Meet a Member

January 2013

Carrie Poston, MPH, MCHES
2013 Arkansas SOPHE President

Carrie Poston will be serving as the 2013 AR SOPHE President. Her experience in health education began in 2000 when she became certified as a group fitness instructor. She primarily taught water aerobics to senior citizens at a fitness center in central Arkansas. Although she enjoyed her job, it made her want to do more. After Carrie completed her undergraduate degree in Health Education from UCA in 2004 and became CHES certified, she began working for the Arkansas Department of Health (ADH) as a Public Health Education Supervisor in the Environmental Epidemiology Section. Environmental health education was new to her, but she has enjoyed every minute of it. Carrie has been responsible for raising awareness, increasing knowledge, and facilitating skills and behaviors conducive to preventing or mitigating exposure to hazardous substances within communities. In 2009, she took on the position of Environmental Epidemiologist within the same section at ADH. Although she still does a lot of environmental health education, her roles and responsibilities have changed some with this position. In 2011, Carrie graduated from the UAMS College of Public Health (COPH) with a Masters degree in Public Health and she became MCHES certified. Also in 2011, Carrie was appointed by the Governor to serve a two year term as Treasurer on the AR Board of Health Education. Carrie has been a member of AR SOPHE since 2004, and has participated on the executive committee since 2006. 

On a personal note, Carrie has been married to her best friend for almost seven years. They have one beautiful son together who will be two in June; he is Carrie’s world. They also have one very spoiled dog. Carrie loves her family, her friends, photography, fashion, art, music, coffee, Christmas decorations, the color pink, health education, and the Razorbacks…Woo Pig Sooie! Public health is a passion of Carrie’s, it’s a way of life for her and it always will be. She truly believes that it’s everyone’s responsibility to help improve the health and well-being of all Arkansans. Carrie is so excited to be the 2013 AR SOPHE President! 

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May 2013

Emily Gordon, MS, CCE
Vice President

Emily Gordon graduated from University of Central Arkansas with a Bachelor’s in Health Education in 2009, where she played volleyball for the UCA Sugarbears. She received her Master’s in Health Science in 2010 from UCA and in January 2011 began teaching health courses. In May of 2012 she began working as a Patient Educator at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences. As a patient educator, she works on the Maternal/Infant unit at the hospital where she teaches parents who are about to give birth or have already given birth, about the benefits of breastfeeding, SIDS, safe sleep, home safety, and bathing safety. She also works with the March of Dimes in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) to educate parents on kangaroo care (skin-to-skin) and newborn care of a premature infant. She also teaches a Preparing for Birth class once a month and is a Certified Childbirth Educator.  She is a BLS CPR instructor. She has been a member of AR SOPHE for 2 years and is now Vice President as of January 2013. She loves to travel, especially to the beach, running, biking, hiking, and sand volleyball. 
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January 2014
LaShonda Norris, CHAA
2014 AR SOPHE President

LaShonda Norris graduated from Parkview High School in 1990 and then moved to Tampa, Florida in 1997, where she began working at the local hospital in the transplant department. While working, she attended college and graduated with her AAS in Respiratory Care in 2002 from Hillsborough Community College. After graduating from college, she was hired at Moffitt Cancer Center in 2002 to work in the research department for a phase one drug study for cancer patients.

In 2008, LaShonda returned to Arkansas after living in Florida for 10 years. In 2009, she returned to school to pursue her bachelors degree in Health Education and Promotion with a minor in Sociology. She will graduate in December 2014. She will continue her education and get her masters degree in Public Health and Epidemiology.  

She is a current member of the Arkansas Cancer Coalition serving to help educate women about breast cancer, the importance of getting medical treatment and screening. She is very passionate about educating and raising awareness of the importance of screening for cancer related illness and disease. “Prevention and education is my mission.” says LaShonda.

LaShonda has worked at UAMS since November 2008. She is a Financial Counselor and assists patients that are underinsured or uninsured with financial assistance (Medicaid, Medicare, the affordable healthcare enrollment).

LaShonda has a daughter that is a freshman at Arkansas State University; “Go Red Wolves!" She has a dog named Boscoe and she loves to read books, go to the theater and bake pound cakes. She is also a member of the NLR Junior League, and a member of Prom Committee for the NLR High School West Campus class 2013-2014.

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March 2014
LaTonya Bynum
Member at Large, Grants

LaTonya Bynum first joined Arkansas SOPHE as a student member in 2004 and is currently serving as the 2014 Member at Large of Grants. She completed her undergraduate studies at the University of Central Arkansas (UCA) in 2004 where she earned her Bachelor of Science in Health Education while taking several courses in Spanish. Her most recent accomplishment has been earning her Post-Baccalaureate Certificate In Public Health from the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences. Currently, LaTonya is working towards her Masters in Public Health (MPH) with a concentration in Health Policy and Management. 

She is forever grateful to the Arkansas Department of Health (ADH) for blessing her with an employment opportunity after completing her studies at UCA. After nearly a decade of work with ADH, she continues to excel as an emerging public health leader and has gained valuable knowledge and skills from managing public health surveillance programs such as the Hospital Discharge Data System and the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS). Her interests in Health Policy and Management peaked while serving as the state BRFSS coordinator. As coordinator, she was responsible for managing the state-wide health survey and reviewing the project with the Arkansas Legislator. 

Currently, her main role is to coordinate the state-wide Synar survey which monitors tobacco retailer compliance to the state law. Arkansas state law prohibits the sale and distribution of tobacco products to persons under the age of 18. Bynum enjoys using her credentials as a Certified Health Education Specialist to educate the public as well as professionals on how to use and interpret survey findings for the overall improvement of community health. She also serves as a student member and Editorial Intern for the American Public Health Association, membership chair for the Health Disparities Section of the Arkansas Public Health Association, and student member of the Society for the Analysis of African American Issues and is also a member of Toastmasters’ International. Her research interests are: Health Disparities, Community Health, Rural Health, and Healthy Homes. LaTonya is looking forward to using her skills in community health assessment, expertise in grant writing, and knowledge in public health to advance AR-SOPHE. 

Sign the Guest Book below for Sara to welcome her as President.


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February 2015
Sara Daniel, MS
President

Sara Daniel first joined AR SOPHE in 2004 and has been a member of the Executive Committee for several years. She completed her undergraduate degree at Arkansas Tech University in Russellville in 2000 in Health Information Management. She received her Master’s in Health Science from the University of Central Arkansas in 2006. Upon graduation from UCA, she began working at the Arkansas Department of Health. 

She worked for the Arkansas Department of Health (ADH) for over eight years and served in several roles including Tobacco Prevention and Cessation Health Analyst, Hometown Health Educator, and Public Health Preparedness Coordinator for the 19 counties in the NW Region. During her tenure with ADH, she collaborated with community leaders, school officials, colleagues, and the public to assess needs and provide technical assistance for program planning, development, implementation, and evaluation of multiple community initiatives. She also served as the lead preparedness planner for the NW region and provided training on multiple preparedness initiatives including Medical Countermeasures, Mass Antibiotic Dispensing, and Open and Closed Points of Dispensing (PODs).  

She is currently an Assistant Professor in the Health Information Management Department at Arkansas Tech University. She teaches classes in Medical Terminology, Pharmacology, Principles of Disease, Health Care trends, and others. Sara is passionate about providing students the information they need to make healthy choices for themselves and their families and improve the communities in which they live.

In addition to AR SOPHE, Sara is a member of the Arkansas Health Information Management Association, the American Health Information Management Association, the Arkansas Public Health Association, and the Arkansas Health Education Board. 

On a personal note, Sara has been married for 14 years and has two beautiful daughters. Her family stays busy with various church and school activities and enjoys watching movies, riding 4-wheelers, camping, and cheering on the Razorbacks! 


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Meet a Member is now a part of the Arkansas SOPHE Newsletter.  To view the newsletters, click here.