ENTRY FROM: The Top 100 Health Promotion Professionals

Nominee: Kimberly Sandmaier

Promotion, Passion, and Perseverance for a Healthy School Environment

Kimberly Sandmaier brings more than 15 years of experience in worksite wellness to her role as Wellness Coordinator for The School District of Palm Beach County, FL. The School District is the eleventh largest in the nation and the fifth largest in the state of Florida with 185 schools, serving more than 177,000 students and nearly 21,000 employees. Through her work in Risk & Benefits Management she has been able to create a healthy environment by integrating financial incentives, surcharges, and engaging challenges related to health behaviors that motivate staff to become more engaged in their personal health and wellness while reducing healthcare costs. She is also a dedicated wife, mother of three and active community member who has a passion for helping others live a healthy lifestyle.

Professional Development:


•           BS in Community Health from Ohio University

•           M.Ed in Health Promotion & Exercise Science from the University of Cincinnati

Current Certifications:

•           Master Certified Health Education Specialist

•           Certified Worksite Wellness Program Manager

•           CDC Diabetes Lifestyle Coach

•           WELCOA Certified and Faculty Status

All of her certifications offer great insight into workplace wellness and are excellent at continuing knowledge of wellness and offering inspiration for best practices.

With an early interest in a career of medicine she began focusing on healthcare prevention. She knew it was her passion to help others to see the value in adopting a healthy lifestyle. Her current role allows her to encourage others to enjoy positive changes towards better health to feel their best.

Recent National Awards:

•           UnitedHealthcare Well Deserved Award for Worksite Wellness 2012 & 2013

•           State Surgeon General Employee Worksite Wellness Recognition Program 2013

•           Sunshine State School Public Relations Association Wellness Rewards Promotional Video Award and Wellness Promotion Policy Annual Report 2013

•           AHA Fit Friendly Company 2012- 2014

•           Alliance for a Healthier Generation Healthy Schools Program Ambassador (2012-2014) and Healthy School National Award Winners for 9 schools (2010-2014)

•           Florida Healthy School District, Gold level 2012 & 2014

Demonstrated Success:

Some of her recent accomplishments and contributions for Employee Wellness include the following; engaging employees through disease management programs, value based plan designs with incentives for individuals with diabetes or pre-diabetes resulting in cost savings of over $4.2 Million, wellness rewards for encouraging health actions resulting in 89% participation, premium incentives for employees with an increase in preventive care above national averages, wellness champions to drive participation and excitement in activities that have allowed employees to become more active in health and supportive of a culture of health, a 100% tobacco free environment due to lobbying the state to change the law to allow school  districts to ban smoking on their property and tobacco surcharge, healthy school environment  & wellness promotion policy changes and ongoing stress management support.

Ms. Sandmaier is most proud of her cohesive wellness teams that include a network of approximately 188 school and department wellness champions from across the School District. Wellness champions build excitement for the District wellness initiatives by volunteering to share information, engage friends and colleagues to participate in wellness programs and serve a key role as messengers and motivators for leading a healthy lifestyle. This “Train the Trainers” approach to disseminated wellness information as well as practical programs that can be implemented in the schools has greatly increased participation in wellness programs and created a workplace culture that supports a healthy lifestyle. They engage everyone in health and well-being by offering fun and engaging competitive challenges and motivation for a healthy lifestyle with programs like Apple a Day (Healthy Eating), Hold it for the Holidays (Weight Management), WonderFit (Physical Activity) and Stress Less Day.  These programs cultivate health, promote vitality, increase wellness participation, gain community support and offer new and inspiring ways to participate in the District’s Wellness Program.

In these challenging economic times, she has worked tirelessly to ensure the School District’s wellness programs are proactive. WELCOA resources have always provided motivation and inspiration to be successful. Although financial resources have continued to be reduced, her dedication, creativity and perseverance to strive to follow the WELCOA’s 7 Benchmarks have allowed her to provide a comprehensive benefits and wellness program to mitigate growing health care costs.


Kimberly’s entire career and passion for life have been centered on health and wellness. It’s offered her new insight into dimensions of wellness, inspiration to be a role model, and amazing supportive friendships. She brings great passion and energy for inspiring healthy habits by her every day actions.

She prides herself on her ability to build effective relationships and bring together multiple organizations for a common cause. Through her leadership and support the School District’s award winning programs have improved the health of the population and have been evident in the financial impact to control spiraling healthcare costs with no medical premium increases the past two years.

Kimberly encourages others to work towards success on several levels - exploring a combination of factors which must be part of a healthy lifestyle. It’s best to assess your needs and develop an action plan that supports incremental changes, gain leadership support and work as a team step by step to reverse the trends.


As a trailblazer in school wellness, Kimberly is committed to being an innovator in her field.  She consistently finds ways to implement program and policy changes that support good health. She was integral in Palm Beach County approaching the Attorney General and lobbied to make schools 100% tobacco free, which is now a district policy. She uses social media to bring wellness to the masses via the Apple a Day Campaign and WonderFit Campaign as an opportunity to engage the whole population in wellness tools and resources.  She uses creative health messages and visuals to share health education and support a culture of wellness. She partnered with the unions to develop a health rewards with outcomes program as well as create a Workplace Stress Committee to find practical solutions and strategies to mitigate stress.  Kimberly continues to grow the Wellness Champion network and offers each a $500 annual incentive for completing wellness programs.

Compelling Vision:

Kimberly believes that the health promotion industry has the power to shape the lifelong health and well-being of the community. Many diseases and injuries are preventable. She believes that we need to empower individuals to take personal responsibility for their health by encouraging small changes and better choices. She strives to create a cultural shift toward health, well-being and self-accountability while providing fun ways to manage health and pursue healthy eating, physical activity and weight management. Her focus will be to continue using data to drive efforts to improve health and work collaboratively with dedicated individuals to develop comprehensive solutions. Her ultimate vision is to better herself and her programs every year in order to best serve the community and allow individuals to enjoy a quality of life that moves health and wellness from the ordinary to the extraordinary.


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Your hard work , dedication to your profession , and your caring and compassion to make a difference in peoples lives, is appreciated by everyone whose life has been extended and made healthier. You have been the difference in my life. CONGRADULATIONS.

Scott I. on 2/01/2015

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