DES MOINES, Iowa, Aug. 4, 2022 — Workers in the U.S. dealing with mental health challenges are among the most stressed in the world, a problem heightened by the COVID-19 pandemic. Mike Tousley of The Weitz Company will make mental health and well-being the focus of his time as chair of the 2022-23 Heart Challenge.

Tousley, the executive vice president and general manager of The Weitz Company’s Iowa Business Unit, will lead the yearlong campaign for the American Heart Association, a global force for healthier lives for all. The Heart Challenge is a suite of initiatives designed to help companies positively impact employee health and well-being.

“Since pandemic-induced stress isn’t going away anytime soon, it’s more important now than ever that we prioritize our mental health,” said Tousley, who has been with The Weitz Company for 37 years. “At a time when many Americans face uncertainty about the future, health fears and financial distress, it’s vital that we take care of ourselves. Physical activity is one of the best ways to keep our bodies and our minds healthy.”

The Heart Challenge campaign includes CycleNation, a high-energy stationary cycling event, and Heart Walk, a 1- or 3-mile group walk to boost physical and mental health. According to a study by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, physical activity is linked to lower risk of diseases, improved mental health and cognitive function and lower risk of depression.

“As national leaders in the construction industry, Mike Tousley and The Weitz Company bring a strong reputation of innovation to the 2022-23 Heart Challenge campaign,” said Karen Rieck, vice president of human resources with Farm Bureau Financial Services and chair of the American Heart Association Greater Des Moines Board of Directors. “Mike’s energy, conviction and passion will help raise critical funds to advance the science and the policies that will lead to longer, healthier lives for Central Iowans.”

The workforce is more complex than ever before, with 157 million working adults in the U.S. covering five generations.

These workers face challenges like stress and burnout, low engagement, high turnover and rising healthcare costs. Heart Challenge addresses these challenges by offering initiatives and events designed to help employees be more engaged, connect with colleagues, boost physical activity, support a great cause and have fun doing it.


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, Facebook, Twitter or by calling 1-800-AHA-USA1.  

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