Making Ames the healthiest community in Iowa
Stephanie Downs, Co-Chair
Stephanie is the ISU WellBeing Coordinator at Iowa State University where she is responsible for creating and leading the employee wellbeing strategies for over 6,500 employees. Stephanie has served in the worksite wellness field for over 25 years, including employment with the City of Ames, Pioneer HiBred Int’l, and the WDM Community Schools. She is a member of Iowa’s Healthiest State Conference planning team and a frequent presenter on worksite wellbeing topics. Recently, she was recognized as one of WELCOA’s Top 25 Health Promotion Professionals for 2016.
Cheryl Langston, Co-Chair
Cheryl is a retired, formerly working at Iowa State University as the Director of Customer Services in Information Technology Services. She is currently a co-chair of Healthiest Ames as well as a DMACC Trustee. Cheryl is also a board member of the Iowa Association of Community College Trustees as well as a community volunteer.
Andrea Cardenas, Treasurer
Andrea is a Health Educator, Health Promotion Coordinator with the City of Ames. She previously worked at Georgia Southern University as a Public Health Faculty Member. Additionally, Andrea was an OneAthens Community Partnership Board Member as part of a Physical and Mental Health Committee in Athens, Georgia. She has been a Healthiest Ames Executive Committee Member from 2014 through the present.
Susan Gwiasda, Secretary
Susan is the Public Information Officer for the City of Ames where she focuses on sharing City of Ames programs, services, and news with citizens using a variety of communication tools. Previously, Susan worked as the Public Information Officer for the City of Dubuque, Iowa, and before that spent five years as a health reporter for the Dubuque Telegraph-Herald.
Bonnie Beer, Health Care Representative
Bonnie is currently an obstetrician/gynecologist at McFarland Clinic. She has also been the Chair of Department of Perinatology at Mary Greeley Medical Center as well as a medical missionary Mother/Well Child Clinic in Nigeria West Africa. Additionally, Bonnie is a past board member and officer of ACCESS.
Gail Johnston, Ames Schools Representative
Gail is currently a senior lecturer at Iowa State University in the Department of Mathematics. Previously, she served as a board member on the Ames School Board from 2004 to 2009. Gail also is a graduate of the IASB Leadership Academy.
Peter Martin, ISU Representative
Peter is currently a professor of Gerontology and Human Development and Family Studies. He has done research on exceptional longevity and healthy aging, as well as teaching experience related to health and human development. Peter has also done public presentations on healthy longevity and successful aging.
Ann Thompson, Ames Schools Representative
Ann is currently a university professor emerita at Iowa State University. She is the former director for the Center for Technology in Learning. Additionally, Ann was a Department Chair for the Department of Curriculum and Instruction, as well as a former professor in the area of instructional technology, all at Iowa State University.
Brian Vanderheyden, ISU Representative
Brian is currently the Tobacco Control Coordinator with the American Lung Association. His background includes work as a Prevention Specialist at Iowa State University and HIV Prevention Intern at Howard Brown Health Center in Chicago. He also has experience working in a variety of settings from health clinics, to schools, to non-profits in public health and prevention. He enjoys getting involved with groups that work towards improving the health and safety of people in the community.