Tennessee Public Health Association 2024 Conference
Creating a Healthier Tennessee

Sponsored by Tennessee Public Health Foundation with funding from Tennessee Department of Health 

The Tennessee Public Health Association is now accepting abstract submissions for oral and poster presentations for the 2024 Annual Conference. The conference will be held October 9-11, 2024 at Embassy Suites in Murfreesboro, TN. 

The theme for this year's conference is Creating a Healthier Tennessee. Authors are encouraged to submit abstracts that align with this year's theme. Suggested topics include community health, epidemiology, emergency preparedness, environmental health, policy and advocacy, and vulnerable populations (eg seniors, children, pregnant women, those with disabilities). 

Rules & Regulations

  • The deadline for submission is Sunday March 31, 2024 @ 11:59 pm Central Time
  • Presenters will be notified via email on Wednesday May 1, 2024
  • Submission of an abstract constitutes a commitment by the presenting author to present their work if the abstract is accepted.
  • If your abstract is accepted for presentation, the presenting author must register for the Annual Conference. 
  • The program committee will take preferences on presentation format into account as possible, but determine presentation format and time. 
  • TPHA Members will be given preference in the selection process.
Click Here to Submit Your Abstract 

More than 500 attend TPHA's 2023 Annual Conference

More than 500 public health professionals from across Tennessee and beyond came together at the Embassy Suites by Hilton in Murfreesboro for TPHA's annual conference, September 20-22.  This year's theme, Healthy Environment, Healthy Communities, included speakers who shared their expertise on the topics of environment including climate change and its impact on Tennesseans' health and the way public health conducts its business. Attendees learned to expect more extreme weather events such as floods and tornadoes and an increasing toll on public health resources and higher economic costs to our state.  Not only are the risks to death and injuries rising, changes in our environment will impact Tennesseans living with chronic health conditions such as asthma, COPD, and obesity among others making it harder for them to breath, spend time outdoors, work and contribute to their families and perform well in school. 

This year's 3-day event kicked off on September 20 with keynote speaker Steve Curwood, the host of PBS show Living on Earth.  He was followed by workshops and a closing plenary given by Dr. Edward Maibach with George Mason University on communicating with family, friends and government officials and other policy-makers about the impact of the environment on our communities' health.  Thursday was jam-packed with activities including a host of workshops throughout the day, and the Commissioner's Address given by Dr. Ralph Alvarado, Tennessee's Commissioner of Health.  Dr. Mary-Margaret Fill gave a presentation on Tennessee's OneHealth Committee, a collaborative effort of multiple disciplines to attain optimal health for people, animals, and the environment. The One Health concept arose from the realization that human, animal, and environmental health are inextricably linked and that a holistic approach is needed to understand, protect, and promote the health of all species.  Closing plenary for the day was given by Rhea Farberman who present Trust for America's annual "Ready or Not: Emergency Readiness Report" on states' capacity to respond in a crisis and the recommendations to improve their positions.  A new feature added to the day's events and funded by the Tennessee Department of Health's Office of Talent Management and Recruitment was a student networking reception that was enjoyed by all in attendance.  

Friday's sessions included more workshops and a plenary session on Advocacy given by Sarah de Guia, JD, from ChangeLab Solutions followed by a session during which attendees provided input on their recommendations for the most pressing advocacy issues facing public health.  President Dr. Christian Williams completed her two-year term as TPHA president and handed the gavel over to incoming president Dr. Dawn Ford who announced the newly-elected officers and other board additions.    

New BOD Members Group Photo

Pictured (L-R) are TPHA's recently elected officers: Shatonia Kenion, VP-elect for Middle Tennessee; Dawn Ford, President; Michelle Moyers, VP-elect for East Tennessee; Emily Rushing, President-elect; and Matt McDaniel, VP-elect for West Tennessee.  For a full list of Board Members, go to TPHA Board of Directors



Join TPHA today and get invited to attend at no cost to the recordings of the conference keynote and plenary sessions.  Click on this link Conference Agenda for a complete list of speakers and their topics.  Most importantly, mark your calendar for TPHA's 2024 annual conference to be held October 9-11 at the Embassy Suites by Hilton in Murfreesboro, TN.  Calls for Speaker and Poster abstracts will be issued in early 2024 and links to apply found at this site, www.tnpublichealth.org.

The Association's Annual Award Recipients Honored at Thursday's Luncheon   

 TPHA recognized outstanding efforts and leadership in its members and partners on Thursday, September 21 during its Awards Luncheon.  Pictured below are award recipients with Dr. Ralph Alvarado, Commissioner of Health (L) and Dr. Christian Williams, TPHA President (R).  For more information on each awardee and their award, go to  Awards

 Dr. Mary-Margaret Fill, recipient of the William Schaffner MD Public Health Hero Award

Dr. Paul Petersen, recipient of the R. H. Hutcheson, MD, Award

Dr. Suzanne Hayes, recipient of the Alex B.Shipley, MD, Award

Dr. Emma Davis, accepting on behalf of the Partner & Leadership Group Award recipient, Sevier United, and the Public Health Group of the Year recipient, Cocke County Health Department

Chelsea White, recipient of the Public Health Worker of the Year Award

 Austin Fesmire, recipient of the Partner and Leadership Individual Award

Emily Rushing, recipient of the Doris Spain Award for Distinguished Service

 Dr. Alisa Haushalter, recipient of the TPHA Member of the Year Award