The 2010 Governor’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports Spotlight Awards winners were announced by Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger and Council Chairman Jake Steinfeld on Friday, September 17 to recognize the efforts of principals, teachers, non-profit organizations, events, park programs, parent associations and schools that positively impact the physical activity levels and well being of California children. Eileen Rogers, a local P.E. teacher at Lillian Larsen Elementary in San Miguel, was selected as the 2010 Bronze Medallist in the “Teacher of the Year” category. The grand prize winning schools and other Spotlight Award medallists, along with Eileen, were selected from 2,425 nominations based on their use of innovation, inspiration and initiative to motivate California students to be physically active.
Research shows that regular physical activity during childhood and adolescence helps build healthier bones and muscles, increases self-esteem, and reduces the risk of obesity and type 2 diabetes. Lillian Larsen’s campus reflects the importance of a healthy lifestyle through many of their adopted programs and initiatives, such as: the Soils to Succulent Flavors school garden program, Healthy Hornets youth advocacy group,cafeteria fresh produce tastings, Promotoras program, and the newly-adopted Breakfast First and Recess-Before-Lunch school policies. Eileen has been the inspiration and drive behind the Healthy Hornets, getting students active, Breakfast First and Recess-Before-Lunch.
As part of Eileen’s award, Lillian Larsen will be receiving $1000 to further support physical activity programswithin the school to help students stay on the road to good health; the Spotlight Awards are sponsored by Anthem Blue Cross Foundation. The California Governor’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports is a non-profit, non-partisan organization dedicated to promoting physical activity for all Californians with an emphasis on children and youth. Governor Schwarzenegger is the Honorary Chairman and Council members include Chairman Jake Steinfeld, Vice Chairman Peter Vidmar, and California sports legends such as Tony Hawk, Laila Ali, Misty May-Treanor, Jack LaLanne, Lisa Leslie, Michelle Kwan, Serena Williams and Jerry Rice. Governor’s Council Key Initiatives include the Governor’s Challenge, the Governor’s Council Spotlight Awards Presented by Anthem Blue Cross Foundation, the Governor’s Council Activity Guide, the Live Like a Champion Tour powered by Anthem Blue Cross and Exercise is Medicine. Founding sponsors are the Anthem Blue Cross Foundation and Kaiser Permanente. For more information visit www.CalGovCouncil.org. - story and photo submitted by Laverne Buckman