Given annually in honor of NSF International’s co-founder and first executive director Walter F. Snyder for outstanding contributions to the advancement of environmental health

ANN ARBOR, Mich. - NSF International and the National Environmental Health Association (NEHA) are pleased to announce that Priscilla Oliver, Ph.D., is the 2014 recipient of the distinguished Walter F. Snyder Environmental Health Award. Dr. Oliver will receive the award on July 8 at the NEHA Annual Educational Conference in Las Vegas for four decades of significant and lasting contributions to environmental and public health through education, leadership, dedication and community service.

The Snyder Award is given annually in honor of NSF International’s co-founder and first executive director, Walter F. Snyder, in recognition of outstanding contributions to the advancement of environmental health.

“Dr. Priscilla Oliver’s achievements reflect the principles expressed by Walter F. Snyder and the public health mission of NSF International,” said Kevan P. Lawlor, NSF International President and CEO. “Her service educating, mentoring and encouraging students toward careers in environmental health, as well as her work in community health and professional organizations, demonstrate her strong commitment to the promotion of environmental and public health. These accomplishments make her a very worthy recipient of the Walter F. Snyder Award.”

“As a trailblazer, Dr. Oliver has accomplished much on behalf of environmental health goals by teaching, being an active member of the community and conducting research. She is highly regarded and respected for her ability to encourage environmental health education, service and collaboration. But most of all, you will just not find a person who is more passionate and more able to excite you about contributing to the good causes that Priscilla works so hard on,” said Nelson Fabian, Executive Director and CEO of NEHA.

Dr. Oliver is a Senior Life Scientist with the Office of the Regional Administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in Atlanta. She also serves as the U.S. EPA Region 4 Regional Program Manager for Partnerships for Sustainable Healthcare, working with state agencies and hospitals throughout the southern U.S. to reduce overall hospital waste and prevent pollution. This program was first formed as a voluntary partnership with the American Hospital Association and other agencies.

Dr. Oliver lectures in environmental health at Morehouse College and Spelman College. She helped start the Morehouse School of Medicine Master of Public Health (MPH) Program and serves on the MPH Curriculum Advisory Board. She has previously taught at Kennesaw State University, Troy University and Clark Atlanta University, and started the Atlanta University Center Faculty Environmental Health Forum.

Dr. Oliver is dedicated to mentoring students in environmental and public health. She founded the Physician and Undergraduate Student Educational Partnerships Foundation, and has advised and supervised students with clinical shadowing, service projects and internships at the Atlanta Veterans Administration Medical Center, U.S. EPA, Georgia State University, medical facilities, health agencies and various non-profit organizations.

As a member of the Eastern Kentucky University National Environmental Health Diversity Recruitment Task Force, Dr. Oliver helped develop a mentoring and recruitment strategy to enhance student and faculty diversity. This group has become known as the National Council on Diversity in Environmental Health. As a site reviewer for the National Environmental Health Science and Protection Accreditation Council, she helps colleges obtain accreditation of their environmental health academic programs. In addition, Dr. Oliver serves as a mentor for aspiring students and junior faculty.

Dr. Oliver has helped implement community public health programs including Atlanta health fairs providing free HIV testing and an American Liver Foundation liver diseases support group for inner-city patients at Grady Memorial Hospital. She created a program for Sam Nunn Atlanta Federal Center employees to participate in the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency/U.S. EPA National Take-Back Initiative which removes unwanted prescription drugs from the environmental waste stream.

She was responsible for the Community Action for a Renewed Environment program, which helps communities reduce exposures to toxic pollutants, and has worked with the National Environmental Justice Advisory Council providing advice and involving stakeholders in actions. She was also instrumental in developing the Sustainability Initiative for Colleges of the South and Historically Black Colleges and Universities.

Dr. Oliver is a long-time NEHA member, including serving as Co-Chair, Chair and Technical Advisor of the Hazardous Materials and Toxic Substances Section. She received the NEHA Presidential Citation and letters of appreciation for her longtime service to the NEHA Technical Editorial Advisory Board and as a peer reviewer for the Journal of Environmental Health.

She secured a grant and served as project director for a Morehouse School of Medicine longitudinal study of lead poisoning in pregnant women and children. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has sought Dr. Oliver to serve on several panels to award environmental public health grants for enhancing cities and communities.

Dr. Oliver has received a Certificate of Appreciation from the U.S. House of Representatives for her service as a Legislative Fellow to the Health and Environment Subcommittee, and won the Anthony M. Rachal Award of Excellence from Xavier University (New Orleans) for many years of service on the Youth Motivation Task Force.

Earlier in her career, she worked as a life scientist inspecting municipal and industrial wastewater facilities for the U.S. EPA and as a biologist managing environmental impact statements and assessments for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

For more information about the Walter F. Snyder Award and previous award recipients, visit NSF International’s website.

About NSF International:  NSF International is a global independent organization that writes standards, and tests and certifies products for the food, water, health sciences and consumer products industries to minimize adverse health effects and protect the environment (nsf.org). Founded in 1944, NSF is committed to protecting human health and safety worldwide. NSF International is a Pan American Health Organization/World Health Organization Collaborating Center on Food Safety, Water Quality and Indoor Environment.

Additional NSF services include NSF Education and Training, safety audits for the food and water industries, nutritional/dietary supplement certification, organic certification provided by QAI (Quality Assurance International) and management systems registrations delivered through NSF International Strategic Registrations (NSF-ISR).

About NEHA: The National Environmental Health Association (NEHA) is a national professional society that represents the profession and practice of environmental health (neha.org). Its mission "to advance the environmental health and protection professional for the purpose of providing a healthful environment for all" is represented in the products and services offered by NEHA through training, education, networking, professional development and policy involvement opportunities. The basis for the association’s activities is the belief that the professional who is trained, educated and motivated is the professional who will make the greatest contribution to the healthful environmental goals.

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NSF International
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