California Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics

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Featured RDNs/NDTRs




Featured RDN/NDTR of the Quarter

Sarah Koszyk, MS, RDN


Sarah Koszyk, MS, RDN

Facebook: Family.Food.Fiesta.
Twitter: @SarahKoszykRD
Instagram: SarahKoszyk
YouTube: SarahKoszyk
Pinterest: SarahKoszyk
Interviewed by Randi Drasin, MS, RDN, CAND Communications Council

Meet Sarah Koszyk dietitian, foodie, author, writer, speaker! Need I say more? She is one of the most well-rounded dietitians in the field! Her passion for nutrition, food and helping people understand that there are no "good" or "bad" foods is what drives her. She is well-versed with a diverse educational background and seems to connect with people not only who are her clients, but fellow colleagues as well as those in the business, sports and medical industries. And although Sarah has not been a dietitian for that long, she seems to be making a lasting impression in our field and in the community!

Please tell us about your experience in the field of dietetics. How many years have you had? What is your background and what inspired you to become a dietitian? I got my original degrees in Speech and Communications and in Spanish. After graduating, I started a fashion company with my partner where I was the business/marketing side of things. Life was very good and prosperous, but I wasn't internally happy with my career. I have always had a passion for food, and I really wanted to help people. We dissolved the company, and I decided to go back to school to become a Registered Dietitian. I went on to get a third Bachelor's degree (third time is a charm, right?), completed an internship and Master's, and here I am today. I have been a dietitian since 2008, in private practice, and have only looked forward to my future opportunities as an RDN. This is definitely my calling and I'm having a blast doing it.

Can you share with our readers what your coaching services are and what type of clientele do you serve? I primarily work with weight management and sports nutrition clients. Since I write for UltraRunning Magazine and Swimmer Magazine, I get a lot of runners, swimmers, and triathletes. The ages range from high school to mid-70s. I also work with a lot of rowers because there are a lot of clubs in the Bay Area and I've built relationships with them. When I first started coaching clients in private practice, I primarily targeted weight management clients. Over time, I built a network of referrals ranging from pediatric doctor offices, personal trainers, therapists, and word-of-mouth. My general clientele includes working with entire families, pediatrics, and adults. The variety of age groups is fantastic for me and it keeps me always wanting to learn more and grow in my practice.

I see that you call yourself a "foodie". What was your defining moment at which you decided that a "foodie" is what you are and wanted to be? One can call me many names and foodie is just one of those fun terms that people use. It's catchy. Anyone who likes food can be a "foodie." I love to eat. Love to cook (but would never call myself a Chef. I'm not trained for that). I love to help people realize that food does not need to be demonized and there is no "good" or "bad" food. Providing people with that liberalization where they can rid themselves of that scared feeling when it comes to food is wonderful. So if loving food makes me a "foodie," I'm game.

Can you share with us some of the media and speaking engagements you have been involved in and works that you have authored? How do you market yourself to obtain these types of achievements? I do a lot of paid writing jobs. I originally got started at a networking event. I met the owner/founder of NutritionJobs, Stacey Dunn-Emke, and she offered me a job writing for her Website. At another networking event, I met a writer for UltraRunning Magazine. She was looking for a nutrition columnist. I offered my services, and got the gig. That same writer introduced me to the editors of Swimmer Magazine when they were looking for a dietitian to write their nutrition column. After reviewing some of my writing samples, they hired me. Who you know is always helpful, and I have been thankful to have had so many opportunities come my way. I have actually never applied for a job, yet.

I've also written 3 books with a 4th on the way:

  1. Whole Body Reboot: The Peruvian Superfoods Diet to Detoxify, Energize, and Supercharge Fat Loss, by Manuel Villacorta with Sarah Koszyk
  2. Brain Food: 10 Simple Foods that will Increase Your Focus, Improve Your Memory, and Decrease Depression, by Sarah Koszyk and Stacey Frattinger
  3. 25 Anti-Aging Smoothies for Revitalizing, Glowing Skin, by Sarah Koszyk
  4. To Be Released in October/November 2016: 365 Snacks for Every Day of the Year, by Sarah Koszyk

In regards to media events, I started my blog back in 2012 and really ramped up my social media engagement. I started connecting with other bloggers through social media and networking to build a community. After establishing relationships with people, they started to refer their PR companies to me when their clients were looking for a dietitian in the Bay Area. Now, I just get requests from PR firms and companies to do spokesperson work. It's another great source of revenue as a dietitian.

What is the most rewarding part of your career? What are you passionate about? The most rewarding part is making a difference in the lives of other people. When you get those phone calls, emails, or positive reviews from clients that their health and wellness has improved because of your help, that is where it's at for me. I am still very passionate about making this world a better place through enhancing one's nutritional outlook and status. In addition, I am also passionate about increasing our worth and value, as dietitians, to the general public. Everyone should know, we are THE nutrition professionals. I enjoy being an advocate for our industry and making sure we get paid for our worth.

Have you received any special recognitions or awards?

What is the single most important piece of advice you can give to new RDNs and students? Life is all about who you know. Put yourself out there and network as often as possible. When you network, make meaningful, deep connections with people. Follow-up and keep in touch. Always remember to be kind and professional. We all help one another get by in this industry so remember to give back when you can and stay connected with others. I wouldn't be where I am at today without the help of my fellow colleagues and friends, so I'm a huge advocate of building relationships and having fun along the way.

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Featured RDN/NDTR of the Quarter

Sarah Greenfield, RD, CSSD

June - August 2016

Sarah Greenfield, RD, CSSD

Registered Dietitian Nutritionist

Facebook: SarahGreenfield
Twitter: @fearlessfig
Instagram: @fearlessfig
Interviewed by Randi Drasin, MS, RDN, CAND Communications Council

Sarah Greenfield also known as "The Fearless Fig" is a fairly new dietitian, but has so much experience in the field, and has definitely left her mark in the nutrition world. Past president of CAND's Los Angeles District, of which I personally served under her as President Elect, and feel we were a powerful team! She is a force with clear direction in her career, and spends much of her time educating the public through her blog, instagram and Nutribullet University.

Please tell us about your experience in the field of dietetics. How many years have you had? What is your background and what inspired you to become a dietitian? I have been a dietitian for about 8 years now, and have watched this industry change and grow. I started my career in the hospital focusing on clinical nutrition and how medical and nutrition based interventions impact an ailing body. It was fascinating to see the healing process speed up when proper nutrition was in place, and to see how adaptive the body was under times of significant stress. This clinical foundation helped me become a more confident RD with first hand experience seeing how the body works and the impact of nutrition interventions. Understanding human physiology helps clear out some of the nutrition noise that exists in the media and all over the internet. This clinical foundation helped me transition out of health care and into the business world where I have been a part of the marketing team for a health and wellness companies. Delivering a message of health and wellness is very important for companies, and I have had to figure out ways to translate science into accurate consumer-friendly marketing terms. I love being in the prevention space and helping people navigate ways to live healthier lives. I have created messaging across multiple consumer platforms including social media outlets, youtube videos, national health programs (NutriBullet University) and consumer product packaging.

Dietetics is a challenging field that is always evolving and everyone is different, there is not a singular dietary solution that works for everyone. This pursuit of understanding and knowledge is what inspires me on a daily basis to continue to grow and become a more effective dietitian. I have always had an interest in human physiology and how food impacts every day function. I love cooking and was actually thinking about becoming a chef, but when I found out that I could combine my interest in human physiology with cooking, and there was a career in the field of human nutrition, I was sold!

Please tell our readers about The Fearless Fig! What clientele do you serve? What are the goals of your program? Fearless Fig has been the one constant throughout my career as an RD, and has reminded me to stay true to who I am personally. Every year in this field I learn more, I become a more confident and knowledgable practitioner and more professional. Fearless Fig reminds me to stay present in my work, to cherish elements of my personality and stay true to my passion, which is sharing the message of health and wellness with others, and watching them find joy in nutrition. Fearless Fig serves people that are overwhelmed with all the nutrition messaging that is out there, and helps them reconnect with what it means to be healthy. I am extremely busy and have learned a lot of health hacks, tips and tricks to keep health at the forefront of a busy life. I also work with a lot of vegan or vegetarian athletes to ensure they are getting all their nutrient needs to perform at their peak. The main goal with the Fearless Fig programs are to give people different options in their lives. I don't try to change a persons habits, but rather give them healthier alternatives in their current habits or give them tools to add on new habits.

You seem to have a lot of social media and have been in the media. What role does this play in your career/company? How often do you provide updates? How often do you blog? Do you find that most of your followers are fellow RDN's or the general public? I have been fortunate to work with several different companies that were involved with higher profile activities, and needed an expert to represent their messaging which gave me opportunities to be on TV outlets.

Being a part of company marketing teams for the past 5 years has also showed me the need to have a presence in the social media world, and I have been working on my brand and personal messaging for years. I have learned to be patient with social media exposure and consistency and staying true to your voice is the best way to effectively leverage social media.

Most of my followers are the general public looking for health tips to integrate in to their busy lives. My current schedule for posting is an Instagram tip daily and weekly blog posts on my Website.

Can you tell us about Nutribullet University? What is it and what is the goal? NutriBullet University is a 90-day healthy eating program for students that provides hands-on education and empowers students to take control of their health. NutriBullet University started as a way for NutriBullet to give back to the community and work with kids to ensure they were on track to become healthy adults. The program was structured as a study to measure health changes through blood work and wellness assessments and the results were amazing. 23% of students decreased total cholesterol levels, and 59% improved HDL cholesterol which equates to a decreased risk for heart disease. 36% increased vegetable intake, 76% reported feeling more empowered to make healthy behavioral changes, and 41% felt they were able to control their own health with exercise and a healthy, balanced diet. The current goal is to expand further and provide the program to more students across the nation and eventually across the world. I am proud to say that I created NutriBullet University, and now oversee the direction and strategy of the program.

What is the most rewarding part of your career? What are you passionate about? Recently it has been working with kids and watching them take a sip of a green smoothie and smile or show me what they have learned about vegetables and how they feel better. I love that moment in a kid's life or an adult's life when they connect to an aspect of health and feel like they can do it, they can control how they feel and improve the quality of their life.

Have you received any special recognitions or awards? I was recognized by CAND years ago for having a unique career. I was featured on Well + GOOD twitter as an expert smoothie maker for NutriBullet!

What is the single most important piece of advice you can give to new RDNs and students? Find your passion and don't forget why you got involved in this field. There will be many challenges that try and move you away from health and wellness, but stay true to your passion.

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Featured RDN/DTR of the Month

McKenzie Hall Jones, RD

April 2016

McKenzie Hall Jones, RD

Registered Dietitian Nutritionist

Facebook: NourishRDs
Twitter: nourishrds and mckenziehallrd
Pinterest: nourishrds
Instagram: nourishrds
Interviewed by Randi Drasin, MS, RDN, CAND Communications Council

McKenzie Hall Jones, RD is fairly new to the field of dietetics, but has seemed to make her mark in the industry. With her drive and tenacity she has been able to combine both her love of nutrition with her love of communications into one entity providing nutrition information via blogging, writing, contributing, and social media. Additionally being a business owner has allowed her to connect with the community on a whole other level that allows her to become a positive impact to others.

Please tell us about your experience in the field of dietetics. How many years have you had? What is your background and what inspired you to become a dietitian? I've been a dietitian for five years and actually always knew that I wanted to work in the communications side of nutrition. When I was in college, I started my studies as an English major and was working as an assistant for the on-campus dietitian at the time. Through her guidance, I realized that I could combine my two loves - for both writing and communications with nutrition - so I headed on the path to become a dietitian. Once I became a dietitian and my business partner, Lisa and I were building Nourish, I did a lot of freelance writing, corporate wellness events, workplace wellness workshops, and also saw one-on-one clients.

Please tell us about your company "Nourish RD's." How was it formed? What are the goals of the company and what clientele do you serve? Please tell us about your company "Nourish RD's." How was it formed? What are the goals of the company and what clientele do you serve? Lisa and I (we co-founded NourishRDs together) met in our dietetic internship in Seattle, and became immediate friends. We decided over the course of our internship that we wanted to start a blog where we could share recipes, our articles, and nutrition information - and we built on our business from there. We now consult with food companies that align with our philosophies by helping them to develop content and increase exposure.

How did you get in to being a spokesperson? Writer? Editor? A lot of our relationships first started by connecting with brands and professionals online and also by networking at events. Some of the organizations I've consulted with include: The National Processed Red Raspberry Council, Chelan Fresh, The Tomato Products Wellness Council, Way Better Snacks, and S&W Beans.

I started writing for Environmental Nutrition a few years ago, and still love it. And I have also written for Today's Dietitian. Additionally I am often interviewed for publications. Here's a recent example:

My freelance writing has always been an enjoyable outlet for me. These are some of my favorites that I wrote for Environmental Nutrition that also got picked up elsewhere: Top 5 Spices for Health, Don't Judge a Vegetable By It's Lack of Color, Hydrate The Healthy Way. And here are a couple I have written for Today's Dietitian: Campus Dining - More Campuses are Serving Healthier Cuisines to Students, Fiber Facts About Cereal.

You seem to have a lot of social media. What role does this play in your career/company? How often do you provide updates? How often do you blog? Do you find that most of your followers are fellow RDN's or the general public? Social media is a big part of what I do! Not only do I help to manage my own accounts and NourishRDs' accounts, but I also help to strategize campaigns for clients and help them develop content that is on-trend, reliable and based on sound nutrition information. With Nourish, we blog about 1-3 times a week - keeping content fresh and relevant is important for what we do. While we definitely have a lot of RDN support (and we love it!), we also have other food bloggers and people in the general public who read our blog for recipes and nutrition information. I absolutely love it when I run into an RD-to-be and they tell me that they read our blog - it keeps me motivated!

What is the most rewarding part of your career? For me, it's connecting with people - whether it's with my fellow colleagues or with clients, I love knowing that I'm making a positive impact and helping to make healthy lifestyles seem attainable and enjoyable

What is the single most important piece of advice you can give to new RDNs and students? Be kind. It helps to make our industry stronger when we support each other, work hard, and treat each other with respect.

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Featured RDN/DTR of the Month

Susie Garcia, RDN

March 2016

Susie Garcia, RDN

Registered Dietitian Nutritionist, Business Owner, Healthy Life Coach, Author, National Speaker, Food Industry Consultant, Corporate Wellness Advisor

Facebook: Nutrition for Your Lifestyle
Interviewed by Randi Drasin, MS, RDN, CAND Communications Council

Susie Garcia has been in the dietetics field for 25 years and has an extremely vast background! She is the founder and owner of "Nutrition for Your Lifestyle" located in the San Francisco Bay area. She is the author of "Psyched to be Skinny-How to Stop Emotional Eating, Enjoy Healthy Weight Loss and Keep it Off for Life." Although her business has thrived with her virtual consulting sessions, she has recently created a self-guided program called "Energize your body, 30 Day Jump Start." Susie's passion is speaking and she seems to have found her calling while in the 4th grade! When she is not consulting, counseling or writing she is out doing public engagements... and her list of corporate clients is a MILE long!

Please tell us about your experience in the field of dietetics. How many years have you had? What is your background and what inspired you to become a dietitian? I have been a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist for over 25 years and have always worked directly in the food, nutrition and healthcare industry.

I completed my BS in Nutrition at North Dakota State University and my Dietetic Internship at Texas A&M. My first jobs out of school were the typical dietitian career path - Clinical Dietitian / Assistant Food Service Director. I have worked in Pharmaceutical Sales, Food Manufacturing and have been blessed to own my own company for the past 9 years. My decision to become a dietitian is entirely thanks to my advisor at NDSU. My original plan in college was to get a double major in Nutrition and Marketing. I became very involved in the music program in college so I changed to a major in Nutrition and minors in Business and Music. Enter great advice from Val Rae Burkholder - she told me that if I had a degree in Nutrition without the Registered Dietitian credential it would be very difficult to find a good job after graduation. She showed me that I needed a few more classes to be eligible to apply for an internship. I took her advice and am so glad that I did!

Please tell us about your company "Nutrition for Your Lifestyle". What clientele do you serve? Is it both Corporate and Individual wellness? What are the goals of the program?

When I moved to California after leaving a bad marriage of 12 years I had the opportunity to start my own nutrition consulting company. I had been using the name "Nutrition for Your Lifestyle" for many years but never had the chance to launch the business full time.

I work with individual clients to meet their health and wellness goals; I'm a provider with a handful of medical groups where I bill insurance, although in the past few years I've really increased virtual consultations and created a self guided program, Energize Your Body, 30 Day Jump Start.

I have worked as a consultant with several corporate clients including Guckenheimer, Epicurean Group, Genentech, Nike, Safeway, GU Energy, The Morning Star Company, and more. My consulting services include menu development, nutritional analysis, and presentations for corporate wellness programs.

You have so many facets to you! You're an author, a media spokesperson, and a guest speaker at numerous events! How did you get involved in all of this? Was this a specific part of your plan as a dietitian? Did you have a mentor guiding you? What were your inspirations? My love of public speaking and promoting healthy eating began at a young age - In 4th grade I competed in my first 4-H Speech Event and won! The title of my speech was "Is Fast Food Bad Food?" and my introduction was singing the "2 all beef patties..." Big Mac jingle. It makes me laugh thinking about it. I entered (and usually won) every year and when I was a senior in high school I won the 4-H State Speech Event.

I've been speaking professionally promoting health and wellness for over 25 years, and I actively seek speaking opportunities and let people know that I'm a speaker. I was active with the Houston and Texas Dietetic Associations in PR and Media, so I applied to be a Media Spokesperson for the California Dietetics Association when I first started my business here. Through that connection I was referred to a PR company in LA. I did numerous television appearances for them representing Got Milk and Fresh & Easy Markets. I believe that because I started speaking in public at such a young, and had huge positive reinforcement with blue ribbons, I have always been comfortable on stage and in front of a camera.

When I first moved to California I was introduced to Deb Waterhouse, a very well known dietitian and author and she encouraged me to open a private practice and gave me advice on which medical groups to join for best insurance reimbursement. I do believe in what I call, the serendipity of California. I have had many amazing opportunities that have crossed my path including teaching at The Culinary Institute of America in the Napa Valley. I always have a positive attitude and outlook on life and I believe that manifests opportunity.

I did have a list of goals, which included writing a book and through re-connecting with a high school friend my book, Psyched to be Skinny, became a reality.

Have you received any special recognitions or awards? I was awarded Recognized Young Dietitian of the Year - and that was one of my goals after I graduated from my internship.

What is the most rewarding part of your career? I admit that I am very proud of being an author, speaking to audiences and appearing on television to promote a healthy lifestyle; however what is most rewarding is my connections with people and knowing that I have helped them in some way. Whether it's a client that takes my advice and successfully loses weight or lowers their cholesterol, nods of understanding in an audience or a friend that tells me they tried a recipe I shared on my blog - I am truly touched that I've made an impact.

What is the single most important piece of advice you can give to new RDN's and students? There are SO many opportunities for new RDN's compared to when I graduated, which can be overwhelming. My best advice is to FOCUS. You can change your focus as your career develops, but focus on what you are best at and what comes easy for you.

What is the single most important piece of advice you can give new RDNs and students? The most important piece of advice I can give is to know your clientele well enough to be able to offer specific suggestions when needed. Remember their success is your success. Also, follow up is key.

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Featured RDN/DTR of the Month

Anna Hamada, RDN

FebruAry 2016 - Part 2 of 2

Anna Hamada, RDN

Registered Dietitian Nutritionist, Consultant, Food Service Director, Food and Nutrition Management Services, Inc.

Interviewed by Randi Drasin, MS, RDN, CAND Communications Council

Anna Hamada, RDN is another veteran in the dietetics profession and the other half of Food and Nutrition Management Services. She is the business partner of Bonnie Hart, RDN (January's Featured RDN). Anna has had over 50 years in the field of dietetics and is Vice President of FNMS. She has shared the load in the creation, research, implementation of their Company and the Be Well program. She has had many years of experience as a research dietitian and as a consultant in healthcare and food service industries. In 2015 she earned a 50-year Milestone for her membership in the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics! Now that is impressive!

Please tell us about your experience in the field of dietetics. How many years have you had and what is your background? I have been in the field of dietetics for over 50 years. After I graduated from UCLA School of Public Health with a degree in Nutritional Sciences. I did my internship at the Cincinnati General Hospital (University of Cincinnati). Afterwards, I worked as a research dietitian at the Research Unit under grants from the NIH.

I then took post -graduate courses in Institutional Management, Foodservice Equipment, Drafting and Commercial Styling and Food Photography.

I was a Food service director, analysis, and consultant to the healthcare and food service industries

I love working with food service professionals to help deliver high quality services to their patients/clients. My passion is to develop and implement programs, such as menus and food service systems.

Please tell us about your role and partnership in FNMS - Food and Nutrition Management Systems. Prior to 1987, FNMS was a wholly owned subsidiary of major healthcare firms, Hyatt Medical Enterprises and AMI (American Medical International) with Bonita Hart (president) and myself (executive vice president). The company had served over 300 domestic and international clients. In the past 32 years, as specialists in food and nutrition services, we provide consulting services to acute healthcare clients, residential care facilities, senior meal programs with Los Angeles County Area Agency on Aging, retirement and assisted living facilities, adult day health care, business and industry, home and hospice health care. We develop a monthly reporting program, Food Service Accounting Cost-Trend Statistics (FACTS) benchmarking system, which gives relative position for the food service department in 44 cost and productivity parameters. We have developed publications and resource banks for the healthcare industry, a Clinical Diet Manual for Acute Care and Skilled Nursing Facilities, Employee Training Manual, Menu Systems, and patient educational materials. We also provide monitoring and administrative services to senior feeding programs in the Orange County area.

Can you share with us what ENHANCE, Effective Nutritional Health Assessments and Networks of Care for the Elderly, is and how it is connected with FNMS and your "Be Well" program? Since February 1995, our company has managed the provision of home based nutrition intervention through the ENHANCE (Effective Nutritional Health Assessments and Networks of Care for the Elderly), a program provided by the Los Angeles County Area Agency on Aging. Through the grant we have developed a "BE WELL" Light Exercise and Weight Management program for seniors 60+. The program is geared to ambulatory seniors in the congregate sites.

What inspired you to pursue this area of nutrition? I am a big foodie. I like to strive to have healthy and nutritious menus but also menus full of flavor and creativity.

What is the most rewarding part of your career? The most rewarding part in being an entrepreneur in the healthcare industry is how to assist food service professionals to meet the ongoing change in their focus and business, which is to meet the needs of their clients. Being a consultant is the relationship I have had the privilege to build with my professional colleague. In my line of work, I have to be analytical and establish good rapport and a clear line of communication with everyone on the team.

Have you received any special recognition's or awards?

What is the single most important piece of advice you can give new RDNs and students? The most important piece of advice I can give is to know your clientele well enough to be able to offer specific suggestions when needed. Remember their success is your success. Also, follow up is key.

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Bonnie Hart

January 2016 - Part 1 of 2

Bonita Hart, RDN

Registered Dietitian Nutritionist, Consultant, Food Service Administrator
Food and Nutrition Management Services, Inc

Interviewed by Randi Drasin, MS, RDN, CAND Communications Council

Bonita (aka Bonnie) Hart is a true veteran in the dietetics profession. She has been in the business and sharing her expertise since 1964. She has done everything from being a clinical instructor to food service director to consultant to lecturer, and now president of her own company. She has been involved in project development, research resulting in her own publications and sits on several advisory boards. Additionally she was CAND's 2013 Distinguished Service Award Recipient. Overall Bonnie has most of us beat when it comes to experience and knowledge and we could all learn "a thing or two" from her!

Please tell us about your vast experiences in the field of dietetics. How many years have you had as a dietitian and what is your background? 1987 to Present, President, Food and Nutrition Management Services, Inc., Los Angeles, California. Consultant to acute care, skilled nursing, psychiatric care, residential care, adult day health care facilities. Executive Director: ENHANCE Program for the Los Angeles County Area Agency on Aging. Project Director for the 2014-16 SNAP-ed program.

I am a current Member of AND, California AND, LA District AND, as well as several AND Dietetic Practice Groups; Diabetes Care and Education, Developmentally Disabled/Psychiatric Disorders, Gerontological Nutritionists. I am on the Advisory Council/Dietetic Internship at Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo; Food Science and Nutrition Advisory Council (Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo). And I am a lecturer, both nationally and internationally on health care, food service and nutrition issues.

Tell us about "Be Well", its research, the results and your publication. BE WELL exercise and nutrition education program is a new evidence based program developed with 19 pilots completed by and for Registered Dietitian Nutritionists to administer. The BE WELL program demonstrates promising risk reduction for moderate to high risk seniors with three or more chronic illnesses, such as Obesity, DM, CVD, HTN, Hyperlipidemia and inactivity. Copyright 2004, Revised 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2013, 2015.

What inspired you to pursue this area of nutrition and why? It was well known that chronic illness affects quality of life dramatically and the health care dollar is expended heavily on older Americans with chronic illness. Registered dietitian nutritionists know that nutrition and exercise can be very effective in mitigating the devastating outcomes of untreated chronic illness. This is where preventive health measures pay for themselves many times over. Health care firms have reminded us that the least number of programs for wellness are available for those that need it most. This seemed to be a "no brainer" to develop a program specific to that population. And it appeared to me that the best health care professional positioned to manage that type of program was the registered dietitian nutritionist.

Can you share with us about your company, Food and Nutrition Management Systems (FNMS), your partnership with Anna Hamada and how it formed? What is your role in the company? When the health care system had paroxysms in the late 1980s I decided to take our food service management company private with Anna's partnership to try our fortune at managing on our own. It was a scary and bold move, (being much younger and with "no fear"), but we were fortunate that many of our clients inside the existing health care firm enlisted our services and paid for them. That launched our bid to remain a self-operated food service management firm that provided consultation to many of the biggest players in health care, i.e. government, large hospitals, hospital chains, and group purchasing organizations.

So, we formed FNMS after we had a career inside health care management organizations that owned and managed hospitals worldwide. I was the President and Anna the Exec VP of Food and Nutrition Management Services Inc.. The company managed those services inside owned and managed hospitals. We established significant controls for those owned facilities that later became important guidelines to provide meaningful and profitable consultation efforts to other healthcare facilities when we launched our independent firm.

What is the most rewarding part of your career? Seeing patients improve their health outcomes, learning about meaningful interventions and taking responsibility for their quality of life. It is also VERY rewarding to work with dietetic interns, where I learn more that I share, and to provide opportunities to registered dietitians nutritionists to provide their amazing efforts to help people lead healthier lives, one patient at a time.

Have you received any special recognition's or awards?

What is the single most important piece of advice you can give to young RDNs and students? Probably now it is most important to keep up to date with legislation and its impact on our profession. And keep up to date with all aspects of food and nutrition, ie, nutrition interventions, keep up with the latest research, know about menu development for "best food for best health" that tastes good and is cost effective. That is the backbone of our profession, providing healthy food that people will consume to improve good health. And, if inclined -to obtain an exercise credential as the two go hand in hand to maintaining good health.

Stay tuned for our February Featured RDN on Bonita's business partner, Anna Hamada!

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