NCPPA grew out of an exploratory meeting at the American Heart Association's national headquarters in Dallas in 1995. Representatives from more than thirty health organizations met to discuss the merits of a physical activity coalition and left in virtually unanimous agreement that such a coalition should be created. Soon thereafter, the American Heart Association, the American College of Sports Medicine, and the American Alliance for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance accepted the responsibility for creating the coalition that eventually became NCPPA.
In 1996, NCPPA was formalized and it began to recruit other organizations as members, expanded its group of lead members and secured a grant from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Between 1996 and 2000, NCPPA created a network of state physical activity coalitions, produced community action and media advocacy kits designed to help organizations promote physical activity and held a national news conference following the release of the Surgeon General's Report on Physical Activity and Health.
Since then, NCPPA has continued to mature. It is incorporated as a 501(c)(4) tax exempt organization and has also established a 501(c)(3) foundation. NCPPA also received a capacity building grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and moved its office and staff to Washington, D.C.
NCPPA has continued to grow, develop and evolve to become the self sustaining, productive coalition that we are today.