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Welcome Address

About the Session:

Welcome Address

Welcome remarks from the organizers of the Global Child Nutrition Forum.

The Speakers:

  • Dr. Ronald Kleinman, President, Global Child Nutrition Foundation (GCNF)
  • Arlene Mitchell, Executive Director, Global Child Nutrition Foundation (GCNF)
  • Ryan Kennedy, Program Officer, Global Child Nutrition Foundation (GCNF)

About the Speakers

kleinman_ronald head shot 2016

Dr. Ronald Kleinman

Board President
Global Child Nutrition Foundation

Ronald E. Kleinman, MD is Physician in Chief of the Massachusetts General Hospital for Children, Chair of the Department of Pediatrics at Massachusetts General Hospital, and the Charles Wilder Professor of Pediatrics at Harvard Medical School. Dr. Kleinman’s major areas of research interest include gastrointestinal immunology, nutrition support of infants and children, and nutrition and public health policy. Dr. Kleinman’s professional affiliations include the American Gastroenterological Association, American Association for the Study of Liver Disease (AASLD), North American Society for Pediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition (NASPGHAN), and American Pediatric Society/Society for Pediatric Research. He is the author of more than 150 peer-reviewed publications, chapters, monographs and 4 textbooks. Dr. Kleinman was a founder and past president of the International Society of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity. He has been a member of the Medical Advisory Group on Diet and Nutrition Guidelines in Cancer for the American Cancer Society, the National Cholesterol Advisory Committee of the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, a member of the Institute of Medicine committees on Standards for School Meals and Obesity Prevention for young Children, member of the Board of Directors for the David Ortiz Childrens’ Fund, the Global Child Nutrition Foundation, the ILSI Research Foundation, the U.S. Fund for UNICEF New England Regional Board, the Massachusetts General Hospital Physician Organization and Chair of the Board for Project Bread. He was the Chair of the NIH/NICHD Workshop Planning Committee for the Dietary Guidelines: Birth to 24 Months. Dr. Kleinman is a member of the External Advisory Board (EAB) for the Obesity Research Center at Harvard Medical School. Dr. Kleinman served as Chair of the Committee on Nutrition for the American Academy of Pediatrics and is the author of the fourth, fifth, sixth and seventh editions of the Academy’s textbook, Pediatric Nutrition, and served as the Editor-in-Chief for Current Pediatrics Reports.


Arlene Mitchell

Executive Director
Global Child Nutrition Foundation

Arlene Mitchell is the Executive Director of the Global Child Nutrition Foundation (GCNF), working with partners to ensure that schoolchildren around the world have nutritious, locally-sourced meals. Among her many activities, Arlene leads GCNF’s Global Survey of School Meal Programs©. Arlene worked in the Agricultural Development program at the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (2008-2013) and in the United Nations World Food Programme (1997-2007). She led WFP’s school feeding program from 2000 to 2005. Arlene also worked for U.S. Department of agriculture, as a volunteer and as a staff member of the U.S. Peace Corps, ran a restaurant, and managed a small snack machine company. She is a graduate of Michigan State University


Ryan Headshot

Ryan Kennedy

Program Officer
Global Child Nutrition Foundation

Ryan Kennedy has worked for GCNF since March 2019. Ryan is focused on managing and developing GCNF’s programs and event management including GCNF’s annual Global Child Nutrition Forum, the annual Spring Seminar, regional Learning Exchanges, private sector engagement, and supporting GCNF’s programmatic contract work as needed. Additionally, he supports data and information management for GCNF’s Global Survey of School Meal Programs and research on specific topics critical to school meal programs. Prior to GCNF, Ryan served in the Peace Corps in Burkina Faso as an education volunteer with a focus on Math & Science and rural food security and later directed the department for Volunteer Engagement at Mary’s Place, the largest provider of social services to families in the Seattle area. Ryan is from Seattle, WA and received his Bachelor’s degree in Economics with a focus on Pre-Medical studies.


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