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Meet Our Newest Staff Members
FreshLink, the PRCHN’s core research project, has a new Program Manager in Kristen Matlack, who comes to us via the Ohio State University Extension’s Expanded Food & Nutrition Education Program (EFNEP). A native of Brunswick, Ohio, Kristen earned an undergraduate degree in Public Health Education from James Madison University and a Master of Public Health degree from Drexel University.

While with the OSU Extension, Kristen ran the Cuyahoga County EFNEP program, which provides free nutrition education for families and youth through schools, summer food services programs, neighborhood centers, churches, and other community organizations. The aspect of the FreshLink program that most intrigues her is training community members to be community health models. “I’m excited to be part of the beginning of something, being part of its development, and seeing it through,” she says. Her first steps, after “getting organized,” are developing the methods and questions for a survey of SNAP recipients that will be conducted over the summer.

Kristen and her husband, a Philadelphia native, moved to Cleveland two and a half years ago. She is glad to be back in her hometown and notes that her husband now refers to Cleveland as “home.” 

IMPACT Navigator Aaron SepulvedaAaron Sepulveda is a recent CWRU graduate, where he majored in Anthropology with a concentration in Medical Anthropology, the study of cultural approaches to and understandings of health and illness. A number of things attracted him to the Navigator position, but he notes that the greatest draw was the chance to work in communities that have affected him personally. "I'm from Cleveland proper and have attended a few schools with which IMPACT has partnered," he says. "Yet I'm also a college graduate and someone who was taught healthy lifestyle habits with respect to diet and exercise. These two things are often contradictory but shouldn't be. And this gives me a passion to change that, at least on a micro-scale, in neighborhoods I know all too well."

The PRCHN is pleased to have Kristen and Aaron on board!
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