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Niagara Falls City School District superintendent joins nationwide initiative to champion health equity in schools


Sat, Nov 12th 2022 10:35 am

Mark Laurrie to serve on the American Heart Association’s Superintendent Council

Submitted by the American Heart Association

Mark Laurrie, superintendent of Niagara Falls City School District, has been selected to serve on the national American Heart Association Superintendent Council. Laurrie is joined by nine other superintendents across the nation who will join the association in seeking to drive transformational impact aimed at improving the health and well-being of students, families and educators.

“We’re proud of the work we’ve done with Superintendent Laurrie, Niagara Falls City School District, and the community partners on increasing nutrition security through afterschool meals and our emergency response to provide fresh produce for the community during the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Jason Stulb, executive director of the American Heart Association, Buffalo/Niagara.

The Superintendent Council is an elite group of American Heart Association volunteers comprised of superintendents from a diverse mix of urban and rural public-school districts across the U.S. Council members serve a two-year term, participating in nationwide stakeholder sessions, and offering their individual and collective expertise to assist the American Heart Association in creating a culture of health in school systems and communities across the country.

The council complements the work of other American Heart Association youth initiatives such as the in-school programs, Kids Heart Challenge and American Heart Challenge, and the American Heart Association Leaders for a Resilient Generation National Council. Each of these areas of work brings volunteers with different backgrounds and perspectives to singularly focus on improving the health and well-being within their local communities and are committed to efforts that will help children achieve healthier, happier and longer lives.

American Heart Association Superintendent Council members include:

√ Chris Allen, Ph.D., Marble Falls Independent School District, Marble Falls, Texas

√ Jeffrey Bearden, Ph.D., Forsyth County Schools, Cummings, Georgia

√ Vivian Ekchian, Ph.D., Glendale Unified School District, Glendale, California

√ Sharonica Hardin-Bartley, Ph.D., University City School District, University City, Missouri

√ Roland Hernandez, Ph.D., Corpus Christi Independent School District, Corpus Christi, Texas

√ Mark Laurrie, Niagara Falls City School District, Niagara Falls

√ Matt Pearce, Ph.D., Republic School District, Republic, Missouri

√ Charlotte Seals, Madison County School District, Madison, Mississippi

√ Aaron Spence, Ph.D., Virginia Beach City Public Schools, Virginia Beach, Virginia

√ Kristi Wilson, Ph.D., Buckeye Elementary School District, Buckeye, Arizona

“The American Heart Association continues to bring great support and value added to education and student programming for the children of Niagara Falls,” Laurrie said. “This organization has been a fantastic partner, with not only the physical development of our students, but the mental health supports our students critically need. The invitation to serve on the National Superintendent Council is not only an honor, but a tremendous way to connect with colleagues in school districts across the country.”

The work of the American Heart Association to save and improve every child’s life is rooted in the organizational vision that all children, regardless of gender, race, location or economic status, should be able grow to their full potential. Efforts are being made around the country, including through this council, to make the places where kids live, learn and play support their physical health and mental well-being, because, according to the American Heart Association, only 29% of children have high cardiovascular health based on Life’s Essential 8 measurements.

To learn more about American Heart Association youth-based programs visit heart.org/schools.

The American Heart Association is a leading force for a world of longer, healthier lives. With nearly a century of lifesaving work, the Dallas-based association is dedicated to ensuring equitable health for all. We are a trustworthy source empowering people to improve their heart health, brain health and well-being. We collaborate with numerous organizations and millions of volunteers to fund innovative research, advocate for stronger public health policies, and share lifesaving resources and information. Connect with us on heart.org, Facebook, Twitter or by calling 1-800-AHA-USA1.

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