On May 1, Rena J. Pasick will receive the 2014 Woman of the Year Award from Women Health Care Executives at a celebration at the Westin St. Francis in San Francisco. Pasick is a professor of medicine at UCSF and director for community education and outreach at the UCSF Helen Diller Family Comprehensive Cancer Center.
Pasick’s expertise is in community health and health promotion across cultures. For more than 25 years, she has pursued her passion to reduce cancer disparities in the diverse and underserved communities of the San Francisco Bay Area and beyond through research, education, and advocacy. Pasick’s research has generated new understandings of the role of culture in efforts to reduce disparities in breast and prostate cancers. Merging research and community work, she established a Faith Communities partnership that fosters new health ministries in African American churches and brings them “best practice” programs and training designed to build their capacity to promote health. Her disparities research led her to obtain NIH funding to establish the Minority Training Program in Cancer Control Research (1998-2018) to encourage under-represented master’s level public health students and professionals to pursue doctoral training and to become leaders in public health and disparities research. To date, more than 150 master’s students of color have gone on to doctoral programs.
Pasick was nominated for the award by Pamela Washington DrPH ’11.The sponsor of the award, Women Health Care Executives of Northern California, is composed of professional women from all health care fields who come together to learn, support, inspire, and encourage one another throughout their career.