Interview with Nicole Cunningham

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What is your role with the New York State Comprehensive Family Planning and Reproductive Health Care Services Program?
I am a Health Program Administrator and one of the Family Program Managers.  In this role, I provide technical assistance and contract oversight for 23 sub-recipient agencies.  As part of the Family Planning Program Team, I collaborate with NYS Center of Excellence for Family Planning and Reproductive Health Services in the design and implementation of projects to improve performance of funded family planning programs. I also assist in the oversight of the Title X HIV Integration Grant deliverables, including reports and prepare annual grant applications.

Tell us a little bit about your background and past work experience.
I am a Registered Dietitian and Certified Lactation Counselor.  For the majority of the past 20 years I have worked in the NYS Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC) Program. For 10 years, I provided direct nutrition counseling and lactation support at local WIC agencies; the past 9 years, I was in the State WIC office primarily developing policies, nutrition and breastfeeding materials and trainings; providing technical assistance to local agencies; and serving as the Statewide Breastfeeding Coordinator overseeing the breastfeeding promotion and support program in 93 local agencies.

What do you like most about your job?
Family planning and Title X funding is new for me, so every day brings many learning experiences.  Fortunately, my colleagues and the program provide a very supportive environment for a newbie with many questions.

What are you most excited about in your new role?
Learning a new program, expanding my skills, and meeting new people.  I look forward to meeting providers at upcoming meetings---live and in person!

What are your interests outside of work?
I enjoy many outdoor activities, especially kayaking, hiking, and snowshoeing with my fiancé throughout the Adirondacks. Outdoor photography is a passion of mine, so there is usually a camera in tow on every adventure.