Faith, Not Fear

Emily Wolfe and son HarperAs working parents around the nation prepare for their children to return to school, many are facing the same circumstances under which school dismissed for the summer: virtual learning. HERO’s Committee Project Manager Emily Wolfe reflects on the impact this is having on her family. Emily has also included some good resources on the topic, regardless of whether you’re a working parent of school-aged children or work with someone who is. HERO is lucky to have such a caring teammate!

Last week at bedtime, my oldest son, Harper (9 yrs.), and I disagreed about staying up late and where he would sleep (he’s afraid of the dark). The disagreement ended in tears. Soon the conversation shifted from bedtime to Harper asking why my husband and I work so much. Harper reflected on our months of “crisis home-schooling” and expressed worry for this school year. Through tears, he said, “I am not intelligent enough to take care of myself. I can’t make lunch on my own. Sometimes I need help remembering to get off the computer or to stop playing a game. I need more. I need your help.” What I heard was an intelligent, articulate child clearly saying, “I need YOU.”

Emily’s full post can be found on the HERO blog. Read on for updates on HERO’s fall events and new resources for employers on COVID-19 and racism.


2020: A 20/20 Vision for Collective Well-being


A 2020 Vision for Collective Well-Being

September 2020
A Virtual Forum!

Registration for Virtual Options Opening Next Week

A 20/20 Vision for Collective Well-being: How Group Dynamics and Social Connectedness Shape Individual Choices…and What Viral and Racial Pandemics Teach Us about Being in it Together 

Forum20 carries forward our learnings from Forum19 where we asked how employers can better achieve well-being through collaboration, and we examined tenets of “collective action” and how individuals influence the direction of groups. This year we examine how well we are employing principles of social psychology to advance well-being and how we are shaping group dynamics to bolster our aims to become the best places to work. Plus, we’ve asked our faculty to reflect on COVID-19 and global protests related to racism as historic teachable moments. Will the pandemic and discord about social injustice fundamentally alter our investments in disease prevention and employee and community health and social support?

HERO is a designated provider of continuing education contact hours (CECH) in health education by the National Commission for Health Education Credentialing, Inc. Provider ID# 101039

Fitness Challenge

Registration Opens August 26

WebMD logoHERO, with the support of WebMD, is bringing a fun fitness challenge in conjunction with the HEROForum20. This five-week challenge is a free event open to the public. You will be able to create your own five-person team, or join an existing team, then start recording your activity. It’s more than just steps — use our fitness chart to convert dozens of activities to steps. Compete each week for prizes and overall bragging rights among your friends and colleagues.

HERO 2020 Fall Think Tank

Social Connections and The New Workplace: Leveraging Technology to Build Meaningful Social Connections & Community

September 10, 2020 | 1:00 – 4:00 PM CT

A free, members-only, virtual event

Never before have we been so aware of the critical need to ensure our initiatives promote health and well-being for all, and we must consider how the use of technology can support or hinder our efforts to promote social connection and inclusion within the context of health and well-being initiatives. With remote work arrangements likely to continue for a significant proportion of workers into the future, how do we strike the right balance? Our focus for Fall Think Tank is on leveraging technology to support meaningful, high quality social connections and to maintain or build team cohesion and community.


2020 Healthcare Summit

Maximizing Organizational Support: Connecting the Dots between Organizational Development, Leadership Development, and Employee Well-being in Healthcare

Monday, October 12, 2020 | 11:00 – 3:30 CT 

A free, virtual event

A recent HERO study reviewing factors that drive effectiveness in workplace health and well-being initiatives found that Organizational and Leadership Support is among 4 key areas of influence perceived to have the greatest impact on program efficacy. Perceived Organizational Support is also found to be closely tied to the business success measures of employee experience (engagement, satisfaction, retention, and increased performance), several of which are challenges within our healthcare climate. Recently, the COVID-19 pandemic and societal impacts of racism have further challenged healthcare institutions to maintain a positive employee experience amid public health, economic, and social instability. Join us for a highly interactive session designed to explore how leading healthcare organizations are currently addressing employee experience through the investment in the development and well-being of their people.

2020 University Summit

Well-Being in All Policies: How Well-Being is Considered and Integrated into Policies and Practices in Universities and Academic Medical Centers

Monday, October 19th, 2020 | 11:00 – 3:00 CT

A free, virtual event

The University Summit will explore the integration of innovative practices and policies to institutionalize well-being into the university infrastructure. Specific examples on how these policies and practices can have a positive impact during and post the COVID-19 pandemic will be discussed and practical tools and applications shared.


HERO Health & Well-Being Best Practices Scorecard in Collaboration with Mercer©

HERO Scorecard Research Study Findings Featured in Benefits Specialist Magazine

Last month we shared the news that an article authored by HERO’s Vice President of research, Dr. Jessica Grossmeier, was published in the June issue of Benefits Magazine and features findings from a research study on HERO Scorecard best practices linked to better program participation, health and medical cost impact, and employee perceptions of organization support. HERO members may now access a free copy of the article here.


Case Study

HERO’s Culture of Health Committee’s Case Study Evaluation Workgroup recently published a new report, Five Important Elements for Building a Culture of Health: What, Why & How. The report highlights common culture of health (CoH) elements across 9 employer case studies, giving examples of how employers approached implementing CoH practices and why it’s important to workplace culture. The report is available here.


Erin Seaverson, MPH – Stefan Gingerich, MSMeasuring participation in worksite health promotion programs

July 30, 2020 | 12:00 PM CT

Five years ago, HERO and the Population Health Alliance (PHA) published a comprehensive set of standards to guide the measurement and evaluation of employer-based well-being initiatives. The standards for participation measurement included a recommendation for more research on “the amount of intervention necessary to produce a positive health outcome” and studying participation “across channels/modalities” of programs. In this webinar, researchers will discuss results of a study that sought to fill a gap identified by the HERO/PHA standards and bridge the divide between “participation” and “engagement.” Erin Seaverson, MPH, Senior Director of Research and Evaluation, WebMD Health Services will be joined by Stefan Gingerich, Senior Research Analyst, WebMD Health Services.



GRI Resources for COH4B

The Global Reporting Initiative has resources for the Culture of Health for Business Framework including FAQs, a key fact sheet and more! The resources are available: Here. Here. Here.

Future of Work

HERO President Karen Moseley teamed up with the Co-President and CEO of Pro-Change Sara Johnson, PhD to write “Why A Remote Workplace Needs Strong Social Connections.” In the article they discuss how to combat the social isolation of remote working. The article is available here.


FORESIGHT is asking thousands of people to equitably envision and bring about a bold future for health and well-being in the United States. Add your voice today.

How to Get Better at Things You Care About

Eduardo Briceño gives a Ted Talk that affirms our view that health promotion professionals need to be intentional about making time for continuous improvement personally and professionally. The Ted Talk is available here.

8th Global Healthy Workplace Awards 2020

Applications are open to ALL employer organizations and are assessed by a panel of global experts. Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), large enterprises, and multi-national enterprises are invited to apply to become recognized as the world’s best employer for health and well-being. The application is available here. 



Ear Hustle, Episode 7: Unwritten

Andrew Sabatino and Arthur Snowden discuss how the color of your skin impacts life in prison and the friendship they have found in each other. The podcast is available here.

The Black Man Who Tips

Rod and Karen, a black, southern couple discuss pop culture and politics through comedy. Their show has consistently been one of the top comedy podcasts and mentioned in countless news sources. The podcast is available here.

We Need to Keep Talking About Charlottesville

Brené Brown discusses how America’s story is one of White Supremacy and how we need to own that story, or it will own us. The Facebook Live is available here.

The 1619 Project

The New York Times has released a podcast on how slavery has transformed America, connecting past and present through storytelling. The podcast is available here.

Rabbit Hole

The New York Times has put out an audio series about how the internet is changing and how, in turn, it’s changing us. The podcast is available here.


Always in Season

A PBS Documentary about a mother’s pursuit for justice for her teenage son’s supposed suicide. The history and trauma of lynching and racial violence draws clear links between past and present. The documentary is available here.


Netflix released the full feature film 13th on YouTube. This is a documentary about the U.S. prison system and the systemic racism occurring in the prisons. The film is available here.

Just Mercy

A film based on Bryan Stevenson, a civil rights attorney, that demonstrates the systemic racism afflicting our society. The film is available here.


The Tattooist of Auschwitz

Based off of the true story of Lale Sokolov, author Heather Morris tells the tale of a love story in the midst of the Holocaust.

So You Want To Talk About Race

Ijeoma Oluo reads from her book, “So you want to Talk About Race,” in this talk, and facilitates a discussion on why it’s so hard to have conversations about race. The talk is available here.

Dear White America: Letter to a New Minority

Tim Wise writes of the United States diverse culture and how this creates racialized nostalgia, but in order for American democracy to survive we must embrace our multicultural past, present and future.

The Hate U Give

Angie Thomas writes a Young Adult novel inspired by the Black Lives Matter Movement, and their struggle for justice.

Talking to Strangers: What We Should Know about the People We Don’t Know

Malcom Gladwell writes of how we don’t know how to talk to strangers and the conflict and misunderstanding we invite into our world as a result of this.

White Fragility

University of Washington professor Dr. Robin DiAngelo writes of the phenomenon of white fragility and discusses how white people can develop their capacity to engage more constructively across race.

How to be an Antiracist

Ibram X. Kendi writes about what an antiracist society may look like and how we can play a role in making that a reality.

Me and White Supremacy

Layla F. Saad offers a book of resources for white people who want to contest white supremacy but don’t know where to start.


Seven Things Organisations Should be Doing to Combat Racism

Esther Choo outlines seven actions she hopes to see from health-care organisations to address structural racism and build equitable environments. The article is available here. 


COVID-19 Resource Hub

First Person has released a COVID-19 Resource Hub of best practices, strategies and resources to help empower people during these uncertain times. The resource page is available here.

Balancing Health and Economic Factors when Reopening Business in the Age of COVID-19

HERO Members William Kassler, MD, MPH and Nicolaas Pronk, PhD, MA, have authored an article in the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine.

The article is available here.

HERO will continue to highlight employer bright spots and resources here.



Ezequiel Galarce, PhD

Ezequiel Galarce, PhD, Vice President, Behavioral Insights, Rally Health

Ezequiel’s work at Rally Health is focused on leveraging data to improve the effectiveness with which their digital products facilitate better consumer decision making. He has over two decades of experience in exploring solutions to help close the gap between people’s best health intentions and their actual behavior. In this journey, Ezequiel has become an expert in the intersection among population health, digital products, data and behavior change. He earned a PhD degree in psychological and brain sciences from Johns Hopkins University.

To read more about Ezequiel, visit the HERO blog.

©2024 Health Enhancement Research Organization ‘HERO’


Send us an email and we'll get back to you as soon as possible.


Log in with your credentials

Forgot your details?