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 Stories for April 1, 1998:

Acknowledging Public Health Heroes
Four Are Recognized for Efforts to Improve Worldwide Human Well-Being

posted Apr. 1, 1998

The School of Public Health honored four front-line public health heroes Friday evening, March 13. The second annual celebration of public health heroes took place at the City Club in San Francisco and recognized:

  • Laurie Garrett, Pulitzer Prize-winning science writer and author of “The Coming Plague,”

  • Rodrigo Guerrero, former mayor of Cali, Colombia, who at great personal risk confronted Colombia’s notorious drug lords in an effort to stop the violence,

  • Dorothy Rice, professor emeritus of social and behavioral sciences at UCSF, currently advising state governments in their pursuit of damages from the tobacco industry to pay for smoking-related health costs, and

  • Esta Soler, executive director of the San Francisco Family Violence Prevention Fund and a national figure in the campaign to end domestic violence.

Organized by the Dean’s Policy Advisory Council, the celebration was hosted by council co-chairs Peter Carpenter and Linda Clever.

In his opening remarks, Carpenter explained that the award was established in 1996 to “broaden people’s awareness and understanding of the public health field by publicly recognizing individuals and organizations for their significant contributions and exceptional commitment to promoting and protecting the health of the human population.”

This year’s heroes received a Steven Maslach dichroic glass sculpture specially commissioned for the event.

Michael Hayes, associate director for external relations in the School of Public Health, said nearly 200 guests attended the dinner. “Faculty and the Dean’s Policy Advisory Council submit nominations for the annual heroes award,” he said. A subcommittee of the council then selects from among the nominees.

“The goal is to have a person representing international concerns, one focusing on national public health issues, one representing the regional arena, and one who is associated with an organization,” Hayes said.

This year’s honored four join the inaugural heroes: Kritiya Archavanitkul, an assistant professor at

Majhidol University in Bangkok, Thailand, whose research addresses the needs of underserved women and children in Southeast Asia; William Foege, former director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, who led the successful worldwide campaign to eradicate smallpox; Stanton Glantz, UCSF professor of medicine, who is credited with exposing the tobacco industry’s 30-year deception of the public about the dangers of cigarette smoking; and Andrea Martin, founder and executive director of the Breast Cancer Fund, a San Francisco-based organization committed to eradicating breast cancer by supporting state-of-the-art projects in research, education, advocacy and patient care.

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