New Jersey Department of Health

PO Box 360
Trenton, NJ 08625-0360

For Release:
Thursday, April 28, 2016

Cathleen D. Bennett
Acting Commissioner

For Further Information Contact:
Office of Communications
(609) 984-7160

Media Advisory: Acting Health Commissioner to Attend Minority Health Month Event Highlighting African-American Brain Health Initiative at Rutgers University-Newark

Concluding the month-long celebration of Minority and Multicultural Health Month, Acting Health Commissioner Cathleen Bennett will visit the Rutgers University-Newark campus tomorrow, April 29, to learn about the progress of its African-American Brain Health Initiative.

African American seniors statistically are at greater risk for Alzheimer’s disease due to environmental, lifestyle and behavioral factors. Neuroscientist Mark Gluck of Rutgers University-Newark (RU-N) is leading a team that will use a five-year, $1 million grant from the New Jersey Department of Health – obtained through a competition among states for funding from the federal Department of Health and Human Services – to teach residents how to protect their brains through exercise. The goal is to demonstrate how this form of exercise improves memory and cognitive ability, reducing risk for Alzheimer’s disease.

“Brain health is a critical issue among the African-American community, and I appreciate Rutgers University-Newark’s leadership and engagement with the community on this topic,” Acting Commissioner Bennett said. “To address disparities, the Department is continuously working with community and faith-based organizations who know the most effective interventions for their communities.”

In collaboration with local community organizations, Rutgers University – Newark develops and delivers educational and memory fitness programs to promote memory health, cognitive vitality, and a better understanding of Alzheimer’s disease among seniors in Greater Newark.

Gluck and RU-N Assistant Chancellor for University-Community Partnerships Diane Hill will present Acting Commissioner Bennett with an award for improving the health of the greater Newark community. Acting Commissioner Bennett will also deliver remarks about how the state is working to reduce disparities and strengthen population health. 


  • New Jersey Acting Health Commissioner Cathleen Bennett
  • M. Carolyn Daniels, Executive Director of the Office of Minority and Multicultural Health of the New Jersey Department of Health
  • Mark Gluck, Professor of Neuroscience at the Center for Molecular and Behavioral Science at RU-N
  • Diane Hill, Assistant Chancellor for University-Community Partnerships at RU-N


Friday, April 29, 2016, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.


Rutgers University – Newark

Paul Robeson Campus Center — Multipurpose Room 231-233

350 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd.

Newark, NJ 07102


Peter Englot


Phone: 973-353-5541

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