British born Tony Kelly was raised in Jamaica and returned to England in 1979 and lives in Birmingham with his family. As a Mico Teachers’ College graduate he taught English Language/Literature and Religious Education in high schools in Kingston. Tony worked in local & central government for 30 years before early retirement as a middle manager specialising in equity, equality and diversity. Among his qualifications is a Masters Degree in Socio-Legal Studies from University of Birmingham.
For nearly 8 years Tony was a Diabetes UK Community Champion Volunteer educating all communities in Britain and further afield about health and well-being in relation to diabetes, a medical condition which runs in his family. He is proud to have controlled his type 2 diabetes with physical activity and diet since diagnosis 17 years ago and has never taken medication. Thus proving it can be done with the right mindset, discipline and motivation. Since April 2020 Tony works as a voluntary Diabetes Strategic Patient Partner for NHS Birmingham and Solihull Clinical Commissioning Group and is also a Diabetes Ambassador and Advocate.
Tony is in demand for radio/television and webinar interviews about type 2 diabetes and runs free workshops/seminars. He has featured in healthy lifestyle videos with some on the internet, emphasising his positive approach in managing/controlling his diabetes. In July 2018 Tony delivered several diabetes sessions in Dominica after being headhunted by London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine as part of the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Trust, raising awareness in particular of preventable sight loss from diabetes which is rampant in four Commonwealth countries: Belize, St. Lucia, Jamaica and Dominica.
In June 2019 he visited Canada to raise awareness of this medical condition. Tony is a patient by experience as a Personal and Public Involvement (PPI) representative on two major COVID-19 research projects both with a year long life span.
1.UK Coronavirus Immunology Consortium (UK-CIC) as an Advisory Board Member and separately as a PPI representative funded by UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) and National Institute for Health Research (NIHR). 2. Aston University led study: Pandemic Enhances Response Involving Realist Synthesis and Community Pharmacy Evaluation (PERISCOPE) sponsored by UKRI (Medical Research Council) and NIHR reviewing the literature in relation to Community Pharmacists and COVID-19. Tony is one of the 12 Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Research Champions West Midlands group (NIHR clinical research network) led by Dr. Mohammed Shaikh. In 2020 Tony was one of the judges for the Patient Experience Network National Awards (PENNA). On average he does 145 diabetes community events per year in Britain with a staggering 195 community diabetes engagements in 2019. From June 2016 to June 2019 he wrote a monthly column for a regional newspaper on a range of topics including health and well-being.
After a two year personal campaign Tony convinced Public Health England in 2020 to change the standard diabetic eye screening template so that letters to diabetes patients with their test results highlight the need for physical activity which was never previously mentioned. He is the editor of The Domino Effect, Play Domino, Talk Prostate, Save Lives booklet written by Joan Blaney, CBE, Hon.DEd with Pamela Campbell- Morris, the project initiator and Leicester University, targeting the black community. It has over 2500 You Tube hits since launching in July 2020. Tony hosts Birmingham’s BreakTru TV ‘Our Health Is Our Wealth’ show interviewing black health care professionals and other community activists after doing an initial podcast in June 2020 with over 1800 hits.
Tony is the editor of a series of children’s books ‘Adventures in Bodiwell’ written by Joan Blaney to inspire children to make healthy lifestyle choices.
Winner of the following awards:
1. 2015 Diabetes UK Regional Campaigning & Raising Awareness Award. 2. 2017 Diabetes UK Regional Reaching Out and Connecting Award. 3. 2017 Association of Jamaican Nationals Seven Heroes Award for contribution to the development of the Jamaican community & other nationals in the United Kingdom. 4. 2017 Bexlive Award Community Champion: Celebrating People of Colour. 5. 2017 Community Foundation: Community Inspiration Award, Health and Well-Being Award. Top 3 finalist.
6. 2019 Award by Nation of Islam’s Sisters of Empowerment, Honouring, Remembering and Valuing Our Brothers with love for role as an ambassador for diabetes. 7. 2019 Vision2Reality Elders Award winner for Health and Wellbeing Community Champion. Contact for free engagements: email address email@example.com