Former NYC Health Commissioner Tom Farley Joins with Former Beverage Company Executive and Other Marketing Experts in National Effort to Combat Chronic Disease


New York, NY— Former New York City Health Commissioner Dr. Tom Farley has been named President and CEO of the Public Good Projects, an organization focused on transforming health in America through its signature campaign, A Healthy America, which it co-founded with the Institute of Medicine (IOM). The campaign brings Farley together with Phil Marineau, former President and CEO of Pepsi-Cola North America and Levi Strauss & Co., as well as other experts in media and marketing, to create a continuous and enduring supply of innovative media that markets health to all Americans.

Farley served as Commissioner of Health for New York City under Mayor Michael Bloomberg from 2009 to 2013, during which the City took an assertive approach to public health, including making parks and beaches smoke-free and raising the legal age of sales of tobacco from 18 to 21.  Mayor Bloomberg and Dr. Farley also addressed the public health crisis of obesity by proposing to limit the size of containers of sugary drinks sold in restaurants to 16 ounces and by warning New Yorkers about sugary drinks through eye-catching advertising campaigns. 

“Today, Americans are suffering needlessly from chronic diseases and dying before their time. These diseases are expensive to treat, but they are preventable,” said Dr. Tom Farley, CEO of the Public Good Projects. “Messages in the mass media can help take on these problems by changing the culture around health in this country. But to do that, the campaigns must be bold and unprecedented. I look forward to working with the best talent in America to develop messages that will change minds, habits, and policies."

The Public Good Projects is a nonprofit media organization founded by former HBO documentary producer John Hoffman, who created AddictionThe Alzheimer’s Project, and The Weight of the Nation. The Board of Directors of the organization includes a wide range of experts in health, media and marketing – people behind brands that every American knows, like Pepsi, Levis, and Sesame Street.  Aside from Marineau, among them are Vice Chair Ruth Wooden, the former President of the Advertising Council, and Todd Putman, formerly of the Coca-Cola Company and now of Bolthouse Farms, which sells fresh vegetables. 

The IOM is the primary scientific advisor for A Healthy America. Established in 1970, it is the health arm of the National Academy of Sciences and the world's most respected independent voice on health.

A Healthy America will forge partnerships with academic experts, government, corporations, foundations, philanthropists, media companies, health care leaders, and others seeking to change the direction of health in the United States. The campaign will work initially in pilot markets across the country in coordination with community-led efforts to promote health and prevent disease. 

“We must create a culture where people are more educated about their health, are taking better care of themselves, and are demanding healthier options,” said Public Good Projects Board Chair Phil Marineau. “If we are going to bend the curve on chronic disease, we must deploy the full power of the modern media to reach people in unprecedented ways and connect with communities across the country.”

Communications from A Healthy America will be rigorously based on science and free of commercial bias. These messages will take on the nation’s biggest health problems, speaking with clarity about their causes and solutions. 

"The Institute of Medicine looks forward to building upon our collaboration with The Public Good Projects and helping propel the mission of A Healthy America through scientific counsel," said Dr. Victor Dzau, President of the Institute of Medicine. "I am pleased that Tom Farley can bring his expertise to expand the vision of A Healthy America."

“After 17 years at HBO, I founded The Public Good Projects with the goal of leveraging the full power of the media to improve the health of the nation,” said John Hoffman, founding CEO and board member of The Public Good Projects, who is now Executive Vice President of Documentaries at the Discovery Channel. “With Tom Farley's arrival, that dream has been accelerated to warp speed—we now have a leader with unparalleled experience using the media to improve public health.”

The full Board of the Public Good Projects is:

Chair Phil Marineau, former President and CEO, Levi Strauss & Co. and Pepsi-Cola North America;
Vice-Chair Ruth Wooden, former President of the Advertising Council and Public Agenda;
John Hoffman, Founder of the Public Good Projects and Executive Vice President of Documentaries, Discovery Channel;
Yvette Alberdingk Thijm, Executive Director of;
Jon Bardin, Director, Documentaries and Specials, Discovery Channel, Co-founder of the Public Good Projects;
David BrittMPA retired President-CEO of the Sesame Workshop;
Victor Capoccia, PHD, Senior Scientist at the University of Wisconsin Center for Health Enhancement Systems Studies;
Susan Combs, JD, former Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts; 
Alexandra Moss, Director, Documentaries and Specials, Discovery Channel; Co-founder of the Public Good Projects;
Todd Putman, Chief Commercial Officer, Bolthouse Farms (Campbell Soup Company) and formerly with Procter and Gamble, The Walt Disney Company, and the Coca-Cola Company;
Andrea L. Taylor, former Director of Citizenship & Public Affairs in North America, Microsoft;
Olivia Tournay FlattoPhD Executive Director, Pershing Square Sohn Cancer Research Alliance; and
Ellen WartellaPhD Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al-Thani Professor of Communication, Northwestern University.

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