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Research!America announces 2018 Advocacy Awards Honorees

Friday, October 6, 2017

A former congressional leader who was instrumental in doubling the NIH budget, the head of a global research center aimed at reducing the burden of disease, two long-time mental health advocates dedicated to accelerating research, a rare disease organization committed to biotech innovation, and a world-renowned vaccine researcher are among those who will be honored at Research!America’s 22nd annual Advocacy Awards on Wednesday, March 14, 2018, in Washington, D.C. The honorees for the Isadore Rosenfeld Award for Impact on Public Opinion and the Edwin C. Whitehead Award for Medical Research Advocacy will be announced in the coming weeks.

The Honorable John Edward Porter will receive Research!America’s 2018 Legacy Award. Porter has served on Research!America’s board since 2001, 12 of those years as chair and now chair emeritus. During his 21 years as the Republican Congressman from Illinois’s 10th district, Porter served on the U.S. House Committee on Appropriations and chaired the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, Education and Related Agencies, which allocates funding for the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and other health-related federal agencies. He spearheaded the doubling of NIH’s budget during the period 1998-2003. One of the world’s largest neuroscience facilities—the John Edward Porter Neuroscience Research Center at NIH—was named in his honor.

Roger I. Glass, M.D., Ph.D., director of the Fogarty International Center and associate director for international research at NIH, will receive the Geoffrey Beene Builders of Science Award for his leadership in strengthening NIH’s research and training partnerships abroad and his extensive research in the prevention of gastroenteritis from rotaviruses, noroviruses and cholera.

Shari and Garen Staglin, founders of the Staglin Family Vineyard, will receive the Gordon and Llura Gund Leadership Award for their commitment to accelerating cures for brain disorders through scientific research. The Staglins founded One Mind, One Mind Institute and Bring Change2Mind to address brain disorders and stigma. For the last 23 years, their annual Music Festival for Brain Health has helped raise over $280 million for brain health research.

The EveryLife Foundation for Rare Diseases will receive the Paul G. Rogers Distinguished Organization Advocacy Award for its efforts to improve the regulatory process for drug development and strengthen the patient voice. The Foundation played a pivotal role in securing passage of the bipartisan 21st Century Cures Act, which was signed into law in 2016.

Peter J. Hotez, M.D., Ph.D., dean of the National School of Tropical Medicine and professor of pediatrics and molecular virology and microbiology at Baylor College of Medicine will receive the Raymond and Beverly Sackler Award for Sustained National Leadership for his important research in neglected tropical disease (NTD) and vaccine development.

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