Newswise — INDIANAPOLIS (August 19, 2020) — Each year, the Society for Nutrition Education and Behavior awards a group of select individuals who have exhibited great dedication to furthering nutrition and health practices and invoke change within their own communities. These awards were presented at the SNEB Annual Conference, held virtually at the end of July.

Former-SNEB President Jennifer Wilkins presented the esteemed President’s Award to Dr. Joan Dye Gussow. Dr. Gussow is Professor Emeritus at Teachers College, Columbia University. Through her prolific writing and research, compelling speeches, and her teaching and advocacy, Dr. Gussow has inspired numerous students, colleagues, leaders, and stakeholders from every segment of the food system to explore connections and to think broadly about what health really means.

The prestigious Helen Denning Ullrich Award for Lifetime Excellence in Nutrition Education is awarded to one professional in the nutrition education field who has made outstanding accomplishments throughout their career. This year’s recipient was Linda Bobroff PhD, RD, for her impressive contributions to the field of nutrition education taught through Cooperative Extension. Dr. Bobroff retired from the University of Florida at the end of 2018 after 33 years as a distinguished Extension Nutrition Specialist. During this time, she amassed a record number of achievements working in all areas of the three-fold mission of a land-grant university: teaching, research, and Extension.

The Nutrition Education Program Impact Award is given to an individual or group for a nutrition education program, practice, or intervention that has resulted in documented changes in behavior. This year the award was presented to Lynn Fredericks of FamilyCook Productions for Teen Battle Chef (TBC). Teen Battle Chef is a scalable evidence-based approach to adolescent dietary change for middle and high schools, out-of-school providers, and clinicians. The program, a hands-on approach to developing skills in nutrition, cooking, and leadership, has been used nationally for the last twelve years.

Karla Pagán Shelnutt, PhD, RD received the Mid-Career Professional Achievement Award in acknowledgment of her notable contributions to the field of nutrition. Dr. Shelnutt is an Associate Professor and Extension Nutrition Specialist in the Department of Family, Youth & Community Sciences at the University of Florida, Gainesville.

Colleen K. Spees, PhD, MED, RDN, LD, FAND was honored with the Early Professional Achievement Award in acknowledgment of her notable contributions to the field of nutrition early into her career. Dr. Colleen Spees serves as Associate Professor in the Division of Medical Dietetics at The Ohio State University College of Medicine. She also holds joint academic appointments in the Department of Extension, College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences (CFAES) and the Department of Human Sciences, College of Education and Human Ecology (EHE).

SNEB and the Advisory Committee on Public Policy (ACPP) reward an individual or group that aligns with the Society’s mission to participate and enact change in nutrition education through policy change. This year’s award is presented to Susan Foerster, MPH. Foerster has dedicated her career to advancing food and nutrition education, research, and policy to improve population outcomes and equity.

Rachel L. Vollmer, PhD, RD received the SNEB Higher Education Division Scholarship of Teaching and Learning Nutrition in Higher Education Award. Dr. Vollmer is an Assistant Professor of Dietetics in the Department of Family and Consumer Sciences at Bradley University.

SNEB partnered with the Korean Society of Community Nutrition (KSCN) to present Marissa McElrone, PhD, RDN with the KSCN-SNEB Student Award. Marissa earned a Bachelor of Science in Nutritional Sciences from Penn State University and worked as a Minority Health Promotion Coordinator and later as a WIC Nutritionist with various non-profits in both Rhode Island and Pennsylvania. 

The Society for Nutrition Education and Behavior is honored to present these awards to the named individuals who have empowered others to learn and practice nutrition. Their contributions to the health and nutrition community have inspired change and empowered others to pursue knowledge within their realm of expertise.

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Journalists interested in further comment or setting up an interview can reach out to SNEB President Pam Koch at [email protected]; Executive Director Rachel Daeger at [email protected]; or Senior Communications Coordinator Jordan Nussear at [email protected].


The Society for Nutrition Education and Behavior is an international organization of nutrition education professionals who are dedicated to advancing food and nutrition education research, practice, and policy that promote equity, and support public and planetary health. To learn more, visit

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