Welcome Candace Allen and Karen Oles

Apr 5, 2018

MAHA would like to welcome Candace Allen of Ahoskie and Karen Oles of Kernersville to the MAHA Advisory Board.Candace Allen

Allen is a National Board for Respiratory Care Certified Respiratory Therapist and serves as a Pediatric Asthma Program Coordinator at Vidant Roanoke-Chowan Hospital in Ahoskie, North Carolina. In her role, she trains patients and their families to cope with an asthma diagnosis, provides individualized education for patients and their families regarding asthma, and informs patients about the air quality index and how it can be utilized to avoid disease triggers. Allen previously served as a Respiratory Care Practitioner at Vidant Chowan Hospital and at Vidant Cardiopulmonary Rehab. In addition to her work, Allen is an active member of the American Association for Respiratory Care, the Asthma Alliance of North Carolina, and the Association of Asthma Educators.

“I look forward to helping expand the MAHA educational training program,” said Allen during the March MAHA Advisory Board meeting. She is excited to learn more about air quality, health and advocacy, as well as use her expertise to help MAHA reach its education goals.

Karen OlesOles, PharmD, is a clinical pharmacist at the Northwest Community Care Network of Wake Forest Baptist Health. As part of a population-based health care model, she provides chronic disease management and consultation in a General Internal Medicine clinic that serves a largely indigent population. She was previously a faculty member at the University of North Carolina School of Pharmacy and Wake Forest University School of Medicine. She received her Doctor of Pharmacy from the StateUniversity of New York at Buffalo and her Masters degree in interdisciplinary epidemiology from Wake Forest University.

“I am honored to be part of the organization,” said Oles about joining MAHA. Oles looks forward to working with the board and helping advise MAHA from a Triad and pharmacist perspective.

The MAHA advisory board has a strong commitment to restoring clean and healthy air to North Carolina. The board guides and supports MAHA initiatives, recruiting, educating, and engaging medical and public health professionals in MAHA’s air quality campaigns. MAHA Advisory Board terms are two years, beginning at the time of appointment, with an option to renew. Board members responsibilities may include:

  • participating in quarterly conference calls;
  • developing expertise on one or two of MAHA’s priority issues, including educating themselves about the issue’s health impacts and engaging in MAHA strategies to address the issue;
  • advising MAHA staff on issues such as scientific research and medical community relations;
  • recruiting medical and public health professionals in your community to join MAHA;
  • generating signatures from your community for MAHA sign-on letters and other actions;
  • representing MAHA at local or statewide public hearings, press conferences or meetings with government agencies;
  • raising awareness of MAHA issues by submitting letters to the editor or newspaper op-eds or being available for press conferences and interviews.


If you are interested in joining the MAHA Advisory Board, please contact the MAHA manager Rachel McIntosh-Kastrinsky at rachel@cleanaircarolina.org.