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Hampshire College Professor Marlene Gerber Fried was honored with the American Public Health Association’s (APHA) 2014 Felicia Stewart Advocacy Award.
The award was presented Nov. 17 at the APHA annual meeting in New Orleans. Dedicated to the memory of reproductive health expert Dr. Felicia Stewart, the award is given by the Population, Reproductive, and Public Health Section of the APHA. It recognizes individuals who have demonstrated a strong commitment to advocacy on behalf of reproductive health and rights.
Professor Gerber Fried is known nationally and internationally as a leader in the reproductive rights movement, both as an activist and a scholar.
A member of the Hampshire faculty since 1986, she served in 2010-2011 as interim president of the College. She is a professor of philosophy and faculty director of the Civil Liberties and Public Policy (CLPP) program at Hampshire.
Hampshire graduate Amanda Dennis 02F, a research associate with Ibis Reproductive Health, introduced Gerber Fried at the award presentation “on behalf of the many young people whose lives [she’s] changed profoundly.” After taking a course taught by her, “Marlene sent me off to different internships, linked me to other mentors, and pushed me academically, all experiences that have become foundational to my personal and professional life,” she said.
Professor Gerber Fried’s scholarship and teaching focus on reproductive rights and public policy. She is coauthor of Undivided Rights: Women of Color Organize for Reproductive Justice, which was awarded the 2004 Outstanding Book Award by the Gustavus Myers Center for the Study of Bigotry and Human Rights, and of a chapter in the 2005 edition of Our Bodies, Ourselves. She edited the collection From Abortion Rights to Reproductive Freedom: Transforming a Movement.
She was the founding president and served for 21 years on the board of the National Network of Abortion Funds. She was also the founding president and continues to serve on the board of the Abortion Rights Fund of Western Massachusetts. She works on abortion advocacy internationally with the Women's Global Network for Reproductive Rights.
Lisa Maldonado, executive director of the Reproductive Health Access Project, also spoke at the award presentation: “The reproductive justice, health, and rights movement is so much stronger, braver, and more loving because of Marlene Gerber Fried,” she said. “Marlene started and nurtured many of the organizations doing important work in our field. However, Marlene’s impact goes way beyond the organizations she’s helped start. She’s been extremely influential in how we think about and approach the work we do.”
Gerber Fried’s many recognitions include an Evidence in Activism Award from Ibis Reproductive Health, Outstanding Mentor Award from CHOICE USA (now URGE), and the Warrior Women Award from SisterSong women of Color Reproductive Justice Collective.