WeConservePA and the programming committee for the 2023 Pennsylvania Greenways & Trails Summit (September 17-19, Scranton) announced their selection for keynote speaker: John Simmerman of Active Towns.

About John Simmerman, MS

John Simmerman, MS

John Simmerman is a veteran public health and health promotion professional with over 30 years of experience helping communities create more people-oriented places and a “Culture of Activity” through proven “All Ages & Abilities” design concepts and evidence-based behavior change initiatives.

Education: His formal training began at the University of Southern California (USC) in human physiology, receiving a bachelor’s degree in Exercise Science in 1988, and then continued on at the University of Michigan with studies in schools of public health, business (the MBA program), and kinesiology and received a Master’s of Science degree in 1990.

Career: For the first half of his career, he was focused on healthcare cost containment strategies and health promotion efforts, primarily working with larger self-insured corporations such as IBM, Motorola, and Seagate Technologies. He then shifted his focus to our built environment and community design, and how well it either supports or inhibits healthy and active living. After several years of serving on the boards of various non-profit organizations striving to create more people-oriented places, he launched his own 501(c)(3) non-profit, Advocates for Healthy Communities, Inc., as a global initiative to create awareness in 2011.

Media & Consulting: Simmerman’s main focus now, however, is to directly inspire others by profiling the people, places, and programs making a difference globally in the effort to create what he refers to as a culture of activity for all ages and abilities through his multi-platform media efforts, which includes:

About Active Towns

Active Towns has become the central focus of Simmerman’s career work, helping to inform and inspire a movement towards active, engaged, connected, healthy communities. In addition to their YouTube channel and podcast, Active Towns engages in an array of additional work for communities looking to join the active towns movement, including:

  • Opportunity assessments;
  • Study tours;
  • Project/program design and support;
  • Workshops, seminars, and trainings;
  • and more.