IA SOPHE Board of Officers

Jess Wiedenhoff

Advocacy Committee Chair

Jess is a Certified Health Education Specialist (CHES) with a Bachelor of Science degree in Kinesiology & Health from Iowa State University, and is currently employed in rural Iowa as a Community Health Specialist with a focus on public health literacy and positive environment structure. She has previous experience working in physical education, health education, employee wellness, health coaching, advocacy, and health care.

Jess is currently a member of several coalitions working together to promote healthy behaviors and address the needs of the community. Her areas of interest are health promotion, program planning and evaluation, and data analysis.

Membership Chair


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Haley Graves


Haley is from Waterloo, Iowa.  She is currently a sophomore at the University of Iowa majoring in Accounting and minoring in Spanish.  She currently works at the University of Iowa Billing Office as a Treasury Support Student. She has always been interested in public health and wishes to do more for the Iowa City and Waterloo Communities. In her free time, she likes running, exercising, and exploring Iowa City.


Erica Thomas


Erica currently resides in Davenport, Iowa. She is an Assistant Professor at St. Ambrose University in the Department of Kinesiology and the Master of Public Health program. After starting at a community college with intentions of pursuing a 2-year certificate, she quickly realized she had found a passion for education and research. After receiving a bachelor’s degree in Biology and a master’s degree in Biomedical Sciences at Des Moines University, Erica began a clinical teaching position at St. Ambrose which confirmed and grew this passion. She recently completed her terminal degree in Health Promotion and Health Education from A.T. Still University. Her research interests focus on whole-person wellness in the college student population and wellness curriculum in higher education. Erica also is active in the Quad Cities community, which includes serving on the Board of Directors for the Vera French Community Mental Health Center.   


Kaci Ginn

National Delegate 

Kaci is a second-year student at the University of Iowa studying Public Health. At the University of Iowa, Kaci is involved with the Health Equity Advancement Lab as well as the Undergraduate Public Health Organization.  Kaci is currently employed at the Institute for Public Health Practice as a Student Research Assistant. She has also worked as an intern for Jones County Public Health in Anamosa, IA. Additionally, Kaci spent time in Peru with the World Food Prize Foundation as a Borlaug-Ruan International Intern where she studied the native population and the health impacts of their nutritional habits. Through these experiences, she has worked with social media as a tool in public health communications, outreach in rural communities, and data collection. Kaci’s interests include improving health literacy in rural populations, nutrition, and maternal and child health.

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Amberly Solorzano, MPH 


Amberly recently graduated in December from the St. Ambrose University Master of Public Health Program. For her final project and paper, she worked with The Beautifull Project to investigate the BMI on its effectiveness across populations to assess body fat and health in the clinical setting. She is continuing work on these projects which include a podcast and literature review paper that she is planning on publishing. The podcast combines the literature with personal experiences of people impacted by the use of BMI in the clinical setting and health professional’s input. The podcast will explore how the use of the BMI supports a weight centered paradigm, affects vulnerable populations such as marginalized ethnic/racial groups and children, and impacts quality of health care that is received. The literature review paper lays out the history of BMI, the effectiveness of BMI across populations to assess body fat and health and how we can move away from its use. Amberly also has 3 years of experience in the K-12 school setting as an English as a foreign language teacher in Ecuador (1 year) and a substitute teacher (2 years). Currently she is substituting for the Fennimore, WI school district while searching for jobs and continuing her projects from grad school.

Continuing Education Chair


Chair IASOPHE’s Continuing Education Committee.
B. Represent IASOPHE on national SOPHE Continuing Education and/or Professional
Development conference calls.
C. Share chapter continuing education events to chapter membership and national SOPHE.
D. Develop a strategic plan for the continuing education committee for the upcoming year.
E. Collaborate with other organizations to provide CHES/MCHES credits.

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Sierra Kelman

Student Representative

Sierra is a sophomore at the University of Iowa and is currently a Public Health Interest Major. She has plans to advance into the College of Public Health and continue her education on the Healthcare Administration path. She is from Danville, Iowa and enjoys visiting home and spending time with family, friends, and her 10 month old Great Dane. She has volunteered for many years with the Alzheimer’s Association where she has used her organizational and leadership skills to advance their mission and vision. With ample amounts of experience regarding student involvement, social media, and healthcare education.