The National WIC Association (NWA) is the non-profit education arm and advocacy voice of the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC), the over 7 million mothers and young children served by WIC and the 12,000 service provider Agencies who are the front lines of WIC’s public health nutrition services for the nation’s nutritionally at-risk mothers and young children.
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The National WIC Association provides its members with tools and leadership to expand and sustain effective nutrition services for mothers and young children.
Our vision is a nation of healthier women, children, and their families.
The National WIC Association (NWA) endorses the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) and the Academy of Breastfeeding Medicine (ABM) Policy Statements on Breastfeeding.
The AAP policy statement “Breastfeeding and the Use of Human Milk” (2012) states, “Breastfeeding and human milk are the normative standards for all infant feeding and nutrition. Given the documented short and long-term medical and neurodevelopment advantages of breastfeeding, infant nutrition should be considered a public health issue not only a lifestyle choice.”
The ABM’s “Position on Breastfeeding” (2015) states, “Suboptimal breastfeeding practices are unequivocally associated with a greater risk of infant morbidity and mortality not only in developing countries, but also in industrialized countries. Increasing breastfeeding rates is one of the most important behaviors we can promote to decrease infant death and illness worldwide.”
NWA promotes exclusive breastfeeding for the first six months of life with continued breastfeeding through the first year and beyond with the addition of appropriate complementary foods. All WIC staff have a role in promoting and providing support for the successful initiation and continuation of breastfeeding.
The National WIC Association defines health equity as the ability of all individuals and families to achieve optimal health, irrespective of their identity, race, ability or class.
For the National WIC Association, health equity is the ability of all individuals and families to achieve optimal health, irrespective of their identity, race, ability or class. This requires equitable access to nutritious foods, breastfeeding support, chronic disease prevention and management services, safe living environments, and good jobs with fair pay. It necessitates removing obstacles to families’ short- and long-term health and wellbeing including poverty, discrimination, and institutional racism and other forms of bias expressed through housing, healthcare, education, labor, and other public policies.
Adapted from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation
We are a proud partner in numerous collaborative efforts to promote the public health nutrition including:
See highlights of our achievements and learn how the Association has evolved over the years.
The Rev. Fr. Douglas A. G. Greenaway is responsible for directing the Association as well as representing the WIC community’s interests to the White House, Congress, the US Department of Agriculture, and other federal agencies and departments. He has served as President and CEO of NWA since 1990.
Cecilia is responsible for assisting the President & CEO in directing, managing, and administering the NWA National Office. She has responsibility over NWA’s internal and external nutrition-related programs, education, and activities. Cecilia supervises the Association’s professional staff and oversees the Association’s Human Resources functions.
Darlena is responsible for managing NWA’s nutrition and breastfeeding activities. Darlena’s work includes representing the Association on various committees both inside and outside the organization, developing public comments, participating in the Association’s advocacy efforts, and assisting in the review of research/studies as it relates to nutrition and breastfeeding.
Brian is responsible for managing the Association’s advocacy strategy to advance NWA’s public policy priorities, including efforts to secure WIC funding and ensure efficient program administration. In this role, Brian manages NWA’s relationship with Congress and the Administration, leads targeted grassroots advocacy efforts, and coordinates policy partnerships with child nutrition stakeholders and industry. Brian also leads NWA’s annual policy conference in Washington, DC.
Elisabet is responsible for managing NWA’s activities related to WIC program innovation, focusing on those aimed at improving recruitment and retention of WIC participants. Elisabet develops, coordinates, and builds on the Association’s various program innovation strategies in the areas of research, marketing, education, and technical assistance.
Francois is responsible for managing the general operations of NWA and oversees the office accounting. Francois serves as liaison to NWA’s Board of Directors and is the main contact to our IT support contractor. Francois also serves as an office liaison to the NWA Membership Benefit Funds Committee and collaborates with NWA’s Director of Education and Events, and Manager of Membership Engagement.
Emily is responsible for developing and managing NWA membership recruitment and retention programs with an emphasis on member engagement and support. Emily serves as a liaison to the Business Council, the Local Agency Section of the Board, and the Membership Benefit Fund Committee, among others. She is responsible for managing the Annual Business Meeting and other key member-related events.
Quinney is responsible for management and oversight of NWA’s community health portfolio. He oversees the planning, development, and implementation of community health programs and actively promotes and integrates health equity policies and strategies into the association’s work with the WIC community.
Kirsten is responsible for engaging state stakeholders to advance NWA’s mission, policy goals, and objectives on behalf of WIC. She serves as a key resource for state-based staff, particularly, state WIC directors. Kirsten also works to mobilize NWA’s membership to advocate on behalf of NWA and WIC priorities.
Georgia is responsible for directing program operations for NWA. This involves managing the NWA staff and working closely with senior management to ensure the Association develops projects, programming and products that support the mission and vision of NWA. In addition, Georgia develops WIC research priorities and leads efforts to connect NWA members with new research findings and provides guidance on planning, conducting and communicating WIC research.
Natalie is responsible for managing NWA's social media engagement, public relations, and advocacy communications campaigns. Natalie serves as NWA's primary press contact.
Kay provides administrative support to NWA’s management and staff, serves as the receptionist at NWA’s office, helps with various projects, and provides customer service to NWA members, partners, and guests to ensure efficient and effective day-to-day operation of the NWA office.
We are governed by a Board of Directors comprising State WIC Directors, Local Agency WIC Directors, State Nutrition Coordinators, a representative of the Indian & Native American WIC State Agencies, and six officers.
We have three interest sections—State Directors, Local Agency, and the Nutrition Services—and twenty-four committees and task forces that help formulate policy for the Association. The Annual Business Meeting authority resides with the Voting Members of the Association.
Our membership dues come from the state treasuries of the 50 geographic and 40 Indian & Native American, territory, trust and commonwealth state WIC agencies, our distinguished Business Council Partners, corporate Sustaining Members and other non-profit organizations. NWA does not receive direct federal funds.
Beth Beachy, Chair
Berry Kelly, Chair-Elect
Rita Arni, Chair Emeritus
Melinda Morris, Treasurer
Barbara Riley, Secretary
Douglas Greenaway, President & CEO
State Section Representatives
Rhonda Buntrock, Mountain Plains, Co-Chair
Sarah Flores-Sievers, Southwest, Co-Chair
Christi Dorsey, Mid-Atlantic
Karen Flynn, Northeast
Rhonda Herndon, Southeast
Lisa Murphy, Midwest
Paul Throne, Western
Dawn Briner, Native American Coalition
Nutrition Services Section Representatives
Amanda Hovis, Southwest, Chair
Danae Olson, Mountain Plains
Denise Pope, Southeast
Carol Raney, Midwest
Meaghan Sutherland, Northeast
Local Agency Section Representatives
Robin McRoberts, Mid-Atlantic, Co-Chair
Diane Shelton, Southeast Region, Co-Chair
Lisa Boeke, Mountain Plains
Jeanne Gallegos, Southwest
Elisabeth Kersaint, Northeast
Samar S. McGregor, Western
Jennifer Miller, Midwest
Earth’s Best Organic® is proud to partner with NWA and WIC. Since 1985, Earth’s Best Organic® has been leading the way in improving accessibility to high quality organic baby food for all Americans, including WIC recipients.
We have worked closely with multiple states to authorize organic baby food as part of their WIC programs. Organic products currently eligible include Earth’s Best Organic® Baby Food Jars and Earth’s Best Organic® Cereals.
General Mills is proud of its longstanding partnership with NWA and WIC. Our relationship with WIC started over 30 years ago when Cheerios was reformulated with more iron to meet the needs of WIC participants. Today, General Mills manufactures over 240 products that meet federal eligibility requirements. From popular cereal brands like CheeriosTM, KixTM, and ChexTM, to Yoplait®; and Mountain HighTM yogurt, ProgressoTM beans, to Cascadian FarmTM frozen fruit and vegetables – we make delicious, widely-available products that WIC consumers are proud to provide to their families.
As a proud NWA Business Council Partner, HemoCue supports WIC clinics nation-wide in their efforts to screen and monitor anemia. We at HemoCue understand that even mild anemia can result in extreme fatigue and can interfere with ones ability to work, perform daily tasks, or participate in family or social activities. In children, iron deficiency can result in developmental delays, behavioral disturbances, lack of attention and learning difficulties.
Stanbio’s Public Health Team understands the importance of good health to individuals during their early stages of life and to the ones that nurture and support them.
By providing live, personal customer support, we build relationships with each WIC agency to learn their situation and participant culture; we work to offer a reliable, stress free and affordable method to test participants for anemia.
As a NWA business partner and member of the WIC community, we pursue opportunities for multiple WIC stakeholders to work together for the benefit of the program. A deep knowledge of WIC concerns allows us to create Kellogg products and nutrition communications to answer WIC needs.
As a NWA business partner, Masimo pursues opportunities to help safeguard the health of the WIC population by identifying participants with low hemoglobin using noninvasive technology. Masimo’s mission of enabling clinicians to detect and treat potentially life threatening conditions is aligned with the NWA and WIC’s mission.
Medela’s primary focus is breastfeeding by helping moms to successfully breastfeed their babies and to do so for as long as they choose. Meeting this goal responsibly is at the heart of everything we do. Medela is proud to be a NWA Business Council Partner. WIC agencies play an instrumental role in educating and supporting breastfeeding mothers and in helping those moms provide breastmilk, the best nutrition, for their babies.
Meredith Foundry 360 is dedicated to helping the National WIC Association provide moms with the best information on how to care for their growing families. Leveraging our status as the leading commercial publisher of parenthood content in the country, Meredith Foundry 360 acts as a strategic communications partner and consultant to NWA. As a company, we focus on providing all women with information and inspiration to create rich and meaningful lives.
In 2015, MOM Brands and Post Foods came together to form Post Consumer Brands—the third largest cereal company in the U.S. We now offer 25 WIC eligible cereals, approved in 49 states, plus Puerto Rico. No other cereal company offers as large a variety of iconic Hot Cereal and the Ready-to-Eat Cereal brands.
While providing all the nutritional benefits to meet Federal WIC eligibility, Post Consumer Brands offers some of America’s favorite combinations of sound nutrition and great taste. Which means families can look forward to —and really feel good about—breakfast, every day.
Cereal is the #1 choice for breakfast in the U.S. and a big part of WIC programs in every state. Over 8 million women and children in the WIC program count on cereal to provide the nutrition they need. What’s more, studies show that kids who eat breakfast do better in school. It’s indeed what makes breakfast the most important meal of the day.
Post Consumer Brands partners with Touchstone Growth Partners, a consulting firm to represent us with state WIC agencies. On behalf of Post Consumer Brands, Touchstone Growth Partners connects with WIC managers across 90 agencies, promoting the nutritious benefits of all our cereals. For more information, please contact: Dave Myers at (717) 715-2700 or email at email@example.com.
Three Sigma Software, Inc. is an innovative software development company, with the sole mission of providing our Customers with quality software development, implementation, and maintenance support to effectively manage their Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) programs. Using state-of-the-art technology, our experienced developers, former WIC staff, and subject-matter experts deliver web-based applications that support WIC staffs in the mission of providing efficient, effective services to WIC participants. Our customized WIC systems offer solutions for both EBT and Coupon-based WIC environments; supports scanners and signature pads, and allows for interfaces to many other services. All of this makes Three Sigma’s systems the leading WIC applications available.
COMMITTEE OF THE BOARD
This committee provides oversight on the Association's budget and finances.
Standing Committees are ongoing and develop governance at the direction of the Board.
The Bylaws Committee periodically reviews the bylaws and makes recommendations to the Board of Directors as needed for revisions or clarifications. This Committee also reviews proposed operating policies developed by affiliate Sections.
The Nominating Committee seeks candidates for Association offices and the following year's Nominating Committee. Members introduce candidates to the membership.
COMMITTEES OF THE ASSOCIATION
Committees address broad policy issues to further the long-term mission of the Association, at the direction of the Board.
Annual Conference Planning Committee
The Annual Conference Planning Committee is charged with planning program content, organizing events, arranging speakers, and hosting the NWA Annual Education and Networking Conference.
Breastfeeding Promotion Committee
The Breastfeeding Promotion Committee works to develop recommendations and standards for the promotion and support of breastfeeding among mothers participating in the WIC Program. This Committee also works to encourage the active promotion of breastfeeding by NWA members.
The Calendar Committee develops the annual nutrition education calendar for purchase by the Association membership and others.
The Evaluation Committee represents NWA's interests in research and evaluation of the WIC Program, especially those efforts of USDA/FNS, OAE, and ERS.
Leadership Academy Development Advisory Committee
The Leadership Academy Development Advisory Committee works with the Leadership Academy Academic Supervisor, NWA Staff, and others as appropriate to review, develop, and recommend content and strategies to grow and enhance the Academy.
The Legislative Committee participates in the development and implementation of regulatory and legislative policy as it affects the mission and goals of NWA and the WIC Program.
Member Benefit Fund Committee
The Membership Benefit Fund Committee oversees the administration of the Member Benefit Fund, the goal of which is to provide unique opportunities for learning and enrichment to enhance individual knowledge and allow for the development of collaborative projects to be administered on a local or regional level to improve the nutritional status and health outcomes for women, infants and children. Additionally, this reinvestment in individuals and communities allows for new and creative solutions and ideas to be shared with members of NWA.
Nutrition and Breastfeeding Conference Planning Committee
The Nutrition and Breastfeeding Conference Planning Committee develops and plans the conference program and schedule for the Association's biennial conference.
Technology, Program Integrity, and Vendor Management Conference Planning Committee
This committee develops and plans the Association's biennial technology conference.
WIC Hub Committee
This committee has two primary functions: creating strategic plans for developing and improving the user experience of www.theWIChub.org (the Hub), and reviewing content submitted to the Hub for publication.
Task forces are created to carry out the work of the Association at the direction of the Board to address specific short-term goals or initiatives.
Environmental Quality & WIC Task Force
The Task Force will examine WIC’s role in addressing environmental factors that could impact the health or safety of WIC participants. The Task Force will consider the effects of toxins and contaminants in the water and food supply chain, as well as broader environmental impacts on community health. The Task Force will develop recommendations and draft position statements for Board approval.
Farmers Market Programs Task Force
The Task Force examines WIC’s relationships with the WIC Farmers Market Nutrition Program (FMNP) and Senior Farmers Market Nutrition Program (SFMNP) and develops recommendations on opportunities to streamline programmatic efficiency and benefits delivery.
Infant Mortality in WIC
This task force examines available research regarding WIC participation and infant mortality to identify best practices for addressing the issue while analyzing methods to reduce the incidence of infant mortality in WIC.
Maternal Mortality in WIC
This task force examines available research regarding WIC participation and maternal mortality to identify best practices for addressing the issue while analyzing methods to reduce the incidence of maternal mortality in WIC.
Reach Them, Teach Them, Keep Them Task Force
This task force examines and develops best practices to reach, teach, and keep WIC participants and has an advisory role for the National WIC Recruitment & Retention Campaign.
Recruitment and Retention of Registered Dietitians (RDs) in WIC
This task force examines and identifies best practices for recruiting RDs from outside of WIC while analyzing methods to optimize the retention of RDs currently working in the Program.
Task Force on the Inclusion of Dads in the WIC Experience
This task force assists state and local WIC agencies in the inclusion of dads in WIC. The task force offers and showcases best practices and steps agencies can take to implement inclusion of dads and others e.g. care givers, grandparents, partners, same gender couples.
Vendor Business Practices Task Force
This task force develops Association policy and related position papers relevant to vendor relationships and implementation of vendor related policies affecting the WIC Program and WIC participants.
Joint Work Group with USDA/FNS
Risk Identification and Selection Collaborative (RISC)
RISC is a partnership between USDA/FNS and NWA to promote ongoing review and development of appropriate nutrition risk criteria for consistent application in the WIC program.