At the AHA, our year begins in July, so we spend the month of August planning our campaigns for the year ahead. I feel like the luckiest staffer in advocacy because I work primarily in Texas and Colorado, which means when it's over 100 degrees in August, I have the good fortune of being able to head to Denver for a few days where I needed a sweater at night. While I was there, my colleague, Government Relations Director Rebecca Levin, and I took a little road trip to meet advocates across the state.
We started in Denver where we met with the Statewide Advocacy Committee Chair, Julie Hill, along with Leslie and Stephanie from coalition organizations we work with on issues like healthy eating and early childhood wellness. It was great to be able to spend time with someone like Julie who has chosen to get active with the AHA because of her passion for childhood wellness. Before she retired, Julie helped design the physical education standards in Florida. She's a passionate advocate for policies the AHA promotes such as quality PE standards, ensuring kids are getting the most out of their time at play.
In Boulder, we met with Linda, who, when she turned 70, had a goal to run seven 10K's for 70 years! As a retired English and PE teacher, Linda also felt passionately about childhood obesity and wellness issues.
In Colorado Springs, we met with Carolyn who has been active with Go Red for Women and whose family has been touched by heart health issues.
As we traveled, Rebecca and I were so glad to be able to put faces to names and learn more about our amazing advocates and how we can better meet your interests and needs. Over the course of the next year, we're going to plan more get togethers and give more opportunities for interaction.
Do you have an idea about an activity you'd like to see that will foster in-person relationships among advocates? Email me at Megan.Klein@heart.org. I'd love to hear from you.