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Nominations now accepted for American Heart Association’s Lifestyle Change Award

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WATERTOWN - The Central New York Chapter of the American Heart Association is looking for residents of Jefferson, Lewis or St. Lawrence counties who have made lifestyle changes in order to live longer and healthier lives.

Nominations will be accepted until March 29, and the Lifestyle Change Award recipient will be announced during the April 27 Watertown Heart Walk at the Alex T. Duffy Fairgrounds, off Coffeen Street.

“The American Heart Association has established its 2020 Impact Goal, which is: ‘By 2020, to improve the cardiovascular health of all Americans by 20 percent while reducing death from cardiovascular diseases and stroke by 20 percent,’” said Kristy Smorol, communications director.

“As we strike to achieve that 2020 impact goal, we want to recognize individuals who have made positive changes to improve their quality of life,” she said. “This award helps to highlight what north country residents have done to improve their own health and inspire others to do the same. Since small efforts can mean big outcomes, no change is too small. Every accomplishment is significant and should be celebrated.”

Last year, which was the first year such an award was offered locally, the agency received 30 applicants. Patricia A. Starr, Fort Drum, received the 2012 award after shedding 57 pounds. Mrs. Starr began her lifestyle change Oct. 14 at 187 pounds. After joining wellness programs, Mrs. Starr has gotten down to a healthy 130 pounds.

“We look for someone who wants to make a change to stop smoking, lose weight, or anything anyone has done to change their heart health,” said Stacy L. Spaziani, corporate events director. “It’s resolution time.”

Nominations may be submitted by friends, co-workers or relatives. People may also nominate themselves. Winners will be chosen by a selection committee.

The Lifestyle Change Award is sponsored by Timeless Frames.

Nomination forms may be requested by sending an email to Mrs. Spaziani at stacy.spaziani@heart.org, or by calling her at 783-4116. Printed versions can be mailed to American Heart Association, Attn: Lifestyle Change Award, P.O. Box 3049, Syracuse, N.Y. 13220.

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