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U.S. Conference of Mayors to Focus on Health and Wellness in 2016 - 2017, including Walking and Walkable Cities

The United States Conference of Mayors (USCM) held its annual meeting in Indianapolis, Indiana, beginning last Friday and adjourning on Monday. ACSM was well represented. USCM is the official non-partisan organization of cities with populations of 30,000 or more. Each city is represented in the Conference by its chief elected official, the mayor.

The Annual Meeting was remarkable in its assembly, which included the mayoral leadership of the United States, two of the major U.S. Presidential candidates, his holiness the 14th Dalai Lama and Lady Gaga, the latter two who addressed how to build more compassionate cities. The new president of the United States Conference of Mayors is Oklahoma City Mayor Mick Cornett, with whom ACSM has collaborated over the years as Oklahoma City has transformed itself into a healthier and a more active, walkable and bikeable city.
Jim Whitehead, ACSM CEO, meets with Mick Cornett
(right), Mayor of Oklahoma City and new President of the
U.S. Conference of Mayors. As USMC President, Mayor
Cornett is making health and wellness— especially
physical activity— a top priority.


Mayor Cornett has been a champion of physical activity and health, asking his citizens to vote for a tax to fund a series of public works to encourage less sedentary lifestyles. The mayor says “And so the citizens have funded more sidewalks, more jogging and biking trails, senior wellness centers and new gymnasiums for kids.” Overviewing the entire effort, Mayor Cornett concluded “Perhaps most notably [there is] a completely different infrastructure that is built to be more pedestrian-friendly, where life revolves around people instead of cars.”

ACSM has encouraged Mayor Cornett to make this a national effort. Now, as President of the U.S. Conference of Mayors and its more than 1,400 mayors and cities, Mayor Cornett has announced health and wellness one of his top priorities. He will be leading an effort to make progress in partnership with this large network of U.S. mayors and cities to encourage walking and walkability, active transportation overall, and the design of our cities to be increasingly supportive of physical activity and health. ACSM looks very forward to working closely with President Mick Cornett, the U.S. Conference of Mayors, and mayors and cities throughout the United States to help make America more physically active and healthier, especially with walking and walkability, with its array of complementary benefits such as economic growth, improve social cohesion and better air quality. We will provide periodic updates on this bold effort to move the health and cities of United States. more


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