News and Events

Tobacco-Free Partnership of DeSoto County Celebrates a Year of Success
May 2, 2018

It has been a very successful 2017-2018 year in tobacco prevention work here in DeSoto County. We have been extremely busy working to educate and prevent tobacco use and social norms within our community.

On May 2, 2018 at the TFP meeting, SWAT Youth and TFP Members were able to celebrate many accomplishments. In addition to celebrating a year of hard work, a few specific members were acknowledged for their outstanding contribution towards a tobacco free future here in DeSoto County.

Pictured L to R: Jodie DeLoach - Community Health Advocate, Lauren Wiley - DHS SWAT Youth President and 2017-2018 SWAT Youth of the Year, and Adrian Cline – DeSoto County School Board Superintendent

Lauren Wiley was recognized as our 17-18 SWAT Youth of the Year. Her leadership and willingness to help has been invaluable. She has put in countless hours of volunteer work and has shown an outstanding dedication towards creating a tobacco free future. In addition to being the DHS SWAT Club president, Lauren has volunteered to speak at several City Council Meetings, as well as presented to state decision makers at the local delegation meeting. Lauren helped plan and complete a tobacco litter clean up in honor of Kick Butts Day at the new Mosaic Rodeo Arena, as well as, volunteer her time to educate community members at various community events, including but not limited to statewide and regional meetings, the Arcadia March Rodeo, Turner Center Trunk or Treat, and Through With Chew Week and Tobacco Free Florida Week festivities. She also helped complete several point of sale store surveys where data was collected on how the tobacco industry targets and markets our youth. Lauren has been a major asset to our SWAT Youth Program and will definitely be missed!

Pictured L to R: Jodie DeLoach - Community Health Advocate, Xenia Rosado-Merced - 2017-2018 TFP Member of the Year, and Adrian Cline – DeSoto County School Board Superintendent

Xenia Rosado-Merced was chosen as our 17-18 Tobacco Free Partnership Member of the Year. Xenia is employed as a Tobacco Program Manager with Gulfcoast South Area Health Education Center and has worked in tobacco education for many years. Currently serving Charlotte, DeSoto, Manatee, and Sarasota Counties, Xenia keeps a very busy schedule, however, that did not stop her from volunteering her time here in DeSoto County. She participated in several community events, including but not limited to, the Arcadia Open House, DeSoto Memorial Love Your Health Fair, and the BOCC Employee Health Fair. Xenia also attended meetings to help strengthen existing tobacco free worksite policies within our county. We are working hard to make our community as safe as possible for all DeSoto County residents, and we are very appreciative of all Xenia has done to help get us to this point. She is extremely knowledgeable when it comes to tobacco and we are proud to have her serve on our partnership.

We would like to extend our deepest thanks to Lauren and Xenia! We sincerely appreciate you both for all for your hard work and dedication to the Tobacco-Free Partnership of DeSoto County and DeSoto County SWAT Chapter.

“Unity is strength. When there is teamwork and collaboration, wonderful things can be achieved.” – Mattie J.T. Stepanek