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St. Luke's Children's and Blue Cross Host Healthy Communities Summit

A blanket of snow covers the Boise foothills on March 11, 2014. For many residents in Boise and the Treasure Valley a healthy lifestyle is a priority, but there still remains much to do to ensure that everyone in our communities embrace a healthy lifestyle. On April 17-18, St. Luke's Children's and the Blue Cross of Idaho's Foundation's High Five! Children's Health Collaborative will present the "Creating Healthy Communities" summit, which will bring together, local and national leaders and experts to explore how best the Treasure Valley can create healthy communities.
By Ken Dey, News and Community
March 11, 2014


Creating Healthy Communities Summit will Help Connect Healthy Places, Healthy People April 17-18

Three of the nation’s pre-eminent experts will collaborate with area leaders and professionals in public policy, community design, health-care access and healthy foods at the “Creating Healthy Communities” summit April 17-18 at The Riverside Hotel.

The 1 ½ day conference will enable local leaders to work with national experts around cross-sector goals that demonstrate the connection between healthy people and healthy places. Discussion will center around the influence of policy, community design and planning, healthcare access and services, and the availability of healthy foods on population health.

Last year, St. Luke's helped fund a new walking and running track at Star Elementary School. The track is aimed at improving not only the health of students, but of their family members as well. At the Healthy Communities summit, St. Luke's will report on how the track has improved the health of people in the Star community.

“Our goal is to learn from the nation’s thought leaders about how we can strategize and mobilize to make a difference in improving the health of our community by focusing on people as well as places,” said Dr. Mindy Gaddis of St. Luke’s Children’s.

Community members and professionals from the health, transportation, education, business and governmental sectors are invited to attend. Continuing education credits are available.

The conference is presented by the St. Luke’s Children’s and the Blue Cross of Idaho Foundation’s High Five! Children’s Health Collaborative with support from Saint Alphonsus, Boise Parks & Recreation, Valley Regional Transit, Idaho Smart Growth, Treasure Valley YMCA, COMPASS, and other partners.

Keynote speakers include:

  • Dr. Richard Jackson, host/narrator of the PBS series “Designing Healthy Communities.” Jackson has done exten­sive work on the impact of the environment on health, particularly relating to children. Dr. Jackson chaired the American Academy of Pediatrics Committee on Environmental Health. Over the past decade much of his work has focused on how the “built environment” affects health.
  • Tyler Norris, Vice President, Total Health Partnerships at Kaiser Permanente. For three decades, Norris has served as a social entrepreneur and trusted advi­sor to philanthropies, health systems, governments, NGOs and collaborative partnerships working to improve the health of people and places. He brings significant expertise to facilitating community outcomes.
  • Todd B. Putman Chief Marketing Officer, Bolthouse Farms. A consumer strategist at heart and an evangelist for breakthrough innovation while driving bottom line results, Putnam has spent over 25 years in general management, market­ing and innovation roles with Procter and Gamble, the Walt Disney Company and Coca-Cola.
Panel discussions on April 17 will focus on strategies for integrating health into planning, availability of healthy food, Cities/ School Districts joint use agreements, school lunches, Let’s Move Cities, Towns and Counties, and many other topics.

On April 18, participants will review the previous day’s content and identify key strategies and action plans to improve healthy places and healthy people through  transportation and design, policy development, youth engagement, healthcare, and food access.

Cost is $30 for adults (full summit); $10 students (with valid student ID), $10 Dr. Jackson’s keynote address only. To register, visit The High Five Children’s Healthy Collaborative is sponsoring the rebroadcast of Dr. Jackson’s “Designing Healthy Communities” series on Idaho Public Television Plus channel:

  • Tuesday, March 11, 9pm MT: Designing Healthy Communities – Retrofitting Suburbia
  • Tuesday, March 18, 9pm MT: Designing Healthy Communities – Rebuilding Places of the Heart
  • Tuesday, March 25, 9pm MT: Designing Healthy Communities – Social Policy in Concrete
  • Tuesday, April 1, 9pm MT: Designing Healthy Communities – Searching for Shangri La

To find out more about Dr. Jackson's "Designing Healthy Communities" series watch the video below:

About The Author

Ken Dey served as Public Relations Coordinator at St. Luke's from 2008-2014.