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Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Healthy Communities Program
4770 Buford Highway, N.E., Mailstop K-93
Atlanta, GA 30341-3717

Telephone: (770) 488-6452
Fax: (770) 488-8488

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March-May 2008 NEWSLETTER

Posted May 23, 2008

Topics in this newsletter:

The 2008 Steps Grantees Action Institute…Steps Community Heroes

The Steps Community Heroes Award Program is a CDC Steps Program initiative that honors individuals who have made outstanding contributions to improve the health and well-being of others in their communities. This program was designed to acknowledge “Steps Heroes” who, without expecting personal recognition, have unselfishly contributed their time, talents, and expertise to make significant and often sustainable contributions in their communities, making them a healthier place to live.

The honored Steps Heroes, representing a cross-section of society, were selected from 23 nominations made by the 40 CDC-funded Steps communities. The selection process was not an easy task, as all of the nominees made excellent contributions to the Steps Programs in their communities.

Seven Community Heroes were selected and recently honored at the annual Steps Cooperative Agreement Program Action Institute held in Washington, D.C., on March 20, 2008. The 2008 Steps Community Heroes Award Program recipients are

  • Raymond “Ray” Denniston from Conklin, New York, and the Johnson City Central School District, Steps to a Healthier NY–Broome County.
  • Woody Hansen from Jay, Oklahoma, and the Sam Hider Community Clinic, Steps to a Healthier Cherokee Nation.
  • Stephanie Heim from Rochester, Minnesota, and the University of Minnesota, Steps to a Healthier MN–Rochester.
  • Dawn Imler and Kelley Brumfield from Cleveland, Ohio, and the Cleveland Metropolitan School District, Steps to a Healthier Cleveland.
  • Peggy Johns from Largo, Florida, and the Pinellas County Schools, Steps to a Healthier FL–Pinellas County.
  • Patty Tobal from Hopwood, Pennsylvania, and the Hopwood Village Project and the Steps Health Ministry Initiative, Steps to a Healthier PA–Fayette County.

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New Resource…The Community Health Promotion Handbook: Action Guides to Improve Community Health

Partnership for Prevention® and CDC's Steps Program are pleased to announce the recent release of The Community Health Promotion Handbook: Action Guides to Improve Community Health, an evidence-based tool that bridges the gap between research and practice. Five selected recommendations from the Task Force on Community Preventive Services’ The Guide to Community Preventive Services: What Works to Promote Health? have been translated into action guides that provide public health practitioners and others interested in health promotion with the necessary “how to” guidance to implement effective community-level strategies.

The handbook’s five action guides cover the following topics:

Diabetes Management

  • Diabetes Self-Management Education (DSME): Establishing a Community-Based DSME Program for Adults with Type 2 Diabetes to Improve Glycemic Control

Physical Activity

  • Places for Physical Activity: Facilitating Development of a Community Trail and Promoting Its Use to Increase Physical Activity Among Youth and Adults
  • School-Based Physical Education: Working with Schools to Increase Physical Activity Among Children and Adolescents in Physical Education Classes
  • Social Support for Physical Activity: Establishing a Community-Based Walking Group Program to Increase Physical Activity Among Youth and Adults

Tobacco-Use Treatment

  • Healthcare Provider Reminder Systems, Provider Education, and Patient Education: Working with Healthcare Delivery Systems to Improve the Delivery of Tobacco-Use Treatment to Patients

For further information on this collaborative effort, please visit This publication can be downloaded free of charge at* Printed copies of the complete handbook or individual action guides can be purchased at the same Web address.

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New Steps Program Resource…The Steps Program in Action: Success Stories on Community Initiatives to Prevent Chronic Diseases

CDC’s national Steps Program Office recently published The Steps Program in Action: Success Stories on Community Initiatives to Prevent Chronic Diseases. This 44-page booklet describes how selected Steps-funded communities are showing what can be done locally in schools, work sites, communities, and health care settings to promote healthier lifestyles and help people make long-lasting and sustainable changes to reduce their risks for chronic diseases.

To order a printed copy, contact CDC’s Steps Program Office by telephone at 770-488-6452, by e-mail at, or by mail at the following address: Steps Program Office, 4770 Buford Highway, Mail Stop K-93, Atlanta GA 30341-3717.

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Local Community Action…The 2008 Steps Program At A Glance Report

The 2008 At A Glance Report (Steps Program: Preventing Chronic Diseases through Local Community Action) is now available. This 4-page report presents an overview of the Steps Program and highlights key principles & strategies, community partnerships and interventions, and program successes in creating and sustaining change in communities across the country.

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Community Highlight…Pike County Scales Back ‘A Ton'

The earth is nearly a ton lighter, thanks to some folks from Pike County who decided to push back, scale back, and come back to tell their stories.

A total of 89 Pike County teams registered for the 10-week Scale Back Alabama program that was designed to encourage people to lose weight by eating healthier and exercising more. Read more of this story at

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Minnesota's Steps Program…March/April Newsletter

MAKE STRIDES!* is the newsletter of the Minnesota's Steps Program. The March and April edition highlights each of its four communities and includes a Q&A section on BMI (body mass index) and a recently published article detailing the significant association between salt intake and the consumption of fluids for children, especially sugar-sweetened soft drinks.

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The National Diabetes Education Program (NDEP) Promotes…“A Step in the Right Direction: Lose Weight & Lower Your Risk for Type 2 Diabetes”

NDEP is promoting an updated feature article, “A Step in the Right Direction: Lose Weight & Lower Your Risk for Type 2 Diabetes,” to help people at risk for diabetes and their family members make gradual lifestyle changes to lose weight safely and keep it off. With so many weight loss programs available, it is easy to become confused about what works and what doesn’t when it comes to losing weight to lower the risk for type 2 diabetes. This article highlights three small steps those at risk for type 2 diabetes can make to lose weight safely and keep it off.

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Steps Program Office Updates…New Additions to the Team and New Opportunities for Staff

It is our pleasure to announce that Dr. Shannon Griffin-Blake has been selected to serve as Acting Team Lead of the Step’s Program Services and Evaluation Team. Dr. Griffin-Blake comes to us from the Division of Adult and Community Health in the National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), where she served as a behavioral scientist. During the past 3 years, she was co-leader with the Directors of Health Promotion and Education of a mixed-method work-site project exploring the impact of job stress on female, blue collar workers. She also coordinated the National Health Promotion Partnership with the YMCA of the USA. As Acting Team Lead of the Program Services and Evaluation Team, Dr. Griffin-Blake will lead programmatic and evaluation efforts in the areas of diabetes, obesity, asthma, cardiovascular disease, and their underlying risk factors of physical inactivity, poor nutrition, and tobacco use in high-risk populations and underserved communities. Before joining CDC, she directed a multidisciplinary research team at the University of Georgia that investigated workforce health and safety factors and their impact on both organizational effectiveness and employee health. Her professional endeavors and multiple publications have focused on work-site intervention effectiveness and model development, workforce empowerment, partnership and coalition development, community engagement, physical activity surveillance and evaluation, mental health promotion, and health disparities. Dr. Griffin-Blake holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Public Health from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, a Master of Arts in Health Education and Promotion from East Carolina University, and a Doctor of Philosophy degree in Health Behavior and Promotion from the University of Georgia.

Yvette Senter has been selected to serve as an Acting Public Health Advisor with the Steps Program. She has 24 years of federal service and is returning to DACH following a year-long detail in the Office of the Chief Operating Officer (OCOO) and the Office of Enterprise Communications (OEC). In OCOO, where she served as Senior Management and Program Analyst, her duties included liaison with center management officials, OCOO office staff members, and representatives of the Management Council. In addition, while on detail she developed the nationwide Public Affairs Public Health Certification program for OEC. Before that she served for 9 years as the Acting Deputy Branch Chief and a Project Officer in the Arthritis, Epilepsy, and Quality of Life Program, National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Control. Yvette previously worked in the CDC OD’s Executive Secretariat Office for 10 years.

Please join us in welcoming Shannon and Yvette to Steps!

Amy Rentz has made the transition from contractor to federal employee by accepting a management and program analyst position in Steps. She will coordinate administrative and management aspects in the day-to-day operations of the Steps Program Office. Duties include purchasing, time and attendance, and providing assistance on special projects.

New Opportunities for Staff:

Nancy Williams, who has been with the Steps Program for the last 4 years, recently accepted a new position in the Division for Heart Disease and Stroke Prevention (DHDSP). She will be a project officer working with the state programs and the Delta Project. Nancy’s many years of experience working with communities will undoubtedly be beneficial to DHDSP. Nancy will greatly miss working with the wonderful Steps grantees and hopes that they will stay in touch even as she moves on to her new program. Her phone number and e-mail address will remain the same. As Nancy said, this is not good-bye, just see you later. We’ll miss you Nancy!

W. Roodly Archer will be leaving Steps on June 13, 2008. She has been accepted into the CDC Epidemic Intelligence Service (EIS) program. EIS is the country's first-line epidemiology training service, discovering and combating the causes of major epidemics. As an EIS officer, Roodly will be assigned to the Division of Public Health at the Georgia Department of Human Resources. Although very excited by her new 2-year assignment, Roodly will also miss working with the Steps team and grantees. It is a good-bye but not a farewell. Congratulations Roodly!

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Upcoming Conferences of Interest…For Steps Grantees and Partners

• June 20–21, 2008……Clearwater, Florida
18th Annual Social Marketing in Public Health Conference,* jointly sponsored by the University of South Florida Health and the Academy for Social Development.

• August 12–14, 2008……Atlanta, Georgia
2nd Annual National Conference on Health Communication, Marketing, and Media, sponsored by CDC’s National Center for Health Marketing, Coordinating Center for Health Information and Service, and Office of Enterprise Communication and the National Cancer Institute.

• August 25–28, 2008……Portland, Oregon
20th Annual Native Health Research Conference "Exploring the Interface Between Science & Tradition in Native Health Research",* co-sponsored this year by the Indian Health Service, the Northwest Portland Area Indian Health Board, and the Native Research Network, Inc.

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*Links to non-Federal organizations are provided solely as a service to our users. Links do not constitute an endorsement of any organization by CDC or the Federal Government, and none should be  inferred. The CDC is not responsible for the content of the individual organization Web pages found at this link.

One or more documents on this Web page are available in Adobe Acrobat® Format (PDF). You will need Adobe Acrobat Reader to view PDF files on this page.

Page last reviewed: May 23, 2008
Page last modified: July 29, 2008
Content source: Division of Adult and Community Health, National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion

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