Oak Ridge National Laboratory


News Release

Media Contact: Fred Strohl (strohlhf@ornl.gov)
Communications and External Relations


'Fit Friendly' ORNL employees recognized

OAK RIDGE, Tenn., May 7, 2008 — Employees of the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory have been recognized by the American Heart Association for their efforts to keep fit. The American Heart Association presented the Fit Friendly Company and Workplace Innovative awards in a special ceremony Monday at ORNL.

ORNL is the first East Tennessee organization to earn the platinum Fit Friendly Award, which recognizes ORNL's programs to support physical activity, healthy eating and wellness. Recent examples include a nutrition program entitled Colorful Choices and the ORNL Smoking Cessation Program.

The Workplace Innovation Award was presented for the "Santaclaustrophobia" program to help participants avoid holiday weight gain.

"These awards from the American Heart Association are the result of our successful programs to improve employee wellness," ORNL Director Thom Mason said. "We thank our staff for their efforts to stay physically fit and encourage them to continue the good work."

The event kicked off HealthFest, ORNL's month-long observance of National Physical Fitness and Sports Month in May. The campaign offers special classes, activities and events such as bike rides, walks, and 10K or 5k runs.

"Our efforts have focused on helping lab employees to become healthier, which in turn will improve their quality of life," said Joan Lawson, ORNL wellness director who coordinated the lab's award-winning programs.

Lawson says at least 1,500 of the laboratory's employees have worked to stay physically active.

ORNL is managed by UT-Battelle for the Department of Energy.