Newswise — CHICAGO – Registered dietitian nutritionist Donna S. Martin begins her one-year term on June 1 as the 2017-2018 President of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, the world’s largest organization of food and nutrition professionals. Martin, of Augusta, Ga., served as the Academy’s president-elect during 2016-2017. 

Martin is the director of the Burke County school nutrition program, which has 4,500 students in five schools, serving breakfast, lunch, after-school snacks and supper. Four of the schools have been acknowledged as HealthierUS School Challenge Gold winners. 

“During 2017-2018 – our Academy’s Centennial Year – we honor our past and choose a bold, purposeful way to continue our proud legacy with a new vision for the Academy’s Second Century. We will elevate the profession, expand our reach and do more to improve health around the world,” Martin said. 

“In my capacity as a school nutrition director, I had the pleasure of meeting and interacting with former First Lady Michelle Obama on several occasions, and to attend the October 2016 celebration at the White House of the Let’s Move! initiative and help with the final fall harvest of the White House Garden. One of the most interesting and inspiring parts of the garden is a table created by faculty and students at the University of Virginia. 

“The table and other structures in the garden include wood from many important places in U.S. history, including wood from significant sites in American history, including Thomas Jefferson’s Monticello, James Madison’s Montpelier, James Monroe’s Ash Lawn-Highland and – a welcome sight for this lifelong Georgian – Martin Luther King Jr.’s home in Atlanta,” Martin said. 

“As I looked at the table, I thought of the Academy and our leadership in the world of food and nutrition. We often describe our leadership role by saying ‘We are at the table.’ But we are not just at the table, we are setting the table and inviting others to join us. For me, that idea captures the meaning of our Second Century and the part that the Academy, our members and the nutrition and dietetics profession we will play in creating it.” 

Martin has received many honors and awards including Recognized Young Dietitian of the Year and the Outstanding Dietitian of the Year from the Georgia Dietetic Association; the Excellence in Practice Award from the Academy’s School Nutrition Services dietetic practice group; and the Academy Foundation’s 2007 Judy Ford Stokes Award for Innovation in Administrative Dietetics. 

An active member of the Academy’s School Nutrition Services dietetic practice group, Martin was the group’s electronic communications chair and newsletter editor. She represented the Georgia Dietetic Association in the Academy’s House of Delegates and served on the Georgia Department of Education’s Task Force on Nutrition Standards for School Nutrition Programs. She served as the Academy’s treasurer-elect in 2012-2013 and the Academy’s treasurer in 2013-2015. 

Martin is a graduate of the University of Georgia and earned a master’s degree from the University of Alabama–Birmingham and an education specialist degree from Augusta State University. 


Media interviews with Martin may be arranged by contacting the Academy at [email protected] or 312/899-4769. Photos of Martin are available. 

All registered dietitians are nutritionists – but not all nutritionists are registered dietitians. The Academy’s Board of Directors and Commission on Dietetic Registration have determined that those who hold the credential registered dietitian (RD) may optionally use “registered dietitian nutritionist” (RDN) instead. The two credentials have identical meanings. 

The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics is the world’s largest organization of food and nutrition professionals. The Academy is committed to improving the nation’s health and advancing the profession of dietetics through research, education and advocacy. Visit the Academy at