Recognizes a young professional whose work has had a significant impact on the public health or social wellbeing of South Florida.
Alison Morales Kerr is a health educator program consultant, community health program manager and public information officer at the Florida Department of Health in Monroe County. Originally from Los Angeles, she received a B.S. in Environmental Studies from the University of Southern California where she did extensive research on Alzheimer’s disease and coauthored an article published in Gynecological Endocrinology, a scientific journal. She later received her M.P.H. with Emphasis in Environmental and Occupational Health from FIU in 2013, where she was also a recipient of the World’s Ahead Graduate Award. She is also a member of the Golden Key International Honour Society.
Kerr is the principal investigator of the community environmental health assessments in the Florida Keys where she utilizes the PACE-EH Methodology (Protocol for Assessing Community Excellence in Environmental Health). PACE-EH is a nationally recognized evidence-based tool that has been used across the United States to combat social inequities, dissolve health disparities, and improve the overall health and wellbeing of a community.
Kerr has led two comprehensive PACE-EH studies in two micro-communities—Bahama Village and Marathon. The projects have brought many residents, local agencies and organizations together to take initiative and become actively involved in improving public health while allowing these groups to gain trust and camaraderie with the health department.
As a result of these efforts, improvements in the community include the renovation of two community parks and a community center, better and improved street lighting, the creation of a community garden, and more enriching activities for children. In recognition of improving the delivery of state services while improving services for communities in Florida, this project received the 2014 Prudential Productivity Award.
Kerr currently lives in Key West with her husband, Emmanuel Kerr.