African American News

The Association of Black Cardiologists Announces Esteemed Honorees in Cardiology and Health Equity for 8th Annual Spirit of The Heart Awards Celebration

Award-Winning Journalist Tamron Hall to serve as Mistress of Ceremonies

NEW YORKAug. 15, 2017 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — The Association of Black Cardiologists (ABC) will host its eighth annual Spirit of the Heart Awards Gala – Saturday, October 7th at Cipriani 42nd Street (110 E. 42nd Street- NY, NY 10017) – 7pm (Media Hour – 6pm).  The celebration will honor distinguished individuals and organizations that have made outstanding contributions to the advancement of health equity and/or the reduction of cardiovascular disease disparities.

ABC CEO, Cassandra McCullough remarks “The annual Spirit of the Heart Awards Gala is the noteworthy ABC tradition to honor and memorialize our “champions of change” for their significant contributions in building health communities.  The awards dinner reflects ABC’s commitment to positive change to ensure that cardiovascular health equity becomes a reality.”

The evening’s distinguished honorees include: Bernard J. Tyson, Chairman and CEO, Kaiser Permanente      (ABC Dr. Walter M. Booker Health Promotion Award); Nanette Kass Wenger, MD, Professor of Medicine (Emeritus) Cardiology, Emory University School of Medicine,  Past Chief of Cardiology, Grady Memorial Hospital, Consultant, Emory Heart & Vascular Center, Founding Consultant, Emory Women’s Heart Center (ABC Spirit of the Heart Legacy Award); Keith C. Ferdinand, MD, Professor of Medicine, Tulane University School of Medicine, Tulane Heart and Vascular Institute (ABC Spirit of the Heart Distinguished Leadership Award); Mrs. Patricia R. Butts, Founder and President of the Abyssinian Baptist Church Health Ministry (ABC Spirit of the Heart Community Health Advocate Award); National Minority Quality Forum accepted by Gary Puckrein, PhD, President and CEO (ABC Spirit of the Heart Health Equity Award); AMGEN Inc. accepted by Laura Hamill, Senior Vice President, U.S. Business Operations (ABC Spirit of the Heart Award).

“The Association of Black Cardiologists, throughout its 42 years, has worked to ensure that all people impacted by heart disease and stroke, especially minorities, are empowered through education and strengthened by action and sustainable solutions.” states McCullough.

Award Winning Journalists Tamron Hall (Discovery Channel) will serve as Mistress of Ceremonies and Cathleen Trigg Jones (TVOne) as Honorary Chair along with ABC Past-President Icilma V. Fergus– Rowe as Awards Dinner Chair.  The festive evening will also include signature auction items and music entertainment by the Ray Chew Band along with the attendance of notable industry leaders, patient advocates, celebs and allied healthcare professionals.  All proceeds from the event will benefit ABC’s ongoing research, education, community outreach and heart disease prevention awareness.   The funding raised will also support scholarships for underrepresented minorities.  The awards dinner celebration will be supported in part by Bristol-Myers Squibb and Pfizer Alliance.

The Association of Black Cardiologists (ABC), founded in 1974, has taken a leadership role in promoting the prevention and treatment of cardiovascular disease including stroke in African Americans and other minorities.  Its mission is to achieve health equity through the elimination of disparities in all people of color.  ABC represents a diverse international membership of 1,700 health professionals, community lay members, corporate and institutional members dedicated to this cause.

For more information on the ABC Spirit of the Heart Awards and the Association of Black Cardiologists, visit

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