DALLAS, Dec. 8, 2015 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The American Heart Association/American Stroke Association's EmPOWERED To Serve movement and American Council on Exercise (ACE) today announced a national partnership where both change agents are set to take action to reduce heart disease and stroke. Together, the organizations plan to integrate their shared interests of reducing obesity through increasing healthy living behaviors and transforming community environments.

"This partnership reflects our shared commitment of empowering people to achieve meaningful lifestyle changes in areas of physical activity, nutrition, and behavior change to help prevention and treatment of obesity, diabetes, cardiovascular disease and other lifestyle-related diseases," said Scott Goudeseune, ACE President and CEO.

Obesity is a growing health concern in the US, affecting almost 70% of adults and putting them at greater risk for stroke, heart disease and diabetes. For this reason, the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association and ACE jointly aim to provide greater access to health resources, tools and fitness professionals to influence health behaviors and outcomes in local communities. American Heart Association/American Stroke Association assessment such as My Life Check, a short survey based on the knowledge of medical experts to assess an individual's health status, and Life's Simple 7 identify health factors and lifestyle behaviors that support heart health and can greatly impact the quality of life and life span to create measureable, positive health results.

"Improving the cardiovascular health of all Americans by 20% while reducing deaths and disabilities by 20% by the year 2020 requires partnering with organizations committed to change and community for the well-being of our citizens specific needs through targeted goals and strategies as we have developed with ACE," said Pamela Garmon Johnson, National Vice President of Multicultural Markets of the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association.

"ACE is committed to helping people move toward adopting healthy lifestyle behaviors that reduce obesity and the many chronic medical conditions plaguing our country. To effectively do so, we must align with like-minded organizations, such as the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association, that share our vision and can deepen the impact of our health and fitness professionals among diverse populations and communities of greatest need" said Goudeseune.

The EmPowered To Serve movement is a national strategic initiative engaging communities and building powerful relationships through targeted health efforts. EmPowered To Serve provides free health resources and support through its online mega community, an interactive hub where multicultural individuals and organizations unite to share best practices, information and results, employing science-based education to inspire small changes towards building a culture of health.

For more information about the EmPowered To Serve movement and to access free health impact resources, visit For more information about ACE, visit


For AHA/ASA Public Media Inquiries: Mara Silverio,, (214) 924-3678

For ACE Public Media Inquiries: Jamie Hampton,, (858) 337-7466

About the American Heart Association and American Stroke Association

The American Heart Association and the American Stroke Association are devoted to saving people from heart disease and stroke – the two leading causes of death in the world. We team with millions of volunteers to fund innovative research, fight for stronger public health policies, and provide lifesaving tools and information to prevent and treat these diseases. The Dallas-based American Heart Association is the nation's oldest and largest voluntary organization dedicated to fighting heart disease and stroke. The American Stroke Association is a division of the American Heart Association. To learn more or to get involved, call 1-800-AHA-USA1, visit or call any of our offices around the country. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

About the American Council on Exercise

The nonprofit organization American Council on Exercise (ACE) educates, certifies and represents more than 58,000 currently certified fitness professionals, health coaches and other allied health professionals. ACE advocates for a new intersection of fitness and healthcare, bringing the highly qualified professionals ACE represents into the healthcare continuum so they can contribute to the national solution to physical inactivity and obesity. ACE is the largest certifier in its space and all four of its primary certification programs are accredited by the National Commission for Certifying Agencies (NCCA), the gold standard in the United States for accreditation of certifications that assess professional competence. ACE also plays an important public-service role, conducting and providing science-based research and resources on safe and effective physical activity and sustainable behavior change. For more information, call 800-825-3636 or visit AMERICAN COUNCIL ON EXERCISE, ACE and ACE logos are Registered Trademarks of the American Council on Exercise.

CONTACT: For AHA/ASA Public Media Inquiries: Mara Silverio,, (214) 924-3678 For ACE Public Media Inquiries: Jamie Hampton,, (858) 337-7466

Source: American Council On Exercise (ACE)