Meet Our Bloggers

Priscilla Hagstrom, Vice President of Marketing and Communications, Cooper Aerobics
Priscilla_finalMy role at Cooper: As Vice President of Marketing and Communications, I’m a strategic thinker and communicator for seven business entities at Cooper. Wearing several hats is one of my strengths. My role is to dig deep and find out even better ways to go-to-market and tell our story. Each day is different – one day it’s sharing life-changing testimonials with future Clinic patients and identifying new companies to work with our Consulting Partners or spreading the word about our multi-million renovations or just dreaming up new ways to attract new members for our Fitness Center and putting heads in beds at Cooper Hotel. Working with each entity and integrating a strategic marketing plan with business plans to position us for success is my main goal. With a great team in place we are accomplishing just that.

My exercise of choice: Playing a mean game of mixed doubles. Most days of the week, I also enjoy leaving the house when it’s still dark outside to take a group aerobics/strength training class before the rest of my day takes off. Over the years, this has proven to help me deal with stress more effectively as well as be stronger for my family. Walking is also a favorite of mine – walking even faster than my tall, tall husband!

After a great day at work, I like to… help shuttle my girls to volleyball and soccer practice, among other activities. I really enjoy sitting down at the dinner table each night hearing about my husband’s day and each of my girls’ days and giving thanks. If I have time, I love to create something from nothing – anything at all, really. From baking to gardening to writing to designing cards, I love the creative process and the results are a bonus.

My Cooper Story: I’m originally from Dallas and have lived here all but a few years of my life. I learned and read about Dr. Cooper years ago from my dad (who was) and sister who is in the medical field. Although I’ve only worked in a professional capacity at Cooper since February 2014, I’ve known about the preventive side and the benefits of living a healthy life for years. In the early 80s, my entire family would run 5Ks together and enter tennis tournaments. My dad was on such a kick when we three kids were in high school that we drank green protein shakes for breakfast! We learned about fueling our bodies and the benefits of being physically fit early on and in in a small way is attributable to Dr. Cooper’s foresight.

Why I love working at Cooper: I’m passionate about our city and all that it offers, including the medical expertise and specifically preventive medicine for which Cooper is known. What a privilege is to work for such an incredibly well-respected organization. Not just on the outside but through and through. The people who work here are committed to making a difference in the lives of people they meet and treat every day. What a true joy! Using my talents and years of marketing/communications expertise to promote such a genuine, credible brand is a rare gift.

Mary Catherine Banister, Marketing and Communications Specialist, Cooper Aerobics

Twitter: @MCBeezy13

My role at Cooper: As the Marketing and Communications Specialist, I have the opportunity to have a hand in many of the amazing things going on throughout all seven Cooper entities. My role allows me to help create our messaging strategy through social media, newsletters and media relations, connect with teammates across campus and spread the Get Cooperized message to the community. I am fortunate in the fact that I am able to work and interact with incredible people both within the Marketing and Communications team and across the entire campus on a daily basis.

My exercise of choice: I’m willing to try just about anything! I love to run, play tennis, swim and kick the soccer ball around with my friends. I also love high-intensity group  exercise classes, lifting weights, hiking and being outdoors. Recently I’ve been trying my hand at indoor cycling and yoga, and I’ve enjoyed incorporating them into my workout routine!

After a great day at work, I like to… knock out a great workout (if I haven’t already), and then spend the rest of the evening relaxing with my friends and family. We love trying new restaurants, going to concerts, exploring Dallas and just spending time together!

My Cooper Story: After four years of school at Auburn and a year of working for a PR agency in Memphis, I was looking for an opportunity to return home to Dallas. I had always heard about Cooper Aerobics growing up, so when the opportunity to work for the organization came my way, I jumped at the chance to be a part of such an amazing institution!

Why I love working at Cooper: I am very passionate about and dedicated to the work that I do, and it is wonderful to have the opportunity to fuse that passion with the message of health and wellness that Cooper has embodied for the past 45 years. Living a healthy lifestyle is important to me, and having the chance to share the Get Cooperized message locally, nationally and globally is a huge thrill.


Elana Zimelman Paddock, RDN, LD, CDE, Cooper Clinic Nutrition Services

My role at Cooper: As a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist (RDN), Certified Diabetes Educator (CDE) and Certified Health and Wellness Coach (CHWC), I coach patients at Cooper Clinic about the latest nutrition to fit their needs and lifestyle. I am also very passionate about blogging on nutrition for the Cooper Aerobics Blog!

My exercise of choice: I started race walking in 2010 after meeting a world renowned race walker, Jack Bray, who came to Cooper Clinic. I have race walked several half-marathons and it’s something I’m very dedicated to. I also practice yoga and Pilates, which provide balance to my workout routine.

After a great day at work, I like to… take a yoga or Pilates class for both exercise and relaxation. I also enjoy meeting friends and trying out new Dallas restaurants.

My Cooper Story: I started working at Cooper Clinic in July of 2007. As a dietitian, it is an amazing work environment, where preventive medicine, health and wellness are held in the highest regard. I personally strive to lead a healthy lifestyle and I am inspired to motivate others to do the same.

Why I love working at Cooper: I feel very proud to be a part of Cooper Clinic and to play a role in encouraging and informing both my patients and website readers about nutrition and leading a healthy lifestyle.

Jill Turner, President, Cooper Concepts, Inc.

My role at Cooper: I’m an organizer, problem solver and project manager. Working with our Cooper Complete supplement line and Cooper Healthy Living, my role is to make things happen – whether that’s making sure our supplements are available when someone wants to make a purchase (online or in a store), or organizing a customized week of all things Cooper for a private group.

My exercise of choice: Strength training with a Cooper professional trainer (and a buddy!) twice a week, and daybreak walks at breakneck speed with my hubby and our two pups, Odis and Ruby Nell.

After a great day at work, I like to… relax. Hopefully the evening will include (a generally healthy) dinner, spending time with hubby and friends or family, and reading (multiple online advice columns and whatever book is currently in progress).

My Cooper Story: I spent 20 years in Call Center management before joining Cooper in 2003, and one of my clients during that time was Cooper Complete supplements – my team answered the toll-free number and took vitamin orders. As sales grew, the decision was made to transition to a company that offered both call handling and warehouse/fulfillment. I was really frustrated when my company lost the business, as we had collectively done a great job. Imagine my surprise when I was contacted about two years later to see if I might be interested in coming to work at Cooper!

Why I love working at Cooper: It’s awesome to be surrounded by smart, kind people, to have meaningful work that makes a difference, and to continually be learning about all kinds of advances in health and wellness.


Nina Radford, Director of Clinical Research, Cooper Clinic

My role at Cooper: I am a Cardiologist in the Cardiovascular Medicine Department. I see patients in consultation who are referred from our preventive medicine physicians for a broad range of cardiovascular issues from shortness of breath to strong family history of premature cardiac death. I also see some of the new members of the Cooper Fitness Center who opt for a cardiovascular risk assessment, I also see patients who are referred for resting or stress echocardiography to assess the structure and function of the heart. I also am involved in prevention research based on the 40+ years of patient data we have archived at The Cooper Institute.

My exercise of choice: I love to walk on the treadmill or use the elliptical, listen to country western music on my iPod and people watch. Because weight training is my least favorite thing to do, I need encouragement and accountability. So, I meet with a trainer for resistance training two or three times a week. April keeps me in line! Over the weekend, I meet an old friend to walk at Whiterock Lake; we walk and talk for an hour or two or three. When we are energized enough to walk around the entire lake (about 9 miles), we usually celebrate with a very big, fattening breakfast… Luckily this only occurs about once a month.

After a great day at work, I like to… relax at home! I love to spend time with my husband Steve, my daughter Christina, my son Charlie (now by phone or text because he is a freshman at college this year) and our two very spoiled dogs. I am very lucky because my teenage kids still really like me and (after 20 years), my husband still really likes me too!

My Cooper Story: After I finished my residency and fellowship at UT Southwestern Medical Center, I was asked to join the faculty. I did basic science in a laboratory and took care of patients. Over time, I found I enjoyed taking care of patients more than running DNA gels but I was frustrated by some of the administrative features of practicing medicine in a large academic center. I met Dr. Cooper at a number of community events at a time when I was the President of the Dallas Division of the American Heart Association. He kept inviting me to Cooper Clinic for a visit and to talk about joining his team. When I found out I could take care of patients at a world renowned preventive medicine clinic and participate in research at The Cooper Institute on campus, I was over the moon. Joining Cooper Clinic in 2001 was the best decision I ever made.

Why I love working at Cooper:  I love our mission; I love the way we take care of our patients and I love the scientific research we continue to publish which helps provide the evidence that proves that prevention works! What’s not to love?!



  1. Christina Crain
    September 28, 2012 at 7:34 am

    Cannot wait for the new Cooper! Will the renovations include a covered swimming pool?

    • September 28, 2012 at 1:07 pm

      Hi Christina – We are very excited as well! As part of the current renovation project, we will not be covering the pool. However, once the first phase of the renovation project is complete, we’ll assess future plans to the pool area which include adding a separate family-friendly pool and a retractable roof.

  2. Gabriel F de Matos
    March 10, 2013 at 12:16 pm

    I am going to be in Dallas from 19th to 24 th of march 13. My wife will be working in a Simposium and I am free and I would like very much to spend time in the Cooper Center, Wellness , Aerobics whatever you could offer for this sort stay in Dallas. We are from San Paolo , Brazil. I am 63 (20th of March) and ride bicycle, do jogging and personal trainning twice a week ( aprox 84 kgs and 1,76 m.height).
    Looking forward to hearing from you and hoping to meet soon. We staying in the Omni Hotel next to Convention Center, Dallas.
    Gabriel de Matos

  3. Mary Burney
    June 20, 2013 at 8:07 pm

    Years ago my Dallas family introduced me to the Cooper Center and I was very impressed and wished I could stay there in some active program but that never happened. Now I’m old but interesed in the wonderful things that happen at the Cooper Center and am always looking forward to news on e-mail. I’m from Hungarian parents and am happy to learn of the connection between Hungary and the Cooper Ctr to encourage children’s well being.

  4. Fred Schwall
    July 13, 2013 at 3:16 pm

    Please comment on increased prostrate cancer risk from using fish oil.

    • July 15, 2013 at 9:05 am

      Hi, Fred. Thank you for reaching out to us–we will have a post today!

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