The Abstract: November 29, 2021
November 29, 2021
Whether you’re local or global, student or alumni, the Abstract’s weekly news digest will help you stay in the loop with our amazing Gillings School community.
Leadership scholarship established in memory of David Steffen
In memory of clinical assistant professor of public health leadership David Steffen, DrPH, who passed away in July 2021, the Steffen family has established the David Steffen and Jill Kerr Family Scholarship to support students within the Public Health Leadership Program who demonstrate a commitment to improving public health practice.
Ward named top world expert in child care research
Dianne Ward, EdD, professor of nutrition at the Gillings School, has been recognized as a “World Expert” in child care by Expertscape, a service that ranks the expertise of researchers in biomedical fields. She is among the top 0.062 percent of published authors in child care research worldwide, and she ranks ninth in the United States.
The rankings are based on Expertscape’s algorithm, which reviews PubMed journal articles over the previous 10 years and ranks the authors according to the number and quality of their publications, considering factors that include how recently their work was published, the types of articles they have authored, and the quality of the journals where they are published.
Dr. Ward is a research fellow at the UNC Center for Health Promotion and Disease Prevention. Her research focuses on preventing obesity and improving health and well-being through early care and education, home and community interventions promoting healthy eating and physical activity.
Gabel named CEO of RTI International
“I am honored to be selected as RTI’s next president and CEO,” said Gabel. “The institute’s work impacts, illuminates or improves the most urgent issues facing society today, in our local communities, in North Carolina, and around the world. I share the commitment that everyone who works for the institute demonstrates each day to deliver the promise of science for global good.”
UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health and RTI International are long-standing partners and leaders in improving human health and the human condition. Both institutions are complex, mission-driven organizations with N.C. roots and global impact.
Williams publishes memoir on mission-driven service
Aaron Williams, MBA, adjunct professor of health policy and management, has published a new book this month, titled A Life Unimagined: The Rewards of Mission-Driven Service in the Peace Corps and Beyond. The book is a memoir of Williams’ life and work in public health.
Williams’ distinguished career in public service has seen him assume leadership roles across some of our nation’s critical agencies for furthering global cooperation, development and peace. He served as a senior official at the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), where he reached the rank of career minister in the Senior Foreign Service. Appointed by President Barack Obama, Williams served as director of the U.S. Peace Corps, from 2009–2012. His time with these organizations included historic milestones, becoming the first African-American to serve as USAID’s executive secretary, and the first African-American male to be appointed to lead the Peace Corps.