Michigan RD/RDNs in the News
In the News
- Check out Registered Dietitian and personal trainer, Tony Stephan, in his interviews on Fox 2 and in Women's Health Magazine
- See Michigan Registered Dietitian, Liz Weber in several segments:
- Check out Katie Francisco in Plant Based Diets: Part 2 of 4 Part Series and in her segments on National Peanut Day, National Taco Day
- See our very own, Bethany Thayer, Registered Dietitian, whip up some game day guacamole: Reducing your risk for prostate cancer
- If you are a Michigan Registered Dietitian Nutritionist who has been featured in the news or on camera, please send the link and your contact information to Director for PR and Media Relations, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Spotlight on the RD: Shari Steinbach
You are best known for your position as the Health and Wellness Manager for Meijer grocery stores for many years. However, I’m sure you wore many hats prior to taking on that leadership role. Can you share your career path with us?
I started out in clinical dietetics at Hackley Hospital in Muskegon and soon realized I wanted to be on the preventative side of healthcare. I created a Wellness Dietitian role at Hackley and my role included corporate wellness programming, community outreach, weight management classes and the development of the Hackley for Health shelf labeling program for Plumb’s supermarkets. From Hackley I went to Spartan Stores (now SpartanNash) and worked for 13-1/2 years in various roles including Meal Solutions Manager and Consumer Affairs Director. It was at Spartan where I really learned the food business and fell in love with promoting nourishing foods and meals to consumers. From Spartan I went to Meijer for another 13-1/2 years and managed a super star team of regional dietitians. I’m so proud of the work they did to provide nutrition and meal guidance to millions of shoppers over the years!
You’ve been on TV promoting simple ingredient swaps, healthy recipes and good nutrition throughout West Michigan. What was your favorite segment and why? What tips would you have for dietitians who are interested in pursuing media opportunities?
I have a firm belief that you just can’t talk about eating healthy with consumers, you have to show them how to cook meals that are easy, affordable and healthy. So many individuals lack confidence in the kitchen and I feel that cooking and eating at home is the gateway to better nutrition. My media spots all reflect this intention so I don’t think I have one favorite. Whenever I get stopped in the community and someone tells me they are still making something I showed them how to do on TV I get pretty excited!
For those dietitians who may be interested in media but are a little nervous about venturing forward, I’d suggest starting with Facebook live. This is going to be the way more and more individuals view cooking and nutrition segments. There are specific classes you can take to help you understand the nuances of doing segments and they certainly don’t have to be perfect! Study others, practice and be prepared. Most importantly, whether you’re doing traditional media or social media you need to have a beautiful, eye-catching display and ensure you are providing a seasonal solution that meets the needs of consumers. For example, showing simple recipes with grilled veggies during the summer months. The more you do media the better you will become. If it’s uncomfortable at first that only means you’re growing!
Tell us about your new venture as owner and president of Shari Steinbach & Associates LLC. What does a normal workday look like for you and what have been some of the exciting changes to your work routine?
I have been fortunate to use my years of experience as a retail dietitian to venture into my own business as a consultant. Shari Steinbach and Associates, LLC is a nutrition and culinary communication consulting firm connecting food companies, health professionals and consumers in the retail setting. I work with food manufacturers, commodities, health organizations and retailers to create practical programs, partnerships and strategies that leverage nutrition to drive sales. I work from home, which I love, but continue to travel quite a bit for clients, speaking engagements or educational events. My work involves strategic planning, the development of marketing content and creating materials for supermarket wellness programs across the country. I also write weekly articles for the Retail Dietitian Business Alliance’s e-newsletter which helps RDNs learn the business skills needed to succeed in retail.
What tips do you have for dietitians on work life balance? You seem to have successfully juggled work, family and travel successfully, but it is indeed challenging not to drop the ball, right?
I have always felt that I had the best of both worlds with a wonderful family and career. My husband and kids have always supported me and have often gone with me to various events and work-related trips. It just all seems to fit together! I have never had a traditional work schedule and I thrive on that. I know I typically work more than 40 hours a week but I arrange it around my family life so I don’t have to miss out on too much. When my girls were young they were my priority, now I manage my time around helping my parents, taking time for myself, and my three adorable grandchildren. Overall, I know it can sometimes be difficult to balance things on a daily or weekly basis, so I really try to be mindful of when I need to recalibrate!
Michigan Academy Members: If you or a colleague have received an award, please use our Contact page to send us information so that we can post it here.
Michigan Academy Members Receive National Honors at FNCE 2017 in Chicago!
Barbara Jacobs Ivens, MS, RDN, FADA, FAND
Jointly bestowed by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and the Institute of Food Technologists (IFT), the Trailblazer Award recognizes exceptional leaders who have advanced the science at the nexus of nutrition/dietetics and food science for at least five years. This award is conferred upon a leader who has demonstrated innovative contributions to improve health among underserved populations through a least one aspect of food science and technology, and has exhibited intellectual courage in research, instruction and/or communication at this intersection.
Barbara Ivens is Principal, Nutrition Information Exchange, located in West Michigan. She has served as the Chair of the Commission on Dietetic Registration, the Fellow Panel Chair, Specialty Panel Chair, and as Chair of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Foundation. She’s been a member of the Academy Recognition Task Force, Honors Committee, and Certification Collaboration Task Force. She served as Chair of, and represented the Academy on, the Joint Food and Nutrition Science Solutions Task Force. Other roles have included Michigan Academy Treasurer, Newsletter Editor, Policies and Procedures and Publications Chair and Chair of the revision of the Pediatric dietetic practice group’s Pediatric Nutrition Manual.
The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics' Medallion Awards, given each year since 1976, honors Academy members who have shown dedication to the high standards of the nutrition and dietetics profession through active participation, leadership and devotion to serving others in dietetics and allied health fields. Several awards are given each year to those members whose dedication to the Academy and service to the profession serve as an example to all.
In recognition of:
- Her transformative ability to move the needle and push the dietetics profession towards excellence. She has used her passion for advocacy to educate countless government officials about the critical importance of nutrition and health, and used her insight to target organizational and policy gaps or opportunities to collaborate with existing Academy units to ensure stability and progress, anchored in documented strategic plans.
- Her outstanding leadership and service to the Academy, serving as a member of National Diabetes Partners, the Evidence Analysis Library Health Disparities work group, the Academy Foundation State Fundraising Task Force, and the liaison to the National Diabetes Education Program (NDEP). She served as Chair of the Dietetics Practice Based Research Network Oversight Committee, Michigan Affiliate President, State Legislative Network Coordinator, Chair of the Diabetes Care and Education Practice Group, and has been appointed to over 10 National Academy committees.
- Her volunteerism, which has spanned the landscape of health, lending her expertise and influence to multiple organizations, namely the National Diabetes Education Program, American Association of Diabetes Educators, American Heart Association and American Diabetes Association.
- Her determination for the success of the practicing dietitian. As an invited speaker and adjunct assistant instructor, she has championed evidence-based medical nutrition therapy education in multiple local and regional forums. She proposed, developed and facilitated the first webinar for NDEP and the first joint NDEP/Academy webinar through the Food and Culinary dietetic practice group. Through her radio and local television interviews, she has shared information to promote nutritional health for youth and adults.
Excellence in Practice: Dietetics Education
Lorraine J. Weatherspoon, PhD, RDN
The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics' Excellence in Practice Awards recognize outstanding registered dietitian nutritionists and dietetic technicians, registered, who have demonstrated innovation, creativity and leadership in a specific area of practice. The awards are given in several practice categories, including Clinical Nutrition; Community Dietetics; Consultation and Business Practice; Dietetics Education; Dietetic Research; Dietetic Technician, Registered; and Management Practice, to honor Academy members who have demonstrated exceptional performance, contributed to the advancement of practice, and been effective and inspiring leaders in nutrition-related organizations.
Mary Abbott Hess Award
Staci Gerken, RD
This award recognizes an innovative food/culinary effort. Staci is the Nutrition Contract Administrator at the Area Agency on Aging of Western Michigan located in Grand Rapids and created the cooking class “Conquering the Kitchen”. The class is designed for male caregivers and provides both classroom and hands-on learning to help participants gain valuable skills that can decrease the stress related to food preparation and mealtime.