Concerned citizen by day, blogging ninja by night

Patrick here, guest blogging ninja, here at the 2012 LGBTQ Health Equity Summit in newly overcast Kansas City, Missouri.

My situation is kind of unique, as I am here technically as a concerned citizen. I started in tobacco control when I was quite young, coming up through the New York State Reality Check program. After joining on to the youth board of directors, I was given the opportunity to work with Legacy as a member of the Speakers Bureau and then as a member of the Youth Activism Council. When I aged out of those programs, I went on to work as a consultant for the state of Montana reACT program, providing training and assistance for them for the better part of 6 years.  I have always found a way to stay involved in the tobacco control community, because that is what I was passionate about.

When Montana lost funding and went through a pretty major reorganization, I sort of thought that my tobacco control era was coming to an end. It was unsettling to think that I wouldn’t be doing what I have spent so many years enjoying, and that I wouldn’t ’be able to share my experiences and learn from others in such a dynamic community.

That’s when, thankfully, I checked my inbox. I saw an email come through regarding scholarships to attend the Health Equity Summit, and I knew instantly that I would apply. I truly appreciate being selected as a scholarship recipient. It was an amazing experience I won’t soon forget. Thank you to all the sponsors of the 2012 scholarship recipients- this would truly not have been possible for so many to attend without your support.

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