Governor Brown And Fitness Council Chairman Jake Steinfeld Announce California's 2011 Champions for Youth Fitness


9-14-2011

SACRAMENTO – Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. and Governor’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports Chairman Jake Steinfeld announced the Council’s 2011 Gold Medal winners and Schools of the Year at the Governor’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports Spotlight Awards Ceremony today in Sacramento. The 6th Annual Spotlight Awards presented by the Anthem Blue Cross Foundation recognize the efforts of principals, teachers, non-profit organizations, park programs, parent associations and schools that positively impact the physical activity, fitness levels and well-being of California children. The six winning schools announced today will receive brand new fitness centers and the six Spotlight Award Gold Medalists will each be honored with checks for $10,000 to further promote physical activity and good nutrition in their communities.

“The individuals, organizations and schools we honor today are champions for youth fitness in California,” Governor Brown said. “Their tireless efforts energize our communities and ensure the state’s children grow up active, healthy and fit.”

Ruskin Elementary School (San Jose), Loma Vista Middle School (Riverside) and Hueneme High School (Oxnard) were announced as winners of the 2011 Governor’s Challenge Competition and as the Council’s Elementary, Middle and High School of the Year respectively. Walker Elementary (Santa Ana), Del Vista Elementary (Delano) and Hickman Elementary/Middle School (Hickman) were selected as the states Southern, Central and Northern Live Positively winners, respectively, due to their extraordinary efforts of promoting health and fitness during California Fitness Month in May. All six schools will receive brand new fitness activity centers. These schools were selected from more than 2,100 schools and more than 1.4 million students who engaged in physical activity 30-60 minutes a day, at least 3 days a week for 4 weeks during the previous school year.

“I’ve always said that passion leads and everything else follows, and today’s award winners have shown remarkable passion and creativity in getting California kids more active and fit,” said Jake Steinfeld, Council Chairman. “From the Mt. Shasta Fun Run and Walk in Siskiyou County to Northmont PTA in San Diego and everyone in between, each of our award winners has inspired kids to get out, get moving and have fun, and for that we’re proud to call them our California Fitness Heroes.”

Steinfeld was joined by State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson and Pam Kehaly, President and General Manager of Anthem Blue Cross California. Anthem Blue Cross Foundation is a founding sponsor of the Governor’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports and presenting sponsor of the Spotlight Awards. Over the past six years the Anthem Blue Cross Foundation has granted more than $2 million to the Council and most of that money has been passed on to schools, parks and non-profit organizations in the form of physical activity equipment and cash to promote physical activity.

“The Anthem Blue Cross Foundation is honored to be the presenting sponsor of the Spotlight Awards and founding sponsor of the Governor’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports,” said Pam Kehaly, President of Anthem Blue Cross. “Since its inception six years ago, the Governor’s Fitness Challenge has grown bigger and better every year. We are thrilled to support this program to help California’s children become more active and informed about how to lead a healthy life.”

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.

2011 Governor’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports Spotlight Awards Gold Medalists Presented by the Anthem Blue Cross Foundation

Event of the Year
Mt. Shasta Fun Run and Walk 2011
Mt. Shasta

Teacher of the Year
Kristen Holm
Lucille Smith Elementary
Lawndale

Grand Prize Winning Schools
Ruskin Elementary, San Jose
Loma Vista Middle, Riverside
Hueneme High, Oxnard

Park and Rec. Program of the Year
Watts Cluster
Los Angeles

Non-Profit of the Year
Runnin’ for Rhett
Elk Grove

Live Positively Winning Schools
Walker Elementary, Santa Ana
Del Vista Elementary, Delano
Hickman Elementary/Middle, Hickman

Parent Association of the Year
Northmont Elementary PTA
Northmont Elementary School
San Diego

Principal of the Year
Khushwinder Gill
George Kelly Elementary
Tracy

A full listing of the gold, silver and bronze medalists, plus the eleven regional award winning schools in the 2010 Governor’s Challenge Competition can be found at www.CalGovCouncil.org.

About the Governor’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports
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. Council members include Chairman Jake Steinfeld and Vice Chairman Peter Vidmar. Governor Jerry Brown is the Honorary Chairman and State Superintendent of Public Instruction, Tom Torlakson is the co-Honorary Chairman.

The Governor’s Council key initiatives include the Governor’s Challenge and the Governor’s Council Spotlight Awards presented by the Anthem Blue Cross Foundation. The Governor’s Challenge encourages all Californians, especially California children and youth to be active 30-60 minutes a day at least 3 days a week for a month. Since 2005 more than 3 million students, parents and teachers from over 3,000 schools have taken the Challenge and together they have logged over 20 million days of physical activity. The Spotlight Awards honor Californians who use innovation, inspiration and initiative to promote physical activity and good nutrition. Over the past 6 years, the Council has donated more than $3 million in cash and fitness equipment to California schools, parks and other non-profit organizations to support their efforts promoting physical activity and fitness for California children. Leading sponsors of the Council are Anthem Blue Cross Foundation, CVS/pharmacy, General Mills, Kaiser Permanente and The Coca-Cola Company. For more information visit: www.CalGovCouncil.org.

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