By Jean Ronnei, SNS 2015-11-19 11:28:44
Encouraging Words The New Year is quickly approaching, and this month offers many of us time to celebrate what has been and reflect on what we want the future to hold. For me, it is a time to consider blessings—including my health. Many of us are so busy taking care of others, working and volunteering that we can lose track of taking care of ourselves. This year, I’ve been inspired to keep up with SNA Secretary/Treasurer Linda Eichenberger, SNS, who accrues between 10,000 and 20,000 steps every day! (Personally, I love when my Fitbit “buzzes” me each time I hit my 10,000 step goal!) In speaking with this month’s featured leaders, I was struck by how health has played such an important role in their journeys. Stephanie Dillard, SNS, served as Alabama state president last year, and now represents the Southeast on SNA’s Public Policy & Legislation Committee. She describes herself as self-motivated, crediting her salesman dad as a great influence. He put customers first and enjoyed seeing others succeed, showing his daughter that hard work and service to others matters. Stephanie admits that during her college years, she gained the “freshman 15” and more recently started seeing her cholesterol rise. While she’d been involved in high school athletics, she’d never been a runner until four years ago, upon the invitation of a friend. Fast forward and Stephanie has completed four marathons and more than 20 half-marathons! When she discovered that a 5K run/walk in Birmingham was scheduled during the Alabama SNA state conference, she was all over it. I was so pleased that it also coincided with my official visit and I was able to walk with Stephanie and 200 other Alabama SNA members! Reggie Ross, SNS, is SNA Southeast Regional Director and credits his parents and many others for encouraging him to take on new challenges. One of those was “My former supervisor Cindy Hobbs, who gave me projects and let me run with them.” Another was Debra Carpenter, who when serving as president of SNA of North Carolina seven years ago, asked Reggie to run for vice president. He initially declined because of a recent colon cancer diagnosis. Debra urged Reggie not to focus on what “might” happen and “Her encouragement meant everything to me,” he recounts. He ran, won and eventually served as state president. Reggie’s current supervisor, SNA Vice President Dr. Lynn Harvey, SNS, also sings his praises. “He has the heart of a leader. He is passionate about meeting the needs of our students and he believes our programs are not only about nourishing their bodies and minds, but also their spirits.” I hope that these stories inspire you as they did me. I can’t wait for next month’s issue on moving more for personal health!
Published by School Nutrition Association. View All Articles.
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