Bakersfield, Calif., June 2, 2023 — Cardiovascular disease and stroke are the leading causes of death in Kern County, and David Harrington, president and chief operating officer of Centre for Neuro Skills, is working hand-in-hand with the American Heart Association, a global force for healthier lives for all, to change that. Harrington will serve as chair for the 2023-2024 Kern County Heart and Stroke Walk, a community campaign focused on engaging local companies, corporations and their employees to join the fight against heart disease and stroke. 

"Heart health is brain health. Preventing heart disease can prevent stroke, and American Heart Association's Kern County Heart and Stroke Walk is a wonderful opportunity for organizations and individuals to bring awareness to the importance of heart disease and stroke prevention, learn more about how to access essential care and improve the overall health of our community,” Harrington said. 

As chair of the Heart and Stroke Walk, Harrington will lead a team of Kern County-area executives to recruit companies and organizations to take part in the event, which takes place Saturday, October 14 at California State University, Bakersfield. The leadership team and supporting organizations will raise funds for the American Heart Association while leading action-oriented conversations about employee health, corporate engagement, community health and community transformation. 

Also serving in leadership roles on the Heart Challenge™ Executive Leadership Team are: 

  • Lindsay Barnes, local sales manager, KGET-TV
  • Kevin Burton, administrator of client relations and governmental/public affairs, Klein DeNatale Goldner - Attorneys at Law
  • Didra Cantu, MPA-HCM, senior director of quality and risk management, Encompass Health Rehabilitation Hospital of Bakersfield
  • George Jenkins III, PHARMD, transition of care pharmacist, Dignity Health Memorial Hospital 
  • Ken Keller, president and chief executive officer, Dignity Health
  • Lisa Kreber, Ph.D., CBIS, multi-site director, neuro service line, brain/spine institute, Adventist Health
  • David Lari, executive director, JP Morgan Chase Morgan N.A. 

“We are incredibly grateful for these leaders who are stepping up to move the needle when it comes to heart disease and stroke” said Kelley Berry, executive director of the American Heart Association in Kern County.  “Through the Heart and Stroke Walk campaign, we are able to drive maximum impact through employee engagement and corporate fundraising. Together, we can save lives right here in Kern County.”

Heart disease and stroke are largely preventable and how you eat, move and manage stress impacts your well-being, physically and mentally. Participants in the Heart and Stroke Walk gain access to resources, tools and activities to support both mental and physical well-being for employers and employees. 

For more information about the Kern County Heart and Stroke Walk or to get your company involved, contact 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 nearly a century. Connect with the Kern County office on, Instagram or by calling 1-800-AHA-USA1.

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