STOP Obesity Alliance at The George Washington University

Nearly two-thirds of American adults are overweight or obese. Obesity is the second highest cause of preventable death in the United States and is an accelerator to many of the most prevalent chronic diseases, including type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, stroke, and some cancers. In 2007, Canyon Ranch Institute formed a partnership with The George Washington University Strategies to Overcome and Prevent (STOP) Obesity Alliance based on the mutual interest to identify and address systemic and cultural barriers that are failing to adequately support individual successes.


The George Washington School of Public Health and Health Services (GWSPHHS) was established in July 1997, bringing together three long-standing university programs in the Schools of Medicine, Business and Education. The GWSPHHS serves as the administrative home of the Strategies to Overcome and Prevent (STOP) Obesity Alliance.

The STOP Obesity Alliance is a diverse group of consumer, provider, labor, business, health insurance, and quality-of-care organizations striving to change how we perceive and approach the problems of obesity, overweight, and weight-related health risks, including heart disease and diabetes. The STOP Obesity Alliance’s goal is to help reverse America’s rising trend in obesity and related conditions such as diabetes, heart disease, and certain cancers through these recommendations:

  • Redefine success;
  • Encourage innovation and multifactorial interventions to strengthen the system of care for overweight and obesity;
  • Address and reduce stigma as a barrier to improving health outcomes;
  • Broaden, intensity and coordinate the research agenda for obesity
  • Encourage physical activity for improved health

How We’re Making a Difference

Canyon Ranch Institute works in partnership with the STOP Obesity Alliance on initiatives that include ongoing research about obesity-related interactions between health care professionals and patients, and providing relevant data and recommendations to policy and decision makers. Canyon Ranch Institute President Richard H. Carmona, M.D., M.P.H., FACS served as the Health and Wellness Chairperson for the STOP Obesity Alliance Steering Committee from 2007 through 2011.

To learn more about the STOP Obesity Alliance visit