David Goff, MD, PhD, FAHA, FACP, stays busy doing his part to build healthier lives and communities. Serving as the Dean of the Colorado School of Public Health, he has sat on committees with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the National Institutes of Health and the Institute of Medicine. But when he’s looking to make impacts in his community, he also looks to the American Heart Association.
“Volunteering with the American Heart Association has been a wonderful way for me to be involved in adopting good health policy in our state. The Heart Association has great resources that enable the board and volunteers to maximize their time,” said Dr. Goff. “I feel like my time is well used and I’ve had a very positive experience.”
Working with Whitney Bell-Haggard, Denver’s Senior Community Health Director, Dr. Goff is squaring off against unhealthy food in schools. By providing healthier options through nutrition standards for food and beverages served in our schools, the AHA hopes to decrease trans-fat and sugar intake, increase fruit and vegetable consumption, and make the healthy choice the easy choice for children across Colorado.
“These are foods that schools have agreed to make available that are not part of the federal food program like lunches or breakfast. For instance, vending machines. These are major sources of nutrition and schools are where kids get many of their calories,” said Dr. Goff “The food we offer children in schools is critical to their health because these are major sources of nutrition.”
For Dr. Goff, public health is a calling. His 20 years of research, teaching, administration, community outreach and advocacy have earned him opportunities to serve as a prominent public health expert in Colorado and throughout the country. His drive to fight stroke and heart disease is personal too.
“My Family is Why. My father had a stroke when he was a young man. He spent the last 11 years of his life in a wheel chair,” said Dr. Goff. “My kids never knew the robust man that I knew. So when I say my family is why, I want my grandchildren and children to have a different experience. Through population health, we are improving the lives of all Americans. That’s a mission that is so compelling for me.”