Idaho Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Candidate Slate and Bios for the upcoming (February 1-15, 2023) Election

President-elect – Hydee Becker, MS, RDN, LD

How long have you been a member of Idaho Academy? I have been a member of the Idaho Academy since I lived in Idaho from 1995-2002 and then again from 2015- Present.

Why did you join Idaho Academy? I joined the Idaho Academy as a student in the Coordinated Program in Dietetics at the University of Idaho, and I believe membership was a requirement of the program. I quickly discovered the value of being an active member of the state affiliate and continued my membership after graduation. 

How has membership in Idaho Academy been of value to you and your practice? Being a member of the Idaho Academy has allowed me to develop relationships with RDNS throughout the state. This has helped me as a Clinical Assistant Professor and Director of Dietetics at the University of Idaho. Finding dynamic guest speakers for class and placements and preceptors for students has been easy. 

Tell us about yourself, your job, and what you find most interesting about your job. I am a wife to Dennis Becker and a mom to Theo (15) and Rose (12). I enjoy being active outdoors. I work at the University of Idaho (Go Vandals!) as the Director of Dietetics. The most interesting part of my job is seeing students find their passion for nutrition and dietetics. 

How did you get into this field? I just got lucky!

Please list a few of your most recent accomplishments. At work recently, I led the effort to transition from a Coordinated Program (CP) to a Future Education Model Future Graduate Program (GP). The last class in the coordinate program graduated in 2022. We admitted our first class of graduate program students in the fall of 2021, and they will graduate this spring in 2023 with an MS in Dietetics!  

What attributes could you bring to this position? Attributes I can bring to this position are a strong sense of responsibility, hard work, and the ability to work with anyone. 

Secretary – Lea Steiner MS, RD, LD, CSG

How long have you been a member of Idaho Academy? Three years

Why did you join Idaho Academy? Networking, connection, advocacy

How has membership in Idaho Academy been of value to you and your practice? Membership has provided valuable networking and connections within the Idaho nutrition community and leadership opportunities.

Tell us about yourself, your job, and what you find most interesting about your job.

I am an Idaho native and avid rock climber who has been a clinical dietitian at the Boise VA hospital for almost ten years.  I also serve as the Healthy Athletes Clinical Director for Special Olympics Idaho.  My specialty is in Geriatrics, and I contribute to developing the geriatric specialty exam for the Commission on Dietetics Registration.  At the VA, I enjoy working with dietetic interns. I love that clinical nutrition is a constantly changing field, so no patient care day is the same, and I need to constantly stay up to date with advances in evidence-based practice.

How did you get into this field? I have a passion for helping others, which drew me to clinical nutrition, but I also love being the nutrition expert within our field and that all other members of the medical team consult us for evidence-based nutrition practice.

Please list a few of your most recent accomplishments.

  • Idaho Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Foundation Chair, 2022-Present
  • Commission on Dietetics Registration Specialty Certification Panel, 2021-Present
  • Examination development for the Commission on Dietetics Registration Advanced Practice Certifications, 2022-Present
  • VA Special Achievement Awards 2020, 2021
  • Award of Excellence Federal Employee Education Fund 2020, 2022
  • Recent peer-reviewed journal publications and grand rounds presentations
  • Recent national VA grant recipient to initiate Women’s Healthy Teaching Kitchen education
  • Doctoral Candidate Rutgers School of Health Professions

What attributes could you bring to this position? I am currently pursuing a doctorate while working full-time, and this experience has honed my time management and organization skills which are valuable skills that would allow me to excel as secretary.

Nominating Committee Member North Kimi Funk, MS, RD, LD

How long have you been a member of Idaho Academy? Since 2015,

Why did you join Idaho Academy? I feel it is important to have a part in supporting the dietetics field not only at a national level but also at a state level. The Idaho Academy allows us to share our nutrition expertise and grow a stronger base of nutrition experts through professional development and networking opportunities.

How has membership in Idaho Academy been of value to you and your practice? It has allowed me to make professional connections and further my knowledge to help grow and provide continued relevance to the dietetic profession.

Tell us about yourself, your job, and what you find most interesting about your job. I graduated with my bachelor’s degree in dietetics from the University of Idaho in 2015 and received my Master’s degree in Clinical Nutrition from the University of Alabama in 2017. I am the Clinical Nutrition Manager at St Joseph Regional Medical Center in Lewiston, ID. I love my job as no day is the same, and I can continually learn. My team and I work together to stay up to date on evidence-based practice to ensure our patients get the best nutritional care we can provide.

How did you get into this field? In high school, I took a Food and Nutrition course. I always wanted to do something in the medical field but was unsure which occupation I would choose. I liked the option of dietetics as it allowed me to work clinically, but I can also shift into management or community if I would like to one day.

Please list a few of your most recent accomplishments:

  • HHS Regional and Western RD champion.
    • HHS is the contract company that I work for at the hospital. To be in a champion position, you are selected from a corporate level based on your performance at your account. As a champion, I oversee accounts in my region, along with other West Coast region accounts, to ensure that accounts are within regulatory compliance and answer any other questions that may arise from starting malnutrition tracking programs, MNT questions, writing accurate ADIME notes, etc. 
    • Teaching Medical Nutrition Therapy at a collegiate level Fall 2021

What attributes could you bring to this position? Passion for nutrition, dedication, commitment, preparedness, willingness to work on committees outside of regular board meetings, eagerness to learn from others