UK Earth Day Symposium links environment, impact on human health


LEXINGTON, Ky. (WTVQ) The 2021 Symposium honoring his pioneering environmental clinical research will be held on Earth Day, Thursday, from noon to 3 p.m EDT.

The event is free and open to all; registration is required.

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Courtesy of University of Kentucky

Every two years, the John P. Wyatt, M.D. Environment & Health Symposium honors the legacy of its namesake, a pathologist who, over 50 years ago, connected air pollution with lung disease.

Dr. Howard Frumkin, professor emeritus of environmental and occupational health sciences and former dean of the University of Washington School of Public Health, will give a keynote address on “Planetary Health: Human Well-Being on a Fast-Changing Planet.”

Frumkin is a world-renowned internist, occupational and environmental medicine specialist and epidemiologist.

He is the former director of the National Center for Environmental Health and Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and Special Assistant to the CDC Director for Climate Change and Health.

The Symposium will also feature a panel on addressing environmental health disparities at the national, regional and local levels will be moderated by Danelle Stevens-Watkins, Ph.D., assistant vice president of diversity and inclusion, associate professor, and director of graduate studies in the UK College of Education. Panelists will be:

  • Heather Henry, Ph.D., health scientist administrator, National Institute of Environmental Health Science
  • Amanda LeFevre, deputy commissioner, Kentucky Department of Environmental Protection
  • Donovan Taylor, manager, The Plan Room & Louisville West End community resident

During the symposium’s breakout sessions, you can learn how to protect Kentucky waterways, map environmental data, how researchers are studying the impact of the environment on health and much more.

This year’s symposium is organized by Erin N. Haynes, the Kurt W. Deuschle Professor and chair of the departments of epidemiology and preventive medicine and environmental health in the UK College of Public Health.

She also serves as deputy director of the UK Center for Appalachian Research in Environmental Sciences and associate director of the UK Center for Clinical and Translational Science.

“I am delighted to be hosting the Wyatt Symposium on Earth Day 2021. This year’s event pulls together the key pillars of strength in environmental research and outreach on our campus and beyond, and features an outstanding line-up of speakers,” Haynes said.