Press Releases

Legacy Begins National Search For Next President And Chief Executive Officer

Cheryl G. Healton, DrPH, Departing for New York University

WASHINGTON, Oct. 9, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Legacy Board of Directors has launched a national search for the organization's next president and CEO, board chairman and Idaho Attorney General Lawrence Wasden said today.   Cheryl G. Healton, DrPH, who has led the foundation throughout its first fourteen years, informed the board in June 2012, that she will be departing Legacy in January, 2014, to join the faculty at New York University as Inaugural Director of its Global Institute of Public Health and Dean of Global Public Health.


The search committee, headed by Attorney General Tom Miller of Iowa, will work with Hamilton, Rabinovitz & Associates, Inc., ( to identify the organization's next leader.

Legacy is the nation's largest public health organization dedicated solely to reducing the tobacco epidemic.  The foundation has established itself as a leader in the public health community, bringing its collective scientific, legal, policy and communications expertise to bear on the number one cause of preventable death in the United States: tobacco. Legacy's life-saving national youth tobacco prevention counter-marketing campaign, truth®, has averted 450,000 young people from smoking its first four years.  During its first 12 years, the foundation has launched numerous social norm-changing initiatives, garnering more than 400 awards.

"On behalf of the Legacy Board, I extend my thanks and gratitude to Cheryl for her leadership," Attorney General Wasden said.  "As a result of her dedication to our mission and her innovation in programming, Legacy is well positioned to realize our vision of a world where young people reject tobacco and anyone can quit."

"Public health and tobacco control were indeed fortunate that Cheryl Healton was selected as the first CEO of the American Legacy Foundation," said Dr. Steven A Schroeder, a former Legacy Board Chair and Distinguished Professor of Health at the University of California, San Francisco. "Her energy, creativity, and dedication to improving health marked Legacy as a rare foundation that was willing to take risks, to utilize media as a way to shape attitudes and behavior, and to help disadvantaged communities overcome the scourge of tobacco use.   Under her leadership, Legacy featured the novel truth® campaign to reduce smoking initiation, fought off attempts by the tobacco industry to curtail its programs, launched innovative programs in research and advocacy and adjusted to a major change in its funding stream.  She will be a hard act to follow," he said.

More than two million people have visited Legacy's tobacco intervention website,, and more than a half million people have joined the online community where smokers are empowered to live longer, healthier lives.

Legacy helps people live longer, healthier lives by building a world where young people reject tobacco and anyone can quit. Legacy's proven-effective and nationally recognized public education programs include truth®, the national youth smoking prevention campaign that has been cited as contributing to significant declines in youth smoking; EX®, an innovative public health program designed to speak to smokers in their own language and change the way they approach quitting; and research initiatives exploring the causes, consequences and approaches to reducing tobacco use. Located in Washington, D.C., the foundation was created as a result of the November 1998 Master Settlement Agreement (MSA) reached between attorneys general from 46 states, five U.S. territories and the tobacco industry. To learn more about Legacy's life-saving programs, visit

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