For Immediate Release
Contact: Kristin Tutino, (585) 258-0253


(Rochester, New York) September 12, 2005 – As part of the Speaking of Women’s Health Conference (SWH), presented by WXXI and held at the Rochester Riverside Convention Center on Friday, September 16, WXXI will present Rosa Wims with the Pinny Cooke Community Service Award for her dedication to helping those in need. The annual award honors women in the community who have made it their life’s work to help those less fortunate. Ms. Wims is a retired licensed practical nurse, who has led the Faith Community Health Awareness Center, now known as the Rosa Wims Family Wellness Center, a program of The Health Association. Currently, she works part-time at Foodlink as a Development Associate.

Pinny Cooke, who championed so many worthwhile causes in her lifetime, passed away on August 1, 2004. WXXI presented Mrs. Cooke’s daughter, Bess Lewis, with the first Pinny Cooke Community Service Award during last year’s SWH Conference. Ms. Wims is the second recipient of this honor.

“I’m just so honored to have been named the recipient of this award,” said a surprised Ms. Wims when told of the award at a private lunch earlier this month. “I knew Pinny and she was such an amazing woman. To be considered a woman of her stature is truly an honor.”

At the Rosa Wims Family Wellness Center on Genesee Street, Ms. Wims spearheaded health education and screening programs for low-income minority populations and initiated tutoring programs and the distribution of food and clothing to those in need. She has also served on the University of Rochester Pediatric Links to the Community (PLC) program. There she advised medical residents how to conduct post-natal home visits with patients who missed multiple appointments. She accompanied the residents on the visits, helping to ease mistrust of medical providers and increase access to care in underserved neighborhoods.

Ms. Wims has received numerous awards over the years for her dedication to the community. She was the first recipient of two local awards: The Health Association's Community Service Award and the City of Rochester's Charles Crimi Award. In 1994, she received the New York State African-Americans of Distinction Award and the Gannett Foundation's "Make a Difference Day" Award. She is also a recipient of a National Points of Light Award.
The SWH Conference features national speakers, health screenings, a continental breakfast, luncheon, and a luxurious gift bag valued at $150 for every attendee. Conference attendees will have the opportunity to talk with more than a dozen local health care professionals from Strong Health about their health, wellness and lifestyle. In addition, SWH will have more than 12 breakout sessions available on topics ranging from heart health, nutrition and diet to tai chi, sexuality, and diabetes.

SWH is presented in Rochester by WXXI, chaired locally by Heather Golisano and sponsored locally by Strong Health, Excellus BlueCross BlueShield, Senator Joseph Robach, PHA Health, Wellness & Fitness Centers, 13 WHAM-TV, WHAM 1180 and MIX 100.5.


WXXI is an essential, lifelong educational resource for the Greater Rochester area. WXXI provides programming that stimulates and expands thought, inspires the spirit, opens cultural horizons and promotes understanding of the issues of our diverse community, nation and world. Log on to for more information about our services and programs.

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