2022 Annual Awards

posted on Monday, January 10, 2022


2022 Healthiest State Annual Awards finalists announced

U.S. Paralympian to speak at online awards ceremony on Feb. 17

The Healthiest State Initiative has announced the finalists for the 2022 Healthiest State Annual Awards. Individuals, communities, K-12 schools, early care providers, out-of-school programs, health care providers and workplaces will be recognized for their efforts to improve the physical, social and emotional well-being of Iowans in an online ceremony Feb. 17.

The finalists in the 10 categories include:

Healthy HometownSM Powered by Wellmark Community Award
  • Dallas Center
  • Guttenberg
  • Harlan
  • Iowa Great Lakes Region
  • Manning
  • New Hampton
  • Stanton
  • Waterloo

Individual, presented by Malvern Bank
  • Cory Arensdorf, Waterloo Schools
  • Daira Driftmier, Hy-Vee KidsFit
  • Jordan McCormick, Girls on the Run volunteer

Health Care, presented by the Iowa Medical Society
  • Cass Health (Atlantic)
  • UnityPoint Clinic Pediatrics – Walnut Creek (West Des Moines)
K-12 School, presented by HealthPartners UnityPoint Health 
  • Clay Elementary (Southeast Polk CSD)
  • Highland Elementary (Waterloo CSD)

Out-of-School Program, presented by the Iowa Department of Public Health
  • Girls on the Run of Central Iowa
  • YMCA of Greater Des Moines Before and After School Care


  • Claude W. and Dolly Ahrens Foundation (Grinnell)
  • North Iowa Area Council of Governments (Mason City)
  • Theodore's Academy Preschool & Childcare (Sioux City)


  • DLL Finance (Johnston)
  • Merchants Bonding Company (West Des Moines)
  • Kreg Tool (Ankeny)


  • Grinnell Mutual (Grinnell)
  • Optimae LifeServices (Des Moines)
  • Polk County Government (Des Moines)

Early Care, presented by the Iowa Department of Public Health


  • Little Fry’s Daycare (Council Bluffs)
  • Neverland Child Care (Sioux City)
  • Ms. Hollie's Preschool at The Big Red Barn (Huxley)


  • Adaptive Daycare Services Inc. (Tipton)
  • Children's Center (Council Bluffs)
  • Theodore's Academy Preschool & Childcare (Sioux City)

“This year’s finalists have gone above and beyond to help create healthier environments where Iowans to live, learn, work and play,” said Jami Haberl, Healthiest State Initiative executive director. “We are excited to highlight their efforts and honor them in our online award ceremony.”

discusWinners will be announced at the 2022 Healthiest State Annual Awards on Feb. 17. The online ceremony will also feature a keynote address from U.S. two-time Paralympic athlete Jessica Heims. Heims, an Iowa native and University of Northern Iowa graduate, competed at the 2016 Rio Paralympic Games and the 2020 Tokyo Paralympic Games in the discus throw.

Each winner will be awarded a monetary gift to continue their efforts.  The 2022 Healthiest State Annual Awards are sponsored by Wellmark® Blue Cross® and Blue Shield®, HealthPartners UnityPoint Health, Iowa Department of Public Health, Iowa Medical Society and Malvern Bank.

WATCH ONLINE: Healthiest State Annual Award Ceremony

Iowans are invited to tune in to the 2022 Healthiest State Annual Award online ceremony on Feb. 17 at 6 p.m. on the Healthiest State Initiative Facebook page and YouTube channel