1950 to provide global leadership to the profession of health education and health promotion, and to promote the health of society. SOPHE represents a diverse membership of 4,000 professionals and students who work and learn in various public and private organizations and universities to advance health education theory and research, develop disease prevention and health promotion programs, and promote public policies conducive to health. For more information visit

SOURCE Society For Public Health Education


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