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WHO official D.A. Henderson (left), famed "diet doc" Dean Ornish, and health-care administrator David Kears are three of the four public-health heroes being honored by SPH. Not shown: Brenda Yee, of honoree Chinese Hospital.
 

School of Public Health to honor its 'heroes'

07 March 2007

Three individuals and one organization will be honored on Friday, March 23, at the 11th annual Public Health Heroes Awards Ceremony in San Francisco. The award, founded by the School of Public Health (SPH), is presented to innovative leaders who have made meaningful contributions to the protection and promotion of health.

D.A. Henderson will receive the International Hero award for his outstanding leadership in directing the World Health Organization's global smallpox eradication program and his vision in establishing the organization's global program of immunization. The National Hero award will be presented to Dean Ornish for his work as a researcher, public educator, and change agent regarding the role of diet and lifestyle and its impact on heart disease. David Kears has won the Regional Hero award for his decades of leadership in finding ways to expand access and improve quality for those most in need of mental health, alcohol, drug, public-health, environmental-health, and medical services. And Chinese Hospital, an independent health-care facility in San Francisco, will receive the Organizational Hero award for providing culturally competent health services to the Chinese American community.

Henderson's award will be presented by Larry Brilliant, executive director of Google.org, the search engine's philanthropic arm; Speaker of the House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) will present Ornish's award in absentia by video; Kears will receive his award from Anne Bakar, president and CEO of Telecare Corp.; and Rolland Lowe, former president of the California Medical Association, will present the Organizational Hero award to Brenda Yee, CEO of Chinese Hospital.

The Public Health Heroes Awards ceremony will take place at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, 701 Mission St., in San Francisco. A reception at 6:30 p.m. will be followed by dinner and the awards ceremony, beginning at 7:15 p.m. For information, including expanded profiles of the awardees and presenters, visit www.publichealthheroes.org.