PO Box 360
Trenton, NJ 08625-0360

For Release:
September 22, 2014

Mary E. O'Dowd, M.P.H.

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Office of Communications
(609) 984-7160

VP of Health and Nutrition for South Jersey Nonprofit Named Department of Health WIC Director

A clinical dietitian with 25 years of experience managing health and nutrition programs joined the Health Department today as director of the Special Supplemental Women, Infant and Children  Program (WIC), Health Commissioner Mary E. O'Dowd announced.

Electra Moses joins the Department after 14 years at Tri-County Community Action Agency Inc. in Bridgeton, which serves more than 50,000 South Jersey residents through programs such as Alzheimer's Adult Day Care, Early Learning Centers, Emergency Assistance Food Pantry, Family Success Centers, the Greater Bridgeton Area Transit Program, Head Start, Housing Development, Literacy Volunteers, Mill Creek Urban Farm/Gleaning Program, Tooth Mobile, Weatherization and WIC.

For the past nine years as vice president of health and nutrition at Tri-County, Moses managed seven WIC agencies serving 23,000 clients in Camden, Cape May, Cumberland and Salem and supervised food and nutrition programs for child care centers and Head Start programs, the Cumberland County Office on Aging and Head Start programs in six counties. She also serves on the Dietetic Advisory Boards for Inspira Medical Center and Camden County College and served on the NJ WIC Dietetic Advisory Board.

 "WIC is near and dear to my heart. It promotes good nutrition and gives children a healthy start," said Moses.

WIC provides nutritious foods to more than 170,000 pregnant and breastfeeding women, infants and children up to age five who meet the income guidelines for WIC. Families receive monthly vouchers that can be redeemed in more than 900 grocery stores statewide for healthy foods including milk, cheese, eggs, cereal, 100% juice, fruit and vegetables. WIC is federally funded but state operated.

The Departments of Health and Agriculture celebrated the 40th anniversary of WIC this summer with a public awareness campaign promoting WIC benefits such as vouchers for fresh produce at farmers' markets and nutrition and breastfeeding classes. As part of the campaign, advertisements were placed on NJ Transit buses and trains and Commissioner O'Dowd taped a video about WIC that was distributed to health care providers and other public agencies. The Commissioner also asked several Departments serving children and families to consider opportunities to cross-promote WIC among the grantees and clients they serve.

"The Department is fortunate to have a WIC director with Ms. Moses's management experience, expertise as a nutritionist and knowledge of New Jersey's WIC program," said Commissioner O'Dowd. "Her challenge is to work with all of the WIC agencies around the state to raise awareness of the program and hopefully enroll many of the 40,000 women and children who are eligible for WIC, but don't realize they qualify."

Ms. Moses received a bachelor of science with an emphasis in dietetics from Andrews University in Michigan and a Master's of Science in Clinical Nutrition from the former University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey, now Rutgers University. She also received a certificate as a Community Action Professional and completed the Dale Carnegie Leadership Training for Managers. She is a native of Trinidad and Tobago and now resides in Williamstown.

Moses replaces the previous director Mary Mickels, who retired earlier this year.

For more information about the New Jersey WIC program, please visit http://www.state.nj.us/health/fhs/wic/wic_camp.shtml

Last Reviewed: 9/22/2014