Rutgers School of Public Health faculty member and chair of the department of urban-global public health, Dr. Leslie Kantor, has received the 2018 Carl S. Schultz Lifetime Achievement Award from the Sexual and Reproductive Health Section of American Public Health Association at its annual meeting in San Diego, CA.
The Lifetime Achievement Award is given annually to recognize leaders, who through scholarship, innovation, and action, have impacted the field of sexual and reproductive health. The award is named after Dr. Carl S. Shultz, a pediatrician and public health servant who played an instrumental role in creating and implementing the federal family planning program, Title X.
Dr. Kantor has been a leader in advancing sex education, HIV prevention, adolescent health and sexual and reproductive health throughout her career. She has been actively involved in the Sexual and Reproductive Health Section for more than twenty years, chairing the Sexuality Task Force, serving as the section’s representative to Governing Council, serving on the Section Council, and coordinating the opening reception for many years. She has educated, trained, and mentored the next generation of leaders in the sexual and reproductive health field, both formally as a former faculty member at Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health and informally as a leader at Planned Parenthood Federation of America (PPFA) and in the sexual and reproductive health field more broadly.
Dr. Kantor’s research has focused on improving adolescent health, advancing sexual and reproductive health, and reducing health disparities. She is a mixed-methods researcher who partners closely with community members to identify priorities and approaches so that her work is both relevant and applicable. Her scholarly articles have appeared in numerous scientific journals including the Journal of Adolescent Health, Prevention Science, and Sexuality Research & Social Policy.
Dr. Kantor’s broad accomplishments are distinguished by her abilities to communicate and translate science for wide-ranging audiences, and advocating for programmatic and policy solutions. She is frequently called upon to share her expertise and insights with the media and has become an influential public-facing voice in the field, who is a highly sought out public speaker and trainer. Most recently, she published on op-ed on access to reproductive health services in New Jersey’s largest newspaper and provided comment on the science behind successful sex education programming in high schools.
“Dr. Kantor is incredibly deserving of this honor as a world leader in women’s reproductive rights,” comments Rutgers School of Public Health Dean, Dr. Perry N. Halkitis. “This is the second year in a row that a faculty from Rutgers School of Public Health has won this award. At a time when the rights of women and the LGBTQ population are so severely under attack, an award such as this is of even greater significance.”
Ms. Nicole Cushman, executive director of Answer (based at Rutgers University), and a mentee of Dr. Kantor, received the Outstanding Young Professional Award from the Sexual and Reproductive Health Section. The award honors individuals who deserve recognition early in their careers because of their professional accomplishments, initiative, and dedication to the field, especially to the work of the Sexual and Reproductive Health Section. Dr. Kantor had the honor of presenting this award.
Dr. Kantor and Ms. Cushman received their awards on Monday, November 12 in San Diego, during the annual American Public Health Association (APHA) Meeting & Expo.