Dogwood Health Trust will host a community meeting at Southwestern Community College’s Burrell Building at 10 a.m. Thursday, Oct. 10. A livestream of this meeting will be available at

The event is one of a series of such meetings being held throughout the area.

During the sessions, national public health experts take part in a panel discussion highlighting the various factors that influence health and well-being and discuss possible ways to address these issues throughout the region.

“These community meetings will help us better understand the unique health needs of the nearly one million Western North Carolinians we serve and hear expert perspectives that will help collectively determine how to best address some of our region’s most pressing health issues,” said Janice Brumit, chair of the Dogwood Health Trust Board of Directors.

The meetings, which are open to the public, will also be the region’s introduction to the Trust’s new CEO, Antony Chiang, who will serve as a panelist prior to formally assuming his new role in November.

Additional speakers include:

Rebecca Onie – a member of the National Academy of Medicine and an Aspen Institute Health Innovator.

Rocco Perla – former director of the CMS Innovation Center, where he established the national learning system to test new delivery and payment models through the Affordable Care Act.

Dr. Betsey Tilson – chief medical officer of the N.C. Department of Health and Human Services. As state health director, Tilson promotes public health and prevention activities throughout the state.

“Our vision is to measurably transform the health of our region, starting with an understanding of the health equity needs and health disparities of our communities,” Chiang said. “That’s why we are so incredibly grateful for these meetings, which will be a meaningful step to learn, and to hopefully begin to build deep relationships with partners.”

While the meeting is open to the public, space is limited. To register and reserve seating, visit