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Bruce Jacobs
Executive Director, Indiana Memorial Union

Last modified: Friday, May 27, 2011

IU welcomes Patricia Whitten Hollingsworth as new director of health engagement

May 27, 2011

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- Indiana University Vice President and Chief Financial Officer Neil Theobald is pleased to announce the appointment of Patricia Whitten Hollingsworth as the university's Director of Health Engagement. She will begin serving as director on July 11.

Hollingsworth will be responsible for providing direction, analysis, consultation, and advice to foster the creation, implementation, and ongoing operation of the Health Engagement Program for the 17,000 employees and family members of Indiana University. Hollingsworth will work with the University Human Resources Department and other university departments to develop programs and services that create and maintain a culture of healthy lifestyle engagement.

Patty Hollingsworth

Patricia Whitten Hollingsworth, IU Director of Health Engagement

Print-Quality Photo

Most recently Hollingsworth served as director of the Health Enhancement Program at Ball State University. During her tenure at Ball State, she established a new health and wellness program for employees, spouses and retirees.

"I was fortunate to have a remarkable Health Enhancement Committee at Ball State," Hollingsworth said. "It was the first time in my professional career that we truly addressed the full continuum of health and it was great. The kickoff "Start Where You Are" set the tone. Moving forward, we built a program that was responsive to the employees' health and well-being goals. It was an honor supporting employees and seeing the positive impact of their efforts unfold."

Hollingsworth has been recognized for her work by receiving the Governor's Worksite Wellness Innovation Award in 2007 and the Healthiest Employers of Indiana Award in 2009.

A graduate of IU's School of Health, Physical Education and Recreation, Hollingsworth has been in the health and wellness field for more than 25 years. She began her career as a coordinator for the first Wellness Center east of the Mississippi, and has held a number of positions related to health and wellness. Hollingsworth has been a presenter, guest speaker and author on topics related to health and wellness. Her most recent article, "Changing Employee Health Behavior: Making It Happen," was published in the American Journal of Health Studies in 2008.

Passionate for self-care programs emphasizing "your everyday choices have the greatest impact on your health," Hollingsworth said she looked forward to working with Indiana University employees and the unique attributes each campus brings.

"IU has a wealth of knowledge and resources in all dimensions that impact our well-being," she said. "One shoe does not fit all, it will be a challenge (and fun) further weaving a culture of health and well-being with the employees of all the campuses of Indiana University."

Bruce Jacobs, executive director of the Indiana Memorial Union, IU Auditorium and Health Engagement Programs, said, "I look forward to working with Patty as we design and implement a Health Engagement Program that is designed on the feedback we received in the town hall style meetings that we have held on all campuses this past semester. The clear feedback was twofold: that the program should be designed to make Indiana University the healthiest university in the country and the program should be incentive based and adaptable so that as one person said -- 'I will do what I know I should do.'"

The Health Engagement Program grew out of the recommendations of a committee formed by IU President Michael McRobbie in 2009. The committee's charge was to identify ways to contain health care plan costs while continuing to deliver high-quality health care. One of the committee's specific recommendations was to assist employees and their families in improving or maintaining their health status by increasing the scope of health promotions/disease prevention services.