March 2017 Member Spotlight
Emily Richters, MS, RDN, LDN
Katelyn Quick, MS, RDN, LDN
The Pennsylvania Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics’ Annual Meeting and Expo (AME) came and went at the beginning of April. For AME co-chairs Emily Richters, MS, RDN, LDN and Katelyn Quick, MS, RDN, LDN, the final day of the event was probably bittersweet.
The pair had spent more than a year and a half planning the annual conference with a dedicated committee — including conference calls, countless emails, and a handful of in-person meetings. According to Emily, finding that committee was the most challenging part of the planning, though she understood why. “It is hard to volunteer and find time when you have other things going on, but everyone we found made it work!”
But for Emily, volunteering is just part of her RD-DNA. She’s a current board member of the Northeast Pennsylvania Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and has been volunteering in similar roles since she was an intern. “I was mentored to be involved, and so I did,” she reveals. “I think being involved helps you learn your passion, talk with other RDs about issues and how to resolve, and find new ways to get our profession out into the eyes of the community.” She also notes that she’s made many friends through her volunteering efforts, which is a nice perk.
When she’s not volunteering, you’ll usually find Emily at the Wilkes-Barre VA Medical Center. She currently serves as the head of the Healthy Teaching Kitchen, a position that includes collaborating with social workers to improve the status of the facility’s food pantry. She spends much of her time conducting outpatient-counseling sessions, sometimes in the home.
For Emily, it’s the culmination of a nutrition-centric dream that began when she read a magazine article in high school about the power of the antioxidants in blueberries. The rest was history. She decided to pursue nutrition, and now focuses on encouraging mindfulness in her clients — and in herself by regularly practicing yoga, going for hikes or runs, and traveling.
Katelyn and Emily have yoga in common. As part of her role at Penn State as an outpatient dietitian for students, Katelyn actually teaches yoga and stress management classes. Mindfulness also factors greatly into her philosophy on nutrition. “I believe that eating habits improve when a client cultivates respect for their body and focuses on their health,” she says, “However, I often find that clients are instead focused on their body image and how others view them. I’d like to shift that focus because I find that this is when eating habits change more naturally.” Katelyn also spreads this philosophy via her private practice, Katelyn Quick Nutrition Consulting, LLC.
So what led Katelyn to this nutrition approach — and nutrition as a vocation? Part of the credit goes to her family, who Katelyn says bonds over preparing and enjoying food. Part of it goes to a nutrition elective she took as an undergrad at Penn State, which sparked her interest in the field. And then, part of the credit probably goes to her genuine love of food. “I always joke that I love peanut butter so much that I could drink it,” she says. “I’m a foodie, so I love all food and trying new trends!”
With knowledgeable, driven, and compassionate women like these serving as AME co-chairs in 2018, it’s no wonder the event was a huge success!