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Black Women's Roundtable Congratulates Past Honoree, Dr. Regina Benjamin on Nomination as Surgeon General

Dr. Regina BenjaminWashington, DC - The National Coalition on Black Civic Participation's (NCBCP) Black Women's Roundtable (BWR) is proud and elated to hear President Obama's announcement today that their 2009 honoree, Dr. Regina Benjamin, has been selected as the next U. S. Surgeon General. Benjamin, an Alabama family physician and Morehouse School of Medicine graduate, was honored by Black Women's Roundtable during their "Celebration of Our Sisters of the Gulf Coast Wellness Journey," for her unyielding determination to provide a rural health clinic for low-income residents of Bayou La Batre, Alabama. The clinic was destroyed when the GulfCoast town was devastated by Hurricane Katrina. It was rebuilt and burned down the day before re-opening.

"Healthcare is one of our highest priorities. Dr. Benjamin clearly has the educational and professional credentials to serve as America's chief health educato; and her personal testament speaks volumes," said Melanie L. Campbell, executive director and CEO of NCBCP and convener BWR. "In addition to demonstrating a commitment to providing healthcare to the poor by enduring fires and hurricanes to stay in her rural health clinic, Dr.

Benjamin has family that died from preventable diseases like lung cancer, high blood pressure, and HIV related diseases. She is extrodinarily qualified to provide leadership as we work to ensure quality health care for all. We look forward to working with Dr. Benjamin to usher in an era of health, healing, and wellness."
"Given the enormous health disparities confronting African American women, the appointment of Regina Benjamin as Surgeon General is just what the doctor ordered," says Felicia M. Davis, president, Just Environment and member of BWR. "Under her leadership our nation will move to close enormous gaps in care for low income and rural communities. Dr. Benjamin's work after Katrina distinguished her as a physician dedicated to healing whole communities. President Obama has indeed selected the most qualified person for the job," Davis adds.

Alabama NCBCP coordinator and BWR member, LaTosha Brown adds, "As a native of the gulf coast, I have served with Dr. Benjamin on the Gulf Coast Fund's board for the past few years and I can attest that she has tirelessly worked towards improving the healthcare system in America. Because of Dr. Benjamin's work in the gulf coast region and overall leadership on healthcare issues throughout the country, she offers a unique understanding of the barriers and challenges for rural and marginalized communities. This appointment is a major victory for the millions of Americans in both rural and urban communities."

The Black Women's Roundtable promotes the involvement of African American women in policy discussions and works diligently to ensure priority issues are communicated to policy makers. For more information visit www.ncbcp.org


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