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No. 3, 2012

Awards at the 2012 National TB Workshop

Winners of the Special NTCA Awards

Picture of Phil Griffin
Dr. Ervin received the William Stead Clinician award.
During the National TB Workshop, Dr. Charles Wallace, President of the National TB Controllers Association, presented awards for exemplary performance and service in TB prevention and control. The winners for 2012 were as follows:


Dr. F. Richard Ervin serves in two capacities in South Carolina: he provides direct patient care as the TB medical clinician for Regions 4 and 6, covering 13 of the 46 counties in South Carolina, and he provides policy and program guidance as the State TB Medical Consultant for South Carolina. Dr. Ervin specializes in infectious diseases; he has spent over 31 years in the field of TB and caring for TB patients in South Carolina. Dr. Ervin maintains offices both in Columbia as well as Florence. By functioning in both roles, Dr. Ervin is able to keep in touch with the realities of working in the field of TB while he works with the TB Division Director and Consultant staff to provide overall guidance for the TB Program in South Carolina. Dr. Ervin is well-known in South Carolina for his TB expertise and provides consultation on TB to private physicians, hospitals, and other care facilities across the state.

Picture of Dr. Ervin
Phil Griffin was named TB Controller of the Year.

TB Controller of the Year: Phil Griffin
Phil Griffin was selected as the TB Controller of the Year. He is more than deserving of this award, as he has worked tirelessly for TB on both a state and national level since he started in TB. He has moved the Kansas TB Program to a premier program in the last 10 years that he has been the TB Controller. He was instrumental in getting a law passed that requires colleges to screen incoming students with QuantiFERON. He is a staunch supporter of regionalization, especially among low-incidence states that can benefit from sharing resources when faced with shrinking funding and resources. Phil has served two tenures as president of the NTCA, as well as serving in president-elect and past-president positions on the NTCA board. His willingness to share his expertise whenever there is a request for training, whether it is in his own state, region, or country, exemplifies why he was selected as the NTCA TB Controller of the Year.

Picutre of Dr. Carol Dukes Hamilton, center, received the Robert Koch TB Researcher award.
Dr. Carol Dukes Hamilton, center, received the Robert Koch TB Researcher award.

Robert Koch TB Researcher Award: Carol Dukes Hamilton, MD
Dr. Hamilton serves as a mentor and role model for physicians working in TB in North Carolina. Dr. Hamilton was one of the original investigators in the newly reconstituted Tuberculosis Trials Consortium in the mid-1990s, and successfully integrated clinical research in TB treatment with public health practice in North Carolina. She has served in a leadership role in that consortium for a number of years, including as the current chair of the Advocacy and External Relations Committee. Dr. Hamilton has made her research programmatically relevant in North Carolina by serving in leadership roles within the North Carolina Tuberculosis Control Program and pressing for rapid implementation of the latest research findings into clinical practice. Dr. Hamilton has provided, through her work, outstanding contributions to TB clinical research nationally as well as her continued mentorship of the next generation of TB researchers.

Ed Desmond Laboratorian Award: Kimberlee Musser, PhD

Picutre of Dr. Vincent Escuyer, center, accepted the 2012 Laboratorian award on behalf of Dr. Kim Musser from Dr. Charles Wallace and Dr. Ed Desmond.
Dr. Vincent Escuyer, center, accepted the 2012 Laboratorian award on behalf of Dr. Kim Musser from Dr. Charles Wallace and Dr. Ed Desmond.
For her exceptional professionalism and dedication to public health; her ability to recognize public health gaps, then propose and develop solutions; and her willingness to share with others, Dr. Kimberlee Musser was selected to receive the Ed Desmond Laboratorian Award. Dr. Musser and her laboratory team recognized the delays in TB testing using smear and culture, in the current molecular testing, and, especially, in drug-susceptibility testing. She undertook the challenge of improving the speed as well as the sensitivity of molecular TB testing, and addressed drug-susceptibility testing as well. Using pyrosequencing, she was able to improve the testing sufficiently to have it incorporated into the Wadsworth Center mycobacteriology laboratory, ensuring the turnaround times for the New York State Fast-Track Program were significantly cut. She has made this method publicly available by distributing control material and laboratory Standard Operating Procedures as requested. Please also see the write-up for Dr. Musser provided in the Laboratory Branch Updates section.

Carol Pozsik Nursing Award: Tammy McKenna, RN, MSN

Picutre of Tammy McKenna, center, received the Carol Pozsik Nursing award.
Tammy McKenna, center, received the Carol Pozsik Nursing award.
Tammy McKenna, RN, MSN, has held every nursing position within the arena of TB control in South Carolina. She was hired in the early 1980s to be the SIT/SPIT (Supervised Intermittent Therapy / Supervised Preventive Intermittent Therapy) nurse in a county; she then became the TB Nurse Case Manager for the county, TB Program Manager at the region level, and currently is the only Nurse Consultant in the TB Control State Office. Her knowledge, skills, and abilities are showcased each day through her dealings with complaining patients, her assistance to persons who are navigating the health care arena related to TB, and her daily dealing with local infection control practitioners, private providers, and others who deal with TB and TB issues regularly. Tammy makes presentations on TB on a regular basis to health care agencies and infection control professionals. She provides ongoing orientation to new TB Program Managers across the state and assists with the orientation of new front-line TB public health nurses. She is truly an asset to the TB Program.

Picutre of john Seggerson, left, received the Charles DeGraw Advocacy award.
John Seggerson, left, received the Charles DeGraw Advocacy award.

Charles DeGraw Advocacy Award: John Seggerson
John Seggerson began his CDC TB career in 1965, holding positions of increasing responsibility and serving for 19 years as the Chief of the CDC/DTBE Program Services Branch. Some of his other early accomplishments in the world of TB included Federal TB Task Force coordination, oversight for three Model Centers, planning for the National TB Controllers Conference, coordination of several TB Program review teams, and serving as a planner for World TB Day activities during 1997–2000.

Picutre of john Seggerson, left, received the Charles DeGraw Advocacy award.
Dr. John Jereb, right, received the Dixie Snider award for supporting and collaborating with TB control programs.
In 1996, he began his formal advocacy career as Associate Director for External Relations for DTBE. In that role, he was able to use his leadership and strong interpersonal skills to build relationships with nongovernmental agencies, as well as private, professional and voluntary agencies, which he continues to this day through his role with Stop TB USA.

Dixie Snider Award: John Jereb, MD
Dr. John Jereb has provided outstanding leadership to the TB control community and through his partnerships with state and local TB programs. As a result of many of John's efforts, local TB controllers are able to obtain a national perspective on issues such as funding, immigration screening, and other vital issues, and likewise, he is able to enlighten DTBE on critical state and local issues.

Picutre of Dr. John Bernardo received the President's award.
Dr. John Bernardo received the President's award.
He provides leadership on a national level by serving as an author for MMWR articles, and assisting states in the implementation of important new tools for TB control. John is a vital liaison between DTBE and state TB Programs and will continue to grow this role in the future.

President's Award: John Bernardo, MD
The current NTCA President selects the recipient of this award to acknowledge the special accomplishments of an individual or organization that has made an outstanding contribution to the NTCA or the TB community. This award is given solely at the discretion of the standing NTCA president. Dr. Wallace’s choice for the recipient of the President’s Award was John Bernardo, MD. In commenting on his selection of Dr. Bernardo, the gist of his remarks was: “John was always there for me. During the weeks and months that I was sick and undergoing treatment and had to be in isolation, he called me every day.” Dr. Wallace’s remarks were clearly heartfelt.

Picutre of Sherry Brown, center, received an award for her contributions over the years to the TB Workshop.
Sherry Brown, center, received an award for her contributions over the years to the TB Workshop.

In addition, the planning committee for the 2012 National TB Workshop made one additional surprise special award. Ms. Sherry Brown, who has been part of the planning team for the National TB Workshop for many years, was formally recognized at the meeting with the thanks of the meeting organizers and was presented with a large plaque. Many attendees who are aware of her behind-the scenes hard work were gratified to see her valuable contributions acknowledged.

—Reported by Shea Rabley, Peter Davidson, and Carol Pozsik, NTCA
and Ann Lanner, Div of TB Elimination



NTCA Poster Competition Winners

For the 6th annual poster competition of the National TB Workshop, 62 posters were developed and submitted by TB program staff from throughout the country. They were available for viewing during most of the meeting. A panel of judges reviewed and rated the posters based on three criteria areas:

Relevance to TB control or elimination
Topic provides information that can potentially be transferred to another program; addresses or identifies high-priority area of TB program or problematic area; provides strategy for better use of resources.

Clarity of information
Information is written clearly, in short sentences, with bulleted points to enhance readability; adequate amount of information is provided to explain project, but not a complete journal article posted on the wall!

Graphic presentation
Graphics are used to clearly present information (photographs to demonstrate or model, graphs and charts to display data); graphics are appealing to the viewer (not crowded, and colors are used appropriately).

The poster judges this year were Andrew Hill, Deb Sodt, Mitch Yakrus, Mark Miner, and Suzanne Marks. A special thanks to them for their time and diligence.

This year the judges gave one first-place award, one second-place award, and two third-place awards because of ties among entrants.

Here are the winning posters of the 2012 competition:

First place winner:
“Predicting U.S. TB Case Counts by Foreign-born Country of Origin.” Rachel Yelk Woodruff (CDC); Carla Winston, Department of Veterans Affairs; Roque Miramontes, CDC.

Second place winner:
“TB Screening Practices of Civil Surgeons Evaluating Status Adjustors Seeking Permanent Residence in the United States – New England, 2011.” Kelley Bemis (CSTE/Connecticut Department of Public Health); Mark Lobato, CDC; Andy Tibbs, Massachusetts Department of Public Health; Jennifer Cochran, Massachusetts Department of Public Health; Alison Stratton, Connecticut Department of Public Health; Alfonzo Rodriguez, CDC; Lynn Sosa, Connecticut Department of Public Health.

Third place winners (tie in scores):
“2010 TB Follow-Up Examination for Immigrants and Refugees Who Relocated to the United States with TB Conditions.” Kendra Michelle Cuffe (CDC); Meghan Weems (CDC); Nekeia Gray (CDC); John Painter (CDC); Rossanne Philen (CDC).

“Describing Binational TB Patients in the San Diego-Mexico Border Region.” Kathleen Moser, County of San Diego Health and Human Services Agency; Heather McClendon, Loma Linda University, School of Public Health.

Congratulations to the winners of this year’s poster competition, and thank you to all submitters for sharing your data, ideas, and solutions!

—Reported by Wanda Walton, PhD, and Ann Lanner
Div of TB Elimination

 

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