The Blog

May 2, 2019

Meet Keynote Speaker Dr. Stephen Pont

Dr. Stephen PontStephen J. Pont, MD, MPH, FAAP

Texas Department of State Health Services; Medical Director, Office of Science and Population Health

Since returning to Texas a decade ago, Dr. Stephen Pont has worked to improve the health of children, families, and communities with a focus on underserved and Spanish speaking populations. Through working in Federally Qualified Health Centers in East Austin and serving as the medical director for Austin Independent School District and its nearly 95,000 students and staff, he recognized the need for clinical childhood obesity programs and co-founded and served as the medical director for Dell Children’s Texas Center for the Prevention and Treatment of Childhood Obesity. Nationally, Dr. Pont co-founded and served as the inaugural chair of the American Academy of Pediatrics Section on Obesity and was the lead author on the AAP Policy Statement Stigma Experienced by Children and Adolescents with Obesity. He has been an investigator or center director on more than $20 million of Medicaid, philanthropic, and NIH and CDC research grants including the CDC Childhood Obesity Research Demonstration Project that tested a systems-based childhood obesity intervention linking primary care offices, schools, YMCAs, and community-based interventions in Houston and Austin. Dr. Pont has served on many volunteer governing and advisory boards for health promoting groups, and Dr. Pont and his team at Dell Children’s worked with It’s Time Texas to pilot and launch the Choose Healthier app that connects children and families with healthy activities near where they live, learn, work, worship, and play.

Dr. Pont is an Associate Professor of Pediatrics with the University of Texas at Austin Dell Medical School and joined the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) executive team and began serving as the Medical Director for the Office of Science and Population Health in November 2017. The new office will work collaboratively to develop and advance public health priorities for Texas, serve as a focal point to coordinate and provide medical and epidemiologic expertise across the department, and identify opportunities to more effectively utilize DSHS data to monitor and drive improvement in health and wellness across Texas. In his free time, Dr. Pont enjoys playing the guitar, an annual mission trip to Guatemala with his church, and learning karate and Brazilian Jiu Jitsu with his sons and wife.

Dr. Pont will be the keynote speaker at our Building Healthier Communities workshop series stopping in Baytown, TX on May 23, 2019. A collaboration between It’s Time Texas, SNAP-Ed, and regional constituents and health leaders across the state, these free, one-day workshops will empower those looking to improve health in their school, workplace, or community to lead effective collaborations while aligning efforts to develop purposeful and actionable plans.. Learn more and register at

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