Congratulations to this year’s R. Palmer Beasley, MD award recipients. Faculty Award for Innovation: Cici Bauer, PhD, associate professor of the Department of Biostatistics & Data Science, and Michael B. Cannell, PhD, associate professor with the Department of Epidemiology, Human Genetics, and Environmental Sciences. Nominated by Hulin Wu, PhD, chair, and professor of the Department of Biostatistics & Data Science, and Bijal A. Balasubramanian, PhD, professor and Rockwell Distinguished Chair in Society and Health, respectively, the research contributions and academic careers of Bauer and Cannell have garnered the attention of their colleagues and peers, leading to their selection for this award.
The R. Palmer Beasley, M.D. Faculty Award for Innovation is an endowment at UTHealth Houston established with a philanthropic gift from Palmer Beasley, MD, in 2012. Beasley was dean of UTHealth Houston School of Public Health from 1987-2004. Beasley, internationally recognized for his research on the causal link between the hepatitis B virus and liver cancer, dedicated his career to epidemiology, public health leadership, and global health research and training. This endowment supports awards to faculty members whose work exemplifies innovative research in public health.
Bauer is an accomplished scientist, collaborator, and leader, focusing her research on spatial-temporal data science to support data-driven decisions and advance innovative spatial-temporal modeling techniques. She has developed and spearheaded several initiatives in the field, partnering extensively with research epidemiologists, environmental health scientists, social scientists, health services, behavior health scientists, and clinicians.
“This award is a great encouragement for me to continue pursuing research on spatial-temporal data science, and making real positive impacts on public health,” said Bauer.
She serves as founding director of the Center for Spatial-Temporal Modeling for Applications in Population Science (CSMAPS), and co-founder and co-director of the Joint Center on Geospatial Analysis & Health (JCoGA&H), part of the UTHealth Houston – MD Anderson Population Health Initiative.
“Her efforts have not only advanced the field of geospatial and spatial-temporal data science but have also had a tangible impact on public health research and policy,” said Wu.
Cannell is an epidemiologist, gerontologist, and data scientist. His research interests include healthy aging and late-life quality of life, and applying that understanding to improving the health of older adults and communities. Specifically, he has published research focusing on preserving physical and cognitive function, living and aging with disability, and detecting and preventing elder mistreatment.
“I am so grateful for the spotlight this award may help to shine on elder mistreatment, the DETECT project, and all of the amazing collaborators I’ve had the opportunity to work with over the past decade – especially MedStar Mobile Healthcare and the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services,” said Cannell.
“His research has had a significant impact on the field of elder abuse and mistreatment, and his dedication and commitment to improving the health and well-being of older adults is truly exemplary,” said Balasubramanian.
Recipients of the annual award receive a plaque and cash award.
Past Recipients: Jack Tsai (2022); Roberta Ness (2018); Steven Kelder, Deanna Hoelscher, Bill Kohl, and Cheryl Perry for their research in the Dell Center for Healthy Living (2016); Charles Darkoh (2015); and Susan Emery, Christine Markham, Ross Shegog, and Melissa Peskin for their program “It’s Your Game” (2015).