TOPSHAM — The skills of Mary Booth, school health coordinator in School Administrative District 75 for the past 12 years, have been recognized at the national level.

The American School Health Association named Booth the 2012 School Health Coordinator of the Year. The organization was to recognize her Wednesday at its national conference in San Antonio, Texas.

“MSAD 75 recognizes the critical importance of coordinating health programs for students and staff,” Booth wrote in an e-mail on Wednesday. “This supportive environment ultimately benefits us all because healthy students make better learners and better learners make better community members.”

As health coordinator, Booth has striven through policy development and practices to reduce tobacco use, bullying and substance abuse, while promoting daily physical activity, staff health and healthy contents in vending machines, according to a news release.

Booth’s collaborative leadership has led to SAD 75 being Maine’s only school system to earn state excellence awards in all eight school health areas, which include health services and education, and social and physical environments, the release stated.

“We are very proud of Mary as we are of all the school health coordinators in Maine,” SAD 75 Superintendent Brad Smith said in the release. “She has helped us to make tremendous gains in promoting the health of students, which is key to their educational success.”

Alex Lear can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 113 or [email protected]. Follow him on Twitter: @learics.

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