Interview with Partnership For A Healthier America (Continued)


Setting Goals for the Future

Kelly: What would make 2011 a "home-run year" for the Partnership for a Healthier America?

Dr. Gavin: The number of major commitments that we get, and the nature of the goals those commitments attempt to achieve. Those are the kinds of things that let us know that we are on track to being successful as an organization. Obviously, there are other things like the attention that we bring to this: the visibility and the level of advocacy and so forth. There are a lot of little things like that but at the end of the day, it really is about commitments and measurable achievements.

Larry: Absolutely. Coming back to your earlier question, Joseph, I would probably compare what we're doing more to the fight against tobacco. And while clearly there have been significant gains that have been made in the fight against tobacco, many doubted that it was really going to happen. But once the movement made it to a certain level, then you saw significant, dramatic progress. So maybe that's a better comparison to where we want to be.

I feel like we're approaching that level. When I go out and speak, people understand the significance of this problem. They see it in their families. They see it in the schools and their churches. They see it in their companies. There's really no way to hide from it any longer.

The number one thing I want to see happen this year is that I want us to announce a lot of commitments, realizing that it takes time to get these started. And then I want us to do more in the second and third years. But I think in this first year, we have a good opportunity to make somewhere in the range of ten commitments.

Kelly: Ten is not a small number given the size and scope of these agreements. We're really excited to see which healthcare company will be the first to show the kind of leadership that these types of agreements require. That's about an agreement and a half each month for the rest of the year.

Larry: Over a three-year period, I'd like to see us have somewhere in the range of 40 or more commitments. When I say commitments, we'll be turning down more than we will be signing. So these are going to be ones that we feel really good about — ones that are solid and we think are going to actually make a difference. Also, as a new organization, our ability to continue to be impactful in the future is partially dependent on how well we are known in the community, and how well our brand is known. In the childhood obesity space, we're a group that a company can actually be a member of — you can't be a member of a government agency, so we're going to try to build our brand significantly so that we can bring that value to companies and have our own kind of seal of approval.

There's also another area of opportunity; it's not so much a goal and this is not something I think we are going to do this year as a startup organization, but I'd like to see us do it down the road. There is a lot of interest from local non-profits and local companies about the work that they're doing in this space. And we don't have the means and resources right now to work with our local companies, but I think that there's definitely something out there for a local presence to help do what we're doing nationally, at the local level. There's so much that can happen both locally and nationally. So that's something that I see on the horizon.

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Last Modified Date: April 23, 2013

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by Brenda Bell
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