NEW YORK (October 3, 2011) – Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels, pediatrician and vaccine advocate Paul Offit and Emmy-award winning television host and wellness advocate Montel Williams will each receive the Center for Medicine in the Public Interest (CMPI) third annual Odyssey Award for Leadership in Transformational Medicine, which honors courageous individuals who have advanced medical innovation and human health. The ceremony will be held on October 5, at the Trump Soho in New York City beginning at 6 p.m. Each year CMPI honors courageous individuals who have advanced medical innovation and human health with the Odyssey Award for Leadership in Transformational Medicine. “We are honored to reward the efforts of these three remarkable people who possess the vision, determination and entrepreneurial spirit that sustains medical progress,” said Robert Hugin, CEO and President of Celgene, Inc. and chairman of this year’s gala. “Each honoree has made a unique contribution to our nation’s health by acting on their ideas with courageous optimism. In so doing they have advanced science and saved lives. “ Gov. Mitch Daniels, author of “Keeping the Republic: Saving America by Trusting Americans” will receive the Odyssey Award for his patient-centered approach to expanding access to health care in the Hoosier state and for making Indiana a hub of medical innovation. Dr. Paul Offit, chief of the Division of Infectious Diseases at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, is being honored for his discovery of the rotavirus vaccine in partnership with Merck and his courageous crusade to promote immunization despite pseudoscientific attacks against vaccines. Montel Williams will receive the award for his forceful advocacy for patient access to affordable medicine and the investment of his time and resources in accelerating the development of medical innovations for a wide range of disorders. “CMPI’s mission of encouraging and valuing medical innovation is unique among non-profit organizations,” said Peter J. Pitts, president of CMPI and former associate commissioner for the FDA. “We are privileged to honor three leaders who stand up for innovation and the needs of patients, and we thank them for their contributions to the common calling of restoring health and healing to those who need us most.”
About the Center for Medicine in the Public Interest
The Center for Medicine in the Public Interest is a nonprofit, non-partisan organization promoting innovative solutions that advance medical progress, reduce health disparities, extend life and make health care more affordable, preventive and patient-centered. CMPI also provides the public, policymakers and the media a reliable source of independent scientific analysis on issues ranging from personalized medicine, food and drug safety, health care reform and comparative effectiveness.