2016 PHSA Executive Board
From Left to Right and Top to Bottom: Leah Reish, Emma Draluck, Meghan Meadows, Ashlyn Cahill, Victoria Liddle, Obrenka Thompson
President – Leah Reish
I was born and raised in Cleveland, TN. I did my undergraduate degree at The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga in Nutrition/Dietetics and Chemistry. During the last two years I was a part of the Student Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (SAND). This past year I served as secretary. I sent out mass emails to the members acknowledging upcoming events and volunteer opportunities. I was in tune with the president and if she needed anything, I was her girl to get it done. I have been on two mission trips to Grenada, Nicaragua where I have taught English and the Bible to strangers and friends. I also have experience in leadership through teaching. I taught dance ages 2-19 for three years. This opportunity gave me people skills that I am very thankful I have today. While in Chattanooga, I was a server at Olive Garden Italian Kitchen. I was awarded with what they called a “blue card.” This gave me leadership over a majority of the servers and they would come to me if they had any questions or problems. Not only do I have leadership skills, I am a very easy going person. I am artistic and organized.
Vice President – Meghan Meadows
My organizational skills have helped me participate in various service projects. I assisted in the development of the charitable organization Soles4Souls, where we collected and distributed shoes for families in need. I felt very passionate about making a difference in our community. I recently have been volunteering for Celebrate Recovery where we help people recovering from drug addictions readjust to life again. I have also been chosen as the fundraising lead for Partners in Health Engage Team Memphis. I feel that being involved in the Public Health Student association I can bring new ideas and still hold on to the old traditions from this past year.
Secretary – Emma Draluck
I am already familiar with PHSA serving as the interim VP. I’d like to make PHSA a fun way for MPH students to get involved with peers on campus and in the community.
Treasurer – Victoria Liddle
I am originally from Plano, Texas and I just graduated from the University of Arkansas with my Bachelors of Science in Biology. I am currently in the MPH program pursuing a concentration in Epidemiology.
Executive Social Action Chair – Obrenka Thompson
Hello, my name is Obrenka Thompson and I am an Alabama native. I received my Bachelor of Arts degree in African American Studies from the University of Alabama in Birmingham. While in undergrad I had the opportunity to serve on numerous executive boards including Leadership and Service Council (LSC), Minority Association for Premedical Students (MAPS) an Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. While apart of LSC I was appointed to the ongoing service chair. I had the opportunity to choose a community service project in the greater Birmingham area. Once a location was chosen me and a group of 10-20 students would go serve for two hours a week. My Junior and Senior year I was selected to be the president over a student group by the name of MAPS. During this time I was able to expand my leadership skills and also to develop my editorial and administrative skills. Lastly, my second semester attending UAB I was chosen to become a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. After initiation I was appointed to the Social Justice chair, and organized events to bring awareness to Human Trafficking and Domestic Violence. Public health became an interest of mine while completing a Minority Health course. Being exposed to the large numbers of health disparities and high numbers of preventable disease diagnoses, I knew I had to make a change. In combination with my African American studies degree I knew a Graduate degree in Public Health would mold me into the Community Health Advocate I dreamed of becoming.
Advocacy Chair – Ashlyn Cahill
Although I am originally from Boston, I have now lived in Memphis for the past 6 years determined to make this city my home away from home. During my undergraduate study at Rhodes College, I double majored in Molecular Biology and Environmental Science, and was immediately hired after graduation for a full time position at Le Bonheur Children’s Hospital as a research coordinator for the Department of Pediatric Nephrology. It is through my education and professional career and now my continued education at The University of Memphis, that I have expanded my networking skills throughout this city in many different realms.