Michigan Surgeon General To Be Honored By American Diabetes Association

Contact: T.J. Bucholz (517) 241-2112
Agency: Community Health

May 5, 2005 Dr.

Kimberlydawn Wisdom, Michigan Surgeon General, will receive the 2005 Excellence in Leadership Award from the American Diabetes Association (ADA) this weekend. Wisdom is being honored for her work in the area of diabetes advocacy, awareness and education.

“I am truly honored to receive this award,” Wisdom said. “In all my years as a physician, I have seen first-hand the importance of preventing diabetes and its complications. I also have seen the many barriers that keep people from getting the necessary information, education and care to control their diabetes or prevent it altogether. While there is yet much to be done, I appreciate the contributions made by the American Diabetes Association through its research and advocacy efforts.”

Wisdom will receive the award Saturday evening at the 13th Annual Flower Ball at the Ritz Carlton in Dearborn, Michigan. The event will benefit diabetes research, programs, and services in Michigan. The American Diabetes Association is dedicated to preventing and curing diabetes and to improving the lives of all people affected by diabetes.

“Dr. Wisdom has worked tirelessly for many, many years in the fight against diabetes and its complications” said Cory Williams, Senior Market Director/Communications for the ADA in Michigan. “The American Diabetes Association is pleased to honor Dr. Wisdom with this distinguished award. She truly is a great leader.”

Prior to Wisdom’s appointment by Governor Jennifer M. Granholm as Surgeon General in 2003, she worked as a board-certified emergency medicine physician and as Founder and Director for the Institute on Multicultural Health at Henry Ford Health System in Detroit. In 1998, Wisdom founded a community-based health screening initiative called “AIM HI” (African American Initiative for Male Health Improvement), through which screening clinics for diabetes, hypertension, and stroke risk assessment and eye disease are conducted throughout the Detroit Metropolitan area. The program is designed to improve short and long-term health outcomes for African American patients with Type 2 diabetes mellitus and those at risk for the disease.

Wisdom also served co-chair of the Michigan Department of Community Health Diabetes Policy Advisory Council, and was a leader in establishing the Detroit Chapter of the American Diabetes Association. In 2002, Wisdom was appointed to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Diabetes Translation Advisory Committee.

In February 2005, Wisdom launched “Michigan Steps Up,” a statewide healthy lifestyles campaign to promote moving more, eating better, and avoiding tobacco use.

Currently, 59.2 million Americans have diabetes or pre-diabetes, with more than 2.3 million people in Michigan alone. Diabetes costs about $4.7 billion dollars a year in Michigan for medical care and an additional $5.7 billion a year in lost productivity. Diabetes is a disease characterized by high levels of blood glucose resulting from ineffective insulin production or absorption. Diabetes can lead to serious complications such as lower limb amputations, blindness, nerve disease, kidney disease, heart disease and stroke. People with diabetes can take steps to control the disease and lower the risk of these complications through education, proper nutrition and new advances in medicine.

For more information about the Surgeon General, please visit www.michigan.gov/mdch. To learn more about the American Diabetes Association, visit www.diabetes.org.