Surgeon General Declares Winner In Walking Challenge: Huron County Health Department Steps Up to Success

Contact: Beth Perrine (517) 241-2112
Agency: Community Health

March 14, 2005

Michigan’s Surgeon General today announced that the Huron County Health Department crossed the finish line victoriously with just over 12 million steps in the Michigan Steps Up Walking Challenge.

“The challenge was an excellent opportunity for public health employees to work together to collaboratively set and meet goals while having fun and serving as role models for healthy lifestyles,” said Dr. Kimberlydawn Wisdom, Michigan Surgeon General.

The 16-week competition ran from September 6 thru December 26, 2004 and included participants from Michigan’s 45 health departments, the Michigan Department of Community Health (MDCH), the Michigan Public Health Institute (MPHI) and the Michigan Association of Local Public Health (MALPH). More than 2,000 employees participated and logged in excess of 800 million steps.

“I am pleased that public health employees were up to the challenge. Their energetic participation made this event a success,” Wisdom said. “I only hope that this experience will inspire others to take the Michigan Steps Up challenge toward a healthier lifestyle.”

The winning team had the highest participation rate in the state with a remarkable 99.4 percent. Together, they logged more than 12 million steps or more than six thousand miles.

“It was an extremely positive and rewarding experience for everyone here, it sparked friendly rivalry among coworkers and provided inspiration to get moving and eat healthy,” said Mitzi Koroleski, team captain for the Huron County Health Department. “Even though we’ve won, my co-workers and I continue to walk on our lunch hour and eat healthier snacks.”

Physical activity is associated with reduced risk of heart disease, stroke, breast cancer, colon cancer, and osteoporosis and helps maintain a healthy weight. For more information on healthy lifestyles visit the www.michigan.gov/mdch and click on the Michigan Steps Up link.