Diabetes & Obesity Summit

Event Date(s): 
May 14-15, 2014
San Diego, California
Event category: 

Diabetes & Obesity Summit

Wednesday, May 14 - Thursday, May 15
W Hotel San Diego
San Diego, CA

This conference built on Women In Government's three year diabetes campaign, and provided legislators a unique opportunity to focus on this topic with colleagues and experts from across the country. Issues covered at the meeting included ideas and training for outreach in the states; existing and new state diabetes programs and policies; co-morbidities with other chronic diseases; preventing childhood obesity; promoting healthy eating and active living; and strategies to address disparities in underserved communities.

View the Agenda HERE.
View the Speaker Bios HERE.
View the Sponsors HERE.
View the Pictures HERE.

Learn more about the topics discussed:

  • Managing Diabetes
    In a session facilitated by Representative Lois Delmore from the North Dakota State Legislature, Martha Rinker, the Chief Advocacy Officer for the American Association of Diabetes Educators spoke about how legislators can encourage healthy management of diabetes among their constituents. Learn more about this topic by viewing her presentation here.

  • Preventing & Treating Diabetes & Obesity with Cultural Competency
    Connie Davis, the Executive Director of Health Services for Cherokee Nation spoke about how Native American populations are at an increased risk of developing type 2 diabetes, and in order to provide adequate treatment, programs must address this population’s specific needs. Cherokee Nation has dedicated large portions of their casino funding source to programs directly tied to reducing the prevalence of diabetes. Learn more about what Cherokee Nation is doing by viewing Ms. Davis' presentation here.

  • Health Policy, Education, & Cultural Competency
    Senator Jackie Winters, from the Oregon State Legislature, facilitated a segment from speaker, Gwendolyn Flynn, the Policy Director at the Community Health Councils. This session provided a community oriented prevention and wellness perspective and discuss policy and systems change strategies. Community Health Councils works to find ways to encourage urban agriculture, using public vacant and private land, focusing on nutrition and building a healthy environment in a variety of communities. Learn more by viewing her presentation here.

  • Legislation in the States
    This session featured ways Mississippi and Arkansas activists passed legislation to combat diabetes and obesity in their at-risk states.

    • Senator Terry Burton, from the Mississippi State Legislature, was not able to attend WIG's conference, however, wanted to share his work on Mississippi SB 2015. He was skyped in to speak about the legisaltion, and what will happen with the legislation. View SB 2015 here to learn more.

    • James Fasules, MD, Cardiologist Member of the Breakaway Policy Strategies Medical Advisory Board spoke about his work on Arkansas legislation. As part of the Child Health Advisory Committee, he advised and assisted in the passage of AR Act 1220 – the so called BMI measuring pull the vending machines out of the schools Act. Learn more about the legislation and the results following the legislation by accessing the following links:

  • Healthcare Reform: Threats to Diabetes Coverage
    In a session Senator Arthenia Joyner from the Florida State Legislature, Marti Macchi, MEd, MPH, a Senior Consultant for Diabetes at the National Association of Chronic Disease Directors spoke about the management of public health resources for high-risk individuals with diabetes and pre-diabetes, and the programs that must remain for self-management and prevention. To learn more access her presentation here.

  • Diabetes Action Plan Legislation

    • Marti Macchi, MEd, MPH continued her presentation and facilitated a legislator panel regarding Diabetes Action Plan (DAP) Legislation. She noted that several states already have DAP in place; Texas and Kentucky both passed in 2011, with ND, LA, NC, OR, WA, NJ, IL, MI, WY passing legislation in the following years. Texas has released two reports, Kentucky has released one, and North Dakota's first report is just recently becoming available. 

    • Representative Ruth Ann Palumbo from the Kentucky State Legislature spoke about her experience passing the legislation. View Kentucky's report here, Kentucky Diabetes Action Plan

    • Representative Kathy Hawken, the Immediate Past Chair, Women In Government Board of Directors, from the North Dakota State Legislature, spoke about how when they first discussed DAP in her state, there was some push back from the various state agencies who already felt they had the components of the report in place. Once they started collaborating, however, the response was great and the groups have synergized their efforts. 

    • Representative Lauren Matsumoto, from the Hawaii State Legislature spoke about how her state wasn't quite ready to pass the legislation. She introduced the legislation this past year, and will continue to work to require state departments charged with diabetes monitoring and programs to align their efforts to report the financial and health burden of diabetes. With more support from advocates, such as Marti Macchi, she is confident that DAP legislation can pass in the future.

  • How To: Establish & Maintain a Diabetes Caucus

    • Representative Janet Cruz from the Florida State Legislature facilitated a segment that featured Nicole Niwa from the Illinois Legislative Diabetes Caucus. Ms. Niwa spoke at the Florida Diabetes State Briefing, which featured information on establishing a diabetes caucus. Ms. Niwa spoke about the success of the caucus in Illinois, and how they have established a seperate non-profit organization to maintain their fundraising efforts. Learn more the caucus by visiting their website here,  and by accessing Ms. Niwa's presentation here

    • Representative Donna Oberlander, Co-Chair of the Pennsylvania House Diabetes Caucus also spoke about what the Pennsylvania Caucus does, and how they have maintained the caucus.

  • Community Programs to Address Obesity
    San Diego County has been a leader in the country in promoting programs to address obesity. This session highlighted a few of those successes and identify what has worked and what legislators should consider replicating. Nick Macchione, MA, the Director of Health & Human Services Agency for the County of San Diego spoke about his work, and initiatives that San Diego has implemented to reduce diabetes and obesity prevalance. A major component of those initiatives is the Live Well San Diego Initiative. Learn about Live Well San Diego by visiting their website here, and access Mr. Macchione's presentation here

  • The Role of Weight Management: Coverage for Obesity Treatments
    Obesity prevention programs are critical in preventing diabetes and are of the utmost importance moving forward. This session focused the role of weight management, the cost of obesity, how it connects to disability in the workplace, and why coverage is critical. Tim Church, MD, MPH, PhD the Chief Medical Officer at Accountable Care  Accountable Patients, and a Professor at Pennington Biomedical at Louisiana State University. He is a nationally known expert who shared his expertise with Women In Government, delving into some of the many factors that contribute to the rising obesity epidemic.

  • Healthy & Safe Schools
    Representative Patrice Arent, from the Utah State Legislature, facilitated a segment featuring Lisa Murdock, the Managing Director of State Government Affairs for the American Diabetes Association (ADA). Ms. Murdock has spent 24 years with the ADA, and has a wealth of knowledge on diabetes topics. For this segment, she shared the information on ensuring a child can manage their diabetes effectively, with appropriate supervision safeguards, is important for every parent of a child with diabetes. 

  • Promoting Healthy School Choices: Smarter Lunchroom Movement
    Shannan Young ended the conference by presenting a segment on promting healthy school lunchs. She has a vested interest in child health and serves as Dairy Council of California’s Senior Project Manager, School Foodservice Advisor for the Farm to School Yolo Taskforce, Co-Chair of the California Local School Wellness Policy Collaborative, and Industry Chair for the Mother Lode Chapter of the California School Nutrition Association. Learn more about the USDA regulations for the meal program and Local School Wellness Policies here.


For Legislator or Registration information, please contact:
Johnathan Lozier, Project Manager, Legislative Outreach 
202.333.0825 ext. 214

For Sponsor information, please contact:
Sumeira Kashim, Project Manager, Development 
202.333.0825 ext. 210

For Policy information, please contact:
Brenna Kehew, Manager, Policy & Program 
202.333.0825 ext. 211