Leadership is not a position or a title, it is action and example. 

-Cory Booker

Meet the Leadership for the 2022-2023 year

BOARD OF DIRECTORS - EXECUTIVE LEADERS
President: Batina Timmons, MS, RDN
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Batina is a nutrition therapist inspiring thousands of people to eat and live well.  Gaining experience in the corporate world of Morrison’s, Sodexo, DaVita and for the past 5 years with U.S. Renal Care, Batina continues her private consulting practice, Tampa Nutrition Therapy, opening in 2008. June 2021, the website was relaunched and she has been specializing in chronic kidney disease as a renal dietitian.

Batina received her Masters of Nutrition Degree from The University of Alabama and her Bachelors from Indiana University.  Her interest in nutrition grew out of learning food can heal the body while learning to cook in Sonoma County California.  

In 2016, Batina completed her integrative and functional nutrition certification and has been focusing on an integrative approach to chronic kidney disease.

In addition to being featured as a nutrition expert on the local FOX television station, Batina is a captivating speaker, menu writer, recipe developer, healthy cooking expert and weight loss coach.

Batina is a member of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (AND) and the National Kidney Foundation (NKF) and served as past Chair of District Presidents (2016-2018) for the Florida Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (FAND).

President Elect: Meggie Connelly, MS, RDN, LDN
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Meggie Connelly MS, RDN, LDN is a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist who helps individuals with PCOS and chronic dieters go from confused, frustrated and exhausted to confident, glowing and balanced.

She holds a Master’s of Science and Bachelor’s of Science degrees in Dietetics from D’Youville College in Buffalo, NY.  Her research focused on identifying the perceived risk for developing type 2 diabetes in women with PCOS. 

Her first love has always been food, so before becoming a dietitian, she received a Bachelor’s of Science in Hospitality Management from UCF. She has been a Registered Dietitian for 8 years and has worked in the food industry for 20 years.

Her experience as a dietitian has ranged from clinical nutrition, outpatient clinics, bariatric weight loss centers, dialysis, food service management and LTC. She finds nutrition coaching to be the most rewarding job as she helps individuals fall in love with food again

Treasurer:  Geena Reciniello, NDTR
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Geena is currently a nutrition and dietetic technician, registered who is currently in her dietetic internship to become a registered dietitian nutritionist. Before graduating from college, Geena had gained a lot of personal and professional experience by working a full-time job while taking on a full-time student role with The University of Alabama’s online program.

Geena received her Bachelors in Food and Nutrition from The University of Alabama and her Associates in Dietetics from Hillsborough Community College. Geena has gained a lot of knowledge and experience throughout her education and is learning more and more each day throughout her rotations. She is completing her dietetic internship with California State University San Bernardino’s ISPP program and her rotations are near and throughout the Tampa Bay area.

When Geena is not studying, she loves to spend time outdoors, relaxing, and eating a variety of yummy foods.

Secretary:  Aria Hetzendorfer
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Aria is a Registered and Licensed Dietitian. She was born in raised in St. Pete, FL and is currently working at the hospital she was born in, Bayfront Health. Aria received her Bachelor of Science in Nutrition and Dietetics from Keiser University.

Aria is the youngest of five, with four older brothers. In her spare time, she enjoys spending time with her family and nine nieces and nephews (all of which live in the area).

VP Membership: Sarah Wollard, RD, LDN
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Sarah is a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist in Sarasota with ample experience in community health. She graduated from University of North Florida with a Bachelors of Science in Nutrition and Dietetics.

Her career started with the Florida Department of Health which led to completing her dietetic internship with the WIC program in Pasco County, where she subsequently worked making a difference in the community.

Growing up in Florida, she naturally enjoys being outdoors
where she likes to go to the beach, hike, and travel with her family.

VP Communications:  Michelle Smith, MS, RDN, LDN

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Michelle grew up in Clearwater and attended the University of Florida for both undergrad and grad school.

After her internship she stayed with Florida Hospital (now AdventHealth) in Orlando for 3 years as a clinical dietitian as well as worked part-time with Meals On Wheels, Sanford creating menus and education for their clients.

When the opportunity came up to move closer to home, she took on the new challenge of long term care in Saint Petersburg.

She later became the Traveling Registered Dietitian, assisting facilities all the way from Jacksonville to West Palm Beach and has been with the company for over 6 years.

She is also a member of the Pinellas County Gator Club (Go Gators!) and enjoys spending time trying new foods, whether creating them at home or out on her travels.

VP Legislation:  Amanda Maucere, MS, RDN, LDN
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Amanda has been a dietitian in the Tampa area for the last 13 years working in a variety of practice settings including acute care, rehabilitation, long-term care, functional fitness, outpatient care, and private practice.  She has found her passion developing future dietitians as the director of the Florida Department of Health in Pasco County Dietetic Internship.  By participating in advocacy events with her interns, Amanda has gained a greater understanding of the importance of advocating for the dietetics profession and the people we serve.  As VP of Advocacy and Legislation, she hopes to encourage more dietitians and dietetic technicians to participate in advocacy and give them the tools they need to do so successfully.   

Amanda enjoys taking trips with her family, is trying to learn how to speak German, can watch bees and butterflies for hours, wishes Florida had mountains to hike but is grateful it has oceans to swim, and recently started puzzling.

If you are interested in advocacy and legislation too, Amanda invites you to join the advocacy and legislation committee

 VP  Programs: Nicole Chenard, MS, RDN, LDN
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Nicole grew up in Boston, MA, completed her Didactic Program in Dietetics and B.S. in Nutrition & Dietetics at Simmons College for undergrad, served in AmeriCorps in the Rio Grande Valley, TX to help increase wellness in K-12 public charter schools, and graduated with her M.S. in Applied Nutrition and Fitness from Northeastern University. For fun, while working in the RGV, she joined the Operations team for the Rio Grande Valley Killer Bees CHL team, and due to an announcer’s absence one night, was the in-stand announcer for 1 game! 

After graduate school, she completed her dietetic internship via Wellness Workdays with an emphasis in Corporate Wellness/Worksite Wellness. Just before her internship, she became a founding member of the non-profit Boston Fisheries Foundation, the host of the Boston Seafood Festival, and created partnerships in the community in order to provide a Nutrition Education program for the public. After her internship, she worked as a Research Assistant for Tufts Friedman School of Nutrition and took anthropometric measurements of study participants and helped to develop the RedCap survey questions for the study. 

What originally brought her to Florida was working as the founding dietitian for the Red Sox Foundation and Massachusetts General Hospital’s Home Base Program where she co-coordinated post-9/11 Veteran medical assessments at Florida Gulf Coast University and co-created the Warrior Health and Fitness Program in Boston, while initiating the Nutrition Education programs for veterans and their families. For the past 5 years, she has been working on the international Breast Cancer Weight Loss Study (BWEL) for Dana Farber Cancer Institute in Boston, which conveniently has been delivered remotely via telehealth, allowing a move to Naples. 

She started her private practice, Major League NutritionTM in 2018 in order to be able to serve more veterans, athletes, individuals and businesses in person and remotely. She’s been contributing to the Provider Nutrition Education Task Force for Harvard Law School’s Center for Health Law and Policy Innovation for the past few years for Food is Medicine in Massachusetts (FIMMA). She is licensed in Massachusetts and Florida. 

Nicole started a new role this year as the Director of Marketing and Communications for Dietitians in Business and Communications Dietetic Practice Group, filled in for a House of Delegates meeting for DBC and had an amazing time networking with dietitian friends from all over the country at FNCE 2022 Orlando where she connected with our current President! She looks forward to ​​working with you to protect, promote & improve the health of all people in Florida through integrated state, county & community efforts. Go EverBlades!

Awards: 

  • Emerging Dietetic Leader of the Year, 2020, Massachusetts Academy of Nutrition & Dietetics

  • Feeding the Need, Developing Solutions, 2022, Villanova University Center for Obesity Prevention & Education  

District Liaison for Pinellas: Nicole Fresta RD, LDN
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Nicole graduated from the University of Connecticut in 2014 with a BS in Nutritional Sciences and a Food Science minor. She relocated to the Sunshine State soon after to complete her dietetic internship through California State University San Bernardino’s ISPP program.

 

Nicole has worked in the acute and long-term care settings and now has her own private practice. She loves being able to help her patients achieve their health goals through the diet and act as their nutrition coach along the way. 

District Liaison for Pasco: Amy Tomik
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