Dr. Mary Jo Podgurski founded The Washington Health System Teen Outreach in 1988. She is responsible for presenting sexuality education to over 230,000 young people. Dr. Podgurski authored 28 books, including The Nonnie Series, for children on challenging topics. She has presented over 750 workshops locally, nationally and internationally.
Dr. Podgurski started a peer education program in 1995, a county-wide Adolescent Advisory Board in 1999, and the Common Ground Teen Center in 2008. She writes the Ask Mary Jo weekly column for young people in the Observer Reporter newspaper. Dr. Podgurski co-founded the first GSA in her county in 2005.
Dr. Podgurski is certified in sexuality education and sexuality counseling from AASECT. She has received many professional awards, including the Athena Women of Wisdom Award (2004) 2004, the NAACP Human Rights Award (2008), The ARC Community Award (2014), and the 2014 Healthy Teen Network Excellence in Sexuality Education Award.