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June 9, 2005


Michael R. Lovell, associate dean of research in Pitt’s School of Engineering and director of the Swanson Institute for Technical Excellence, has been selected to receive the 2005 Burt L. Newkirk Award from the American Society of Mechanical Engineers “for significant contributions to the field of tribology, primarily through publications and services for nearly 15 years; and as an expert in computational and manufacturing tribology.”

Tribology is the study of friction, wear and lubrication as applied to engineering.

The award includes a $1,000 honorarium. Formal presentation of the award is scheduled to take place at the World Tribology Conference in September.


Stephen B. Thomas, director of the Center for Minority Health (CMH) in the Graduate School of Public Health, received the David Satcher Award from the Directors of Health Promotion and Education (DHPE) at the group’s annual meeting last month, in conjunction with the National Conference of Health Education and Health Promotion.

The award honors Satcher, who was the first African-American director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and was surgeon general during the release of the Healthy People 2010 national health objectives, which included for the first time a national focus on reducing health disparities. He also is credited for his efforts that focused national attention on evidence that race and ethnicity correlate with ongoing, and often increasing, health disparities among U.S. populations.

Thomas served as a visiting scientist in the Office of the Director, Center for HIV/AIDS, STD and TB Prevention at the CDC from 1996 to 1998, during the time when Satcher was director of the CDC.

Among the programs and strategies implemented by the CMH under Thomas’s leadership are community-based interventions that range from development of culturally tailored health communication materials designed to address an individual’s risk behaviors to media advocacy — using mass media to advocate for policy change.

Thomas also established a team that mobilized the community to focus beyond the biomedical model and began to address a broad range of health disparity issues including breaking the cycle of poverty, exposing discrimination in access to health care and eliminating environmental hazards in homes and neighborhoods.

He is one the nation’s leading scholars in the effort to eliminate health disparities based on race. Over the past 15 years, Thomas has applied his expertise in behavioral science and health education in the African-American community.

Thomas’s work has addressed several critical public health issues including HIV/AIDS, youth violence, substance abuse and the need for increasing organ and tissue donations among African Americans.

“Dr. Thomas was selected to receive this award because he has demonstrated leadership in reducing health disparities which have resulted in the improvement of health promotion and health education programs at the state and local levels,” said Fred Breuckelman, president of DHPE.

“Dr. Thomas has demonstrated successful program implementation which has reduced health disparities by sharing new knowledge about the causes of health disparities, translating research into practice, using innovative methods of promoting health and delivering culturally competent and linguistically specific preventative services,” Breuckelman added.


Two faculty members in the Pitt medical school’s Department of Family Medicine have received the 2005 Innovative Program Award from the Society of Teachers of Family Medicine.

Richard Zimmerman, associate professor of family medicine, and Donald Middleton, professor of family medicine and the department’s vice chair, along with Sanford Kimmel of the Medical College of Ohio, were honored for their creation of three educational products for family physicians.


A Pitt administrator and a faculty member were honored at the 20th Black Extravaganza and Trailblazer Awards ceremony hosted by Pittsburgh’s Renaissance Publications.

Winners of 2005 Black Trailblazer Awards included Vice Chancellor for Public Affairs Robert Hill.

Among those who received KDKA-TV Lift Up Awards during the awards ceremony were Margaret Larkins-Pettigrew, an assistant professor in Pitt’s School of Medicine.


Pitt-Bradford’s Staff Association has awarded its 2004-2005 Staff Recognition Award to Donald (Donnie) Johnson, staff member at the UPB Mail Center.

The award honors staff who demonstrate outstanding dedication to the Bradford campus and commitment to providing high-quality service.

Johnson will be recognized at the UPBSA end-of-year luncheon.

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