Established in 2008, the Community Council held the first of 9 conversations to identify community issues of priority at Lawson State Community College. By 2010, in collaboration with the McWane Science Center, the OGC planned the first yearlong Health Change in Your Community Challenge (HC3) program, to engage community members--and youth in particular--about how to make healthy eating and exercise choices. The program hosted 119 children and 47 adults, representing 4 community group.

In 2011 the OGC conducted a series of social network analyses, in which OGC members were asked to complete a survey about their communication relationship with other OGC members, and explain how that pattern changed over the course of their involvement in OGC. Increased links were shown between all members from pre- to post-involvement.

The HC3 program continued in 2012, when IRB approval to take pre-and post-program body measurements of participants provided data, the results of which were presented at the American Public Health Association annual meeting that year. Also in 2012, OGC launched the Community Health Innovation Awards (CHIA) as an annual grant competition for local community organizations. 

In 2013 the OGC Council began meeting with the UAB Center for the Study of Community Health's Jefferson County Community Participation Board. The idea to collaborate on an event to benefit both academic and community partners resulted in the inaugural Community Engagement Institute.

From 2013 to the present, OGC has focused on developing CHIA and CEI with the goals of building trust and exploring novel ways for community members to participate as partners in biomedical research. OGC has also broadened our network of academic, business, and community-based organization partners, both within the Birmingham area and across the CCTS Partner Network region (AL, LA, MS).

Meet our Council Members