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OAC Honors Members with Annual Awards at the 2015 Your Weight Matters National Convention
Each year, the OAC proudly recognizes the outstanding individuals and groups who go above and beyond in their efforts to support the OAC’s mission of education, advocacy and support for individuals affected by obesity. During the OAC’s 4th Annual Your Weight Matters National Convention in San Antonio, the OAC presented 13 awards to deserving members of our organization.
In honor of our 10 year anniversary, the OAC also presented milestone awards to the hardworking and dedicated individuals who have been with the OAC since the very beginning. We are excited to announce all of the winners of this year’s OAC Annual Awards:
OAC Member of the Year Award | Rob Portinga
The 2015 OAC Member of the Year is Rob Portinga, a member who has dedicated himself to raising awareness of the OAC, advocating for access to care, combating weight bias and much more. Since joining the OAC, Rob Portinga has continually proved himself as an exemplary member time and time again. He’s been featured in Your Weight Matters Magazine, where he provided readers with an in-depth look at how he is making a difference in the world of obesity through the power of his voice.
Rob Portinga currently serves on the Convention Planning Committee, the Convention Welcoming Committee, and the Weight Bias Committee. He’s joined the OAC on Capitol Hill to advocate for the Treat and Reduce Obesity Act and was also the recipient of the 2014 Barbara Thompson Award for Advocacy. As a health coach, blogger and host of a local integrative wellness show, Mr. Portinga knows how important it is for individuals to have access to the right education and support for their journey. He is truly a deserving member who has stood out as an advocate, educator and supporter of individuals affected by excess weight and obesity.
OAC Healthcare Provider Advocate of the Year Award | Scott Kahan, MD, MPH
The 2015 Healthcare Provider Advocate of the Year is Scott Kahan MD, MPH. As the former director of the STOP Obesity Alliance, as well as the director of the National Center for Weight and Wellness and a faculty member at The George Washington University’s School of Public Health & Health Services, Scott Kahan is a leading voice in the fight for access to care. He is a tireless advocate for patients, the OAC and the cause of obesity.
Dr. Kahan has joined the OAC multiple times on Capitol Hill to advocate for access to care, and he has championed many initiatives calling for improved patient/physician communication regarding obesity. His personal compassion for the cause is remarkable. Not only do his patients speak highly of him, but so do policy makers on the Hill. The OAC is proud to recognize Dr. Kahan for his efforts on behalf of the 93 million Americans affected by obesity.
Chairman’s Award | Jaime Fivecoat, MBA
This year’s winner of the OAC Chairman’s Award is Jaime Fivecoat, MBA. As the first Chair of the OAC’s National Board, she paved the way for many of the OAC’s future successes. Much of the OAC’s success is due to her invaluable leadership in the early days of the organization and her continued service as part of the OAC’s National Board of Directors. The OAC simply would not be where we are today without her efforts and dedication to this organization.
Jaime Fivecoat has devoted 10 years of service to the OAC, speaking nationally to advocate for our cause, helping educate policy makers on Capitol Hill, providing support and guidance about employee insurance benefits and much more. She currently serves as part of the Executive Committee, Convention Committee and the Nominating Committee.
Barbara Thompson Award for Advocacy | Patty Nece, JD
The winner of the 2015 Barbara Thompson Award for Advocacy is Patty Nece, JD. She is a tireless advocate for the OAC and has testified many times before the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, advocating for approval of new obesity treatments. She has also joined the OAC many times on Capitol Hill where she provided a compelling story about the impact of obesity in her life and influences policy to fit the needs of people living with obesity.
Patty Nece, JD, is also a part of the STOP Obesity Alliance and was instrumental in helping to develop a new guide for physicians to talk to their patients about weight with sensitivity and understanding. She is also an active voice speaking out against weight bias and has shared her personal story before thousands of individuals to help the OAC educate about weight bias and its impacts. Her dedication to advocacy is truly unmatched.
Bias Buster of the Year Award | Justin Puckett, DO, FAAP
The 2015 Bias Buster of the Year is Justin Puckett, DO, FAAP, who has led the charge in raising awareness of issues of weight bias. He has continually worked with the OAC staff on identifying a wide variety of bias issues, and has been a true bias buster. Dr. Puckett has tirelessly identified and championed the fight against weight bias, stigma and discrimination.
By personally speaking out on many different issues and by identifying problems for the OAC to tackle together, Dr. Puckett has been an invaluable ally in the mission to change the public perception of obesity. He has gone above and beyond in the fight to eradicate weight bias, and the OAC is proud to honor him with this award for his continuous efforts.
Community Leader of the Year Award | BMI of Texas
The recipient of the 2015 Community Leader of the Year Award is Bariatric Medical Institute (BMI) of Texas. This dedicated group of individuals raised more than $2,300 for the OAC during their Thanksgiving fundraiser for the OAC. At the 4th Annual Your Weight Matters National Convention, they provided resources to offer health screenings for attendees and members of their local community in San Antonio.
BMI of Texas and their physician leadership make a difference in promoting health and obesity awareness in their community and in helping further the mission of the OAC. Through their dedicated efforts, they have raised awareness of the OAC, recruited new members, funded our organization and played a crucial role in the success of this year’s National Convention.
Dr. Robin Blackstone Outstanding Membership Recruitment by a Physician | Rocky Mountain Associated Physicians
The winner of the 2015 Dr. Robin Blackstone Outstanding Membership Recruitment by a Physician award, for the third year, is Rocky Mountain Associated Physicians – Doctors Sherman C. Smith MD, FACS; Steven C. Simper, MD, FACS; Rodrick McKinlay, MD, FACS; and Sarah Christensen, PA. These outstanding physicians introduced more than 500 new members to the OAC just in a one-year time span, helping support their journey with weight and health.
The Rocky Mountain Associated Physicians have been long-time participants in the OAC Sponsored Membership Program and joined thousands of new members in the OAC to benefit from the education, advocacy and support offered to all individuals. We thank them for their continued support of our organization and are pleased to once again present them with the recruitment award.
OAC Milestone Awards
With the recent celebration of the OAC’s 10 Year Anniversary, we honored six vital individuals who helped in the founding of our organization and made it possible to reach every milestone since. Robin Blackstone, MD; Christopher D. Still, DO, FACN, FACP; and Georgeann Mallory, RD, began the OAC nearly a decade ago to create an organization representing individuals with obesity. When they founded the OAC, they hired our very first staff members — Joe Nadglowski, OAC President and CEO; Kristy Kuna, OAC Vice President of Programs and Operations; and James Zervios, OAC Vice President of Marketing and Communications. Through their hard work and dedication to the cause of obesity, these six remarkable individuals have created meaningful change in the lives of people with obesity, and we are proud to honor them with OAC Milestone Awards.
The OAC congratulates all of the winners and thanks all of our members for their nominations to the OAC Annual Awards. For more information on the OAC Annual Awards, please visit www.ObesityAction.org.