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Codirector of Haitian Clinic Receives William A. Hinton Award

MED’s Michele David recognized for public health achievements

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Michele David learned that she had received the Massachusetts Health and Human Services William A. Hinton Award at a time of concern for her family and grief for her people.

Haitian immigrant David, an associate professor of medicine at the School of Medicine, director of community health programs at the Center of Excellence in Women’s Health, and codirector of the Boston Medical Center Haitian Health Institute, was selected to receive the 2010 award in recognition of her commitment to public health, especially the improvement of health care for communities of color.

The award is named after one of the first African-American graduates of Harvard Medical School, who made great strides in the field of immunology. Like Hinton, David has made significant contributions to the medical field through many years of activism and dedication to educating others on health inequities and how to help eliminate them.

Her career includes serving the BMC Haitian Health Institute, taking on health issues affecting immigrants and those of color, researching health beliefs and how they influence patient views of the health-care system, and conducting educational campaigns on a range of topics, among them HIV, breast and cervical cancer, respiratory illnesses, hypertension, nutrition, obesity, and diabetes. She says she is honored to have been singled out for her work, but that there is still more to be done.

David is encouraged and uplifted by the immense international response to the tragedy of the earthquake that devastated her homeland in January. “I was very grateful and appreciative,” she says. “It often feels like Haiti is forgotten, and this time Haiti was not forgotten.”

David gave the 2010 William A. Hinton Lecture: Massachusetts Health Care Reform in Communities of Color: Lessons Learned on February 10, 2010, at the Harvard School of Public Health. 

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