2018 Public Health Achievement Award Recipients

Washington County is pleased to announce the winners of the 2018 Public Health Achievement Awards. Presented annually by the Washington County Board of Commissioners and the Department of Public Health and Environment, the awards recognize and honor residents in three categories (youth, individual, and group) who devote their time, energy, and talents to improving the public health or environmental conditions of individuals, families, and communities in Washington County.

“We’re honored to celebrate the winners of this year’s awards,” said Lowell Johnson, Director of the Department of Public Health and Environment. “It’s because of their efforts that Washington County consistently ranks as one of the healthiest counties in the state.”

A diverse panel of department staff evaluated 13 nominations across three categories before selecting the 2018 winners. The awards were presented during National Public Health Week, April 2-8, 2018.

About the 2018 winners

Randy Hayne, Individual Category

Randy is a dedicated volunteer who hand-crochets and donates dozens of beautiful baby blankets each year to the Family Health and WIC programs, which serve families across Washington County. Public Health nurses share the blankets with clients who are pregnant and families with new babies or young children. Randy’s contributions have touched the hearts of so many families in Washington County. Public Health nurses have shared with us how grateful clients are upon receiving a baby blanket. In one case, WIC staff were able to give blankets to a family who had lost everything in a house fire. The mother had “tears of joy” after receiving the blankets. Another family proudly showed off the new blanket when decorating the baby’s room

Briana Mullan, Youth Category

For three years, Briana has volunteered her time to teaching K-6 students about healthy living, alcohol and tobacco awareness, internet safety, citizenship, and fairness. Through this work, Briana discovered a passion for learning and leadership. For the 2017-2018 school year, she started and currently leads a “Youth Teaching Youth” club at Park High School, which has grown from 4 teen teachers to over 40 teen teachers. Briana is a champion for Healthy Living in Washington County. Because of her exceptional leadership, more Washington County youth have access to healthy living education.

Forest Lake High School Environmental Club, Group Category

More than 90 students participate in the Forest Lake High School Environmental Club, which meets weekly to plan school and community events that promote environmental stewardship. The club has been actively working to reduce waste at High School by increasing the number of recycling bins in the building and starting a food share table in the cafeteria. Other projects have included planting a pollinator garden with native plants, hosting an environmental film event, and providing education at an Earth Day celebration. Members of the Environmental Club are dedicated leaders whose impact reaches beyond Forest Lake High School and into the community. Through collaboration and engagement with local leadership and businesses, they are helping the community become more sustainable.

About the Public Health Achievement Awards

Winners of the 2018 Public Health Achievement Awards were celebrated during National Public Health Week, which is observed April 2-8, 2018. National Public Health week is celebrated as part of an initiative to create the healthiest nation in one generation. For more information, visit www.co.washington.mn.us/publichealthaward