The Delta Population Health Institute (DPHI) honored seven individuals for their outstanding contributions to population health and health equity at the inaugural Delta Impact Awards ceremony held in Jonesboro earlier this month.
The DPHI, which serves as the community engagement arm of New York Institute of Technology College of Osteopathic Medicine at Arkansas State University chose the honorees to recognize their dynamic work toward impacting health in the Mississippi Delta region. Corey Wiggins, Federal Co-Chairman of the Delta Regional Authority, served as the keynote speaker at the ceremony.
“We are so grateful for the tremendous work so many individuals and organizations are doing to make a difference in the Delta, and it was very important for us to provide special recognition to these honorees,” said Brookshield Laurent, D.O., executive director of the DPHI and chair of clinical medicine at NYITCOM at A-State.
Cherisse Jones-Branch, dean of the graduate school at ASU, received the DPHI Excellence in Education Award. The DPHI Excellence in Policy Award was given to Craig Wilson, director of health policy at the Arkansas Center for Health Improvement.
Loretta Alexander, health policy director at Arkansas Advocates for Children and Families (AACF), was the recipient of the DPHI Excellence in Advocacy Award. The DPHI Excellence in Journalism Award was given to Lyndsey Gilpin, founder of Southerly. The DPHI Excellence in Community Leadership Award, which is presented to champions of well-being for their communities, was given to James White of Elaine.
Chelsea Presley, co-founder and executive director the Coahoma County Diaper Bank, received the DPHI Excellence in Community Leadership Award, and the Barbara Ross-Lee, D.O., Impact in Community Engagement Award was given to Kristy Carter, who serves as the director of marketing for Outreach and Community Engagement at the University of Central Arkansas.
Additionally, the DPHI recognized 16 NYITCOM medical students for their outstanding community engagement. Those students include Sooji Beck, Kaitlyn Child, Colton Crain, Ethan Dominguez, Saif Fiaz, Saminul Haque, Nic Harriel, Baylee King, Erika Levy, Makayla Lund, Tina Mirzakhanian, Elli Meuller, Holleigh McMasters, Vicki Oladoyin, Andrea Pecina, and Emma Schmidt.
NYITCOM established the DPHI in 2019 to lead efforts to create equitable cultures of health through education, research, policy engagement, and community engagement.