Vermont Go Red for Women event is April 25th in Burlington as American Heart Association celebrates its centennial year

For nearly two decades, the American Heart Association’s Go Red for Women campaign has raised awareness about women’s greatest health threat – cardiovascular disease. As the campaign celebrates 20 years of making an impact and during the Association’s centennial year, the Vermont Go Red for Women event will take place on April 25th at the DoubleTree by Hilton Burlington. 


Lauren Maloney

Cardiovascular disease, which includes stroke, is the leading cause of death in Vermont. The Association, the world’s leading voluntary organization focused onheart and brain health, announced plans for the Vermont Go Red for Women event which has a goal of raising$100,000 to save and improve women’s lives. 


Mary Cenci

The event will begin with an exciting silent auction, Hands-Only CPR demonstrations and other activity tables. The dinner program, hosted by Mary Cenci of Star 92.9 and Lauren Maloney of ABC22 & FOX44, will feature an educational keynote address, inspiring survivor stories, and the presentation of the 2024 Woman of Impact Award. 


Sherrie Khadanga, MD

Sherrie Khadanga, MD, will deliver the keynote address, “Know Your Numbers Like Your Red Dress Size”. Dr. Khadanga is a cardiologist and the assistant director of Cardiac Rehabilitation at the University of Vermont Medical Center. She is also the Chair of the Early Career Council of the Cardiovascular Research Institute and an assistant professor in Internal Medicine at the Larner College of Medicine at UVM. 


Emily Benz, RN, will receive Vermont’s first “Woman of Impact” award. Woman of Impact, a nationwide Association initiative, launched in more than 100 cities across the country on National Wear Red Day on February 2. Nominees nationwide embark on a nine-week journey to help transform the health of women through education and fundraising. This can include learning and spreading the word about CPR, getting physically active, and raising critical funds for Vermont’s Go Red for Women movement.  

Emily Benz


Benz works on the Mother Baby Unit at the University of Vermont Medical Center. She was born and raised in Burlington and graduated from Vermont State University at Castleton with her Bachelor of Science in Nursing. “I care about the people of my home state, many of whom are my patients or will be my patients someday. The American Heart Association is ensuring that they are able to have a healthy future, and Woman of Impact is giving me an opportunity get involved with that work right here in my community, and play a part in it myself,” said Benz. 


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. Since 2004, Go Red for Women has had a profound impact on women’s health, challenging them to know their risk for heart disease and to take action to reduce their personal risk by sharing tools they need to lead a heart-healthy life. 


Dr. Julia Becerra Bernard, Vice President of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion at Norwich University, is the 2024 Vermont Go Red for Women Chair. Serving in leadership roles on the Vermont Go Red for Women Executive Leadership Team are: Kendra Kirkland, Vermont Mutual Insurance Company; Sarah Larson, Otter Creek Awnings; Joanne Leclerc, Homeland Security; Megan Liptak, Norwich University; and Jessica Wood, Norwich University. 


The Go Red for Women Luncheon is sponsored nationally by CVS Health and locally by Blue Cross Blue Shield of Vermont, Cardiovascular Research Institute of Vermont, Norwich University, Otter Creek Awnings, PC Construction, University of Vermont Larner College of Medicine, and Vermont Federal Credit Union. Media sponsors are ABC22 & FOX44 and Star 92.9. 


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