ASH has recognized ADM Brett Giroir, MD, the 16th Assistant Secretary for Health in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), with the 2020 ASH Outstanding Service Award.

To recognize effective “behind-the-scenes” leadership in areas relevant to the Society’s mission, the ASH Outstanding Service Award is presented annually to individuals in the public or private sector. This year, ASH honors ADM Giroir who, as Assistant Secretary for Health, leads development of HHS-wide public health policy recommendations and oversees several of the department’s core public health offices, including the Office of the Surgeon General. Additionally, ADM Giroir serves as Senior Adviser to the Secretary for Opioid Policy and currently serves on the White House Coronavirus Task Force. ADM Giroir is a pediatric critical care specialist and physician-scientist who has held several federal government and academic leadership roles. He was executive vice president and CEO of Texas A&M’s Health Science Center from 2013 to 2015. He directed the Defense Sciences Office of the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency from 2006 to 2008 and chaired the Veteran’s Choice Act Blue Ribbon Panel to reform the U.S. Veterans Health System from 2014 to 2015. ADM Giroir, whose office leads many critical national initiatives, has demonstrated a great commitment to improving the lives of individuals with sickle cell disease (SCD) through his work with HHS’s Interagency Working Group on SCD, making SCD a top priority at HHS. ADM Giroir established a Global Coalition to End Sickle Cell Disease with key global partners, including ASH, the U.S. Agency for International Development, the World Bank, and the World Health Organization, and under his leadership, HHS’s Office of Minority Health commissioned the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine to develop a strategic plan and blueprint for addressing SCD in the United States. ADM Giroir always makes sure to include ASH representatives as subject matter experts at these high-profile meetings with global partners, and frequently calls upon ASH for guidance on SCD-related policy. 

As part of his involvement with ASH, in 2018, ADM Giroir delivered the keynote message at the Sickle Cell Disease Coalition Meeting, provided video remarks at the U.S. Food and Drug Administration-ASH SCD Clinical Endpoints Workshop, and attended the ASH African Sickle Cell Disease Newborn Screening and Early Intervention Consortium Meeting in 2019. ADM Giroir will be recognized during the ASH Awards Presentation, held on Saturday, December 5, 2020, at 3:30 p.m. Pacific time.

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