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Corporate Business | July 26 2013

NABJ Chapters Score Big for Health, Wellness and Scholarship Funds

As reported here, the Detroit and Chicago chapters of the National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ) in June were locked in an intense wellness competition. In the end, the chapter members walked nearly 15 million steps collectively. The prize was scholarship dollars for aspiring journalists. Chicago edged out Detroit and earned $5,000 for its scholarship fund. Detroit earned $2,000. Both groups earned the gratitude and respect of the program sponsor, Chrysler Group LLC, for embracing health and wellness as an important learning opportunity that can contribute to more sustainable multicultural communities.

Chrysler Group’s 2013 Wellness Challenge winners from the NABJ Chicago Chapter show off their medals, posing with Chrysler Group representatives at Columbia College (Chicago) on July 17, 2013. NABJ Chicago Chapter earned $5,000 in scholarship funds for aspiring journalists after walking 15 million steps.
The purpose of the Chrysler Group effort is to raise awareness for the need for better health and wellness education in multicultural communities in order to address health disparities faced by these groups. The goal is to raise awareness of achievable best practices among journalists who are often key influencers in these communities.

This week, Chrysler Group was proud to meet with the groups to award them medals commemorating their outstanding efforts.

Val Oehmke, Manager – Corporate Communications, Chrysler Group presents Vickie Thomas, President – Detroit Chapter, National Association of Black Journalists with a medal commemorating the chapter’s achievements in the Chrysler group Wellness challenge. Thomas and her NABJ colleagues walked nearly 15 million steps to earn $2,000 in scholarships for aspiring journalists. Presentation took place at Chrysler House in Detroit, Mich.

“Chrysler Group is hoping its passion and experience in promoting health and wellness best practices among its employees can be projected to the larger community through programs like these,” said Val Oemke, Manager – Corporate Communications, Chrysler Group LLC. “We are overwhelmed with how completely these journalists and leaders have embraced the challenge to gain first-hand knowledge that can help their communities.”

Oemke also gave the members a sneak peek at Chrysler Group’s plans for the Company-sponsored health pavilion experience at the NABJ national convention, August 1-4 in Kissimmee, Fla., which will be an engaging and interactive event thatwill touch many key areas of health and wellness, including exercise, food, nutrition, health awareness, education and health screenings.

The goal, again, is to raise awareness of achievable best practices among journalists who are often key influencers in multicultural communities. And, with more than 1,500 journalists expected to attend the conference, the opportunities to make a difference are significant.

Let’s take a closer look at what’s in store:

August 1: Health and Education Day

Screenings for blood pressure (throughout the day)

Displays (fat and muscle demonstrations)

Health and Wellness Educational Materials display

Dice game (try your luck and improve your health awareness)

Other elements TBD

August 2: Healthy Food Day

Screenings for BMI (throughout the day)

Display on nutritional content

Educational Materials display

11 a.m. to 3 p.m.: Ask a nutritionist

1:30 p.m. and 3 p.m.: Chef demonstrations (two, one-hour segments with samples)

How to take a traditional meal and make it healthier

August 3: Fitness Day

9 a.m. and 10:30 a.m.: Work out with Jennifer Turner, creator of MAD COOL FITNESS, with her newest workout, MAD COOL CARDIO DANCE PARTY

Convention-goers who participate in these and other activities can win daily prizes. Everyone who participates in a certain number of activities can win a free registration for next year’s NABJ convention. We will keep you posted on each day’s events, so stay tuned.

We’ll be getting some exercise, too. After NABJ, we do it all over again at the National Association of Hispanic Journalist’s convention in Anaheim, Calif., in late-August.

Enjoy the ride!


Michael Palese

Legal, HR, Diversity, Business Development and Real Estate Communication
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Legal, HR, Diversity, Business Development and Real Estate Communication