​Iosefa (Sefa) Aina, is Associate Dean and Director of the Asian American Resource Center at Pomona College.  Professionally, he has served as an academic and student-organizational advisor, as well as an instructor for Asian American Studies programs at UCLA and California State University, Fullerton.  In the community, Sefa  serves as the Board Chair of EPIC (Empowering Pacific Islander Communities) and has been active on the advisory boards of the PIHCP (Pacific Islander Health Careers PIPELINE) Project, NHPI (Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander) Alliance for Health, Pacific Islander Cancer Control Network (PICCN) Samoan Community Advisory Board, and The AIGA (All Islands Getting Along) Foundation. Sefa is also a founding member of NPIEN (National Pacific Islander Educators Network) and the UCLA PIER (Pacific Islander Education + Retention) Project which does outreach, tutoring and mentoring for Pacific Islander youth in the greater Los Angeles area.  In September of 2010, Sefa was appointed by President Barack Obama to the President's Advisory Commission on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders.  He served as the Vice-Chair on this Commission until his term was completed in 2014. In addition, he has served as a member of the Steering Committee for the APIASF's (Asian Pacific Islander American Scholarship Fund's) Higher Education Summit, and was a reader for the Gates Millennium Scholarship Fund for both APIASF and the AIGCS (American Indian Graduate Center Scholars).  Sefa also hosted a Pacific Islander Health and Fitness Day at UCLA, which took on the issue of childhood obesity in the Pacific Islander community.

John Auerbach, MBA, is the Associate Director for Policy at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Acting Director of the Office for State, Tribal, Local and Territorial Support (OSTLTS).  He oversees the Office of the Associate Director for Policy, which focuses on the promotion of public health and prevention as components of health care and payment reform and health system transformation.   As the Acting OSTLTS Director he oversees key activities and technical assistance that support the nation’s health departments and the public health system.  Prior to his appointment at CDC, he was a Distinguished Professor of Practice in Health Sciences and the Director of the Institute on Urban Health Research and Practice at Northeastern University from 2012 to 2014.  He was the Commissioner of Public Health for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts from 2007 to 2012.  Under his leadership the Department developed new and innovative programs to address racial and ethnic disparities, to promote wellness (including the Mass in Motion campaign), to combat chronic disease and to support the successful implementation of the state’s health care reform initiative.  Prior to his appointment as Commissioner, Auerbach had been the Executive Director of the Boston Public Health Commission for 9 years during which time health equity, emergency preparedness and tobacco prevention became priorities.  In addition to the city’s public health programs, he oversaw Emergency Medical Services, homeless services and substance abuse services for Boston.

Sinsi Hernández-Cancio, Esq. is the Director of Health Equity at Families USA, where she focuses on expanding and strengthening the organization's ability to enhance and elevate health care advocacy and activism in communities of color across the nation. She is continuing the group's work to help build a thriving and vocal health equity movement that will protect the gains of the health care law while ensuring maximum equity in its implementation. She has worked in the field of health policy for more than a decade and has a longstanding commitment to advancing social justice and fighting for the rights of people of color, especially vulnerable women and children. She started her professional career as a women's human and civil rights lawyer with a Georgetown Women's Law and Public Policy Fellowship at the Women's Rights Project of Human Rights Watch. She first became deeply engaged in health care justice and the elimination of health disparities when she served as Health and Human Services advisor for two Puerto Rico Governors at their DC offices. She later worked on health policy for the Service Employees International Union (SEIU), where she continued to focus on health care issues in Puerto Rico, in addition to long-term care, health equity, and health reform. During the effort to pass the Affordable Care Act, she was the National Campaign Coordinator for SEIU's Healthcare Equality Project, where she worked with many coalition partners to ensure that health equity was part of the national debate and that health disparities were addressed. She has appeared on Univision, CNN Español, and Telemundo, and she has been widely quoted in both print and radio.

Ichiro Kawachi, MB ChB, PhD, is the John L. Loeb and Frances Lehman Loeb Professor of Social Epidemiology, and Chair of the Social & Behavioral Sciences Department at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.  Kawachi received both his medical degree and Ph.D. (in epidemiology) from the University of Otago, New Zealand.  He has taught at the Harvard School of Public Health since 1992.  Kawachi is the co-editor (with Lisa Berkman) of the first textbook on Social Epidemiology, published by Oxford University Press in 2000 (new & revised edition published in 2014). His other books include Neighborhoods and Health (Oxford University Press, 2003); Globalization and Health (Oxford University Press, 2006); Social Capital and Health (Springer, 2008); the Oxford Handbook of Public Health Practice co=edited with Charles Guest and others (Oxford University Press, 2013), and Behavioral Economics and Public Health co-edited with Christina Roberto (Oxford University Press, 2015).  His current project is focused on the longitudinal impacts of community social cohesion/social capital on functional recovery after the March 11, 2011 Great Eastern Japan earthquake and tsunami. In 2013, he launched a massive, open online course (MOOC) through HarvardX called “Health and Society” (PHx 201), in which 32,000 participants registered from throughout the world. Kawachi is the Co-Editor in Chief (with S.V. Subramanian) of the international journal Social Science & Medicine. He is an elected member of the Institute of Medicine of the US National Academy of Sciences.

Adewale Troutman, MD, MPH, CPH, is a Professor and Associate Dean for Health Equity and Community Engagement at the University of South Florida. He identifies himself through his commitment to social justice, human rights, community activism, health equity and national and global health. His life’s work has been a testimony to this fact. Dr. Troutman has over 40 years of dedication through action to the principles of universal freedoms and the elimination of racism, injustice and oppression. His unique educational background has been a major factor in this quest. His career has included clinical emergency medicine, hospital administration, academic and public health practice. He served as an Associate Professor in the University of Louisville’s School of Public Health and Information Sciences while directing the Metro Louisville Department of Public Health and Wellness.  His experience includes special consultancies with the World Health Organization in Thailand and Japan, health assessment missions in Angola, Jamaica and Zaire and training in India and Austria. His commitment to Justice has evolved into his nationally recognized efforts to create health equity and the supremacy of the social determinants of health, the founding of the first Center for Health Equity at a local health department and the creation of the Mayors Healthy Hometown Movement. He is also credited with the passage of one of the strongest anti-smoking ordinances in the country. Dr. Troutman has had multiple publications including “What if We Were Equal”, co-authored with former Surgeon General and Assistant Secretary of Health, Dr David Satcher. His awards and recognitions include the Medistar physician of the year award, the St Stephens Community Man of the Year Award, the Ottenheimer Award for Social Justice, The Power to End Stroke Award and numerous others.

The judges will evaluate applications based on the following criteria:

  •  Nominee’s work shows alignment with Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s vision for building a Culture of Health and achieving health equity
  • Nominee’s work demonstrated success to change systems that impact health outcomes in one or more of the following areas: access to quality care, education, employment, income, community environment, housing, and public safety
  • Nominee’s work provided a solution to improve outcomes for groups most affected by health disparities
  • Nominee’s successfully implemented a systems change approach to reduce health disparities within the past two years
  • The degree to which nominee’s work reflects: outcome(s), innovative approaches, transformational systems change, collaborative leadership, resourcefulness and impact and scalability.

For full details about the RWJF-APIC Award, including eligibility, submission criteria and application, and award rules, please visit www.apicaucus.org. 



Nominations due                                                                                 June 15, 2016 at 11:59 PM ET

Nominees notified of decision                                                          August 31, 2016

APIC Awards Ceremony                                                                     October 31, 2016 at 8 PM MT





We’re honored to have five prominent leaders judge the 2016 RWJF-APIC Award.  

This Award will recognize individuals who have made outstanding contributions towards achieving health equity. 

Nominations are due June 15, 2016 at www.apicaucus.org.

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