Rural Health Network Awards Cash Prizes to the Biggest Losers

The Greene County Rural Health Network’s Healthy Weight Initiative is pleased to announce that 23 people were awarded cash prizes in the first annual Biggest Loser contest. 250 people entered the 12-week contest, which started April 1 and ran through June 21. The contest was open to employees of Greene County employers. The person who lost the most weight was given a $500 award, second place was $300, and third place was $150. The next 20 people who lost the most weight were each awarded $50 gift cards. The winners lost, on average, about 5%-10% of their weight over the 12-week period, according to Program Coordinator Melissa Scheriff. Participants were given a weight loss guide, calorie counting wheels, and weekly tips to assist them in their weight loss.

Of the 15 agencies that participated in the contest, the National Bank of Coxsackie employs the highest number of winners. Two of their employees ranked in the top three and five others ranked in the top 20. According to 2nd place winner, National Bank of Coxsackie employee Mark Maraglio, “my blood pressure and sugar levels were very high before I lost weight. Now, my numbers are all in the normal range.” Employees of the Village of Coxsackie also lost significant weight. “Employees of the Village of Coxsackie lost a total of 61.9 pounds and most of us will be making wiser food choices in the future even though the contest is over,” said Valerie Murphy, Village Clerk. ” I am now down 11 pounds thanks to the calorie wheel. I still can’t believe how many calories I had been consuming prior to the contest.”

“People will have another chance to lose weight and win a cash award because we are planning another contest for early 2014, right after the holidays,“ said Scheriff. The Healthy Weight Initiative is a program of the Greene County Rural Health Network that aims to help Greene County residents reach and maintain a healthy weight. To learn more, go to

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