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Alliance for Aging Research Recognizes Erik Fatemi

Published June 24, 2008

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Alliance for Aging Research Recognizes Erik Fatemi with “Making a Difference Award

Award Honors Legacy of Health Research Advocate Florence S. Mahoney

June 24th, 2008, Washington, D.C. – The Alliance for Aging Research will honor Erik Fatemi, a staff member of the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies, for his public service and commitment to medical research with its inaugural Florence S. Mahoney Making A Difference Award. Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA), chairman of the subcommittee, will participate in the award ceremony and reception to be held this evening at the Reserve Officers Association.

In his seven years of service on the subcommittee, Fatemi’s responsibilities have included the National Institutes of Health, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, and the Department of Education, particularly funding for the No Child Left Behind Act and the Individuals With Disabilities Education Act. He also works on policy related to embryonic stem cell research. Previously, Fatemi worked as a newspaper reporter and editor for 12 years, most recently for Education Week, a newspaper covering K-12 education across the United States.

The award remembers Florence Mahoney for her advocacy and dedication to health care policy, especially aging research. She fought relentlessly to establish the National Institute on Aging (NIA) in the early 1970s despite opposition from President Nixon, members of his administration and various interest groups. Mahoney’s efforts were rewarded in 1974 when the NIA was created, launching a new era in aging research.

She also served on a number of boards and committees, including the National Community Committee on Mental Health; the Lasker Foundation; the National Advisory Arthritis and Metabolic Diseases Council; the National Advisory Child Health and Human Development Council; and the President’s Commission on Heart Disease, Cancer and Stroke.

“We are honored to recognize Erik Fatemi with this award,” said Daniel Perry, executive director of the Alliance. “Erik’s consistent support for medical research has made a difference for many researchers who look to NIH for funding, advocacy groups that strive for innovation, and patients and their families who count on new discoveries to ease their suffering. He exemplifies the values that guided Florence Mahoney, and he is a truly worthy recipient of th is first award named in her honor.”

The reception will bring together leaders in medical research and policy to celebrate Fatemi’s accomplishments and learn about the state of medical science. It will be held from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. at the Reserve Officers Association, 1 Constitution Ave., NE, in Washington, D.C. This event is made possible through a grant from the Florence S. Mahoney Foundation.

Founded in 1986, the Alliance for Aging Research is a nonprofit, independent organization dedicated to improving the health and independence of aging Americans through public and private funding of medical research and geriatric education. The Alliance combines the interest of top scientists, public officials, business executives, and foundation leaders to promote a greater national investment in research and new technologies that will prepare our nation for the coming senior boom, and improve the quality of life for today’s older generation.

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