Thomas to chair first Go Red for Women luncheon

Thomas to chair first Go Red for Women luncheon
Ashley Pratt, Mayo Clinic; Kristi Garside Circle of Red Chair; Dr. Pamela Rama, Baptist Heart Specialists; Christina Stallings, CSX; Jessica Cummings, Brooks Rehabilitation; Nicole Thomas, hospital president Baptist Medical Center South; Susan Walker, Bank of America; Dr. Simone Nader, Baptist Heart Specialists; Heather Quick, Florida Women’s Law Group; Jessica Williams, The Adecco Group; Deidra Johnson, Duval County Public Schools; Monique Brown – Batson-Cook Construction.

Baptist Medical Center South Hospital President Nicole B. Thomas is chairing the 2020 Go Red for Women initiative, with a goal of raising $475,000 for the American Heart Association (AHA) to end heart disease and stroke in women. Thomas, a San Marco resident, was the first woman to head Baptist Medical Center South, the second-largest hospital in the Baptist Health system.

Nicole B. Thomas
Nicole B. Thomas

As chair, Thomas will work diligently with community members and executive leaders to support the First Coast Go Red for Women movement. The 2020 Go Red for Women Luncheon, scheduled for Friday, May 15, will welcome a crowd of 400 local business, healthcare, civic, and philanthropic leaders to raise funds for continued research, education and outreach. In the meantime, participants are encouraged to select a goal that fits their lifestyle and pledge to make a change over the next several months.

First Coast American Heart Association Executive Director Amber Wilson said her organization was thrilled to have Thomas on board. “We are thrilled to have Nicole’s experience, conviction and passion help to drive Go Red in Jacksonville and surrounding communities. Together, we know that we will have a positive impact on the lives of women and the families that depend on them,” she said.

Fighting the dread disease, which is the No. 1 killer of women in the United States, is a cause that is close to Thomas’s heart.

 “Heart disease is prevalent in my family. My grandmother has survived both stroke and heart attack, my mother suffers from high blood pressure, and my sisters and I have decided we want to do what it takes to live long healthy lives. It is an honor to serve in this way, raising awareness and doing whatever it takes to help us reduce our risk of cardiovascular disease.”

Heart disease claims more lives each year than all forms of cancer combined, according to the AHA. While nearly 80% of cardiac events can be prevented, cardiovascular diseases claim one in three women.

“I am honored to chair the 2020 Go Red for Women movement here in Jacksonville. Thomas said. “Go Red, Get Fit Jax is about empowering the entire city of Jacksonville to prioritize their health. This fun and interactive challenge will help people from all walks of life to get started with one healthy lifestyle change to help lower their risk of cardiovascular disease,” she said adding that as part of the Go Red, Get Fit Jax Challenge, she has chosen to add fruits and vegetables to every meal.

“One of the things that’s really important for us to do is to know our numbers (cholesterol, blood pressure, BMI and more). Every first Tuesday you can go to a Y Healthy Living Center and get to know your numbers for free 30-minute health assessment,” she said.

For more information about the Go Red, Get Fit Jax Challenge visit www.baptistjax.com/juice/Stories/heart-vascular/go-red-get-fit

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