The WSA Exchange

For healthy hearts and minds

The WSA Exchange

Welcome to the The WSA Exchange, for healthy hearts and minds. Kathy Rogers, American Heart Association Western States Affiliate Executive Vice President will share stories from across the affiliate.

Improving the heart health of Northern Nevada

Renown Health in Northern NevadaWe have exciting news from Northern Nevada to share this week. Renown Health has just come on board as the Life is Why Sponsor! The healthcare network has been a long-time supporter of the American Heart Association, acting as Presenting Sponsor for Go Red, Toast Sponsor for the Heart Ball and Nutrition Sponsor for Heart Walk.

Renown was interested in making a larger, year-round focus that would help keep heart health at the forefront of community messaging, making a tangible impact. The Life is Why campaign was a perfect fit! The entire team at Renown Health moved quickly and efficiently to identify key strategic priorities to tackle over the course of this three-year partnership, specifically choosing to focus on prevention, and educating and inspiring people to know their numbers and better understand their personal health journey.

We cannot wait to celebrate this commitment during events in Reno throughout the year and look forward to seeing this powerful message Northern Nevada Heart Walk Renown Health teamcome to life in new media opportunities as well! A sincere thank you to our wonderful friends and volunteer leaders at Renown Health. And, a special shout out to Renown Vice President of Advocacy Wendy Damonte and Director of Cardiovascular Clinical Programs and Northern Nevada Board Member Karen Meskimen for being pioneers and game changers in the name of heart health in Northern Nevada!


By |May 23rd, 2016|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Coming soon to San Francisco: warning labels on soda ads

American Heart Association volunteers in San Francisco lobby for soda warning labelsSan Francisco is No. 1 on the leaderboard for sweeping policy change. Thanks to  the efforts of Greater Bay Area Chairman, Chris Tsakalakis and board member, John Maa, M.D., soda warning labels on ads in the city and county of San Francisco will be displayed starting this year.

The beverage industry had filed a motion to quash the law passed last summer, but this week a federal court San Francisco Chronicle article "soda warnings OKd"judge denied their request. Chris, a San Francisco resident and dad to two teen sons, led a press briefing about the value of soda warning labels with our coalition partners. Dr. Maa spoke on the record to the San Francisco Chronicle about the American Heart Association’s strategy of implementing soda warning labels as one puzzle piece to an effective strategy that will start a wave of policy change throughout the country.

Great work, San Francisco, and thank you Chris and Dr. Maa!

By |May 19th, 2016|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Guest Blogger: Lorna Shaw

Lorna Shaw is the External Affairs Manager at Sumitomo Metal Mining Pogo in Fairbanks, Alaska – and a very passionate and committed advocate for the American Heart Association.

Having a great hair dayLorna Shaw - AK Heart Walk shaves her head

Have you ever said something you didn’t really mean? Did you choose to honor your word anyway? That’s the situation I found myself in this week. I didn’t really mean it when last year I casually said I’d shave my head if the Pogo Mine Fairbanks Heart Walk team raised $35,000 for the American Heart Association. In fact, I said $35,000 because I figured it was unattainable.

As I make my hair appointment for Monday, I reflect that if I have to lose all of my hair, I’m darned grateful that it is because of the generosity and kindness of my friends and colleagues. The AHA does important work to prevent heart disease and stroke and your contributions make their work possible. And, I am SO proud of Pogo for being the 2016 Fairbanks Heart Walk Top Company. We are the first company other than a hospital or university to have this honor since the year 2000!

Thank you, and even as I have my head shaved, I am grateful for your continued support! (But rest assured, I won’t be so cavalier in my challenges next time!)

Lorna Shaw Fairbanks Alaska Life is Why

By |May 18th, 2016|Uncategorized|2 Comments

A generous donation from Stater Bros.

Stater Bros. successful fundraisingStater Bros. Supermarkets once again conducted their “Have a Heart, Save a Heart” campaign, a successful in-store fundraising campaign that has raised over $5 million for the AHA mission since its launch in 2002. Each year, generous Stater Bros. customers purchase  $1 and $5 paper hearts at each check-stand in their 168 Stater Bros. supermarkets throughout Southern California. This year to demonstrate first-hand how some of the funds are used to make a difference in the fight against heart disease and stroke, the AHA provided a Hands Only CPR training at Yucca Valley High School. The Yucca Valley location was selected for this special program because it was home to the Stater Bros. store that raised the most funds through the campaign.

In February, Stater Bros. raised over $391,700 during the two-week campaign in February. Pete Van Helden, Stater Stater Bros. CPRBros. CEO presented the check for the campaign to Kelly Grose, Affiliate Development Officer from the American Heart Association. Afterwards, 120 students and several Stater Bros. executives all took part in an on-site training offered by the American Heart Association’s Mike Deitch. Z107.7 FM’s Gary Daigneault tweeted about the event to raise awareness, as well as posted on the station’s social media accounts. Assistant Principal Michael Ruggiero shared that the staff and students at Yucca Valley are excited to hold CPR training in Schools program on their campus and are  thankful for the generous donation. This is an opportunity that students will certainly benefit from… and so will the community of Palm Desert. Currently, when someone suffers a sudden cardiac arrest outside of a hospital, approximately 10 percent survive. When a CPR-trained bystander is near and can act quickly and effectively, survival rates can double or even triple.

By |May 16th, 2016|Uncategorized|1 Comment