The American Cancer Society recently elected 11 new officers to its volunteer 2009-10 National Board of Directors. Among the chosen was Lila R. Johnson, RN, MPH, who will serve as secretary on the national board for the nation’s largest voluntary health organization.
The Aina Haina resident first became involved with ACS more than 30 years ago when a good friend asked for help putting on a fundraiser.
“My undergraduate degree was in nursing, and I had some experience working with patients who had cancer ... it was an intriguing invitation,” remembers Johnson, who has a master’s degree in public heath from UH-Manoa. “From there I participated in practically every committee possible and was able to serve in board leadership positions” - including president of the Honolulu Unit and both president and board chairwoman of the Hawaii Pacific Division.
“It has been a privilege to represent Hawaii. We are highly respected for our accomplishments in cancer control over the years in education, advocacy and service,” she adds.
In her new role, Johnson’s duties will include representing the society as an officer and participating in strategic officer meetings prior to board meetings. She also will review draft board minutes for final approval and take minutes when the board meets in executive session.
In addition to her day job as statewide community coordinator with the state Department of Health’s Tobacco Prevention & Education Program, Johnson was elected to the executive committee representing North America for the International Network of Women Against Tobacco and will staff the statewide Strategic Planning Process and Tobacco Control Conference later this year. Other organizations with which the mother of four has been involved include Friends of the Medical School, Friends of the Cancer Research Center, Junior League of Honolulu, Coalition for a Tobacco Free Hawaii and COPD Coalition.
“Through voluntarism,” Johnson says, “we have the unique opportunity to work without expecting remuneration at making our communities better by taking on noble causes.”
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