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Q&A with ACSM President-Elect: How ACSM will be "Inclusive - Active - Healthy"

from By Dr. Barbara Ainsworth, Ph.D., MPH, FACSM, and Dr. Melicia Whitt-Glover, Ph.D., FACSM

ACSM President-Elect Barbara Ainsworth, Ph.D., MPH, FACSM, is a Professor in the Exercise and Wellness Program and the Healthy Lifestyles Research Center at Arizona State University in Phoenix. As ACSM President-Elect, Dr. Ainsworth chairs the ACSM Annual Meeting Program Committee. With support of that capable team, she is developing a cohesive and diverse program of research and educational content for our 2011 Annual Meeting and World Congress on Exercise is Medicine®, which will be held in Denver from May 31 – June 4. Each President-Elect creates a unique focus for the Annual Meeting program that can, in part, highlight some of her or his leadership objectives for the College.

Melicia Whitt-Glover, Ph.D., FACSM, is president and CEO of Gramercy Research Group in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. She is a community-based researcher with background, training and experience in exercise science and epidemiology. Gramercy’s mission is to develop and implement programs that positively impact the health of individuals and communities. Dr. Whitt-Glover’s research includes developing and assessing interventions to increase physical activity in racial/ethnic minority communities.

This month, ACSM’s Sports Medicine Bulletin (SMB) is featuring a special series in observance of February as Black History Month. This series will cover a broad spectrum of diversity-related issues that pertain to our members, the world’s leading sports medicine and exercise science professionals.

During her ACSM presidential term, Dr. Barbara Ainsworth will focus on increasing diversity and inclusion while also reducing health disparities. In this Q&A with SMB, Dr. Ainsworth and her colleague, Dr. Whitt-Glover, share their perspectives on activities and initiatives to realize these goals and promote diversity.

Q&A questions include:
  • (For Dr. Ainsworth) During your ACSM presidential term, you will focus on increasing diversity and inclusion and reducing health disparities. How will this take shape?
  • Why is it important to also diversify ACSM’s membership?
  • What is ACSM already doing to increase diversity?
  • What are some specific strategies you envision ACSM taking to increase diversity?
  • From your experience, how can we increase the relevance of ACSM for underrepresented groups? More

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