Michigan Academy
2021-2022 Board of Directors Candidates


Sarah Ann Heinz, MS, RDN

Over the past 15 years, I have been an active member of different dietetic organizations. I have held numerous leadership roles, including different Board of Director positions. Being very friendly, organized, and able to multi-task, being understanding, compassionate and punctual, has assisted in the growth of my career as a dietitian. I currently teach culinary nutrition classes and other nutrition education classes and counsel outpatients as my day-to-day routine as a registered dietitian.

Dietetic Association Positions/Activities:

  • Lansing Dietetic Association: Member, Nominating Committee, Nominating Committee Chair
  • Michigan Academy: Nominating Committee, Spring Conference Planning Committee, Secretary/Treasurer-elect, Secretary/Treasurer, Membership Director                                                                                        

Secretary Treasurer-Elect

Lorraine Bonkowski, RDN

As a member of an interdisciplinary team in my current work, I practice communication and teamwork on a daily basis, important skills needed for this position. When necessary, I am a strong, independent worker. I greatly value attention to detail, organization, and time management. In addition, I strive to always bring a positive and professional attitude in any situation.

Dietetic Association Positions/Activities:

  • Attended several Michigan Academy conferences
  • Presented a research poster during Michigan Academy’s 2016 conference
  • Volunteered at Michigan Academy conferences as a dietetic intern
  • Attended Legislative Day as a dietetic intern.

Emily Ostrowski, MS, RD

While serving on dietetic, school, and other professional boards, I have brought problem-solving skills, innovation, and inclusion to the group.  I believe in the purpose of the Michigan Academy and will be detailed-oriented, an excellent communicator, and accountable, if elected.  I look forward to networking and keeping the Michigan Academy strong. 

Dietetic Association Positions/Activities:

  • Michigan Nutrition and Dietetics Institute: Secretary/treasurer
  • Michigan Academy: Nominating Committee
  • Lansing Dietetic Association: Multiple board positions

Nominating Committee Member

Mary Clare Foody, RD

I am qualified to serve as a nominating committee member for the Michigan Academy due to my experience as a member of the nominating committee for SEMDA. I was responsible for recruiting active SEMDA members to run for board positions, including providing them with position descriptions and application requirements. Also, since 2017, I have served as the website manager for SEMDA. In that role, I am responsible for creating election ballots while collaborating with other board members to tally votes and announce election winners. If elected I will bring my previous experience to MiAND while collaborating with others for the best of our organization.

Dietetic Association Positions/Activities:

  • Southeastern Michigan Dietetic Association: Website Manager, Nominating Committee

Alicia Taub, MS, MBA, RD, CNSC

Honesty and respect. Those are the two leadership skills I value the most. Effective teams are based on a foundation of trust, so I make it a priority to demonstrate, through what I do and say, that I am an honest and trustworthy leader. Respect is earned and goes both ways. I always demonstrate to my team that I respect what they do, what they say, what they contribute, etc. As a member of the nominating committee, I will continue to apply these skills, and others, to support the role I hold.

Dietetic Association Positions/Activities:

Southeastern Michigan Dietetic Association: Treasurer

Emily Welles, MS, RD, CDE

I would be an asset to the nominating committee due to my experience serving on various professional organization boards and the connections I have made with fellow dietitians over the years. I work in both diabetes education and eating disorder care and have a wide variety of RD colleagues. I am passionate about providing current and future dietitians with adequate training and education on patient-centered care. In addition to serving on the Dietitian of West Michigan board for many years, I have also done many speaking engagements and enjoy teaching other dietitians. Thank you for your consideration!

Dietetic Association Positions/Activities:

  • Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics: Member
  • Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics: Board Student Representative
  • Michigan Academy: Member
  • Dietitians of West Michigan: Member, Secretary, President-elect, President, Social Media Chair

Michigan Nutrition and Dietetics Institute Trustee

Olivia Foote, RDN

As a registered dietitian, I plan to use my (loud) voice to advocate for nutrition students to be successful in their careers through scholarship funding. I will provide a fresh set of ideas to support our future registered dietitians during their educational journey.

Dietetic Association Positions/Activities:

  • Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics: Member
  • Southwest Michigan District Dietetic Association: Member

Furwa Haque, MS

As a recent graduate of a dietetic internship and a master’s degree program, I am very familiar with the obstacles currently hindering obtaining the RDN credential and the obstacles the RDN faces in striving to advance the field of dietetics. I possess strong leadership and problem-solving skills and like many, mine stem from several years of collaborating with other professionals and always trying to go above and beyond to provide patients with the best possible solutions. I always told myself that as soon as I became an RDN, I would give back, and this is how I intend to begin.

Dietetic Association Positions/Activities:

  • Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics: Member since 2017
  • Southeastern Michigan Dietetic Association: Member since 2017

Lynette Maxey, RDN, CDCES

I have been in a leadership position for many years in my place of employment and with the Northern Michigan Dietetic Association.  I am also very passionate about the profession of dietetics and about providing valuable learning experiences for my dietetic interns.  I love to learn and I love to teach. 

Dietetic Association Positions/Activities:

  • Northern Michigan Dietetic Association: President/President-Elect, Newsletter Editor
  • Michigan Academy: Conference Chair, MDA Award 2009, State Regulatory Specialist, Member of the Diversity Committee, Member of Food Service Management DPG SOPP Team

Mary Angela Niester, MPH, RD

As an active board member at both the state and national level, I have the insight and expertise needed to identify future leaders among students and interns. The skills and knowledge in these elected and appointed positions I’ve held will be helpful in reviewing scholarship applications.

Dietetic Association Positions/Activities:

  • Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics: Diabetes Dietetic Practice Group Membership Chair and Treasurer, Religion Member Interest Group Newsletter Editor
  • Michigan Academy: Delegate/Delegate-elect, Nominating Chair, President, President-Elect, Secretary/Treasurer, Secretary/Treasurer-Elect, Member Communications, Nominating Committee Member, Annual Conference Planning Co-chair
  • Lansing Dietetic Association: Secretary/Membership Chair Secretary

Meghan Wilkinson, MS, RDN, CNSC

Throughout my career, I have been driven to be a leader in our field of nutrition and dietetics. One of the most rewarding aspects of my career is working with students and dietetic interns. As an educator, I encourage my students to get involved in their local and state dietetic associations and stress the importance of leadership activities and advocacy for our profession. Through my role as an inpatient clinical dietitian, I have had the privilege of precepting dietetic interns. I look forward to continuing to improve our profession through student engagement and leadership opportunities.

Dietetic Association Positions/Activities:

  • Michigan Academy: Member
  • Michigan Nutrition and Dietetic Educators and Preceptors: Member
  • American Society of Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition: Member
  • Michigan Society of Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition: Member
  • Southwest Michigan District Dietetic Association: Member, President