Gurung to present on childhood obesity at UW-Green Bay-sponsored conference

University of Wisconsin-Green Bay Prof. Regan Gurung will be among the featured presenters at a Sept. 29 collaborative conference on the critical and timely topic of childhood obesity.

The Childhood Obesity Conference: Integrating Innovative Strategies to Help Tackle the Epidemic is designed for professionals engaged in public health efforts and initiatives. It will provide the latest information on childhood obesity, as well as recommendations for encouraging and supporting healthy lifestyles in our communities and beyond. The event will be held from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 29 at The Meadows Conference Center, 850 Kepler Drive, Green Bay.

The Childhood Obesity Conference is sponsored by UW-Green Bay, Northeast Wisconsin Alliance for Social Worker and Professional Counseling Continuing Education, Brown County Healthy Weight Coalition, Brown County UW-Extension and United Healthcare Community Plan.

Gurung’s presentation will center on the Greater Green Bay: Where Kids Count community initiative and its ‘LIVE54218’ campaign, which focuses on encouraging healthy behaviors around eating and physical activity. Each number in the ‘54218’ sequence — designed to be the “healthiest zip code in America” — represents a numerical prescription for better health (for example, eating five fruits and vegetables daily). Gurung, a professor of human development who earned the UW System Board of Regents’ 2011 Teaching Excellence Award, has received numerous grants for his health and social psychological research on cultural differences in stress, social support, smoking cessation, body image and impression formation. He has published articles in a variety of scholarly journals and has presented nationally and internationally.

“The Kids Count initiative and resulting ‘LIVE54218’ campaign promises to provide a much-needed infrastructure to pull together the ongoing efforts in the Green Bay area to reduce childhood obesity,” Gurung said. “In addition to new initiatives by the Green Bay schools, area Y’s, and area grocery stores (e.g., Festival Foods) the Kids Count steering committee is planning a major rollout of the next campaign for later this year to provide the impetus for major health changes in the county.”

The event’s keynote speaker will be Dr. Marilyn S. (Susie) Nanney, an assistant professor at the University of Minnesota, Department of Family Medicine and Community Health. Her address is titled ‘Childhood Obesity Prevention: Research, Practice and Policy.’ Jordan Bingham, the Healthy Communities Coordinator for the Wisconsin Department of Health Services, will present on ‘Building a Statewide Movement for Obesity Prevention.’

The cost for the conference is $79, with registrations accepted now through Sept. 22. Register online; by mail (send form with payment to Outreach-CPE, UW-Green Bay, 2420 Nicolet Drive, Green Bay, WI, 54311-7001); by phone (920-465-2642; toll-free 800-621-2313) or fax (920-465-2643). For additional information, check their website or contact Joy Ruzek at 920-465-2222.

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