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CSG Health Policy Academy
Diabetes: Finding Solutions for the States

8-11 a.m. Dec. 3


Academy Registration Form


Session Agenda

An estimated 26 million Americans have been diagnosed with diabetes, while another 79 million have prediabetes. Policymakers have a real chance to reduce the burden of diabetes on public health care systems, employers and individuals who have the disease. This session will present a number of promising state policy initiatives, such as partnering with community YMCAs to increase physical activity opportunities, encouraging appropriate care models in schools for children with diabetes and ensuring timely screening for gestational diabetes. State legislators who have championed prevention and treatment, community program managers and others who have joined the battle for better health outcomes will speak during this session.


Confirmed Speakers

Katherine Blair
Health Policy Advisor, Office of Policy, Research & Legislative Affairs, Colorado Governor's Office
Full bio>>







John Griffin Jr.
Managing Partner, Marek, Griffin & Knaupp
Full bio>>








Nicole Johnson
Executive Director, Bringing Science Home, University of South Florida
Full bio>>









Marti Macchi
Senior Consultant for Diabetes, National Association of Chronic Disease Directors
Full bio>>





Katherine Blair
Katherine serves as the health policy advisor to Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper, a role she has held since late 2011. In this role, she coordinates the administration's policies on health and health care, is responsible for implementing primary components of state and federal health reform laws, and works with state agencies and outside organizations in the public, private and nonprofit sectors interested in the governor's position on health policy issues.
Prior to joining the Governor's Office of Policy, Research & Legislative Affairs, Katherine worked in health policy and health law in the private and public sectors, and was a nonprofit management consultant for organizations in Colorado and Washington, D.C. Katherine is a Kansas native who was raised in New York City and has lived in Colorado off-and-on (mostly "on") since 1996. She received her Master's degree and law degree from the University of Denver. Back to speakers.


John Griffin Jr.

John Griffin Jr. is managing partner at the Texas law firm Marek, Griffin & Knaupp and is well known as one of Texas' most successful lawyers working on the side of employees with disabilities. He has successfully led many efforts to end discrimination against workers and students with diabetes. The cases in which he participated have been instrumental in breaking down blanket bans that prevented people with disabilities from pursuing careers in law enforcement and other safety-sensitive jobs, while leading to the development of nationwide standards for fair employment of workers with diabetes as well as equal educational opportunities for children with diabetes.
Active in both national and community affairs, he serves as Chair of the National Board of Directors of the American Diabetes Association. In 2008, he was named by Texas Governor Rick Perry to the Texas Diabetes Council, where he represents Texas families with diabetes.
A native of Port Lavaca, Texas, Mr. Griffin graduated from Austin College in 1978. He earned his law degree from the University of Missouri in 1981 and entered the private practice of law in 1983 after serving as a lawyer on the staff of State Comptroller Bob Bullock for two years.
He is a long time member as the Texas Bar Foundation and the Texas Center for Legal Ethics and Professionalism. He lectures on employment law and legal ethics, and is an advocate for health care and access to health insurance for children and adults with diabetes. Back to speakers.

Nicole Johnson


Nicole has served as an international consultant and advocate for diabetes issues for more than twelve years.  She has worked tirelessly promoting awareness, prevention and early detection of the condition she has shared since 1993.
Nicole is a Telly award-winning television journalist and an avid writer. Her articles on living with diabetes have appeared in Diabetic Cooking Magazine, Guideposts Magazine, Diabetes Forecast, Diabetes Health, USA Today and on various websites related to diabetes. She has written six books including her most recent diabetes cookbook, Nicole Johnson’s Diabetes Recipe Makeovers and her autobiography, Living with Diabetes.
In 2010, Nicole secured funding and is the executive director for an innovative project called Bringing Science Home at the University of South Florida.  This project investigates the connection between chronic disease, family dynamics and optimistic living.
Nicole also serves on numerous health related advisory boards including the Florida Governor’s Diabetes Advisory Council and the Tampa Bay chapters of the American Diabetes Association and the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation. She is also a past national board member for the American Diabetes Association and an appointee to the National Institutes of Health Council of Public Representatives.
Over the last 12 years, Nicole has helped raise over $26 million for diabetes research and programs. She is passionate about promoting public participation and understanding of research.
Nicole has been recognized for her work in diabetes around the world.  She is a recipient of the Charles H. Best Medal for Distinguished Service in the Cause of Diabetes from the American Diabetes Association, The C. Everett Koop Medal for Health Promotion from the American Diabetes Association, the Hero Award from the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, the Victory over Diabetes Medal from the Polish Diabetes Association as well as awards from the Japan Diabetes Association, Australian Diabetes Associations, the University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health, Regent University and the University of South Florida.
Nicole holds Master’s degrees in Journalism and Public Health and is currently seeking her Doctor of Public Health degree from the University of South Florida. Back to speakers.

Marti Macchi


As the senior consultant for diabetes with the National Association of Chronic Disease Directors, Marti oversees all diabetes-related projects and initiatives. Prior to joining NACDD, Macchi served as the  director of special studies for the Kansas Department of Health and Environment where she was responsible for state initiatives involving policy, systems and environmental change approaches aimed at diabetes prevention and control, heart disease and stroke prevention, arthritis, physical activity, nutrition and obesity prevention. Additionally, Macchi’s career experience has focused on disease prevention, health promotion and community wellness initiatives in both the clinical and community settings. She has supervised a large staff of clinicians focusing on obesity treatment, cardiac and stroke rehabilitation, diabetes management, physical and occupational therapy and various other health promotion programs.
Macchi, a California native, currently resides in Topeka, Kan. and  holds a Masters of Education in Exercise Science from Wichita State University and a Masters of Public Health from the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill. Back to speakers.