VCU Health Chief of Health Impact leads local movement to improve women’s heart health

Sheryl Garland to chair the American Heart Association’s Richmond’s 2023-24 Go Red for Women® movement

Sheryl Garland, Chief of Health Impact for VCU Health, will serve as the executive volunteer chair of the 2023-2024 Richmond Go Red for Women® movement, a comprehensive platform designed more than two decades ago to increase women’s heart health awareness and serve as a catalyst for change to improve the lives of women globally. As the American Heart Association celebrates its 100th birthday, Garland will play a critical role by leading Richmond’s Go Red for Women® campaign.

According to the American Heart Association, a global force for healthier lives for all, cardiovascular disease (CVD) is the leading cause of death in women, claiming more lives than all cancers combined. Nearly 45% of women over age 20 are living with some form of CVD. Heart disease and stroke continue to be central Virginia women’s greatest health threat.

“My family has experienced several losses to heart disease, and as a former American Heart Association Richmond Board President and now member, I have seen the mission at work to prevent others from losing their loved ones too soon,” said Garland. “I also have two daughters, and reaching younger women with Go Red for Women’s lifesaving messages is so important to the future health of our community.”

Garland will be joining a team of 11 other local female leaders who are working to improve women’s heart health in central Virginia. The list includes:

  • Hem Bhardwaj, VCU Health
  • Adrienne Whitaker, Virginia Housing
  • Karen Higgins, Ameriprise
  • Lachonda Lee, County of Dinwiddie
  • Allison Gross, Merle Norman Cosmetics
  • Denise Holmes, Keiter
  • Vicky Lyle, Owens & Minor
  • Gemma Pop-Whitfield, Cigna
  • Angela Simmons, Genworth
  • Jeri Turley, Winged Keel Group
  • Polly White, Gather

“We are so grateful to have Sheryl step into yet another leadership role for the Association,” said Chandra Hurst, American Heart Association Richmond volunteer board chair and Vice President, Senior Business Consultant at JPMorgan Chase & Co. “Her passion for our mission and leadership will make a notable impact on the lives of women in our community.”

Go Red for Women is a global movement with impact across the United States and in more than 50 countries around the world. This year’s Go Red for Women movement and its local achievements will be celebrated at the local Go Red for Women Luncheon on Friday, February 23 at the Richmond Marriott located at 500 E Broad St.

Go Red for Women is nationally sponsored by CVS Health and the Richmond Go Red for Women Luncheon is locally sponsored by VCU Health Julia van de Riet at 804.965.6514 or visit


About the American Heart Association

The American Heart Association is a relentless force for a world of longer, healthier lives. We are dedicated to ensuring equitable health in all communities. Through collaboration with numerous organizations, and powered by millions of volunteers, we fund innovative research, advocate for the public’s health and share lifesaving resources. The Dallas-based organization has been a leading source of health information for a century. During 2024 – our Centennial year – we celebrate our rich 100-year history and accomplishments. As we forge ahead into our second century of bold discovery and impact our vision is to advance health and hope for everyone, everywhere. Connect with us on, Facebook, X or by calling 1-800-AHA-USA1.

About Go Red for Women®

The American Heart Association’s signature initiative, Go Red for Women®, is a comprehensive platform designed to increase women’s heart health awareness and serve as a catalyst for change to improve the lives of women globally. While the majority of cardiac events can be prevented, cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death in women, claiming the lives of 1 in 3 women. For more than two decades, Go Red for Women has encouraged awareness. The movement harnesses the energy, passion and power of women to band together and collectively wipe out heart disease. It challenges them to know their risk for heart disease and take action to reduce their personal risk. It also gives them tools they need to lead a heart healthy life. The Go Red for Women movement is nationally sponsored by CVS Health, with additional support from national cause supporters. For more information, please visit or call 1-800-AHA-USA1 (242-8721).

For Media Inquiries: 214-706-1173

Audry Dubon: 804-380-6877;

For Public Inquiries: 1-800-AHA-USA1 (242-8721) and