Dr. David Satcher Awards Recognize Local Work Addressing Health Inequities

September 14, 2020                                                                           FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE



Dr. David Satcher Awards Recognize Local Work Addressing Health Inequities


The 11th annual Dr. David Satcher Community Health Improvement Awards recognizes University of Rochester Medical Center (URMC) faculty and staff for their significant contributions to the health of the greater Rochester area and Finger Lakes region. The annual event, usually held in the spring and celebrated with a major speaker, often Dr. Satcher, was not held due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but the awardees’ work, in partnership with their community partners, was recognized.

Presented by the Center for Community Health & Prevention (CCHP), the awards reflect the mission of the CCHP and the URMC to develop and expand community-university partnerships that support community-engaged research and interventions that reduce health inequities and improve the community’s health.

David Satcher, M.D., Ph.D., 16th surgeon general of the United States, a URMC alum and the awards’ namesake, is a leading voice in public health and has been an integral advisor to the University in helping move this mission forward. Dr. Satcher’s latest book “My Quest for Health Equity: Notes on Learning while Leading,” was published earlier this month.

“We were very disappointed to forego a more formal celebratory event this year with the awardees and their community partners,” said Nancy M. Bennett, M.D., M.S., CCHP director and co-director of the UR Clinical & Translational Science Institute. “Yet, we are proud to be able to share their tremendous accomplishments in community health improvement and recognize the invaluable work being done with community partners to combat health inequities throughout Rochester. Although this work has always been important, it is especially critical in our current national climate.”

This year’s recipients include:

Senior Faculty Awardees

  • Susan Hetherington, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Clinical Pediatrics and Education; Director, Strong Center for Developmental Disabilities; University of Rochester School of Medicine & Dentistry (recent retiree)

Through research consultation, clinical services and program development at the Strong Center for Developmental Disabilities, a federally-funded University Center of Excellence in Developmental Disabilities, Dr. Hetherington promotes positive outcomes and full inclusion for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) throughout the lifespan.

Community partners include: Rochester City School District, Common Ground Health, Starbridge, Inc., YMCA

Read more and watch a video on Dr. Hetherington’s work.

  • Steven L. Barnett, M.D., Associate Professor of Family Medicine and Public Health Sciences; Director, Rochester Prevention Research Center: National Center for Deaf Health Research; University of Rochester School of Medicine & Dentistry

Dr. Barnett directs the Rochester Prevention Research Center (RPRC): National Center for Deaf Health Research (NCDHR) and in that capacity has engaged and partnered with populations of Deaf sign language users and people with hearing loss in Rochester, and nationally, to identify and address health priorities with those communities.

Read more and watch a video on Dr. Barnett’s work

Junior Faculty Awardee

  1. Mahala Schlagman, M.D., Assistant Professor of Medicine; Director, Internal Medicine Health Equity Curriculum; Director, Medical Legal Partnership; University of Rochester School of Medicine & Dentistry

In her role as Internal Medicine Health Equity Curriculum Director, Dr. Schlagman built a team to develop a novel educational curriculum for Internal Medicine residents on the Social Determinants of Health and how they impact health equity. She also helped initiate, and is the faculty mentor for, the Health Equity Advocacy Team, an interdisciplinary initiative to foster resident conversations about health disparities and to develop advocacy skills.

Community partners include: Legal Assistance of Western NY (LawNY)

Read more and watch a video on Dr. Schlagman’s work.

Staff Awardee

Amali Epa-Llop, Ph.D., Sr. Human Subject Research Coordinator; Women’s Initiative Supporting Health (WISH); University of Rochester

WISH is a clinical and research health services initiative of gender and trauma-responsive strategies to address the broad health needs of women involved in the justice system (e.g. incarceration, probation, Drug Treatment Court). WISH uses evidence-based strategies including: primary medical care, peer community health workers, Self-Determination Theory, and self-paced multimedia interventions. This is Dr. Epa-Llop’s second year with WISH.

Community Partners include: Exercise Express, Finger Lakes Performing Provider Services (FLPPS), Samaritan Center of Excellence

Read more and watch a video on Dr. Epa-Llop’s work.

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For more information:

Rebecca Youmell

Communications Manager

Center for Community Health & Prevention


(315) 506-9676

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