Who We Are
Beginning as a conference of health care workers in 1926, the Tennessee Public Health Association (TPHA) was chartered in 1939, creating an organization in which different disciplines work together to obtain higher standards of preventive health practice through recommendations involving administrative policy and legislative action.
TPHA is the official professional organization for those engaged or interested in public health services and is endorsed by the administration of the Tennessee Department of Health. TPHA is an affiliate member of the American Public Health Association and the National Association of County and City Health Officials. TPHA provides opportunities for health professionals representing diverse service areas to meet and share ideas in an effort to maintain high standards of quality in all aspects of public health. Membership is encouraged for any person who is engaged in the practice of public health, either directly or indirectly, or who is interested in the advancement of public health in Tennessee.
TPHA is the leading professional organization recognized as the voice for public health in Tennessee.
Click to view the TPHA Strategic Plan.
· To exercise leadership in health policy development
· To promote, protect and improve the health of those living in, working in and
· To foster professional development and a sense of unity among its members
1. Public Health is a critical element of the total health care system, is proven effective, and is extremely cost efficient.
2. Maintaining a strong public health system is critical to the health and well-being of Tennessee’s citizens and communities.
3. Public Health addresses community health problems through assessment, policy development and assurance. These core public health functions serve as the system’s infrastructure.
4. The Public Health system, at all levels, must have sufficient capacity to achieve its objectives.
5. Public Health can be most effective through the development of partnerships.
What We Do
- Sponsors an annual educational conference including continuing education, training, and scientific and educational exhibits
- Provides an advocacy mechanism for promoting public health issues
- Awards annual scholarships to public health workers
- Organizes regional meetings in each grand division of the state
- Promotes a sense of pride, unity, and accomplishment among health professionals in Tennessee
- Co-sponsors public health events and activities
- Publishes a quarterly newsletter
- Recognizes deserving individuals or work units who make contributions to public health in Tennessee by presenting awards during ceremonies at the annual meeting
Public Health Worker of the Year
Presented to a person in the field of public healthcwho, during the past three years, has provided outstanding service to public health.
1973 Dorcie Yates, Humphreys County Health Department
1974 Thomas H. Hale, Benton County Health Department
1975 Vernon L. Smith, Southwest Regional Office
1976 Dr. Leonard Chadwell, First Tennessee Regional Office
1977 Dr. Robert S. Sanders, Rutherford County Health Department
1978 Rebecca J. Groves, Center for Health Statistics
1979 Hugh Bellamy, First Tennessee Regional Office
1980 Larry Bowles, East Tennessee Regional Office
1981 Manny Martins, Health Services Administration
1982 Frank L. Duncan, Knox County Health Department
1983 Eddie H. Abernathy, Hawkins County Health Department
1984 Marguerite Sallee, Bureau of Health Services
1985 Joyce Holt, Stewart County Health Department
1986 Judith Womack, Mid-Cumberland Regional Office
1987 Susie Baird, Bureau of Health Services
1988 Richard C. Swiggart, Memphis-Shelby County Health Department
1989 Dr. Barbara Levin, Monroe County Health Department
1990 Fred Adams, Greene County Health Department
1991 Debbie Dotson, Sullivan County Health Department
1993 Joy Lorance, Cannon County Health Department
1994 Rebecca Johnson, Hardin County Health Department
1995 Peggy Tackett, Montgomery County Health Department
1996 Cindy Lewis, West Tennessee Regional Office
1997 Christie Morris, West Tennessee Regional Office
1998 Charlene Nunley, Grundy, Franklin, Bledsoe, & Sequatchie County Health Departments
1999 Sharyn Thompson, Jackson-Madison County Health Department
2000 Jo Ann Armbrister, East Tennessee Regional Office
2001 Rose Kidwell, East Tennessee Regional Office
2002 Barry Moore, Memphis-Shelby County Health Department
2003 Art Miller, Roane County Health Department
2004 Dr. David Brumley, South Central Regional Office
2005 Dr. Tim Jones, Communicable & Environmental Disease Services
2006 Joan Carter, Lincoln & Moore County Health Departments
2007 Jennifer Spears, Trousdale County Health Department
2008 Donna Short, West Tennessee Regional Office
2009 Marilyn Barnes, West Tennessee Regional Office
2010 Steve Hall, Lawrence & Wayne County Health Departments
2011 Mary Beth Davis, Mid-Cumberland Region
2012 Brenda Eggert, CEDEP Program
2013 Dr. John Dreyzehner, Commissioner, Department of Health
2014 Joey Smith, Montgomery County Health Department
2015 Kevin Morris, West Tennessee Region
2016 Jennifer Valentine, Knox County Regional Health Office