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Health Improvement Is the Goal

Cal State Fullerton Hosts Feb. 27 Forum on Building a Healthier Community

The number of people becoming obese and being diagnosed with diabetes, heart disease, cancer and other health-related problems is on the rise in Orange County and throughout the nation, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The faculty members behind Cal State Fullerton’s newly created Health Promotion Research Institute find the statistics alarming and aim to intervene, beginning with a Feb. 27 free, public forum.

“The goal of this town hall forum is to have a dialogue between community members and university faculty about ways to collaborate and improve the health of our community,” said Shari McMahan, chair and professor of health science, director of the university’s Center for the Promotion of Healthy Lifestyles and Obesity Prevention and the institute’s acting director.

The 8:30 a.m. to noon forum will be held in the Portola Pavilion of the Titan Student Union. Reservations are recommended and can be made by email to

Speaking at the forum, in addition to McMahan, will be:

  • C. Jessie Jones, professor of health science and director of Cal State Fullerton’s Fibromyalgia Research and Education Center
  • Sora Tanjasiri, professor of health science and director of Cal State Fullerton’s Center for Cancer Disparities Research
  • Michele Mouttapa, assistant professor of health science
  • Jeannie Kim-Han, director of Cal State Fullerton’s Center for Internships & Community Engagement
  • Fullerton Mayor Pro Tem Pamela C. Keller, executive director of the Fullerton Collaborative
  • Jacqueline Tran, program manager of the Orange County Asian Pacific Islander Community Alliance
  • Lynne Kennedy Matallana, founder and president of the National Fibromyalgia Association and president of Cause Marketing, LLC
  • Nancy Mullenax, senior program officer of the Unihealth Foundation

Attendees will be invited to participate in round-table discussions on health-related topics, from community campaigns and partnerships to cancer, fibromyalgia, obesity and research.

The Health Promotion Research Institute was created as a result of a $224,097 UniHealth Foundation grant. Its mission is to enable public health research, promotion, education, policy and advocacy in the community, to engage community partners and to facilitate research-based public health services.

It serves as the umbrella organization for the College of Health and Human Development’s Center for Cancer Disparities Research, Fibromyalgia Research and Education Center, Center for the Promotion of Healthy Lifestyles and Obesity Prevention and the Center for Successful Aging. Institute leaders plan to develop health education programs, disseminate the findings of the research centers, create new research centers, and provide programs and services, among other projects.

Media Contacts:
Shari McMahan, Health Science, 657-278-7000 or
Mimi Ko Cruz, Public Affairs, 657-278-7586 or