Past Winners

2012 Winners

The ninth annual Champions of Health awards took place on Monday, October 8, 2012, at the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum in Oklahoma City. Seven winners were honored for their efforts to improve the health of Oklahomans. The evening featured KWTV News 9 at 4 anchor Christina Eckert as emcee and NBA Legend Magic Johnson as keynote speaker.


Dr. Rodney L. Huey Memorial Champion of Oklahoma Health Winner:
Eagle Adventure – Partnership with Chickasaw Nation and OSU (Stillwater)
Native American children are at the highest risk for type-2 diabetes with the number of new cases increasing dramatically. The Eagle Adventure program teaches children in grades 1-3 and their families’ ways to reduce the risk by eating healthier and being more physically active.

Through the tradition of Native American storytelling and additional lessons, the program teaches children about the joy of physical activity, eating healthy foods and learning traditional ways of being healthy from their elders.

Since 2010, more than 2,000 children have participated in the program. Surveys indicate their increased healthy food choices and physical activity are significant.

The Eagle Adventure program is a collaboration between the Chickasaw Nation Nutrition Services Get Fresh! Program and the Oklahoma State University’s Department of Nutritional Sciences in the College of Human Sciences. The program is funded through the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program Education (SNAP-Ed) of the Unites States Department of Agriculture.


View a video presentation about the Eagle Adventure program

Champion of the Uninsured Winner:
Street Outreach Clinic, Mark D. Fox, MD, MPH – Youth Services of Tulsa – OU Partnership (Tulsa)
The Street Outreach Clinic operated by the OU School of Community Medicine at Youth Services of Tulsa commits efforts to identifying and serving Tulsa area homeless youth and those at risk for homelessness in need of health care services. The clinic persists in making progress to shift youths' perceptions that adult authority figures (i.e. health care providers) simply do not care. By developing concepts such as trauma informed primary care, which includes pre-clinical alliances involving non-clinical social interactions to build trust (i.e. serving as a team doctor for street soccer and dressing in costume for Halloween parties), and including homeless youth in the operation of the clinic as community health workers, staff at the clinic are progressing models of a true patient centered medical home. Such a medical home is a convenient place where homeless youth receive continuity in care allowing them to feel secure in having their medical needs met in a trusting and respectful environment.


View a video presentation about the Street Outreach Clinic

Champion of the Uninsured Finalist:
Good Samaritan Health Services (Tulsa)
Good Samaritan Health Services began in 1998 to address the enormous need for healthcare for Tulsa’s indigent population who could not afford it on their own. Good Samaritan Health Services, the only mobile medical outreach in Tulsa, provides free doctor visits, necessary lab work, medications and specialty referrals to community doctors (if needed) for over 600 patient visits every month.

This quality free healthcare is provided by two mobile medical vehicles which are outfitted with patient rooms, a formulary, bathroom and a lab area. The medical vehicles provide 40 clinics a month at 14 different locations.

Champion of Children’s Health Winner:
Emergency Infant Services (Tulsa)
Emergency Infant Services' (EIS) mission is to meet the basic human needs of infants and children through five years of age whose families are in crises. EIS was started in 1977 to address the need for families who needed short-term, immediate assistance. EIS’ guiding principal is to provide immediate, compassionate aid to infants and young children with a minimum of obstacles in receiving assistance for the parents. Last year, EIS assisted more than 13,725 children and 8,236 impoverished families in the Tulsa area with basic life necessities such as food, milk, infant formula, diapers, pull-ups, clothing, cribs, car seats, medications, and hygiene items. EIS cuts through the barriers of appointments, referrals, income qualification and complex paperwork to provide immediate access to parents enduring financial setbacks.


View a video presentation about the Emergency Infant Services

Champion of Children’s Health Finalist:
Variety Care Children’s Health & Wellness (Oklahoma City)
Variety Care, a nonprofit community health center, provides a full scope of medical, dental, optometry, behavioral health and clinical pharmacy services to individuals with the goal of making healthcare affordable and accessible. In 2011, Variety Care provided services to 51,775 individuals in 21 counties throughout Oklahoma.

Variety Care's commitment to improving the health of children is expressed by the many initiatives and collaborations spearheaded by the organization, including collaborations with Educare, NorthCare Community Mental Health Center and Oklahoma City Public Schools, all aimed at increasing access to health care for children and enriching their lives through nutrition, exercise and disease prevention. 

Community Health Champion Winner:
Oklahoma Mission of Mercy, Oklahoma Dental Association (McAlester)
The Oklahoma Mission of Mercy, a free dental clinic that aims to meet the patient's immediate dental needs, focuses on improving not only oral health but overall health of the individual treated.      

OKMOM has treated 5,739 patients, resulting in over 3 million donated dental services.  89% of treated patients were uninsured or had no ability to receive care.       

Oklahoma is currently ranked 50th in the nation for adults who visit the dentist. Addressing this issue on a massive scale is OKMOM's goal. Starting with a smile and ending with a smile is a difference the OKMOM makes as community health champions.  


View a video presentation about the Oklahoma Mission of Mercy

Community Health Champion Finalist:
Morton Transportation System, Morton Comprehensive Health Services, Inc. (Tulsa)
Since 1983, Morton Comprehensive Health Services (MCHS) has provided free transportation services to its patients and the safety net community. The MCHS transportation system provides free transportation to poor, elderly, uninsured, homeless, unemployed, Medicaid recipients and anyone else in need of transportation to and from vital safety net services. In 2011, Morton’s Transportation System provided 51,000 individual rides to senior nutrition sites, social service agencies, and to Morton facilities for primary care services. The program removes transportation barriers as an obstacle to health care access.

Community Health Champion Finalist:
Community Food Bank of Eastern Oklahoma, Mobile Pantry Program (Tulsa)
The Food Bank's Mobile Pantry service delivers food products to hungry Oklahomans that reside in the outermost rural areas of eastern Oklahoma. The mission of the Mobile Pantry Program is to feed the hungry of Eastern Oklahoma and engage communities in ending hunger.

Champion of Senior Health Winner:
LIFE Senior Services, SHIP Program – Senior Health Insurance Counseling Program (Tulsa)
LIFE Senior Services works to improve the health of Medicare beneficiaries in northeastern Oklahoma through LIFE’s Senior Health Insurance Counseling Program (SHIP). In 2004, LIFE created the program in response to the Medicare Modernization Act of 2003, which included several significant changes to Medicare and prescription drug coverage. LIFE’s SHIP provides accurate and objective information and resources, and personalized assistance regarding Medicare benefits, Medicare Part D and the low-income subsidy, Medicare supplements and other related topics.

As a trusted resource, LIFE’s Senior Health Insurance Counseling Program has served nearly 20,000 seniors and adults with disabilities on Medicare since the program was launched. In 2011 alone, the program served 4,206 individuals, conducted 55 educational programs and saved nearly $1 million in prescription drug costs for those seeking assistance regarding their Medicare Part D coverage. LIFE also published and distributed “Your Guide to Medicare Part D-2012” which reached more than 100,000 seniors state-wide.


View a video presentation about the SHIP Program

Champion of Senior Health Finalist:
Volunteer Services, Retired Senior Volunteer Program of Tulsa (RSVP) (Tulsa)
Since 1971, Retired Senior Volunteer Program of Tulsa (RSVP) has served the health of those 55 years and over by matching their time, talents and interests with volunteer services that benefit not only another non-profit agency, but also personally benefits their own physical and mental health. Numerous studies among senior populations have found a significant connection between volunteering and good health. Reports show that volunteers have greater longevity, higher functional ability, lower rates of depression and less incidence of heart disease. According to a 2011 survey, 82 percent of members responded that their volunteer position was very important or important to their physical and mental health.

Corporate Health Champion Winner- Large:
Buy for Less (Oklahoma City)
Over the past year, Buy for Less (BFL) has made major changes in their employee health practices. The multifaceted efforts by the BFL dietician included Lunch and Learn cooking class events, guided healthful shopping tours and partnerships with local businesses to promote good nutrition. The most significant change to the BFL plan was providing health coverage, at no cost, for eligible employees who earned $10 or less per hour, which resulted in providing coverage for 108 employees, reducing the number of people without coverage by 94 percent.


View a video presentation about Buy for Less

Corporate Health Champion Finalist- Large:
Corporate Wellness Initiative, Valir Health (Oklahoma City)
Valir is composed of 380 dedicated health care professionals ranging from support staff, to nursing, to therapists. Health care workers are notorious for not being very prudent in taking care of their own health due to their focus on providing care for others.

In 2007, the Valir executive team embraced the concept of developing and deploying wellness strategies as a mechanism to reduce the rapidly rising cost of health care coverage. Each year, a team of employee professionals known as the design team formulates the wellness initiatives for the coming year with the goal of building on the previous year’s success and further enhancing the overall wellness program.

The V-Fit program has evolved into a comprehensive wellness program that provides incentives for completion of specific initiatives throughout the calendar year designed to result in long term behavior modification.

Corporate Health Champion Winner- Small:
Oklahoma Foundation for Medical Quality, OFMQ Go the Distance Fitness Challenge

As a nonprofit organization dedicated to improving healthcare and improving lives, OFMQ provides opportunities for employees to engage in and adopt healthy lifestyles through its comprehensive wellness programs that include health screens, participation in community health events, reimbursement for health club memberships and internal health and wellness promotion.

The company’s annual fitness challenge engages staff in an 8-week team-based competition to increase physical activity. This goal and results-oriented event consistently engages over half the company staff to “Go the Distance.” Employees track minutes of physical activity using CDC guidelines, and the competition rewards the most improved team and the highest average participation. OFMQ provides incentives to team captains, participants and the winning teams. This friendly competition helps build camaraderie and team spirit. Feedback from staff about the event is consistently positive, and importantly, the event inspires participants to keep exercising even after the competition.


View a video presentation about OFMQ Go the Distance Fitness Challenge

Event Partners

bcbsok logo

blue cross and blue shield of oklahoma logo
Oklahoma Hospital Association logo

Oklahoma State Department of Health  logo

Oklahoma Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services logo

Foundation for Medical Quality logo

Oklahoma Dental Associaton logo

Oklahoma Health Care Authority logo

Oklahoma Osteopathic Association logo

Oklahoma Association of Optometric Physicians logo

Oklahoma Association of Optometric Physicians logo