See our interview conducted with the State Adolescent Health Coordinator.

This November, we are celebrating the Texas Youth Action Network’s 5th anniversary. We wanted to recognize some special individuals in our network who have become the roots of our success. Susan has been with our team for 2 years, and we are thankful for her guidance and support. She is a sounding board for our program, and continuously steers us a in positive and forward direction. Susan, your work does not go unnoticed and we are thankful to have you not only in our corner, but in the corner of so many youth in Texas who have been impacted by the work we are doing. Check out what she has to say about the Texas Youth Action Network below.

TYAN: Describe your role and experience since beginning your work with TYAN.

Susan : I am the State Adolescent Health Coordinator at the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) and have been working with TYAN for almost two years. With funds from Title V Block Grant, DSHS provides TYAN funding. In my role I monitor the TYAN project at the state-level and provide a public health perspective and adolescent health expertise. Since I began overseeing the project TYAN has recruited more than 40 community partners to develop and advance youth-adult partnerships

TYAN: What is the biggest impact you believe TYAN is making in communities?

Susan: TYAN is making a significant impact all across Texas. TYAN’s approach to build community, strengthen relationships, and give young people a voice in their communities not only promotes individual change, but also benefits Texas at the community level. Through the holistic framework of positive youth development, TYAN supports adolescent protective factors such as peer support, self-efficacy, and positive relationships, rather than focusing on risk factors related to negative health outcomes.

TYAN: What is one aspect of TYAN you want to share with other people?

Susan: TYAN is elevating the significance of adolescents in Texas. With 1 in 10 Texans between the ages of 10 and 24, TYAN is giving young people a platform to share their experiences, problem solve, and develop skills to achieve positive outcomes and improve adolescent’s overall health and well-being.

TYAN: From your perspective, what does TYAN’s future look like?

Susan: I believe the future of TYAN is continuing network expansion throughout Texas, while strengthening relationships with community partners and organizations to develop sustainable programming to improve adolescent health. TYAN’s innovative approach is leading the way in public health, and I see it supporting other states to develop a similar infrastructure. The future of TYAN has so many possibilities!

Thank you to DSHS and their staff for believing in our mission! We look forward to our continued expansion in the years to come.

Be on the lookout next week for another message from 2 very important TYAN supporters: our favorite TYAN staff member and community member who has been with us every step of the way!

Thanks for reading!



Organizations interested in starting or expanding their youth-adult partnerships can apply to be a Community Partner. As a Community Partner, organizations can access to exclusive materials, technical support, funding, and more!