American Heart Association honors four volunteers

June 28, 2001

DALLAS - The American Heart Association honored four volunteers with Awards of Meritorious Achievement during its annual Delegate Assembly in June.

The award, created in 1952, honors volunteers from throughout the organization for "specific significant accomplishments or projects that have advanced the association's objectives."

The 2001 award recipients are Edward Freis, M.D., professor of medicine at the VA Medical Center, Washington, D.C.; Patricia B. Mahoney, SPHR, a human resources consultant, Mandeville, Louisiana; Michael C. Moore, J.D., Attorney General, State of Mississippi; and Robert Roberts, M.D., chief of cardiology, professor of medicine and cell biology at Baylor College of Medicine, Houston.

Freis was honored for his efforts to demonstrate the importance of treating high blood pressure to reduce the incidence of target organ damage, such as renal failure, cardiac failure and stroke.

He has been an American Heart Association volunteer for more than 35 years, serving as president of the board in the Washington Affiliate and as vice-chair of the council on high blood pressure research at the national level. He was appointed to the editorial board of Circulation: Journal of the American Heart Association in 1967.

Mahoney was director of human resources with Ochsner Health Plan in Metairie, Louisiana and has served as chair of the compensation and benefits committee for the past 5 years, the corporate operations coordinating committee, and the development of standardized benefits plan task force at the national level. She has also been a member of the Southeast Affiliate Board of Directors, the joint operating committee, the human resources committee and the administrative cabinet. She was a bank senior vice president in Metairie, Louisiana for 17 years and is also past chair of the Louisiana Affiliate.

Moore successfully led the landmark national lawsuit against the tobacco industry. In 1994, he filed suit against 13 tobacco companies, making Mississippi the first state to insist that cigarette manufacturers bear the health care costs of those who smoke. His work came to fruition in 1999 as anti-tobacco public health programs began to emerge around the country.

Roberts has made significant contributions to the association's research program over the past five years, guiding the research program through a tremendous transformation. He joined the research program and evaluation committee in 1994, becoming committee chair in 1999. His national involvement with the association spans virtually all of its science operations. He is a member of the science advisory and coordinating committee, the strategic leadership group and is a member of the association's national board of directors.

The American Heart Association spent about $337 million during fiscal year 1999-2000 on research support, public and professional education, and community programs. Nationwide, the organization has grown to include more than 22.5 million volunteers and supporters who carry out its mission in communities across the country. The association is the largest nonprofit voluntary health organization fighting heart disease, stroke and other cardiovascular diseases, which kill about 950,000 Americans every year.

American Heart Association

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