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Natural Awakenings Naples and Fort Myers

Who’s a Natural Awakenings Reader?: Meet Deborah Chesna

Life’s mission: Embrace my journey of holistic health with love and respect for others, while creating awareness that healthy lifestyle choices can prevent disease and preserve the environment. Sharing this knowledge with others is important to me as we all work together to find positive solutions for real world problems.

Work: As the Healthy Communities Program consultant at the Florida Department of Health, in Collier County, I continue to advocate for including such things as a more active transportation system into planning the design of our communities. By promoting a more comprehensive transportation system, we can create a safer environment for pedestrians and cyclists.

Proudest achievements: Community involvement on environmental councils to achieve population-based solutions by passing legislation for the five-cent return on bottles and cans, which worked to clean up the environment.

Expectations for the future: Restoring a more holistic approach to sustainable living by bringing communities together in a cohesive neighborly environment. This gives residents an opportunity to care about each other, actively conserve resources and protect our wildlife and environment.

Favorite App: Raindar. I love watching Florida weather patterns.

Favorite website:

Local causes supported: Conservancy of Southwest Florida, United Way, St. Matthews House, Gulf Coast Runners, Southwest Florida Urban Land Institute, Naples Velo, Naples Pathways Coalition.

Favorite thing about Natural Awakenings: The magazine enforces a holistic approach to health. Reading articles and learning new avenues gives me more choices for optimal health, further research and becoming more informed.

Most frequented healthy food restaurant: Seasons 52 and The Local.

How you invest in your community: Volunteering my time and participating in not-for-profit organizations that make a difference in the community.

Favorite quote:  “Life can be understood only looking behind, but can be lived only looking ahead.” ~ Soren Kierkegaard.

What you are doing to be the change you want to see in the world:  Leading by example, with health at the forefront of my decisions for humanity and the planet. Eat unprocessed foods, make extra efforts to always recycle, reuse whenever possible, stay disposable-free to eliminate waste and avoid buying things that will be thrown into the landfill.

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