I
~ Professional Affiliations ~


Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics
Food and Culinary Professionals DPG, Past Supermarket Retail Sub-Group Chair

 

Progressive Grocer Retail Dietitian Symposium Advisor & Event Emcee

Food Marketing Institute, Consumer Affairs Committee Past Chair;  Member & Advisor

 

Food Marketing Institute Health and Wellness Advisory Council Member &
Advisor

 

Retail Dietitian Business Alliance Member and Contributing Author

 

Egg Nutrition Center Health Professional Advisor
 

Nutrition 411 Editorial Board Member

Diabetes Influencers Featured Influencer

 

Topco Dietitian Advisory Committee Founding Member
 

Cooperative Extension Advisory Board, Past President
 

Pennsylvania Dietetic Association, Public Relations: Past Chair


Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Member
 

 

I

~ Honors and Awards ~
 

2018 Food and Culinary Professionals DPG Communications and Education Award
 

2015 Academy of Nutrition & Dietetics Excellence in Practice Award Nominee
 

2014 Food Marketing Institute Gold Plate Award: Weis Healthy Bites’ positive impact on family meals

2013, 2014 American Heart Association Gold Fit Friendly Worksite Award: Weis Balance™

2009 Woman of Influence in the Food Industry: Griffin Report

2009 Top Women in Grocery: Rising Star; Progressive Grocer

USA Rice Federation ‘Ricessionista’ and 2008 Retail Partner of Year


Excellence in Broadcasting Award; Best Public Service Campaign; Million Pound Meltdown 2006

 

 

 

Freelance columnist

Co-Author

Co-Author & Presenter; Published May 2015

Interim Editor; Author  Nov 2014-May 2015

     Editorial Board Member                                                Product Reviews  Writer & Coordinator           

Health Professional Advisor

Nutrition Advisory Board Member

   Featured Diabetes Influencer

Bio
& Experience

 

 

Karen believes in the healthy enjoyment of food! As a trusted nutrition expert, she delivers credible advice via radio, television, newsprint and electronic media in support of her mission to help consumers better understand the connection between food, nutrition and health. As founder and president of Nutrition Connections LLC, Karen provides food and nutrition communications services to the food industry nationwide.

While serving as Supermarket / Retail Subgroup Chair within the Food and Culinary Professionals (FCP) Dietetic Practice Group of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, Karen helped develop and co-author Supermarket Business and Industry Skills to Thrive Certificate of Training program published by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.

 

Karen is recognized widely as "The Weis Dietitian" for her long-standing role as Director of Lifestyle Initiatives for Weis Markets Inc., a Pennsylvania-based grocery store chain. She was responsible for cause marketing and leading strategic planning for health & wellness initiatives geared to both customers and associates. Prior,  Karen was Senior Marketing Manager at a National Sales & Marketing fim, where she worked to establish retail dietitian programs at Big Y, Pathmark, Shaw's, Farm Fresh, Acme Markets and Penn Traffic.

Notable contributions include launching  Weis Healthy Bites™ magazine, serving as its Editor for volumes 1--69, and creating Weis Mystery Tours™, a custom field trip program that helps combat childhood obesity through nutrition education, reaching more than 15,000 children. Karen also launched Weis BALANCE™ comprehensive employee wellness program, Weis Step Up
Challenge™ physical activity campaign and Weis Wellness Workouts. Karen launched the Weis Healthy Heart annual television media campaign to educate viewers in New York's Southern Tier about heart health.  Karen has appeared on both radio and television, completing more than 1000 nutrition media segments. Branching into social media, Karen also produced a series of more than 100 instructional videos featuring healthful recipes and nutrition guidance.

 

As a sought-after speaker, Karen has given numerous presentations at professional conferences including Institute of Food Technologists Annual Meeting and Food Expo, Progressive Grocer Retail Dietitian Symposium, Food Marketing Institute Connect, Viva Fresh Produce Expo, Oldways Leadership Symposium for Supermarket Dietitians, FMI Communications and Consumer Affairs Conference, Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Food and Nutrition Conference and Expo, Food Marketing Institute Future Connect Conference, Central Pennsylvania Dietetic Association Conference, The Susquehanna Valley Women’s Leadership Symposium and more.


Honors include receiving the Food Marketing Institute's 2014 Gold Plate Award  recognizing Weis Healthy Bites' contributions to healthful family meals, being selected as a Woman of Influence in the Food Industry  by The Griffin Report and being named one of the Top Women in Grocery  by Progressive Grocer.
 

In addition to her work in the retail sector, Karen is experienced as both a clinical and community dietitian. As a nutrition educator, she taught group classes for diabetes, conducted one-on-one counseling sessions, designed and led supermarket shopping tours, and provided community education via local radio, television, newspaper, and health-related events.
 

Karen holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Nutrition from Albright College and practices as both a nationally Registered Dietitian-Nutritionist and Pennsylvania State Licensed Dietitian-Nutritionist. She is an active member of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and the Pennsylvania Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, serving as past-PR Chair. She was a founding member of the TOPCO Dietitian Advisory Committee, past-chair and member of the Food Marketing Institute Consumer Affairs Committee and member of the Channel Marketing Committee for Produce for Better Health Foundation. She continues to serve as a founding member of the Food Marketing Institute Health and Wellness Task Force and serves on several health/nutrition-related advisory boards. Karen is the proud mother of two active children.
 

 

 

 



 

 

 

 


 

 


 

 

     ~Publications & Speaking~
 

Meat Market: Organic, Natural, Grass-Fed--What Do they Mean for the Category?

     Progressive Grocer p 22  February 2019

What Major Meat Claims Must Grocers Clarify for Their Shoppers? Progressive
     Grocer Online February 11, 2019

 

How Grocers Could Combat Barriers to Selling More Produce; Progressive Grocer
     
Magazine   p 22  September 2018

     The People Behind Beef: A Portrait of Pennsylvania Cattlemen; School Nutrition
      Association of Pennsylvania 2018 Conference; Pittsburgh, PA;
      Lead Presenter & Expert Panel Moderator;  August 1, 2018 


► 2018 Retail Dietitian's Healthy Shopper Summit;  Event Host/Emcee
      McCormick Place; Chicago, Il    June 25-27, 2018

 

Leveraging Retail Dietitian and Pharmacist Partnerships; Progressive Grocer
     Magazine   p. 24 June 2018

► Veal or No Veal?   Exploring Consumers' Food Attitudes Today
      & Ways to Boost Veal's Appeal Among Food Shoppers Tomorrow;
      King of Prussia, PA.  Presenter: Veal Summit;  April 4, 2018.

How to Meet Millennials' Growing Snacking Needs; Progressive Grocer         
      
Magazine   p. 22 April 2018.

►Future of Farming Dialog 2017>Innovating for Sustainable Agriculture;
      Food Chain Discussion Panelist; Dusseldorf, Germany; September 2017

Becoming My Own Boss--A Dietitian's Journey to Nutrition
     Entrepreneurship; Presenter; Central Pennsylvania Academy of Nutrition &
     Dietetics Conference; August 2017 

 

Egging Shoppers On: The incredible edible item is due for a protein-centric
     in-store makeoverProgressive 
 Grocer  Magazine. p. 20; August 2017

Have A Healthy Back-to-School Season: Strategies to Reach BTS Shoppers;
      Progressive  Grocer Magazine  p. 24; July 2017

 

The Tidal Wave Shift Toward Cage-Free Eggs; Nutrition Close Up. pp. 6-7 Spring
     2017

Wellness from the Deep: Seafood Can be Part of a Health DietProgressive
    Grocer
Magazine   p. 24; March 2017

Whole-Store Health Solutions; Progressive Grocer Magazine p. 22; October 2016

 

Beyond Fresh: Get Wellness-Seeking Shoppers to Look at Center Store;
     Progressive Grocer Magazine  pp. 22-24; April 2016

 

Harness the Power of Protein: This Key Wellness Trend Can Help Grocers Boost          Historically Lagging Milk Sales; Progressive Grocer Magazine p. 34; January 2016


Consumers Seek More Protein
; Nutrition Unscrambled; November 24, 2015

 

► Will Consumers Turn to Healthy Snacks? If they're tasty enough, yes. ;    
    Progressive Grocer Magazine p. 20; October 2015


►Utilizing the Influence of Retail Dietitians in Produce Marketing; New England
    Produce Council Expo; Cape Cod, Mass.  Presenter; September 18, 2015


 ►Culinary Applications in Retail Dietetics;
Tastings Newsletter; Summer 2015

​►
Healthful Harvest: Fall and Winter Eating Occasions Bring Opportunities for In-           Store Dietitians to Connect with ShoppersProgressive Grocer Magazine p. 20;            August 2015

​►Insights into the Supermarket Shopper: How-to Guide to Retail Dietitian and

    Food Company Partnerships; Institute of Food Technologists Annual Meeting
    and Food Expo; Presenter; July 13, 2015

 

Clicking with Consumers: Retail Dietitians Must Evolve to Meet the Needs of the
     Online Grocery Shopper; Progressive Grocer Magazine p. 22; June 2015

 

►Food Marketing Institute Connect; Supermarket Business and Industry Skills to
    Thrive: An Online Training Program; 
Session Moderator; June 10, 2015

 

►Progressive Grocer Retail Dietitian Symposium;  Hot Topics in Retail
    Dietetics: Panel Moderator, Session Organizer; June 9, 2015

 

►Supermarket Business and Industry Skills to Thrive in Retail Dietetcs: Certificate    of Training Program;  Co-developer; Co-author:  October 18, 2013-May 27, 2015
    Module 1-
Retail 101: Navigating the Landscape 

    Module 2-Roles and Responsibilities of the Retail Dietitian: In store, Regional
                      and Corporate; Co-Author
    Module 3- Expanding Your Reach by Developing Internal & External Partnerships 
    Module 4-The Metrics of Success: ROI (Return on Investment) and other Tools


Retail Dietitians: The Legistation on Your Plate Tastings Newsletter; Spring 2015

 

Working Solo as a Retail Dietitian RDBA Weekly; May 20, 2015
 

Tips for Effective Salary Negotiation RDBA Weekly; May 13, 2015

 

Calculating & Communicating ROI RDBA Weekly; April 22, 2015

 

Marketing: A Discussion for Retail Dietitians--Part 4: Event Marketing       
    
Strategies to Engage Consumers RDBA Weekly; April 08, 2015

 

► The Increasingly Important Role of Supermarket Dietitians; Viva Fresh Produce
     Expo Panel Presenter, Session Organizer; March 27, 2015

 

Marketing: A Discussion for Retail DietitiansPart 3: Layering Techniques &

     Co-Marketing Partnerships RDBA Weekly; March 18, 2015

 

 Marketing: A Discussion for Retail Dietitians—Part 2: Value-added Marketing
     RDBA Weekly; March 4, 2015

 

► Marketing: A Discussion for Retail Dietitians—Part 1: The 4 Ps of Marketing    
      RDBA Weekly; February 18, 2015

 

► Jewel-Osco Retail RDs Share First Merchandising Experience RDBA Weekly,
     January 14, 2015

 

Making SMART Goal Setting Work for Your Career RDBA Weekly; January 7,   
      2015

 

 The Retail Dietitian’s Map to Success in Employee Wellness RDBA Weekly;  
      January 7, 2015


Retail Dietitian Close Up: Julie McMillin, RD, LD—Learn About Julie’s Path to 
     Earning her AVP Title  RDBA Weekly; December 17, 2014
 

 

 Measuring Positive Return on Investment (ROI)  RDBA Weekly; December 10,
     2014
 

 

Member Spotlight: Francis Lenna Cooper Memorial Lecture Award Recipient  
    RDBA Weekly
; December 10, 2014

 

Balancing a Holiday Food Budget While Keeping Healthy Eating a Priority Egg
    Nutrition Center Nutrition Unscrambled; December 10, 2014
  

 

Cooking Videos - Tips to Get You Started RDBA Weekly; December 10, 2014
    Co-author

 

Talking Organic with Your Customers RDBA Weekly; December 3, 2014

 

Climbing the Retail RD Career Ladder: Are You Poised to Move Up? RDBA
     Weekly
; December 3, 2014


Consumer Interest in Food’s Journey from Farm to Fork  Food & Culinary
     Professionals Dietetic Practice Group of the Academy of Nutrition and
     Dietetics; Tastings Newsletter: Fall 2014


How Can Retail Dietitians Reach the Millennial Shopper?  RDBA Weekly;
     November 26, 2014

 

Consumers Seek More Seasonal & Local Foods—Supermarkets Deliver  
    Food & Culinary Professionals Dietetic Practice Group of the Academy of
    Nutrition and Dietetics; Tastings Newsletter: Summer 2014

 

Flavor Trends in the Kitchen Food & Culinary Professionals Dietetic Practice
    Group of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics; Tastings Newsletter: Spring
    2014

 

Working with Grocers to Reduce Dietary Sodium: Lessons Learned From the
    Broome County Sodium Reduction in Communities Pilot Project; Journal of
    Public Health Management
January/February 2014 Volume 20 - p S54-S58

 

 Supermarket Food and Nutrition Communications Food & Culinary
     Professionals Dietetic Practice Group of the Academy of Nutrition and
     Dietetics; Tastings Newsletter: Winter 2014 


Food Marketing Institute Toolkit: ‘Hiring, Leveraging and Empowering Retail
     Dietitians’ Reviewer 2013

 

A Retail RD’s Perspective on Special Dietary Trends Food & Culinary
    Professionals Dietetic Practice Group of the Academy of Nutrition and
    Dietetics; Tastings Newsletter: Fall 2013  


►Helping Combat Childhood Obesity through Weis Mystery Tours™; Oldways
     Preservation Trust Supermarket Dietitian Symposium  Presenter 2013

►Family Meals Made Easy!; Susquehanna Valley Women’s Leadership
    Symposium EmpowHER!   Presenter 2013

Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Pocket Supermarket Guide, 4th edition
    Reviewer 2012

Weis Kids Can Cook Cookbook; Editor and Publisher 2011

►Food Marketing Institute Future Connect Leadership Conference; Health and
    Nutrition Breakout Session   Co-presenter with Dr. Wendy Bazilian and
    moderated by Kevin Coupe 2009

Healthy Earth, Healthy  Eating: Connecting Sustainability with Health and
    Wellness;
American Dietetic Association National Food & Nutrition    
    Conference & Expo
  Co-presenter with Laurie Demeritt 2009

► Healthy Earth, Healthy Eating: Connecting  Sustainability with Health and
     Wellness; Central Pennsylvania Dietetic Association Conference 
     Presenter 2009

►Executive Producer and Creative Director >100 Recipe how-to videos


Weis Healthy Bites™ Magazine; Volumes 1–69; 2003 through 2014

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