Our Sponsors


Join us for the inaugural Mississippi Health Disparities Conference 2021, sponsored by the Mississippi INBRE network, to be held on Wednesday, August 4, 2021 at the Mississippi Coast Convention Center in Biloxi, Mississippi.

MHD2021 will offer workshops, research posters, evidence-based educational sessions, and an exhibitor pavilion, as well as opportunities for working group meetings.

Our Goal:

To increase understanding and awareness that
Chronic Diseases affecting Mississippians
with Healthy Lifestyle Modification!

As we have all witnessed across Mississippi, the unexpected devastation of the COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the critical need to accelerate the implementation of healthy lifestyle choices for all.

Many of the chronic diseases that increase risk of severe COVID-19 infection, including coronary artery disease, hypertension, diabetes, chronic kidney disease, and obesity are not only preventable but also reversible with intensive lifestyle modification.

Benefits of Attendance:

There will be abundant opportunities for networking with like-minded researchers, professionals, and industry leaders. The conference will bring together health executives, health professionals, researchers, community leaders, students, and government officials, for innovative and strategic discussions, solutions, and partnerships to discuss the key issues listed below:

  • Holistic and multi-level approaches to diabetes, obesity, HIV, and other cardiometabolic disease prevention
  • Social Determinants of Health as a means of reducing and eliminating health disparities
  • Use of technology to address access concerns in rural and underserved communities
  • Future solutions and innovations to address health disparities in Mississippi

This conference is open to all individuals or organizations that are committed to addressing health disparities in Mississippi. Registration is free for all attendees. Proposals for special sessions are welcome.

Continuing Education Units:

This activity has been submitted to the Commission on Dietetic Registration, Mississippi State Medical Association, Mississippi Nurses Foundation and Mississippi Board of Pharmacy for approval to award continuing professional education contact hours.

Covid-19 Statement:

The Mississippi Health Disparities (MHD) Conference Organizing Committee is continually monitoring local and state COVID-19 conditions and current CDC travel and event recommendations. The MHD Conference Organizing Committee will follow all state and CDC guidelines to ensure we have a safe and productive conference as we examine health disparities in underserved populations in Mississippi. The MHD Conference Organizing Committee recognizes modifications to in-person guidelines or adaptation to a virtual event may be required due to ongoing COVID-19 conditions in Mississippi and will provide notification of any changes to all registered attendees as well as maintain updates on our website.

COVID-19 Guidelines:

  • Masks are to be worn at ALL times during the conference.
  • Maintain social distancing at all times.
  • Wash hands and use sanitation stations regularly.

Please be sure to check our website regularly for updates: www.mississippihealthdisparities.org.

WHEN: Wednesday August 4,  2021

WHERE: Mississippi Coast Coliseum and Convention Center 2350 Beach Blvd, Biloxi, MS 39531

For additional information or session proposal submission, please email healthdisparities@msinbre.org.

Register Now!

Professor, Dean Emeritus

Director, Center on Better Health

and Life for Underserved Populations

Florida State University

State Health Officer

Mississippi State Department of Health

Director, Office of Preventative Health and Health Equity

Mississippi State Department of Health

David R. Buys, PhD, MSPH, CPH, FGSA

Associate Professor, Department of Food Science, Nutrition, and Health Promotion
State Health Specialist, MSU Extension
Mississippi State University

Session Title: “The Rural Way: Factors Affecting Health Outcomes of People in Rural Geographic Areas

Dan Capron, Ph.D.

Associate Professor, USM

Session Title: A Mobile Phone Intervention for National Guard Suicide Prevention

Kayla Carr, Ph.D., RN, FNP-C

University of Mississippi Medical Center School of Nursing

Associate Professor and Director of Jackson School-based Health Clinics

Session Title: “School-based health services for youth in a health disparate community: The way forward
in the wake of COVID-19

Caroline E. Compretta, PhD

University of Mississippi Medical Center
Associate Professor, Departments of Preventive Medicine and Pediatrics
Core Faculty, Center for Bioethics and Medical Humanities

Session Title: Community Engagement Alliance (CEAL) Against COVID-19 Disparities

Session Title: “A New Hope:  Managing Diabetes and Obesity Disparities through Research and

Chair: Stephen Farrow, MD, MBA-AEC, CPE, FACP
Executive Director of The National Diabetes & Obesity Research Institute

Michael Forster, PhD, LCSW

Professor of Social Work, University of Southern Mississippi

Session Title: Dance for the Health of It

Jacquilyn German, MPH

Mississippi State Department of Health,
Jackson Heart Study Community Engagement Center

Session Title: The Jackson Heart Study Community Engagement Center: Changing the Future for Heart Health and Disparity Elimination

Holly Huye, PhD, RD

MS Center for Clinical and Translational Research
Community Engagement and Outreach Core

Session Title: Who are the people in your neighborhood? Developing Community-Researcher Partnerships to Inform and Prioritize Community Needs in the Fight against Health Disparities

D. Olga McDaniel, MT, PhD.

Program Coordinator: MAS-HSD
Professor Emeritus, School of Medicine, General Surgery
University of Mississippi Medical Center

Session Title: Population Health Diversity

Mauda Monger, PhD, MPH

My Brother’s Keeper, Inc.
Chief Operating Officer

Session Title: “Let’s Start the Discussion: “The Uncomplicated Truth about Sexual Health during a Pandemic

Phillip Trotter

Diabetes Coalition of Mississippi
Prevention Workstream Chair

Session Title: Realizing DPP for Mississippi

The Mississippi Coast Coliseum Convention Center (2350 Beach Blvd, Biloxi, MS 39531) is located approximately 5.5 miles west of downtown Biloxi and the I-110/MS Hwy 90 intersection. Many hotel accommodations are available within a 13-15 minute drive along the Coastal Mississippi Highway 90/Beach Blvd from Downtown Biloxi.

Hotel List:
There are many hotels on the Mississippi Gulf Coast that are close to the MDH2021 meeting facility. Below is a short list of hotels in the area. There are many others available.

Courtyard by Marriott Gulfport

Online reservations


DoubleTree by Hilton Biloxi

Online reservations


Golden Nugget

Online reservations


Hampton Inn by Hilton

Online reservations


Holiday Inn

Online reservations


IP Casino Resort & Spa

Online reservations


Palace Casino Resort

Online reservations


Where is the meeting?

The Mississippi Gulf Coast Coliseum and Convention Center (2350 Beach Blvd, Biloxi, MS 39531) is located approximately 5.5 miles west of downtown Biloxi and the I-110/MS Hwy 90 intersection. Many hotel accommodations are available within a 13-15 minute drive along the Coastal Mississippi Highway 90/Beach Blvd from Downtown Biloxi.

When is the meeting?

The Mississippi Health Disparities Conference 2021 (MHD2021) will be held on Wednesday, August 4, 2021. Please see the Session Schedule tab above for the final Conference program event times when posted.

How much are the registration fees?

There is no registration fee for this conference.

How do I register for the meeting?

The registration form can be found at the “Registration” tab above.

Can I register multiple attendees?

Yes, as long as you can provide all of the requested information.  Refresh the page after each submission to register your next attendee.

How do I confirm that I have successfully registered?

Once your registration is submitted you will see a page indicating that you are officially registered.

When is the deadline to submit an abstract?

The deadline for abstract submission is July 16th. Abstracts can be submitted under the registration tab.

When is the deadline for Session Proposals?

The deadline for Session Proposals is June 30th. Session Proposals can be submitted via email to healthdisparities@msinbre.org.


Email healthdisparities@msinbre.org or call 601.266.5611

Dr. Jennifer Lemacks

Mississippi INBRE

Telenutrition Center Director



Dr. June Gipson

My Brother's Keeper

Community Engagement & Training Core Director



Dr. Mohamed Elasri

Mississippi INBRE

Program Director



Caroline Iverson

Research Support Liaison and 

Coordinator of Student Programs 

601.266.6918, 601.270.2776


Jordan Laster

Administrative Specialist

601-266-5611, 601.596.8964


Mary Ann McRaney

Network Coordinator

601.266.5201, 601.517.1631


Danny Holland

Events and Public Relations Assistant



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