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2017 CPHA Public Health Awards Breakfast


The Connecticut Public Health Association (CPHA) will be hosting a Public Health Awards Breakfast from 8:30-11am on Friday, April 7th, 2017 at Goodwin College in East Hartford. As part of National Public Health Week (April 4th-8th, 2017), CPHA will recognize and honor outstanding professionalism, dedication and contributions to the field of public health within the state of Connecticut. There is no greater honor than to be recognized by one’s peers. 


Congratulations to our 2017 Awardees!

C.-E.A. Winslow Award - 

Jennifer Kertanis, MPH, Director of Health at the Farmington Valley Health District

The C.-E.A. Winslow Award recognizes a public health professional for demonstrated leadership and achievement in public health practice, research, and/or education.

Jennifer Kertanis is the Director of Health for the Farmington Valley Health District, serving ten towns and a population of approximately 110,000. Prior to joining FVHD in September of 2012, Jennifer served as the Executive Director of the Connecticut Association of Directors of Health (CADH) for ten years. During her tenure at CADH, she co-established the CT practice-based research network and was a contributing architect of the Health Equity Index, a tool that measures the relationship between social conditions and health outcomes. Prior to her position with CADH, Jennifer worked for eleven years with the CT Department of Public Health in the environmental epidemiology unit, working with communities to assess the health implications of hazardous waste sites. During this time, she wrote several peer-reviewed health assessments and advanced a number of health outcome studies. Jennifer also established the Department’s asthma surveillance program.


Ira V. Hiscock Award - 

Richard Blumenthal, US Senator for Connecticut

The Ira V. Hiscock Award recognizes a Connecticut layperson or organization that has made notable contributions to the advancement of public health through public service, education, advocacy and/or leadership. Hiscock was an internationally recognized epidemiologist and public health professor at Yale who inspired generations of students.

Originally sworn in on January 5, 2011, Richard Blumenthal is serving his second term as a United States Senator from the State of Connecticut. He has introduced, sponsored, and supported legislation on a range of public health issues, including: women’s health, Medicare drug savings, prescription drug shortages, mental health parity, tobacco use, and elder abuse.

Senator Blumenthal served an unprecedented five terms as Connecticut’s Attorney General, fighting for people against large and powerful special interests. A key player in the national fight against Big Tobacco, he helped bring an end to deceptive marketing aimed at children – a victory significantly lowering youth smoking rates, and compelling a multi-billion dollar settlement for Connecticut taxpayers. As Attorney General, he advocated for reforms in the health insurance industry to assure critical health care coverage and lower pharmaceutical drug prices


Charles G. Huntington Award - 

Richard Melchreit, MD, CT Department of Public Health

The Charles G. Huntington III Award is presented annually to a Connecticut health care practitioner who has demonstrated public health leadership and a commitment to the health and well-being of populations.

Dr. Melchreit has served the people of Connecticut for more than three decades. Prior to joining DPH, Dr. Melchreit was a staff pediatrician at St. Francis Medical Center. In 1986, he became the first AIDS Program Coordinator for the AIDS Division at DPH. As the program expanded, he became the Division’s Medical Associate, working closely with advocacy groups and the clinical community, and advising public health staff and policymakers on HIV/AIDS programs and prevention policies. After 9/11/2001, Dr. Melchreit became the Bioterrorism (Smallpox) Medical Program Coordinator, responsible for the development of medical capabilities for response to bioterror and other infectious public health emergencies. In 2008, Dr. Melchreit began his current role as Healthcare Associated Infections Program Coordinator for the Infectious Disease Section at DPH. In this role, he works closely with acute care hospitals, long-term care centers, dialysis centers, and various medical associations. He supervises staff, oversees the investigations into healthcare associated infections, and facilitates an advisory committee composed of health professionals, experts and consumers. Over the years, Dr. Melchreit has mentored dozens of students, both undergraduate and graduate. He has held leadership roles in the Council of State and Territorial Epidemiologists, most recently on the Healthcare Associated Infections Subcommittee. He also has been an active member of CPHA, serving as Director-at-Large in 2015-2016.


Michael J. Perlin Award- 

Riddhi Doshi, MBBS, PhD Candidate, University of Connecticut

The Michael J. Perlin Student Award recognizes a current public health student who demonstrates, through student activities and/or community service, a commitment to leadership, volunteerism, and the highest educational standards.

In addition to her medical degree and MPH, Dr. Doshi is currently a PhD candidate in Public Health in the Department of Community Medicine and Healthcare at the University of Connecticut. Within the PhD program, she has maintained a GPA of 4.0 and has published research in a number of national and international journals. Her dissertation research focuses on examining racial disparities in hospitalizations in Connecticut over the past decade – an area of research critical to the state and the nation. She is currently collaborating with the World Health Organization’s Global TB programme team and international non-profit organizations to develop studies to examine the effectiveness of innovative technology to improve patient outcomes among TB patients in India. Alongside, she is also volunteering for a small non-profit organization in India that is involved in the using mobile-based intervention to improve maternal and child health outcomes among urban poor. Her community service work reveals her constant commitment to vulnerable populations. 


CPHA respectfully requests that attendees refrain from wearing colognes and perfumes to this event.

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