October 13, 2017
Amy Lansky, PhD, UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health alumna, was selected as one of five 2017 recipients of The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s Distinguished Alumnus/Alumna Awards. She and other winners were recognized Oct. 12, during UNC’s University Day ceremony.
Lansky, who earned a Master of Public Health (in health behavior, with a minor in epidemiology) and a doctoral degree in health behavior at the Gillings School, is senior adviser for strategy in the Program Performance and Evaluation Office at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Her bachelor’s degree in political science is from Swarthmore College.
She previously served as director of the White House Office on National AIDS Policy and, in that role, was the architect and implementer of U.S. HIV/AIDS policy. She also co-authored the national roadmap for action on HIV/AIDS.
She held numerous leadership positions at the CDC, including serving as deputy director for surveillance, epidemiology and laboratory services in the Division of HIV/AIDS Prevention.
Lansky has published extensively on issues such as heterosexual transmission of HIV, prevention of perinatal HIV transmission, prevention of blood-borne infections among persons who inject drugs, and sampling methods for reaching high-risk populations.
In 2010, she established the Lansky Family Scholarship in the Gillings School’s health behavior department, in honor of her parents’ commitment to education and public health. In her personal capacity, she served as president of the Gillings School’s Alumni Association board from 2014 to 2016, and as board member from 2011 to 2014.
“Many students arrive at the Gillings School wanting to change the world, and some do,” said Barbara K. Rimer, DrPH, dean and Alumni Distinguished Professor at the School. “Amy Lansky is one who definitely has.”
Other alumni awardees were Berrien Moore III, a mathematician who once served as the chair of the Space and Earth Science Advisory Committee for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA); writer Judith Phillips Stanton, who compiled and edited The Collected Letters of Charlotte Smith (2004) and taught at the University of Wisconsin at Eau Claire and at Clemson University; playwright Mike Wiley, whose work has been seen in settings ranging from The Shakespeare Theatre in Washington, D.C., to the official finale of the Freedom Riders’ 50th Reunion in Jackson, Miss.; and Richard Stevens, an attorney with the Smith Anderson Law Firm in Raleigh, N.C., who is serving a second term as a member of UNC-Chapel Hill’s Board of Trustees.
Nancy Albritton, PhD, Kenan Distinguished Professor of Chemistry and chair of the joint UNC and N.C. State University Department of Biomedical Engineering, received the Edward Kidder Graham Award, recognizing a UNC faculty member’s distinguished service to the state, nation and University.
University Day, which marks the anniversary of the 1793 laying of the cornerstone of Old East, the nation’s first state university building and the beginning of public higher education in the United States, was celebrated first in 1877.
Gov. Roy Cooper, a two-time UNC alumnus, delivered this year’s keynote address, celebrating the University’s 224th birthday. Several UNC leaders spoke prior to his address, including Shayna Hill, MPH, chair of the UNC Employee Forum and a 2014 alumna of the Gillings School’s Public Health Leadership Program.