Healthy Active Arkansas

June 1, 2015

Treadmills at a gym

Initiative Partners

Arkansas Department of Health

University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences

Arkansas Center for Health Improvement

Arkansas Minority Health Commission

Baptist Health

Arkansas Children’s Hospital

Arkansas Department of Human Services

Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield

Arkansas Coalition for Obesity Prevention

CHI St Vincent and Winthrop Rockefeller Institute

Launched in 2015, the governor-endorsed Healthy Active Arkansas Initiative was sparked by the state’s consistently poor ranking with respect to obesity rates and as a way to encourage and enable healthier lifestyles in Arkansas. The single, overarching goal is to increase the percentage of adults, adolescents and children who are at healthy weight. A 10 year plan consisting of nine priority areas that address food and physical activity provides the framework for action that can be adopted and implemented in realistic ways by a diverse group of stakeholders.

In Arkansas, one out of every three people is obese; Annual obesity-related health care costs totals $1.25 billion; The Healthy Active Arkansas framework is intended for anyone to be able to use; The 9 priority areas of the framework have strategies and action steps with a reasonable timeframe; Arkansas is a place where healthy lifestyles are achievable.

The Experts

Thompson, Joe

Joseph W. Thompson, MD, MPH

President & CEO

Wilson, Craig

Craig Wilson, JD, MPA

Director, Health Policy

Wessel, Jennifer

Jennifer Wessel, JD, MPH

Senior Policy Analyst and Data Privacy Officer


Ideas and strategies affecting lifestyles, decisions, and outcomes


Culturally-informed solutions and accessible opportunity



Quality care, equitable practices, and affordable methods

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