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School & Program Updates

School & Program Updates

UNC Receives $7M Gift for Professorship, Breast Feeding Institute

An anonymous donor has committed $7 million to The University of North Carolina’s Gillings School of Global Public Health.

The $7 million gift directly benefits UNC Gillings’ Department of Maternal and Child Health, UNC Gillings’ Carolina Global Breastfeeding Institute, and the department’s World Health Organization (WHO) Collaborating Center for Research Evidence for Sexual and Reproductive Health. Specifically, the gift will establish a distinguished professorship, provide immediate-impact funds to expand the Institute, and also support the WHO Collaborating Center’s new initiatives in implementation science for global maternal and child health.

“This truly wonderful gift will make a huge difference in our ability to make meaningful and lasting change in the lives of mothers, babies, and children in North Carolina and around the world,” says Dr. Herbert Peterson, Kenan Distinguished Professor, department of maternal and child health, UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health. “We’re also so grateful for the support to our WHO Collaborating Center’s efforts to accelerate progress in the new and increasingly important field of implementation science.”

Established in 2006, the Carolina Global Breastfeeding Institute was the first public health breastfeeding entity of its kind. Its mission includes improving maternal and infant health across North Carolina, the U.S., and the world by increasing knowledge about and support for breastfeeding through a comprehensive program of research, service and education.

“The new professorship will enable us to recruit additional world-class expertise as we move forward in addressing inequities in breastfeeding support by strengthening evidence-based programs and policy change at the state, national and global levels,” according to Dr. Miriam Labbok, professor of the practice of public health, UNC Gillings Department of Maternal and Child Health, and director, Carolina Global Breastfeeding Institute.

Dean Barbara K. Rimer, Alumni Distinguished Professor, Gillings School of Global Public Health, says the gift targets vital public health issues and needs.

“Breastfeeding is one of the most life-saving, life enhancing and health promoting actions a mother can take for her children and herself,” says  Dean Rimer. “This generous gift will allow us to take our highly regarded and globally significant breastfeeding program to an even higher level of impact,”