September 1, 2016
Steven W. Gust congratulates the winners of the 2016 NIDA International Awards of ExcellenceNIDA International Program Director Steven W. Gust congratulates the winners of the 2016 NIDA International Awards of Excellence. From left are J. Randy Koch, Virginia Commonwealth University; Marya Hynes, Organization of American States; and Mustafa al’Absi, University of Minnesota Medical School.

NIDA International Awards of Excellence recognize individuals for outstanding contributions to international cooperation in drug abuse research and training. During the NIDA International Forum, these awards were presented for:

  • Excellence in mentoring, to J. Randy Koch, Ph.D., Virginia Commonwealth University, for his work with the VCU Hubert H. Humphrey Fellowship Program on Substance Abuse Prevention, Treatment, and Policy to improve the delivery of health care services and promote evidence-based prevention and treatment of substance abuse throughout the world.
  • Excellence in international leadership, to Marya Hynes, Organization of American States (OAS), for her work coordinating regional research and training programs, establishing strategic partnerships among Latin American political agencies and international substance abuse research organizations, and launching several NIDA-OAS initiatives, including REDLA – the Latin American Epidemiology Work Group.
  • Excellence in collaborative research, to Mustafa al’Absi, Ph.D., University of Minnesota Medical School, for his work investigating the concurrent use of khat and tobacco, building research capacity in the Middle East and North Africa, and establishing the Africa and Middle East Congress on Addiction to help local scientists address issues in addiction and related psychiatric disorders.