Serving Up Health Equity Southern Style
You'll learn about:
Overview of the health challenges facing the Southeast and how planners can work with public health professionals and community leaders to improve communities and reduce health inequity.
Understand the role planners’ play and tools available for increasing physical activity opportunities in low-income neighborhoods through lessons learned by Charlotte Plan4Health.
Learn about the importance of healthy food access to addressing obesity and ways planners are assessing the food environment and helping increase access in Savannah, Georgia.
In a nation where your zip code is becoming more of a determinant of your health and life expectancy than your genetic code, those living in the South are at greater risk for poor health outcomes. Social conditions such as higher rates of poverty, unemployment, uninsured, and uneducated coupled with unhealthy cultural traditions contribute to higher rates of chronic diseases including obesity, high blood pressure, diabetes, cancer, and heart disease. Low-income and communities of color are at even greater risk, often living in neighborhoods where safe places to play are hard to find and the nearest grocery store is miles away. What can planners do to overcome the impacts of decades of red-lining, segregation, gentrification, lax development regulations, and disinvestment?
This session highlights the experiences of two Plan4Health grantees and their efforts to address health inequity and promote physical activity and healthy eating in at-risk neighborhoods. Plan4Health Charlotte and Healthy Savannah are building multi-sectoral coalitions and taking comprehensive approaches to increase physical activity opportunities and promote access to healthy food, through changes to policies, systems, and the environment. Find out the benefits of extensive partnerships, how to incorporate healthy community policies into action, and learn which policy approaches work well together.
, Transport Studio
Confirmed SpeakerWhitney Shephard, PE, LEED AP, is a Principal Engineer/Planner. She manages diverse projects for local and regional governments, with a focus on health impacts, multimodal transportation, and advanced geographic information systems applications. She cofounded Transport Studio in 2013. For the last several years, Whitney has been an active volunteer for Healthy Savannah, promoting policy and environmental changes to increase access to healthy food and physical activity. Whitney holds bachelor’s degrees in architecture and civil engineering, and a Master of Science in Civil Engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology. She is a 2014 graduate of Leadership Southeast Georgia. Whitney has lived and worked on the southeast her whole life, with the last 23 years in Georgia. She is an active APA member. Whitney founded and chairs the Georgia Chapter Mentor Program, and is the Georgia District 9 Director.
, Centralina Council of Governments
Confirmed SpeakerKatherine Hebert is experienced in healthy community design and a well-known Health Impact Assessment practitioner having personally led 11 HIAs and having served as a mentor for 3 others. Ms. Hebert currently works for the Centralina Council of Governments as a Healthy Community Design Specialist for the Centralina Health Solutions Coalition and their Healthy Environments for Health Equity Project funded through a Plan4Health grant from the American Planning Association. Katherine has a Masters in City and Regional Planning from UNC Chapel Hill.
, Centralina COG
Confirmed SpeakerMichelle Nance, AICP is the Planning Director for the Centralina Council of Governments, providing planning services to nine counties in the greater Charlotte region. She directs the Council's work related to land use and transportation, healthy community initiatives, energy and the environment. Her work is focused on helping local governments address shared, long-term issues through collaboration and partnerships. She led the CONNECT Our Future regional planning process which developed this region's first bi-state growth framework. She is the former Director of the City of Gastonia Development Services Department, managing land use and subdivision planning, transportation, building inspections and housing. She also served as development ombudsman for the City of Gastonia, fostering public-private collaboration on policies and practices related to growth. Michelle received her Masters of Public Administration and BS in Urban and Regional Planning from East Carolina University. She is a past president of the NC Chapter of the American Planning Association and recently received this region's "Transforming Health Champion Award" for her dedication to creating healthier, active communities. In 2017, she was recognized as one of the 50 Most Influential Women in the Charlotte region for her influence and leadership on planning and healthy community issues and was named the 2017 Woman of the Year by the Mecklenburg Times.