As the year begins, I am reflecting on the Foundation's accomplishments in 2015, our 20th Anniversary year, and on the goals remaining for 2016 and the next 20 years. So many have given of their time, their talent and their treasure to make this year a success.
Our Advisory Council met in the Fall and compiled a list of hot topics and exciting speakers for our luncheon series. Many of the members of the Council have served for years and we are grateful to all the participants. At the Council meeting we presented Dr. Irene Su, our newest CEI recipient, with the award for her project, "Developing a reproductive health intervention for adolescent and young adult cancer survivors."
We have strengthened our alliances with other amazing organ
izations including Soroptimist International of La Jolla, who made the Howell Foundation possible 20 years ago, The National CHEERS Foundation and Las Damas de Fairbanks Ranch. All have contributed to making this year a success for our Foundation.
And, of course, it is always a delight to hear from our past scholars. Most recently, we heard from Jeffrey Maloy, a 2010 scholar, who has leveraged his Howell Foundation research scholarship to pursue a Ph.D. at UCLA
studying the bacterium, Burkholderia pseudomallei, which causes melioidosis, a severe and often fatal disease commonly found in Southeast Asia and Australia. (I love it when our scholars use big words). There will be more about Jeffrey on our blog "Keeping the Women we Love Healthy" soon.
And, speaking of our blog, this year, due to the splendid work of Carolyn Northrup, our Communications Chair, we have truly arrived on social media with followers on Facebook and LinkedIn, and a significant number of views per month on our wonderful blog. Check it out, won't you? Just google "keeping the women we love healthy".
Finally, last month we welcomed three new Board members: Abigail D'Agostino, Bonnie Mendenhall and Carol Tuggey, who bring enthusiasm and talent to our Board.
And...we look forward to:
- The next 20 years of "Keeping the Women We Love Healthy"
- Four exciting 2016 luncheons including presentations on autoimmunity, genetic screening and other "hot" topics
- Meeting brilliant new scholars from UCSD, SDSU and USD
I thank our advisors, our volunteers, our "friends" and other donors and our dedicated Board of Directors for
making our 20th Anniversary year a success.
Carole L. Banka, Ph. D.
Chair, Board of Directors, Howell Foundation.
| Twenty Years of Accomplishments, Twenty Years of Appreciation. Ending our 20th anniversary year with a bang!
Our 20th anniversary celebration truly represented what the Howell Foundation stands for: a sense of community, the importance of women's health research, empowering women with informational events, and introducing young minds to science with our scholarship program.
Today, after 20 years, the inspiration brought about by Dr. Howell has allowed the Foundation to award over 200 scholarships to aspiring researchers and doctors, to hold over 80 educational events and to fund 3 grants addressing the health of underserved and/or "at risk" women in our community.
The celebration was marked with testimonials from our scholars, all of whom are on their way to success. Our first CEI program is starting to create an impact on Latino women in our community. The support of our sister organization, Soroptimist International of La Jolla, was felt with donations towards our 2016 programs and fabulous attendance at our luncheon. Dr. Stanley Maloy from one of our dear partners, SDSU, delivered an eye-opening presentation on the need for the "one world, one health" initiative.
Two items at the luncheon helped mark this incredible journey: The support of our community with our "20 for 20" campaign, and the inspirational message from Dr. Howell, who urged all of us to keep moving up and forward in women's health.
Our work would not have been possible without the help of our partners. Thank you for many years of accomplishments! Thank you as well to all our donors and "Friends of Howell". Meeting our goals has been possible because of your generous and continuous support.
Make sure to read the highlights of our event below. And please do stay tuned for a promising 2016!
Dr. Howell inspires us with her words: "It's not who you are or where you've been. It's where you are going that counts".
Dr. Howell couldn't have said it better. Addressing the audience at the Foundation's 20th anniversary event, she told us the story about the challenges she faced when study
ing at McGill University; known for its extensive focus on research. She says humbly that the technicalities of research may have been difficult at times but yet never missed
a lecture. And that is how she learned that information is the key for women's health advocacy.
"Take the research that is being done, translate it, and put it into practical use. Please take it seriously because we have no way to go but up, no way to go but success, no way to go but needed. It is filling that need that I hope our Foundation will constantly try to do as its mission; and so far I believe we've succeeded."
How much exercise do Latina women get during pregnancy? Study finds cultural aspects play a significant role.
It was at the end of 2012 when the Howell Foundation awarded its first Community Engagement Award, "For our Health". The aim of the study was to pilot test the impact of a physical activity intervention on the physical activity practices of pregnant Latinas. Considering the important influence of family and friends in Latino culture, a social support approach was utilized to develop an intervention that targeted individual, social, and cultural influences on physical activity. Read more on the results of our first CEI here.
"20 for 20" campaign was launched early in our 20
anniversary year asking donors for any donation that began with a "2". We were delighted to receive donations of $222 and $2,222! Other donations ranged from $20 to $2,000. It is not too late to help us reach our goal by visiting the Howell Foundation website and contributing. This funding represents a wonderful nest egg for 2016 and our next 20 years. Thank you to all for our generosity!
Why a universal health initiative is needed: shifting the current research paradigm to stop illness on its track.
We were very fortunate to have Dr. Stanley Maloy from SDSU speak at the Foundation's 20th year anniversary celebration last November. The topic: one world, one health.
tory of infectious diseases shows that, from the early 1900s up to 1980, death incidences had significantly decreased in the US - except for the 1920s epidemic of the Spanish Flu. Even though lower death rates from infectious diseases were attributed to historical changes in the 20th century --the development of vaccines and the discovery of antibiotics, to name a few-- the decline is really a consequence of access to clean water.
It has, however, not been the case for the past 25+ years. Every year, there have been new and emerging, antibiotic-resistant diseases --every year! Furthermore, mortality rates due to the chronic illnesses derived from infectious disease are rising worldwide. In other words, illness today has NO geographic boundaries. Health shouldn't either.
Read about the shift in paradigm that needs to happen to stop infectious disease here.
Acting on women's health: working to provide resources to young breast cancer survivors.
Deepika Suresh, 2015 UCSD Howell Scholar, presented her work at the Howell Foundation's 20th anniversary luncheon. She, along with H. Irene Su MD MSCE and Sally Dominick PhD MPH, are working on developing an education intervention on genetic risk assessment in young breast cancer survivors (YBCS). "My objective is to develop content about genetic risk assessment in YBCS for a web-based survivorship care plan that my lab is in the process of creating", Suresh comments.
"Ultimately, I wanted to find out what the main barriers are that prevent young breast cancer survivors from undergoing genetic risk assessment and how to overcome these."
Read about how Deepika is putting her scholarship to work towards women's health! An update of her work can be found here.
Dedicated women coming together to work towards women's health: The history behind the Doris A. Howell Foundation.
oroptimist International of La Jolla (SILJ) is an organization that is known for acting upon community needs. The concern of the group about women's health led them to take action, especially upon the common practice of not including female subjects in the clinical trials taking place at the time and the outcome for women when facing illness. Their mission became VERY clear: get women's health on the radar.
Read more about the history behind the Howell Foundation here.
Foundation Fast Facts:
Howell Scholars Program
Founded in 1995
Awarded 206 research scholarships for a total of $542,225 to date
Applications solicited at UCSD, SDSU, USD Hahn School of Nursing, and all CSUs through joint effort with CSUPERB.
All research projects have a women's health aspect
projects are overseen by a Faculty Mentor
A very special thank you to our
2015 Scholarship Donors
for funding full research scholarships of $3,500 or more:
- Sandra Fleet Honnen/The Reuben H. Fleet Foundation of The San Diego Foundation
- The Mirandon Foundation for Hope, Inc.
- Beatrice K. Rose, MD, MPH
- Ruth Lane Charitable Foundation
- Soroptimist International of La Jolla
We could not have celebrated our 20th year anniversary without the recognition of our scholars!
If, indeed, the health of the women in your lives or their families is important to you, the solutions rest in the hands of academically gifted young researchers such as the ones the Howell Foundation supports at the undergraduate and post-graduate level through our scholarship and community engagement initiatives. On our 20th anniversary year, we would like to recognize the scholars that are creating an impact in women's health:
"The Howell research scholarship fueled my interest in science and cancer biology. It led me to great mentors who guided me into the medical field during my time at UCSD. I have since finished medical school in New York and am now a surgical resident training at Mt Sinai Beth Israel in NY. I am very appreciative of the Howell Foundation for giving me the opportunity to get started in biomedical research which helped me to get where I am today!"
Thank you to Dr. Howell and the members of the Howell Foundation! I was awarded a Howell Scholarship in 2014. The funding helped me to support my dissertation study on HPV knowledge and HPV vaccine uptake among U.S. Navy personnel. I have collected my data from over 350 participants in the U.S. Navy, and currently analyzing the results. The findings will help support preventive medicine and sexual health programs in the armed services. In addition, it will help the fight against cervical cancer (the #1 related cancer to HPV), both nationally and globally".
If your health and that of your family is important to you, we urge you to consider helping the Howell Foundation grow in order to provide critical funding of vital programs that advance research in women's health. Your support will indeed help these young researchers find cures for diseases dramatically impacting the lives of women and help us advance the education of women as they consider their own health issues.
It is the generosity of all our donors that enables us to make awards to these and other outstanding young scientists. A special thank you to each of them.
Thank you to all of our Howell Scholars making and impact on women's health!
The Howell Foundation has awarded
research scholarships for a total of $542,225. We are proud of our relationships with local universities UCSD, SDSU and USD's Hahn School of Nursing. In addition, the Howell-CSUPERB partnership allows the Howell Foundation to support amazing young researchers throughout the state.
Below is a listing the 18 Howell Scholars for 2015
Congratulations to our 2015 Howell Scholars!
CSUPERB (California State University Program for Education and Research in Biotechnology)
CSUPERB awards a new research grant to a CSU undergraduate for each full scholarship the Howell Foundation awards.
Pictured with Dr. Howell, Anna Leighton and Andres Bermudez.
Left to Right: Geil Merana (Biology, California State University, Fresno), Lukas Fuentes (Chemistry & Biochemistry, California State University, Long Beach) Andres Bermudez (Biology, San Diego State University) & Joy Aparicio Valenzuela (Biology, California State University, Fresno).
- Joy Aparicio Valenzuela - California State University, Fresno. Mentor: David Lent
- Andres Bermudez - San Diego State University. Mentor: Kelly Doran
- Annalisa Duenas - San José State University. Mentor: Rachael French
- Lukas Fuentes - California State University, Long Beach. Mentor: Paul Weers
- Joshua Gladfelder - California State University, Chico. Mentor: Carolynn Arpin
- Lindsay Hetrick - California State Polytechnic University, Pomona. Mentor: Junjun Liu
- Anna Leighton - San Diego State University. Mentor: Sanford Bernstein
- Geil Merana - California State University, Fresno. Mentor: Laurent Dejean
- Jessica Phan - California State University, Long Beach. Mentor: Kevin Sinchak
- Aaron Ridder - California State University, Long Beach. Mentor: Houng-Wei Tsai
- Jaime Tran - California State University, Long Beach. Mentor: Vasanthy Narayanaswami
- Kaycee Villarreal - Biology, California State University, Long Beach. Mentor: Roger Acey
University of California, San Diego
Founded in 1995, the Howell Foundation's mission and vision are firmly rooted in our affiliation with UCSD's School
of Medicine, through the renowned pediatric
hematologist/oncologist Doris A. Howell, M.D., in whose honor the organization was founded.
Pictured above with Dr. Howell: UCSD-Howell Scholars:
- Liza Brusman - Mentor: Pamela Mellon
- Jessie Chen - Mentor: Kina Thackray
- Deepika Suresh - Mentor: Irene Su
University of San Diego, Hahn School of Nursing & Health Science
In 2010, the Howell Foundation established the Cheryl A. Wilson Nursing Scholarship, in honor of long-time Howell Board member Cheryl A. Wilson, R.N., M.A. to fund USD Ph.D. can
didate nursing students whose research emp
hasis is on women's
|Pictured CDR Nations and Ms. Obrien
- CDR Ryan Nations - Mentor: Dr. Cynthia Connelly
- Jodi O'Brien - Mentor: Dr. Mary Barge
Howell Foundation Evening Series on Health & Happiness
"The speaker was excellent. She was funny, informative and engaging."
"Carole's delivery was excellent. Her friendly, jovial way of presenting technical information was delightful. Everyone around me seemed to enjoy it as much as I did."
"I thought the speaker engaged the audience and delivered well. I did learn something new."
"Great speaker & fascinating topic."
"Wonderful venue. Great speaker. Delicious food. Nicely done!"
In 2012, the Howell Foundation started a new Evening Series to provide researched based education for women on the theme of healthy living. Our topics focus on how to care for our mental and physical health in ways that contribute to overall well-being.
The series is designed to draw women from all over the city especially working women who cannot easily attend the Howell Luncheons.
This year, the topic Hormones and Happiness encompassed the roles our hormones play in our health.
Understanding the differences between men and women has everything to do with the hormones we produce in our bodies, and nothing to do with stereotype differences. In other words, there IS a reason why we act like we do.
The presentation covered the differences between men and women under stress and the hormones related to the 'fight or flight' vs. 'tend and befriend', along with the role hormones play when falling in love and the feeling of power.
Read the summary of the event:
For more information on the
Howell Foundation Evening Series
, visit www.howellfoundation.org
Howell Foundation's Lecture Series
By understanding how the brain works and utilizing the concepts of analytics, Dr. Coleman, his laboratory team and his many collaborators have developed computer-interfaced systems that enable a direct communication pathway from the brain to an external device - the human and the computer collaborating together to provide physicians the adequate information tools for effective and timely patient care.
In case you missed it, Ashley Mackin from the La Jolla Light did a wonderful job of summarizing the key -note presentation by
Dr. Heather Hofflich
on osteoporosis last May. The presentation covered the latest research on osteoporosis, including the risks and causes, to strategies for prevention, and treatment with the latest in new medication.
Photo courtesy of LJL
Osteoporosis," Hofflich explained, "is caused by low bone mineral density and poor bone quality. As such, bones become porous and weak, and can fracture or break easily, especially from falls." Hofflich recommends that all women have their bone density screened starting at age 65, and men at age 70. However, anyone who has experienced a fracture after age 50 should also have their bone density screened".
A revolution in medicine has occurred over the past seven years involving the bacteria in and on your body, your "microbiome." Someday soon you will be having fecal bacteria tests in the same way that you now have blood tests!
At the Howell Foundation luncheon on August 5th,
Dr. Sarah Highlander
from the J. Craig Venter Institute, shared the latest research regarding bacteria and health. You can read about her presentation here.
Different bacteria reside in different areas of the body and each individual has a signature profile of bacteria. These bacteria perform specific and important functions in each area of the body. Read more about Dr. Highlander's presentation on our blog "
Keeping the women we love healthy
The Advisory Council offers speaker suggestions for our luncheon series and ideas for promoting the visibility of the Foundation.
Thank you for your time and valuable ideas!
2016 Advisory Council: Steve Dahms, Ph.D.,
Ralph Feuer, Ph.D., Sherrie Gould, MSN, NP-C,
Stanley Maloy, Ph.D.,
Jennifer Martin, Camille Nebeker, Ed.D., M.S.,
Mana Parast, M.D. Ph.D., James Paterniti, Ph.D., Michael J. Sailor, Ph.D., Irene Su, M.D. MSCE, Varykina Thackray, Ph.D.
Advisory Council Co-Chairs: Kathleen Franklin, Kay Pierce
Howell Board Representatives: Carole Banka, Ph.D., Brad Benter, Priscilla Moxley
Howell Foundation's Lecture Series
his year promises to bring the latest information on health topics that affect women specifically. Make sure you check the
Howell Foundation's web page
for information about our Lecture and Evening Series.
Interested in a specific topic? Make sure you contact us: firstname.lastname@example.org for suggestions on topics that most interest you!
Community Engagement Initiative
Howell Foundation Awards Third Grant to Develop Resources for Young Cancer Survivors.
H. Irene Su, MD, MSCE, an associate professor in the Department of Reproductive Medicine and Moores Cancer Center at UC San Diego Health, has been awarded a Community Engagement Initiative (CEI) grant from the Doris A Howell Foundation for Women's Health Research to support her efforts to improve reproductive health needs of young female cancer survivors.
The CEI award from the Howell Foundation provides up to $15,000 in funding for pilot research projects which support health promotion and disease prevention among under-served women within the greater San Diego region. The grant is unique in partnering academic researchers with community organizations.
Su is the first researcher from UC San Diego to receive the award, which is now in its third year. She hopes to develop and pilot test a web-based survivorship care plan to improve reproductive health issues such as fertility and pregnancy for adolescent and young adult women who have had cancer. Su said a considerable body of knowledge now exists on screening and managing reproductive issues, which could provide significant benefit to cancer patients and their caregivers if properly disseminated. Su will partner with the community organization, Stupid Cancer and work with patient advocates and other UC San Diego cancer research and clinical faculty to conduct this study.
to read more about the research of Dr. Su. For more information about the Howell Foundation's Community Engagement Initiative, go to: www.howellfoundation.org.
Doris Howell, MD
Chair Emeritus; Founder
Chair, Nominating Committee
Carole L. Banka, Ph.D.
Kathleen A. Franklin
Cheryl A. Wilson
Linda G. Osborne, CPA
Chief Financial Officer
Kay Christian Pierce
Howell Fund Development Chair
A. Stephen Dahms, Ph.D.,
Abigail D'Agostino, RN BSN MBA
Skai Krisans, Ph.D.,
Co-Chair, Howell Scholarships Committee
Hamilton Loeb, Jr.
Jean Kauth McGrath
Co-Chair, Luncheon Committee
Camille Nebeker, Ed.D., M.S.
Chair, Community Engagement Initiative (CEI)
Chair, Communications Committee
Immediate Past Chair, Board of Directors
Beatrice Rose, M.D., M.P.H.
First Board Member Emeritus
Friends of Howell
e Friends of Howell are the lifeblood of our organization as they help us achieve our mission. We appreciate their support in promoting women's health research and education.
Below are Friends of Howell donations received Jan. 1, 2015 to December 31, 2015.
A full list can be found at
Thank you for your continuous support!
($3,500 or more)
Sandra Fleet Honnen/The Reuben H. Fleet Foundation of The San Diego Foundation
The Mirandon Foundation for Hope, Inc.
Beatrice K. Rose, MD, MPH
Ruth Lane Charitable Foundation
Soroptimist International of La Jolla
The Thursday Club
($3,000 or more)
Brad and Gigi Benter
Carole Banka, Ph.D.
Alex and Barbara Bollinger
California Trucking Assoc.
Audrey Geisel/Dr. Seuss Foundation
Hamilton & Estelle Loeb, Jr.
Susan Baxter, Ph.D.
Alison and James Denman
Las Damas de Fairbanks
Jean Kauth McGrath
Sherman & Lady Smith
Betty Bader Irrevocable Trust
Madeline Butler, Ph.D.
Berit Nielsen Durler
Mary Lynn Hyde
Skai Krisans, Ph.D.
Joseph & Mary Watson
Tom and Kathy Gatlin
James & Ruth Harris
Mary Lee Roberts
Rose Marie Royster
Dr. Howard & Judith Rubenstein
The People Behind the Foundation
Our Foundation would not be possible without the work of our Board Members, Friends of Howell and Volunteers. All of us have a personal history and connection to women's health issues. Take a minute to meet some of our biggest fans!
Putting her Heart in her Work.
Dr. Banka is known in the research community for being a champion of gender differences in research, which should lead to diagnosing and treating illness accordingly. If you ever hear the words "were both genders included in the research/studies?" or "how did gender differences impact the outcome?" then you know it HAS to be her! Read about her story
If you want bread, you NEED the dough.. pun intended!
Meet Betty Braysahy, fundraiser for the Doris A. Howell Foundation. Her business is in the dough... not the one to bake with (although she is a very good cook), but that one required to fund perhaps the single most important aspect in women's health: education. Read about her story here.
From respect to perspectives: Men talk about women's health and why it's important.
It is eternally, tiredly and jokingly stated that women really do not need to be understood... just loved. But nothing could be farther than the truth according to Hamilton Loeb and Irving Tragen; especially when it comes to women and their health.
So why should women's health be important to men? For the same reason that men's health should be important to women. For Irving and Hamilton, there is just a symbiotic relationship between men's and women's health. Read about their take on women's health here.
Coming Full Circle in Women's Health Research
It is always said that if you face a challenge with a smile, success becomes even sweeter. Gladys Kohn can tell you about both.
She can also tell you how the Doris A. Howell Foundation got started. "Back then, the notion of women's health research was rarely heard of," she recalls. The concern of the group about women's health led them to take action, especially upon the common practice of not including female subjects in the clinical trials taking place at the time and the outcome for women when facing illness. Their mission became VERY clear: get women's health on the radar.
Read about the history behind the Howell Foundation
The best way to promote women's health
is to get involved! If you would like information on becoming a volunteer
at the Doris A. Howell Foundation, please drop us a line: