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Former Perth Board of Health Chair, Teresa Barresi, Receives Provincial Distinguished Service Award



Thursday, May 23, 2019


Perth County  ̶  Former Perth Board of Health Chair, Teresa Barresi, is being awarded a 2019 Distinguished Service Award by the Association of Local Public Health Agencies (alPHa). The award recognizes significant contributions to public health at the local and provincial levels. alPHa selects recipients that demonstrate exceptional qualities of leadership, achieve tangible results through lengthy service and/or distinctive acts, and display exemplary devotion to public health at the provincial level.


“On behalf of the board, I offer Teresa our heartfelt congratulations!” says Dr. Miriam Klassen, Medical Officer of Health. Barresi was a Provincial Appointee to the Board of Health in Perth County from 2009 to 2019, serving as Chair for the last five years. “During her time as chair, Teresa proved to be a dedicated, creative and passionate leader and public health champion.”


“There are numerous examples of ways that Teresa promoted public health,” says Dr. Klassen. Under her leadership, the Perth District Health Unit (PDHU) was strongly represented at numerous regional initiatives, such as:

  • Stepping Out Safely Huron-Perth, a falls prevention initiative;
  • Quit Partners Community of Practice, supporting smoking cessation; and
  • Kids First Huron Perth, 18 Month Working Group, supporting healthy child development.

She also brought – and continues to bring – a public health lens to her work as nurse leader and the Primary Clinical Team Coordinator of the STAR Family Health Team. Barresi has helped to implement programs, such as: an Exercise Prescription program; a social determinants of health program called Finding Options; giving out dental health kits to young families; and distributing prenatal folders with information for having a healthy baby.


“This award is just one example of wonderful people coming together to support the delivery of excellent population health every day,” says Barresi. “I would love the whole STAR FHT team, the PDHU staff, and community partners up on stage with me when I receive this award! They are the true winners in this – the true champions in population health.”


Barresi’s nomination was put forward by Dr. Klassen and supported by current Board of Health members. She will receive the award at an upcoming ceremony in Kingston, Ontario.


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