Powell Hammond honored with Minority Leadership Development Program award

Dec. 9, 2013

Wizdom Powell Hammond, PhD, assistant professor of health behavior at the UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health, has been selected as a Kaiser Permanente Burch Minority Leadership Development Program awardee.

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Dr. Wizdom Powell Hammond. Photo by Dan Sears.

The program, piloted in 2010, aims to enhance leadership development of junior minority researchers committed to improving service to the underserved and reducing health and health-care inequities.

The Institute for Alternative Futures, on behalf of Kaiser Permanente, selected Powell Hammond, along with Gillings School alumna Chandra L. Ford, PhD, now assistant professor of community health sciences in UC-Los Angeles’ Fielding School of Public Health, for two years of leadership support (2014-2016).

Awardees receive up to $10,000 to develop and sustain professional relationships with policy makers and gain increased visibility as emerging leaders of the underserved. An additional stipend is given to take part in a practicum that provides awardees with practical experience in a health care setting that shows commitment to health equity.

Powell Hammond’s research investigates psychological and social determinants of mental and physical health for African-American males in all stages of life. Her primary interests are in social constructions of masculinity and their influence on men’s health, medical mistrust, racial discrimination and paternal socialization. She studies outcomes related to health-care use and access, cancer prevention and control activities, mental health status, and health risk behaviors.

The Kaiser Permanente Burch Minority Leadership Development Program is funded from 2013 to 2016 by a $600,000 grant from a Kaiser Permanente charitable fund at the East Bay Community Foundation. The program was established to honor the service of Chris Burch, retired executive director of the National Association of Public Hospitals and Health Systems (now known as America’s Essential Hospitals), and her tireless efforts on behalf of public hospitals and social justice.

In addition to Powell Hammond and Ford, the 2014-2016 awardees include Lisa Cacari-Stone, PhD, of the University of New Mexico Health Sciences Center; Cheryl R. Clark, MD, ScD, of the Harvard Medical School; LeConté J. Dill, DrPH, of the State University of New York; and Helena B. Hansen, MD, PhD, of New York University.

Alumna Ford’s areas of expertise include the social determinants of HIV/AIDS disparities, critical race theory, and health disparities affecting sexual minority populations.


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Gillings School of Global Public Health contact: David Pesci, director of communications, (919) 962-2600 or dpesci@unc.edu.