LOS ANGELES – The American Public Health Association announced today they are awarding the nation’s highest public health award to The California Endowment’s President and CEO Robert K. Ross, MD. The Sedgwick Memorial Medal for Distinguished Service in Public Health recognizes public health leaders for innovation and leadership in the field. In their announcement of the award, APHA said Dr. Ross is being honored for his work and constant leadership to protect the health and well-being of vulnerable populations and improve knowledge and practice among public health professionals.
“I am humbled by this recognition though we still have such a long way to go before we achieve racial equity in health,” said Ross. “It is my hope that our work in California will be embraced nationally so we can make a meaningful effort as a nation to improve the health of all Americans,”
Ross, who served as the Public Health Director for San Diego prior to his appointment as President and CEO of The California Endowment in July 2000, has a long history of leading efforts to improve the health of vulnerable, underserved Californians. Among his accomplishments are the 10-year Building Healthy Communities initiative, Health4All, a campaign to expand health care and coverage to undocumented Californians, and his efforts to end the school to prison pipeline through The Endowment’s #SchoolsNotPrisons campaign.
Dr. Ross will be presented with the Sedgwick award at APHA’s virtual national convening on October 27, 2020.
About The California Endowment
The California Endowment, a private, statewide health foundation, was established in 1996 to expand access to affordable, quality health care for underserved individuals and communities, and to promote fundamental improvements in the health status of all Californians. Headquartered in downtown Los Angeles, The Endowment has regional offices in Sacramento, Oakland, Fresno and San Diego, with program staff working throughout the state. The Endowment challenges the conventional wisdom that medical settings and individual choices are solely responsible for people’s health. The Endowment believes that health happens in neighborhoods, schools, and with prevention. For more information, visit The Endowment’s Web site at www.calendow.org.