Dear Friends and Colleagues,
As the spring semester winds down I am often asked if things slow down at CGBI in the summer months. The answer is a resounding and grateful no. Our programmatic work is year round and preparations for the coming academic year start as soon as the semester ends. Now to give you a recap of the last few months… In late March we co-sponsored the Breastfeeding and Feminism International Conference with Dr. Paige Hall
Smith from UNC Greensboro. Thanks to Dr. Alison Stuebe for stepping up, co-facilitating the conference for the CGBI team! This year in addition to the amazing conference sessions we had a special evening reception honoring Dr. Miriam Labbok. Friends, colleagues and Dot Labbok (Miriam’s sister) joined us for laughter, tears, her favorite music and dancing. This year’s recipient of the Miriam H. Labbok Award for Excellence was awarded to Brooke Bauer, founder and CEO of Nurture Project International, an International Humanitarian Aid NGO that provides lactation support, midwifery care and nutrition programs to refugee populations in Europe and the Middle East. Read Brooke’s acceptance speech here. We were also able to secure the provocative and heart wrenching film, Tigers. Thank you to Miriam’s longtime colleague and friend Judy Canahuati for making this happen. Tigers is a film about the Nestle whistleblower, Syed Aamir Raza who gained the courage to take on big industry in Pakistan. Syed and his family met with guests for a Q&A session following the film. We are thankful to Syed for sharing his story with us. The conference itself was filled with fantastic sessions and a visit from our friend Kimberly Seals Allers, who read from her new book, The Big Letdown. Please consider joining one of the 2018 BFIC committees -see the survey link in this newsletter issue.
We have been busy on the conference circuit this spring presenting at that National WIC Association, the United States Lactation Consultant Association, North Carolina Lactation Consultant Association Summit, Pennsylvania Keystone 10 Summit and co-hosting our second learning collaborative meeting for EMPower hospitals with our colleagues from Abt Associates and Population Health Improvement Partners.
Another stellar cohort of the Mary Rose Tully Training Initiative has graduated and we have started the process of finalizing our next class. In late May we held a close out meeting for our FEEDing project in Forsyth County, funded by Kate B. Reynolds Charitable Trust. This effort was led by Kathy Parry and Daina Huntley. As a result of this project we are pleased to offer a new set of stakeholder driven and patient centered handouts in English, Spanish, and Arabic (coming soon). Thank you to Saada Sallim Al-barwani, a PhD nursing student for assisting us with back translation. This issue is packed with meeting and project updates, please enjoy!
This summer the CGBI team will be relocating to a suite in the Department of Maternal and Child Health so come visit us! Being in the same physical location will enable us to communicate and collaborate even better. In August, we will be welcoming a new member to our team. Dr. Aunchalee Palmquist will join us as an Assistant Professor on the tenure track. We will share more about Dr. Palmquist in our fall edition.
I would like to end with congratulations to Dr. Nathan Nickel, Assistant Professor at the University of Manitoba. Nathan is the recipient of the Sydney S. Chipman, an award honoring alumni who have shown outstanding promise to the field of maternal and child health. This week I was blessed to participate in the BUILD Health Challenge grant review committee. As I sit in the airport waiting to return home I find myself reflecting on how lucky we all are to be doing the work that we love with like-minded, gracious colleagues. Thank you friends for your ongoing support.