'Good Times' actress promotes good health

May 13, 2010 WHO: Singer Vickie Winans, Actress Bern Nadette Stanis, Dr. Stephanie Bailey, celebrity Chef Jamika, celebrity fitness trainer Jeanette Jenkins and local health officials

WHAT: Multi-faceted National Women's Health Symposium

WHEN: Saturday, May 15 8 am to 4 pm

WHERE: Apostolic Church of God

6320 Dorchester Avenue, Chicago, IL 60637


Centered on the theme "Health Matters," this powerful and distinctive day of health education promises to connect a multitude of African American women and girls with local health experts to learn about obesity prevention, high blood pressure prevention and management, cholesterol prevention, heart disease, physical activity and other fitness issues. Public health expert and chief of the Office of Public Health Practice Stephanie B.C. Bailey, M.D., will engage speakers and attendees on health issues as moderator of the morning panel discussions. Author and actress Bern Nadette Stanis, formerly known as "Thelma" from the long-standing TV show "Good Times" will share her insights on staying healthy and fit. Celebrity fitness trainer, Jeanette Jenkins will conduct a morning warm-up session and celebrity cook Chef Jamika will fire up the burners for a healthy cooking demonstration. Gospel great, Vickie Winans will conclude the event with a live performance. A lucky participant will win two tickets to the 2010 BET Celebration of Gospel awards show.

The weekend begins with a "Spirit of the Heart: Community Leaders Forum," at the Renaissance Hotel, 1 Wacker Drive, Chicago, on Friday, May 14 from 6: to 9 pm; followed by the Symposium on Saturday. The Community Leaders Forum, hosted by the BET Foundation and ABC, will provide a unique opportunity to educate, empower, and mobilize influential members of the community around the issues of cardiovascular health and access to care.

National health data shows that continuing disparities experienced by African Americans remain disproportionately high. Obesity, diabetes and strokes which are major contributors to prolonged illnesses and death, remain top health concerns among African American women and their families. The Women's Health Symposium offers participants a dynamic and entertaining setting to learn about practical strategies to achieve healthier lifestyles, reduce obesity and address other chronic health concerns.

Attendance at the Symposium is free to women and families of all ages. However, advance registration is required. Call 1-866-356-7348 or visit www.BETFOUNDATION.ORG to register and for more information.

Saturday, May 15th, SCHEDULE OF EVENTS:

8- 8:55 am

  • Doors Open; On-site Registration/Check-In & Breakfast
  • 8 am - 2 pm o Free Health Screenings/Exhibits & Vendors Open

    9 am - 11 am

  • Welcome & Opening Remarks - MC (TBD)
  • "Get it Moving" Morning Warm-up with Jeanette Jenkins
  • Panel Discussion and Q & A with Dr. Stephanie B.C. Bailey and health experts on obesity prevention, high blood pressure prevention and management, heart disease, and other fitness issues
  • 11:30 am - 1:30pm

  • Lunch
  • "Get It Moving Sisters" with Jeanette Jenkins
  • Healthy Cooking Demonstration with Chef Jamika
  • "Fit Is In" Fashion Show
  • Breakout Workshops
  • Vendor Exhibits and Health Screenings
  • 2 - 4 pm

  • Closing Plenary: Performance by Vickie Winans, Prize Drawings and Final Remarks

    The BET Foundation is a non-profit organization created to raise public awareness to the numerous health-related challenges within African-American communities. Established in 2003, the Foundation takes a pioneering step in addressing one of the leading behavioral-attributed health concerns among African-American women and families, obesity-related health concerns. Through specifically tailored initiatives and targeted campaigns, the BET Foundation aims to insure that African Americans live longer and healthier lives. For more information, please visit www.betfoundation.org.


    Founded in 1974, the Association of Black Cardiologists, Inc., (ABC) is a nonprofit organization with an international membership of 2,500 health professionals, lay members of the community (Community Health Advocates), corporate members, and institutional members. The ABC is dedicated to eliminating the disparities related to cardiovascular disease in all people of color. Today, the ABC's public and private partnerships continue to increase our impact in communities across the nation. For more information, please visit www.abcardio.org.

    ABOUT BERN NADETTE STANIS from www.thelmaofgoodtimes.com

    Bern Nadette Stanis is best known as the quick witted, sexy savvy and the original "It" girl, Thelma Evans, from the groundbreaking, first African American sitcom, "Good Times." The still sexy 70's star needs no redefining. Bern Nadette remains the personification of the 'gem' that young girls want to emulate and that we've all come to know and love.

    Bern Nadette's place in television history has been secured not solely based on her undeniable sex appeal and good looks, but instead based on her undeniable contributions to redefining the role of the young black girl from ghettos across America in the minds of the overwhelming masses prone to stereotypic beliefs. Bern Nadette through 'Thelma' proved to audiences everywhere that Black girls with the support of their strong families have sky-is-the limit dreams and unshakeable faith and hope! Bern Nadette (Thelma) showed that a 'ghetto girl' from Chicago's inner city projects lived a life full of hopes and dreams girded by intelligence, respect, dignity and grace, and for Bern Nadette Stanis these characteristics weren't learned in acting class. Bern Nadette is a wonderfully trained and graceful dancer as was witnessed on many of the "Good Times" episodes. In everything that Bern Nadette did it was marked with beauty, form and style extraordinaire.

    Without question as long as there is a television, there will be a Bern Nadette Stanis across our TV screens with her dramatic, comedic, witty one liners, daintiness, sexy but innocent, and daddy's little girl charm.

    Stanis is back with a vengeance in her quest to quell self-esteem issues and insecurities in our young generation. Astonished by the everyday questions and persistent dogmatic relationship environment family, friends and women in general endure and sadly see as 'the norm' Bern Nadette was prompted to do more than have phone pow wows about possible resolutions. She was determined to proactively seek a forum to reach out and stop the cycle of perpetually 'justifying' reasons to remain in sufferable relationships. Her hope is to go beyond scraping the surface of why we tolerate what we do, but dig deeper and breach the core of self-destructive behavior in relationships.

    Today, she travels the world promoting her book, Situations 101: Relationships The Good, The Bad & The Ugly and her poetry book, For Men Only. Bern Nadette Stanis is also a well sought after speaker. She is a popular keynote and motivational speaker.

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