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Dr. Henry L. “Hank” Lacayo Lifetime Achievement Medallion

Dr. Antonia C. Novello, the 14th Surgeon General of the United States, was born in Fajardo, Puerto Rico. She graduated from the University of Puerto Rico with a B.S. degree in 1965 and an M.D. degree in 1970. She completed her subspecialty training in pediatric nephrology at the University of Michigan and Georgetown University. Dr. Novello received a master’s in public health from the Johns Hopkins School of Hygiene and Public Health in 1982 and a Doctor of Public Health in May 2000. She holds countless awards and over 53 honorary doctorates.

On March 9, 1990, Dr. Antonia Novello was sworn in by Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor to serve as the 14th Surgeon General of the U.S. Public Health Service. Her appointment marked two firsts: Dr. Novello became the first woman and the first Hispanic ever to hold this position. As Surgeon General, Dr. Novello advised the public on health matters such as smoking, AIDS, diet and nutrition, environmental health hazards and the importance of immunization and disease prevention.

On June 3, 1999, Governor George E. Pataki nominated Dr. Novello to be the 13th New York State Health Commissioner; one of the leading health agencies in the nation with a $49 Billion budget – one-third of the whole NY state budget. Most recently, Dr. Novello served as the Executive Director of Public Health Policy at Florida Hospital.

She is currently a consultant and preparing to launch a book tour, promoting her biography Duty Calls: Lessons Learned from an Unexpected Life of Service.

The Dr. Henry L. “Hank” Lifetime Achievement Medallion will be presented during the Hispanic Legends Awards Dinner on Saturday, February 17 at 7:00 pm.
February 15-18, 2024
Sheraton Grand Chicago Riverwalk
301 E North Water Street
Chicago, IL 60611

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