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Past New Alumni Award Recipient: Kristyn Yepa

Photo: Kristyn YepaClass of 2010

Kristyn Yepa received the UNM College of Nursing 2010 New Alumni Award. After working as a nurse at Isleta Pueblo for two years following her graduation from UNM College of Nursing, she has returned to her home of Jemez Pueblo, NM. Kristyn has shown leadership skills that have promoted to the Assistant Public Health Manager for the Jemez Health and Human Services (JHHS) Public Health Programs.

She has dedicated her career to improving the health of the members of her community. Kristyn has rallied to tackle health problems such as obesity, especially in children, diabetes, and immunization. She has also incorporated evidence-based interventions into the planning of programs. Kristyn has also worked to improve the quality of care that is delivered by the JHHS Public Health Programs.

She co-authored the Center for Disease Control Community Wellness and Public health Program cooperative agreement. Jemez Pueblo was one out of 44 communities across the nation to be funded in March of 2010. This program calls for creating school and community programs to increase physical activity, promote healthy food and beverage choices, and supporting a growers market to improve access to healthy food and encourage local crop production. In addition to this, she successfully co-wrote a large federal grant proposal to work on childhood obesity issues in her pueblo that incorporates a return to native health and wellness traditions. Her project was singled out and visited by Kathleen Sebelius, secretary of health and human services, in July of this year.

Kristyn is currently developing a young mothers’ program that will carry out her dream of helping young native mothers reach their goals. She is determined to start a non-profit foundation to inspire young women to achieve higher education and overall wellness to become strong, self-sufficient women in their community and, more importantly, to their children.

Kristyn Yepa is giving back to her community in ways that demonstrate leadership qualities and will have long lasting impacts!

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