WEST PALM BEACH, Fla., May 9, 2023 — Iliana Rentz’s personal experience with heart disease was a private tragedy for years. The U.S. Army veteran and NextEra Energy team member could never have imagined the impact she would make by sharing her story with others, or that it would make her a nationally recognized champion for heart health. At the Palm Beach County Go Red for Women Luncheon, the American Heart Association named Rentz the 2023 Woman of Impact not just for Palm Beach County – but for the nation.

Rentz was one of six women participating in Palm Beach County’s Woman of Impact campaign, and one of more than 500 women participating in the national campaign. Woman of Impact is an extension of the American Heart Association’s long-standing Go Red for Women movement, 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.

Through her campaign, Rentz reached more than 13 companies and 200 individual donors, while spreading awareness to thousands of individuals across Palm Beach County.

“This initiative has been incredibly meaningful for me,” Rentz said. “Through all of my outreach, I was taken aback by how many people I know who have been impacted by heart disease in so many ways.”

Heart disease is the No. 1 cause of death in the United States, claiming the lives of 1 in 3 women each year.

Palm Beach County’s 2023 Woman of Impact nominees were: Collette Cattafi, Jyrece McClendon, Shenetria Moore, Thais Sullivan, Maya Asha Underwood and Rentz. They were joined by Palm Beach County’s first Teen of Impact, Eva Vukusich.

“To have the national Woman of Impact winner right here in Palm Beach County just goes to show how critical this issue is for our community. We’re also grateful to Eva Vukusich, our first-ever Palm Beach County Teen of Impact, for helping us reach younger generations with heart health awareness,” said Kayla Fox, executive director, American Heart Association Palm Beach County. “Heart disease is the No. 1 killer of women in the U.S. and it’s largely preventable – the more we can all learn about prevention, the more lives we can save.”

Each of the Women of Impact and Teen of Impact nominees were celebrated at the April 19 Go Red for Women Luncheon at the Pelican Club in Jupiter. The event featured a “Power of Red” panel, highlighting ways for audience members to drive health changes in their lives and in the community at-large. Panelists included: Philanthropist Sally Soter, CEO of Florida Community Health Centers, Inc., Dr. Wilhelmina Lewis, Founder and CEO of Empowered Healthcare, Inc., Jinga Oglesby-Brihm, DNP and Emergency Medical Technician, Yanela Vickers. Nathalie Pozo, morning anchor for WPBF, was the event’s emcee, and Ashley Vertuno, CEO of HCA Florida JFK North Hospital, was the event’s chairperson.

“We are so grateful to Iliana and to all of our nominees for their work elevating the Go Red for Women message and raising critical funds in support of our local mission,”  said. “While our work is far from finished, we’ve made considerable progress in women’s heart health awareness. With the incredible Go Red for Women supporters who attended the luncheon and work year-round on preventing and reducing heart disease in women, our community is stronger and our future is brighter.”

Go Red for Women is nationally sponsored by CVS Health and Together to End Stroke is nationally sponsored by Encompass Health. Sponsors of Go Red for Women in Palm Beach County include Florida Power & Light, Blue Lake Service, Cross Country Healthcare, HCA Healthcare Foundation, ArborWorks, Asplundh, Burford Construction, GE, HCA Florida JFK North Hospital, Lewis Tree Service, MasTec, Medtronic, Moss Construction, Pike Electric, Quanta Services and Utility Power. Media sponsors are WPBF, Hubbard Radio West Palm Beach, Florida Weekly and Jupiter and Stuart Magazines.

For more information about the Palm Beach County Go Red for Women movement and the Woman and Teen of Impact initiatives visit PBGoRed.Heart.org.  


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 us on heart.org, Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

For Media Inquiries:  

Nina Barbero, APR