FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, January 18, 2006

GOVERNOR BARBOUR MAKES APPOINTMENTS TO
INFANT MORTALITY TASK FORCE

(Jackson, Miss.)—Governor Haley Barbour today announced the appointments of Mary Ellen McNamara-Hammett, of Madison; Randy Henderson, of Hattiesburg; Daniel Vassel, of Clarksdale; and Jamie Seale, of Tupelo, to the Infant Mortality Task force. The task force is designed to foster the reduction of infant mortality and morbidity in Mississippi and to improve the health status of mothers and infants.

“These appointees have combined years of community service and healthcare experience,” Governor Barbour said. “I am proud these individuals have accepted the assignment to serve on this board, and I am confident they will great assets to its important work in Mississippi.”

McNamara-Hammett has sold real estate, worked as a sales associate and director for Lagniappe, and in 1999 joined McNA+MED as a medical sales associate. She was a member of the Greenville Junior Auxiliary and served as the 1995 chairman of the Women’s Committee for the Delta Council. McNamara attended the University of Mississippi and has three children: Catharine, Ellen Kent, and Warren Hammett, III.

Henderson is currently employed at Southern Mississippi Neonatology and has worked as both an English teacher and mental health associate at Parkview Hospital in Nashville. He is board certified in pediatrics and neonatal-perinatal medicine; additionally, Henderson is a certified STABLE instructor and hospital-based instructor in NRP. Henderson’s medical research has been published in Development. President of the Hattiesburg Habitat for Humanity chapter, he also serves as a CATCH representative for Mississippi. Henderson attended both Princeton and Vanderbilt University, and earned his medical degree from the University of Virginia.

Daniel Vassel is a long-time public servant. He is a past member of the Clarksdale Rotary Club, Clarksdale/Coahoma County Chamber of Commerce Education Committee chairperson, and Clarksdale Municipal Public School District board member. Vassel has served on the Mississippi State University Extension Service Marketing Task Force and the board of directors of the Friends of the Carnegie Library. Past president of the Proactive Approach for Children, he has also been on the board of directors for the North Delta Community Development Corporation. Vassel is a graduate of Alcorn State University, the University of Oklahoma, and is currently enrolled in a master’s program at Delta State University. In 2000, he received the Goals Distinguished Service Award. Vassel is also a recipient of both the Mississippi State University Extension Service Individual Diversity Award and the Coahoma Community College ABE-GED Outstanding Service Award.

Jamie Seale is an advocate for the early detection of congenital heart defects and the improvement of prenatal care for expectant mothers. She was the Middle Tennessee District director for the Muscular Dystrophy Association; Seale also worked as campaign director and director of leadership, giving and corporate development, for United Way of Northeast Mississippi and of Central Alabama. She received a bachelor’s degree in English from Mississippi State University.

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Governor Haley Barbour
P.O. Box 139 Jackson, MS 39205
Phone: 601.359.3150 Fax: 601.359.3741