Media Contact: Beth McGroarty • +1.213.300.0107

Global Wellness Institute Appoints Two Senior Research Fellows  

Ophelia Yeung and Katherine Johnston will lead major global research project on workplace wellness

Miami, FL – April 1, 2015 – The Global Wellness Institute™ (GWI), an international think-tank that develops research and resources to help improve wellness worldwide, today announced that its major research initiative for 2015 will focus on workplace wellness and the role these initiatives play in supporting the health and wellbeing of people worldwide. The project will be spearheaded by newly appointed Senior Research Fellows, Ophelia Yeung and Katherine Johnston, who have conducted previous research projects for the Institute under their other affiliation as economists and researchers at SRI International. A summary of top-line findings will be revealed at the Global Wellness Summit taking place at the St. Regis Hotel, Mexico City, November 13-15, 2015.

“There are many factors driving the global adoption of workplace wellness initiatives – including an obesity and chronic disease epidemic sweeping the world, alongside a huge increase in stress, resulting in part from our ‘always connected’ lives, which, of course, result in healthcare costs spiraling,” said Susie Ellis, Chairman and CEO of the Global Wellness Institute. “This research will investigate what makes a ‘well’ company and will dig deeper into what contributes to the successes (and failures) of current workplace wellness initiatives.”

“We’re excited to formalize Ophelia and Katherine’s roles as Senior Research Fellows for the Institute, and it’s a recognition of the key roles each has played in the wide-ranging wellness research our organization has released over the last eight years,” said Ellis.

Yeung has more than 20 years of experience leading research and strategic studies for corporations, governments, universities and multilateral agencies in dozens of countries and is a Senior Consultant at SRI International, a nonprofit, independent research center serving government and industry. Said Yeung: “My work with companies, industries and regions has convinced me that ‘wellness’ is a key factor in creating competitive businesses, vibrant regions, and cohesive and engaged communities. I believe in the mission of the GWI, and I am proud to be affiliated with a dynamic and passionate group of thinkers dedicated to empowering wellness worldwide.”

Johnston has over 15 years of experience managing studies on economic and industry competitiveness and is an expert in developing innovative approaches for collecting and analyzing industry, workforce and economic data, and in combining rigorous quantitative analysis with qualitative insights gathered through stakeholder interviews and engagement. Said Johnston: “It has been exciting to see the GWI grow and embrace such an expansive leadership role in advancing the cause of wellness around the world. GWI’s research has been critical in filling a void of information and data on this major trend and it’s a privilege to work so closely with them in developing meaningful research with the mission of helping people, businesses, and governments understand the importance of a proactive, wellness-focused approach to life.”

Research conducted by the Global Wellness Institute is made available for free download thanks to the generous sponsorship it receives. Thus far, the 2015 research has received the support of the following companies: Spafinder Wellness, Inc., the largest media, marketing and gifting company for the spa and wellness industry; Clarins, a global leader in the premium skincare market; Delos, a pioneer in Wellness Real Estate™ that places health and wellness at the center of design and construction decisions; Massage Envy Spa, a pioneer and national leader of affordable massage and spa services; Universal Companies, supplier to over 30,000 spa professionals in 47 countries; as well as Bon Vital, The Comphy Company, The Body Holiday, Edge Systems, ESPA and Wahanda. A limited number of additional sponsorships are available and all sponsors will be acknowledged when a summary of the research is presented at the Summit in Mexico City and then, in full, at a press conference that will take place in New York City.

About the Global Wellness Institute: The Global Wellness Institute (GWI) is an international think tank that brings together leaders from the private and public sector to positively impact and shape the future of the wellness industry. The GWI is considered the leading global research and educational resource for the $3.4 trillion wellness industry, and, the world’s first online portal to the medical evidence for common wellness approaches, is a GWI initiative.