By Jennifer Moorer
Public Information Officer, North Georgia Health District
Why would anyone want to take on the full-time task of answering phone calls from the press (sometimes, hostile), setting up media interviews, writing health-related press releases, creating educational materials and serving as the office photographer?
What person in their right mind would be on-call 24/7 for some reporter who must know the absolute latest about a rabid raccoon or for a co-worker who needs some sensitive public relations matter handled, right away? Who is it that would want to spend Saturdays and evenings working health fair booths, giving emergency preparedness presentations, and driving mounds of printed materials to schools all over a six-county health district?
Well, that would be me.
I am the North Georgia Health District Public Information Officer, and yes. . . I LOVE my job!
So, the question is why? Why would I love such a demanding job that requires me to wear a wide range of hats from health news provider, to healthy lifestyles cheerleader, to emergency risk communicator?
Because of the people. That's right, as sloppily sentimental as it may seem, my labors of love are for the people. That includes the people I work with - fellow staff, media reporters, community partners - and for the people I serve, which is everyone who lives, works, and plays (or even passes through!) Cherokee, Fannin, Gilmer, Murray, Pickens and Whitfield Counties.
So, my plate is never too full nor my workday too limited to accommodate a request from someone in need because of a little secret I learned a long time ago: when you're doing what you really love, you're never really working.
The North Georgia Health District is a part of the division of Public Health in Georgia. This District is comprised of six counties including Cherokee, Fannin, Gilmer, Murray, Pickens, and Whitfield County. Many programs and services exist throughout the district, all of which are designed to meet the needs of the people of North Georgia.
The district vision is healthy people, families and communities, and its mission is to promote and protect the health of people within the district wherever they live, work and play, through population-based preventive programs such as disease and epidemic prevention, protection against environmental hazards, injury prevention, encouragement of healthy behaviors, disaster response, and community assessment of accessibility to health services.