In Remembrance: Sarah E. Samuels
The Atkins Center for Weight and Health was saddened by the death of our friend and colleague, Dr. Sarah Samuels, on March 29th. Trained in nutrition and public health, Sarah was the founder of Samuels & Associates, a public health evaluation, research and policy firm. Throughout her career, Sarah combined scientific skill with leadership and policy abilities to build momentum for food policy justice through many important venues including Project LEAN, the Healthy Eating Active Communities project, the Central California Obesity Prevention Program Initiative, and the Strategic Alliance to Promote Healthy Food and Physical Activity Environments. She collaborated with us at the Center for Weight on Health on projects ranging from obesity prevention in WIC to school nutrition, commodity foods, childcare, and neighborhood food access.
Sarah Samuels was a model for those of us who seek to combine public health research with public health advocacy. She influenced state legislative policy on school competitive foods, physical education policy to increase physical activity opportunities for school age children, after-school nutrition and physical activity standards, child care nutrition standards, and worksite vending policies. Sarah developed cooperative relationships that fostered health-promoting accomplishments that neither researchers nor advocates alone could have achieved. She was both a visionary and a collaborator who changed the field of public health nutrition – and the people fortunate to work with her – over the course of her career. We will sorely miss her personally and professionally.