June 25, 2014

Manchin Congratulates City of Williamson for Receiving 'Culture of Health' Prize

Washington, D.C – U.S. Senator Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) today congratulated the city of Williamson for being one of six winners to receive the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) Culture of Health Prize for its work to help improve the community’s health and wellbeing through creative and innovative strategies. Williamson was selected from more than 250 applicants across the country and will receive a cash prize of $25,000 in recognition of its commitment to building a “Culture of Health.”

“There is no sweeter feat than when community members come together to take charge of their own future and make plans to revitalize the place they call home,” Senator Manchin said. “The Williamson community truly deserves this award for taking matters into its own hands, improving the quality of life for the surrounding area and making it a priority to live healthier lifestyles. I congratulate Williamson’s success and hope the city’s initiatives will inspire other communities around our great state to take action.”

“This award reflects years of patience and perseverance that has catalyzed a holistic model we have all come to call, Sustainable Williamson, a collaborative project of the City of Williamson and the Williamson Health and Wellness Center,” said Dr. Dino Beckett, D.O., Williamson Health and Wellness Center CEO and Board Chair of the Williamson Redevelopment Authority. “The true winner of this prize is the community itself who has and continues to embody the spiritual fuel necessary to breathe life into central Appalachia’s emerging Culture of Health.”

The RWJF Culture of Health prize winners must excel in six criteria:

  • Harnessing the collective power of leaders, partners, and community members.
  • Working strategically across the multiple factors that influence health.
  • Addressing problems that disproportionately affect vulnerable populations.
  • Developing sustainable, long-term solutions to shared community priorities.
  • Leveraging and maximizing resources.
  • Measuring and sharing results.

The RWJF Culture of Health Prize is awarded annually and was announced today at the Aspen Ideas Festival Spotlight: Health. Representatives from Williamson were on hand to accept the award from RWJF President and CEO Risa Lavizzo-Mourey.

Communities across West Virginia may learn more about this award and apply at www.rwjf.org/cohprize. The deadline for phase 1 applications is September 17, 2014.