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2013 Sapphire Awards and Symposium Program Expanded

December 12, 2012

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Florida Foundation (BCBSF Foundation) will expand its program for the 2013 Sapphire Awards and Symposium to feature national experts to address trends, emerging issues and best practices related to child health and wellness, access to care and health care reform.

The two-day event, scheduled Feb. 21-22, 2013, at The Peabody Hotel in Orlando, Fla., will include an opening day address by Dr. John R. Lumpkin of The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. A panel discussion on childhood obesity, health policy and wellness will be moderated by Dr. Judith Rodriguez, chair of Nutrition and Dietetics at the University of North Florida, and will also include Debbie I. Chang, Nemours; Robin Safley, Florida Department of Agriculture; and Nate Whitman, Tufts University.

Technical workshops will focus on a range of topics including grant writing, strategic planning and measurement for nonprofits and health care reform. This year’s event will also include an exhibit hall featuring curriculums and tools to help health-related nonprofits better serve their clients.

The awards presentation Friday, Feb. 22 will include a keynote address by Patrick J. Geraghty, Chairman and CEO, Florida Blue. Morning plenary sessions will focus on “The Changing Health Care Landscape” as well as a “Funders Roundtable” with panelists Gail Christopher of the W.K. Kellogg Foundation; David Christian of Regions Bank; and Mara Frazier of Darden Restaurants.

The Sapphire Awards is Florida’s only statewide honor that recognizes programs, organizations and individuals that have demonstrated excellence and innovation in community health. Since its inception, 45 individuals and/or health-focused nonprofits have been awarded more than $2 million.

To learn more and register for the 2013 Sapphire Awards and Symposium, visit

About the BCBSF Foundation
The Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Florida Foundation (BCBSF Foundation) is a separate, philanthropic affiliate of Florida Blue, the Blue Cross and Blue Shield company for the people of Florida. The BCBSF Foundation and its parent, Florida Blue, are independent licensees of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association, an association of independent Blue Cross and Blue Shield companies. For more information about the BCBSF Foundation, please visit

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