Stakeholders From Across Michigan Gather to Address Obesity

Contact: Angela Minicuci (517) 241-2112
Agency: Community Health

For Immediate Release:  September 20, 2011

LANSING - One week after Governor Snyder presented his Health and Wellness Message, Michiganders will gather in Lansing for the Call to Action to Reduce and Prevent Obesity summit. The Michigan Department of Community Health (MDCH) is bringing together stakeholders from across the state to identify strategies that will reduce obesity and improve the health of Michigan residents.

The summit will take place from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 21 at the Lansing Center in Lansing. With two-thirds of Michigan adults and 12.4 percent of youth at an unhealthy weight, the summit was designed for participants to recommend strategies for reducing and preventing obesity. These recommendations will guide the MDCH as it crafts a work plan to reduce obesity in Michigan.

Governor Rick Snyder will deliver opening remarks at 9 a.m. followed by a presentation on obesity trends in Michigan. MDCH Director Olga Dazzo will issue a charge to the workgroups at 10:15 a.m., encouraging summit participants to join her and Governor Snyder in the effort to make Michigan a healthier, stronger state.

"We have two options: talk about this issue until it's too late, or do something about it now and find ways to improve our lives and futures. That's what this summit is about," said Olga Dazzo, Director of the MDCH. "We must identify strategies we can all implement to turn the tide of rising obesity in our state. It's going to take all of us working together. Wednesday will be a great first step - but the first step of many."

Experts will be made available to the media for interviews at 10:30 a.m., including:

  • Olga Dazzo, Director of MDCH
  • Dean Sienko, Interim Chief Medical Executive at MDCH
  • Jean Chabut, Deputy Director of the Public Health Administration at MDCH
  • Michael Hamm, C. S. Mott Professor of Sustainable Agriculture, Michigan State University
  • Kai-Lin Catherine Jen, Ph. D., Professor and Chairperson, Department of Nutrition and Food Science, Wayne State University
  • Karen E. Peterson, D.Sc., Professor and Director, Department of Environmental Health Sciences, University of Michigan

Members of the media are asked to RSVP to Francesca Knot at
or (517) 241-2112.

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