KMOJ presents Community Health Dialogue

Series will address important issues about the health of women, families and children


On Monday evenings in September and October, local experts will discuss health topics that affect women, families, and children on Community Health Dialogue (, a weekly public health program on KMOJ-FM (89.9 FM). The show is hosted by Clarence Jones, outreach director of Southside Community Health Services.

The special series was developed in collaboration with the Center for Leadership Education in Maternal and Child Public Health, School of Public Health, University of Minnesota (

“Clarence Jones is one of our great local public health leaders. He is also a colleague and a friend,” Center director Wendy Hellerstedt said. “We have been talking about putting together a special series like this for a long time.”

Jones and Hellerstedt identified what they thought were some of the most important public health issues facing women, families and children: reproductive and sexual health, infectious disease, mental health, adolescent health, and health disparities.

“We asked wonderful speakers who are incredible public health advocates, including Minnesota Health Commissioner Ed Ehlinger,” Hellerstedt said. “Everyone we asked said ‘yes’ because they know our Center and, most important, they know Clarence’s show. Clarence aims to make his shows informative and entertaining through his commitment to discussing tough topics and his unwavering respect for the intelligence and the curiosity of his audience.”

“In addition to specific health topics, Clarence and I also discussed the importance of primary care,” Hellerstedt said. “Primary care is about preventing health problems before they happen. We knew, from our own experiences, that people are often reluctant to see physicians for primary care because they are unfamiliar with it, they lack access, or they have not always had positive experiences,” she explained.

“Health Commissioner Ehlinger will discuss health disparities and healthcare access one evening,” she continued “One of the most patient-focused physicians we know, Amy Gilbert, will be a guest another evening to share her perspective about common client questions and how people can get the most out of a clinic visit.

“I am excited about each and every guest,” Hellerstedt said. “For example, Lisa Randall knows so much about HPV and vaccination and can really talk about how the prevention of this infection can lead to a huge reduction in cervical cancer. Jill Farris, an expert in the sexual health of adolescents, is always an engaging speaker who is on top of the latest research.

“And Cari Michaels has a wonderful background in parent education about an often overlooked topic: child mental health. I am eager to listen to every speaker and to learn from them.”

To listen to this special series, listeners can tune in live at 89.9 FM or stream ( from their computers on the following dates and times. The shows that begin at 6 pm will offer the opportunity for listeners to call the speaker and ask questions:

September 14, 6-7 pmReproductive Life Planning, Wendy Hellerstedt, MPH, PhD, Center for Leadership Education in Maternal and Child Health, University of Minnesota School of Public Health, and The Importance of Fathers to Family Well-being, Clarence Jones, MBA, Southside Community Health Services

September 28, 6:30-7 pmHuman Papillomavirus (HPV) and HPV Vaccination, Lisa Randall, MPH, JD, Minnesota Department of Health

October 5, 6-7 pmWhat Does Adult Preventative Care Look Like? Common Questions and Definitions, Amy Gilbert, MPH, MD

October 12, 6-7 pm — Talking About Sexual Health with Your Kids: Adolescent Sexual Health, Jill Farris, MPH, Teenwise

October 19, 6:30-7 pm — Children’s Mental Health: What Should Parents Know? Cari Michaels, MPH, Children, Youth & Family Consortium, University of Minnesota Extension

October 26, 6-7 pm — Health Disparities in Minnesota, Commissioner Ed Ehlinger, MPH, MD, Minnesota Department of Health



For more information on the series, visit or email 

Sara Benning has a BS in family social sciences and a Masters of Liberal Studies (MLS), both from the University of Minnesota -Twin Cities. She leads the Center’s outreach and evaluation efforts.