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Recognized for Stem Cell Research Legislation Leadership

WASHINGTON—March 22, 2006—U.S. Representative Michael Castle (DE) has received the 2006 Research!America Edwin C. Whitehead Award for Medical Research Advocacy. The award, presented jointly to Castle and Rep. Diana DeGette (CO), recognizes their introduction and leadership in securing passage of the Stem Cell Research Enhancement Act (H.R. 810) last year in the U.S. House of Representatives.

Castle was honored March 21, 2006, at the 10th Annual Research!America Advocacy Awards gala at the Andrew W. Mellon Auditorium in Washington, DC. Judy Woodruff, broadcast journalist and Research!America board member, served as master of ceremonies.

"Research!America's national public opinion polling has found that a majority of Americans favor federal funding for embryonic stem cell research," said Mary Woolley, president of Research!America. "We are pleased to honor Mike Castle for his role in The Stem Cell Research Enhancement Act of 2005, which would expand the current federal embryonic research policy."

The U.S. House of Representatives passed the bill in May 2005; the Senate has yet to vote on it. Castle is considered the House Republican leader on stem cell research and works closely with leading health care groups in Delaware and Washington, DC, such as the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation International, Christopher Reeve Paralysis Foundation and Parkinson's Action Network. He was a strong supporter of doubling the budget of the National Institutes of Health (FY99-FY03). A former deputy attorney general, state legislator, lieutenant governor and two-term governor of Delaware, he is now serving his seventh term as Delaware's lone U.S. Representative.

Research!America's pinnacle Edwin C. Whitehead Award for Medical Research Advocacy carries the name of Research!America's founding chair. The Whitehead Charitable Foundation, the award benefactor, is a long-standing Research!America partner.

Other 2006 Research!America Advocacy Award winners are former First Lady Nancy Reagan; Sam Donaldson of ABC News; Linda Aiken, PhD, RN, director of the Center for Health Outcomes and Policy Research and Claire M. Fagin Leadership Professor of Nursing and Professor of Sociology at the University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing; Gordon Gund, co-founder and chairman, The Foundation Fighting Blindness and CEO of Gund Investment Corporation; and the Center for the Advancement of Health.

Research!America is the nation's largest not-for-profit public education and advocacy alliance working to make medical and health research-including research to prevent disease, disability and injury and to promote health-a much higher national priority. The 2006 Advocacy Awards represent Research!America's 10th year of recognizing the accomplishments of leading advocates for medical and health research.

 

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