Public invited to honor Douglas County Health Champions
- on March 20, 2014
The Lawrence-Douglas County Health Department will recognize Ellen Young and Logan Brown as the 2014 Douglas County Health Champions during a community breakfast from 7:30 a.m. to 8:30 a.m. April 11 at the Community Health Facility, 200 Maine St.
The event is open to the public and is part of the Health Department’s celebration of National Public Health Week. Keynote speaker will be Michel Loomis, of Lawrence, who has been recognized locally and by the state of Kansas for her efforts to improve health among youth.
Health Board Chair David Ambler said Young and Brown are being honored for their significant efforts to model, encourage and promote health in the community. “These two individuals epitomize champions of health. We hope residents will join us in thanking them for their contributions.”
• ELLEN YOUNG, 60, Lawrence, has shared her passion for running and fitness with countless others as a longtime leader at Red Dog’s Dog Days community workouts and a volunteer coordinator for numerous races in the region, including the Red Dog Run, Jingle Jog and Mass Street Mile.
Three years ago, Young became a certified running coach and founded a running group, “Running for the Hill of It,” which has about 40 members. Young enjoys helping others and believes in paying it forward. Before joining Red Dog’s Dog Days 17 years ago, Young was an overweight mom trying to get in shape. She could barely run a half-mile, but she never gave up, and six months later, she ran her first 5K. Since then, she has completed numerous races, including four marathons.
Lisa Ball, who joined Young’s running group, said, “In Ellen’s world, no one is too slow and no one is going to be left behind. She is a constant encourager.”
• LOGAN BROWN, 18, Eudora, a Free State High School senior, has volunteered for three years at GaDuGi SafeCenter, which provides 24-hour services for women, children and men affected by sexual violence. She began her volunteer work by answering phones and filing paperwork, but soon wanted to do more. She created and organized an annual “Shoppin’ for Survivors” fundraiser, which has helped keep programs operating.
Brown also has helped victims in recovering and seeking justice through her volunteer work at GaDuGi SafeCenter and the District Attorney’s office. Brown is the Kansas representative for the D.A.R.E. Youth Advisory and she works with the Kansas Juvenile Officers Association to help children and prevent drug abuse.
GaDuGi SafeCenter Director Chrissy Heikkila said, “Brown gives me hope for a better tomorrow.”