A Fond Farewell

We are very sad to be saying goodbye to our friend and fellow prevention coordinator, Jarod Ormsby, who is leaving us for medical school very soon. Jarod has been with ASAP since the summer of 2022, overseeing ASAP’s Youth Ambassador Coalition and conducting anti-vaping seminars in Anderson County’s public schools. Everyone who has worked with him appreciates Jarod’s hard work and his dedicated service to the community. We wish him all the good fortune in the world, and we are going to miss him. Good luck, Jarod! 

Staff Spotlight: Sara Bean

While we here at ASAP are all still sad about losing Jarod, we are also so happy to welcome his successor and ASAP’s newest Prevention Coordinator, Sara Bean! 

Sara has only just started working with us, but it feels like she has already become an indispensable member of the ASAP team. 

Sara is a native of Clinton, Tennessee (which we like very much!) and a graduate of Lincoln Memorial University. She continued her education at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville obtaining a Master’s in Public Health with a concentration in Community Health Education and a minor in Epidemiology. 

During her master’s, Sara worked with Project NOW (Nurturing Options for Women) which helped to reduce stigma regarding substance use and neonatal opioid withdrawal syndrome in rural East Tennessee communities. The problem of stigma is huge, a persistent and aggravating problem that makes a whole host of contingent issues much harder to solve, and ASAP is excited to work on stigma alongside Sara.

But we don’t want simply to tell you about Sara. We want to allow Sara to tell you, Anderson County, about herself. Therefore, we asked her a series of hard-hitting questions to get at the very core of her being. Here’s what we found out:


Question: What’s your favorite color, Sara? 

Answer: My favorite color is pastel pink. 


Q: What interests you most on an intellectual level?

A: Social Determinants of Health (SDoH), and how they affect almost every aspect of society. SDoH piqued my interest in grad school and I was able to focus most of my research around the concept. I still give presentations on SDoH to college students, healthcare providers, and school nurses. I also developed a board game about SDoH with my mentor, to help people understand real-life experiences and how they can impact not only our health but every other facet of our lives as well. 


Q: What are your long-term, 25-year goals, objectives, or ambitions?

A: My long-term goal, realistically, is to be happy (cliché, I know). My life and career have taken so many turns that now, I think, the overarching goal is to create meaning, change, and happiness in my life. Likewise, if I can make a real, lasting difference in one person’s life, then I think I will have lived my own life to the fullest. 

My ambition, on the other hand, might be to get a Ph.D. so that I can conduct SDoH research full-time. I’m especially interested in how SDoH intersects with substance use in rural areas. Also, my husband and I want to rescue as many dogs as Life allows and help to effect change in the animal shelter community, especially in Anderson County. Rescue work is very important to us. We have three dogs of our own and we work closely with a particular rescue in Anderson County.  


Q: What is the most interesting place you’ve visited?

A: My husband and I went to Greece for our honeymoon. Athens, Santorini, and Crete! It was incredible and I would love to live in the Mediterranean one day!


Q: What accomplishment makes you most proud of yourself?

A: I would say the work that I have done up to this point. As I kind of said above, I think my purpose on this Earth is to help people because that’s what I enjoy, to my core. Knowing that I have helped to expand education, helped individuals, and created meaningful change makes me feel proud of my purpose. I am also really proud to be a first-generation graduate student in my family!


Q: Okay, now for the hard stuff. What was your first pet (if you had one. Our parents never let my sister and me have a pet)?

A: I guess I will go with the first pet that my husband and I got, Prince. I’ve owned dogs my whole life, but if you ask anyone, Prince is my first-born. He is an 8, almost 9-year-old German shepherd (see the attached photo). He loves the snow, his sisters, Sadie and Sophie, and his momma. 


Q: What is your favorite animal and why?

A: My favorite animal is a red panda. I don’t know if I have a particular reason why, besides that I love them and they’re pretty darn cute. It’s a plus since the Knoxville Zoo has one of the best conservation programs for red pandas in the world! 


Q: Do you have a favorite film (or other work of art), and if so, why is it your favorite?

A: I do have a favorite film, but you can’t laugh. It’s Ratatouille. I adore that movie, it has been my favorite since I was a child, and I don’t think that will change anytime soon. 


So, if anyone has the good fortune to meet Sara when she’s out in the community, congratulate her on her new gig, ask her about red pandas, if she saw the Parthenon in Athens, or just say hi! 

Be safe and be well, Anderson County!

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