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AACR Honors Lourdes A. Báezconde-Garbanati with AACR Distinguished Lectureship on the Science of Cancer Health Disparities

PHILADELPHIA – The American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) has announced Lourdes A. Báezconde-Garbanati, PhD, as the recipient of the 2020 AACR Distinguished Lectureship on the Science of Cancer Health Disparities. Báezconde-Garbanati will present her award lecture during the opening session of the virtual AACR Conference on the Science of Cancer Health Disparities in Racial/Ethnic Minorities and the Medically Underserved on Friday, Oct. 2, 2020. Her lecture is titled “Optimizing engagement to reduce disparities among Hispanic/Latinos/Latinx and other underserved communities.”

This AACR lectureship recognizes an investigator whose novel and significant work has had or may have a far-reaching impact on the etiology, detection, diagnosis, treatment, or prevention of cancer health disparities.

Báezconde-Garbanati is a professor of preventive medicine in the Keck School of Medicine at the University of Southern California (USC) and serves as the associate director for community engagement for the USC Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center. She is also associate dean for community initiatives and director of the Community Scholars Collaborative on Health Equity Solutions in the USC Office of Research Advancement. Báezconde-Garbanati is a leading expert on the theory and research methods that are integral to advancing the understanding and mitigation of cancer health disparities. She has been instrumental in developing and testing effective interventions that utilize innovative communication strategies, outreach activities, and partnership development to enhance community health with a focus on reducing tobacco use, preventing substance abuse, and cancer control.

Báezconde-Garbanati focuses her work on tobacco and e-cigarette use, one of the most critical cancer disparity issues affecting the Hispanic community. Her research on the marketing, sale, and regulation of tobacco in relation to Hispanic communities has been integral in helping to shape California’s progressive tobacco policies. Additionally, her research influenced U.S. Food and Drug Administration regulations pertaining to retail sales of tobacco and e-cigarettes in minority communities.

Báezconde-Garbanati has also made major contributions to addressing cervical cancer disparities in Hispanic/Latina and African American women. Her community-based, transdisciplinary approach led to the creation of a culturally targeted intervention, Tamale Lesson: A case study of a narrative health communication intervention, that increased cervical cancer screening in the target area of East Los Angeles.

Báezconde-Garbanati has been a member of the AACR since 2019. She is also a member of the AACR’s Minorities in Cancer Research and Women in Cancer Research membership groups.

Báezconde-Garbanati has received many professional accolades during her career, including the first Hispanic National Hero Award from the 11th World Conference on Tobacco or Health (2000); the 10-Year Common Fund Award from the National Institutes of Health (2014); the American Public Health Association Health Education and Health Promotion Award (2013); recognition for Services to the Research Community from the NCI and the American Legacy Foundation (2010); a certificate in recognition of valuable contributions to Cancer Information Services from the NCI (2009); the Outstanding Leadership in Health Promotion award from the National Latino Tobacco Control Network (2009); the Award for Excellence, Outstanding Performance and Lasting Contributions as Scientific Journal Reviewer from the Journal of the National Medical Association (2004); and the Community, Culture and Prevention Science Award from the Society for Prevention Research (2001).

Báezconde-Garbanati is a steering committee member of the National Latino Tobacco Control Network and serves on the Board of Directors of the National Alliance for Hispanic Health.

Báezconde-Garbanati earned a doctorate in public health-community health sciences from the University of California, Los Angeles. She earned her undergraduate degree from Universidad Nacional Pedro Henríquez Ureña, Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic.