Melissa Cummings of Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Rhode Island to Chair the American Heart Association’s 2017 Go Red For Women Luncheon in Providence

PROVIDENCE, RI – (April 19, 2016) The American Heart Association announced today that Melissa Cummings, senior vice president and chief customer officer at Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Rhode Island (BCBSRI), will serve as the chairwoman of the Southern New England Go Red For Women Luncheon scheduled for Friday, February 17, 2017 at the Rhode Island Convention Center.

The Southern New England Go Red For Women Luncheon is the premier women’s annual event focusing on cardiovascular health. As a cornerstone piece of the American Heart Association Go Red For Women movement, this social-educational event focuses on raising awareness and urging action to prevent or survive the No. 1 and No. 5 killers of women—heart disease and stroke. Nationally sponsored by Macy’s, this vibrant movement celebrates women’s energy, passion, and power to band together to wipe out heart disease and stroke while living longer, stronger, and more heart-healthy lives.


As Senior Vice President and Chief Customer Officer for BCBSRI, Ms. Cummings is responsible for the company’s product development, marketing, sales and distribution, as well as servicing across all consumer and commercial markets. She also leads BCBSRI’s innovative retail strategy and expansion into new lines of insurance including dental, vision, and voluntary coverage.

“Women helping other women make a promise to take one step for heart health is the cornerstone of our effort this year. I hope that by starting more conversation about the importance of heart health, the women in our lives encourage their sisters, mothers, aunts, and best friends to take the first step toward a healthier heart. As the mother of two young daughters, I’m committed to modeling and strengthening the message of heart health and taking simple steps to lower the risks associated with heart disease and stroke,” said Cummings. “It’s an honor to be the Chair of the 2017 Go Red for Women Campaign. I truly believe it is never too early to Cross Your Heart… and Start!”

“Cross Your Heart… and Start” is the theme of this year’s luncheon event. Ms. Cummings’ efforts will focus on encouraging women to pledge to make a change to improve their overall heart health. Even small changes can make a big impact.  Experts say that sitting is one of the biggest factors contributing to obesity and heart disease.  Getting up and moving can lower the risk of high blood pressure, high cholesterol and diabetes as much as running can, according to a 2013 study that compared approximately 33,000 runners and 15,000 walkers over six years. .

The Southern New England Go Red For Women Luncheon raises funds to support this lifesaving movement, supporting cutting-edge research, community programs and professional education focused on cardiovascular health. For more information, sponsorship opportunities or to purchase tickets, please visit our website at or contact at [email protected] or 401-228-2329.


About the American Heart Association and American Stroke Association

The American Heart Association and the American Stroke Association are devoted to saving people from heart disease and stroke – the two leading causes of death in the world. We team with millions of volunteers to fund innovative research, fight for stronger public health policies, and provide lifesaving tools and information to prevent and treat these diseases. The American Heart Association is the nation’s oldest and largest voluntary organization dedicated to fighting heart disease and stroke. The American Stroke Association is a division of the American Heart Association. To learn more or to get involved locally, call, visit or call 401-228-2324. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter: @sneheart #SNEGoRed.

About Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Rhode Island

Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Rhode Island is the state’s leading health insurer and covers more than 450,000 members. The company is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. For more information, visit, follow us on Twitter @BCBSRI, and like us on Facebook at

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