Visiting Scholar Program
Recognizing Leaders in Health and Prevention
The Canyon Ranch Institute Visiting Scholar Program recognizes people who are leading change in one or more of our five Focus Areas. We invite the CRI Visiting Scholar to collaborate with Canyon Ranch Institute through interactive workshops, lectures, and seminars. Through these interacations, the CRI Visiting Scholar Program provides an opportunity for thought leaders to help inform and shape our partnerships, programs, and activities.
Kavita K. Patel, M.D., M.S.H.S. - April 2010
Dr. Kavita K. Patel, who joined the Canyon Ranch Institute Board of Directors in 2011, is a board-certified internal medicine physician who has dedicated her life to bringing the stories and lessons learned from her clinical experiences to policymakers and the people working on shaping the future of our health care system. Her expertise spans a number of sectors including delivery system reform and equipping clinical teams with the skills necessary to respond to our changing health care system.
Dr. Patel is director of policy for the White House Office of Public Engagement and Intergovernmental Affairs. Prior to that, she was the deputy staff director for the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee under the leadership of Senator Edward M. Kennedy.
Dr. Patel helped to develop the health reform legislation that was signed into law in March 2010. Canyon Ranch Institute was also engaged in aspects of that health reform through our partnerships with the Partnership to Fight Chronic Disease (PFCD) and The George Washington University School of Public Health and Health Services' STOP Obesity Alliance.
During her visit, Dr. Patel participated in several group discussions and led a one-day workshop with the Canyon Ranch Institute team. Dr. Patel also met with Iman Hakim, MBBCh, Ph.D., M.P.H., dean of the Mel and Enid Zuckerman School of Public Health (MEZCOPH) at the University of Arizona. Dr. Patel then delivered a college-wide seminar, "Health Reform: Perspectives on Future Directions and Implications."
Frederico Peres, Ph.D., MSc. - December 2009
Continuing to build an international dimension to Canyon Ranch Institute, Dr. Frederico Peres, Vice Director of Center for Studies in Workers Health and Human Ecology at the National School of Public Health from Brazil's Oswaldo Cruz Foundation (FIOCRUZ), participated as a Visiting Scholar. Dr. Peres participated in several group discussions and led a workshop with the Canyon Ranch Institute team. Dr. Peres' work in Brazil, as part of the Ministry of Health of the Brazilian government, is particularly focused on identifying best practices of risk communication. Most of Dr. Peres' research has focused on risk communication in the context of the use of pesticides in Brazilian agricultural practices.
Dr. Peres and Canyon Ranch Institute are exploring collaborating to combine the best practices of health literacy and an integrative approach to health and medicine with Dr. Peres' expertise in risk communication. The shared goals are to collaborate on projects that improve the health and wellness of the Brazilian population, enhance the evidence base on health literacy and risk communication, and continue to forge good working relationships between Canyon Ranch Institute and FIOCRUZ, as well as with the public health system in Brazil.
Val Jones, M.D., and Kerri Morrone-Sparling - April 2009
As part of the Canyon Ranch Institute Visiting Scholars Program, Val Jones, M.D., president and CEO of Better Health LLC, and Kerri Morrone-Sparling, founder of www.sixuntilme.com, led a blogging workshop where they each talked about their experience with blogs and how people are starting to use social networking tools to better manage their health.
During the workshop, Dr. Jones and Kerri described the exponential popularity growth of blogs – which are personal or corporate websites in the form of an online journal entry – and ways to build a blog community. Dr. Jones and Kerri also talked about Twitter as the latest popular iteration of e-communication. Although the primary function of Twitter is a social tool, it can also be used in health communications.
The session concluded with discussing potential creative strategies for engaging people in health- and wellness-focused blogs.
Andrew Pleasant, Ph.D. - January 2009
Andrew Pleasant, Ph.D., who joined Canyon Ranch Institute in May 2009 as Health Literacy and Research Director, was the first Canyon Ranch Institute Visiting Scholar. During his visit, Dr. Pleasant led numerous workshops to facilitate discussions and understanding about health literacy, cultural competency, and community and individual empowerment. Three of the workshops were with Canyon Ranch Institute staff and focused on how improving health literacy can support the ongoing effectiveness of Canyon Ranch Institute's partnerships, programs, and activities.
Dr. Pleasant also met with Iman Hakim, MBBCh, Ph.D., M.P.H., dean of the Mel and Enid Zuckerman School of Public Health (MEZCOPH) at the University of Arizona, and Canyon Ranch Institute Executive Director Jennifer Cabe, M.A. Dr. Pleasant then delivered a keynote as part of the MEZCOPH Public Health Seminar Series. The seminar was sponsored by Canyon Ranch Institute for University of Arizona faculty, students, staff, and Tucson community members and was attended by more than 100 people who work in health literacy; public health; and library science; as well as health and wellness professions, including medicine, pharmacy, and nursing. Following the MEZCOPH seminar, Dr. Pleasant met with members of the Pima County Community Health Task Force about their collaborations to establish community-based public health literacy activities that are responsive to health priorities in economically marginalized sectors of the Tucson metropolitan area.