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Tuesday, December 6, 2016

New Patroon Award will honor Global Institute for Health, Human Rights

Dr. Kamiar Alaie (rear, center left) and Dr. Arash Alaei (rear, center right) with Global Institute for Health & Human Rights refugees project staff at UAlbany.

The Albany Roundtable has selected the Global Institute for Health and Human Rights, its director Dr. Kamiar Alaei, and its associate director Dr. Arash Alaei, to receive its prestigious New Patroon Award for finding hope in the act of learning and teaching at the intersection of health and human rights. The award will be presented at the Albany Roundtable luncheon on Thursday, January 12. The Roundtable usually meets on the second Wednesday of the month but is changing the date of the January 2017 meeting to avoid a conflict with Governor Cuomo’s combined State of the State and Budget address.
Since the Global Institute for Health and Human Rights was founded in 2013, it has fostered research, education, policy, advocacy and development, and advanced the understanding and protection of health and human rights in a theoretical, academic, practical, and ethical context. The Institute’s collaborative and interdisciplinary model engages the intersection of health and human rights from a variety of angles, integrating fields of study ranging from philosophy to urban planning to law and public health.
Chris Hawver, President of the Albany Roundtable, said, “The Global Institute has a number of ongoing international projects in the areas of drug policy, environment, international health law, criminal justice, HIV/AIDS prevention and care, and human rights advocacy, research & health policy. The Founders of the Institute believe that Health and human rights are deeply interconnected. They hold that health is itself a basic human right, and it is an important precondition for the meaningful fulfillment of a wide range of other human rights. We are delighted to honor the Alaei brothers with the New Patroon Award.” 
The featured speaker for the January 12 luncheon is Albany Mayor Kathy Sheehan, and he luncheon is sponsored by KeyBank N.A. 
The Albany Roundtable established its Good Patroon Award 1988 to celebrate outstanding contributions to the community by institutions and individuals. While the Good Patroon Award has traditionally honored organizations and individuals with a long record of service to the community, the Roundtable launched its New Patroon Award in 2011 to highlight and encourage the work of newer organizations.
The most recent Good Patroon Award winners include WAMC Northeast Public Radio; Historic Albany Foundation; Hon.  John J. McEneny for his career in public service; Ruth Pelham and the Music Mobile; and Amy Klein and Capital District Community Gardens. Catherine Hedgeman and The Stakeholders, Inc. received the first New Patroon Award in 2011, followed by Jeff Mirel and The Albany Barn in 2012; Edwards Grimes-CarriĆ³n and Grand Street Community Arts in 2013, All Over Albany in 2014 and Albany Chefs’ Food & Wine Festival in 2015. (The Global Institute for Health and Human Rights is the 2016 honoree, but the doctors’ travel schedules prevented them from receiving the award until January 2017.)
Reservations are required and seating is limited. The cost for the luncheon is $20, which may be paid at the door. The Roundtable also offers its guests the option of paying in advance with a credit card at The University Club will serve a hot and cold buffet from 12:00 noon to 1:00 p.m., with the program commencing at 12:30. Reservations for the January 12 luncheon are required by Friday, January 6 and may be made by prepaying online, by calling 518-431-1400 (the Capital Region Chamber) or by sending an e-mail to
            “When he died in 1839, Stephen Van Rensselaer III was remembered as ‘The Good Patroon’ for his benevolent attitude toward the residents of Rensselaerswyck,” said Hawver. “The Good Patroon and New Patroon Awards are the Albany Roundtable’s means of honoring those leaders who make our community a better place to live. We are so pleased to be able to present the Global Institute for Health and Human Rights and its founders with this award.”