An experienced executive, Alicia Procello Maddox serves as president of the Avery Dennison Foundation in Glendale, California. Alongside her work for Avery Dennison, Alicia Procello Maddox is vice-chair on the board of directors of Public Health Advocates.
In its efforts to improve the health of all California residents, Public Health Advocates oversees research initiatives that aim to help policymakers address health disparities and widespread health issues at the state level. Over the years, the organization has pursued research on a variety of topics, including obesity, healthy eating, and healthy land use.
One of Public Health Advocates’ most recent research initiatives focused on the rise of diabetes in California and highlighted ways policymakers could reverse the trend. According to the study, nearly half of all adults in the state have prediabetes or undiagnosed diabetes.
The study also highlights the fact that the condition disproportionately affects adults of color, particularly Pacific Islanders, American Indians, and African Americans. In these groups, more than 50 percent of adults are estimated to have prediabetes.
To address the issue, Public Health Advocates recommends that policymakers improve access to quality health care and diabetes prevention programs and promote environments that encourage healthy eating and physical activity. Exercise, improvements in diet, and weight loss have shown to prevent or delay the onset of diabetes, and Public Health Advocates suggest that efforts focused on these areas can lessen the problem in California and the rest of the country.