From the Podium and Beyond

By Carol Olechowski

SPH Honors AIDS Doctors

Alaei brothers honored at School of Public Health symposium

Photo: Mark Schmidt

Months after being released from prison in their native Iran, doctors Kamiar and Arash Alaei were honored in December at “Human Rights and HIV,” a School of Public Health symposium.

The brothers were incarcerated in 2008 for educating and treating patients diagnosed with HIV and AIDS. Kamiar, principal education specialist at SPH, was freed in late 2010 and returned to Albany to continue his doctoral studies at the school. Arash was released last August.

DEC Recognizes UAlbany Conservation Efforts

Its energy-conservation efforts have earned UAlbany the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation’s Environmental Excellence Award.

Led by the offices of Environmental Sustainability (OES) and Energy Management and their respective directors, Mary Ellen Mallia and Indu Lnu, students, faculty and staff have become more aware of the need to conserve. Turning off lights, printers, computers and other equipment not in use; lowering the heat in vacant offices and dorm rooms; and encouraging the recycling of paper and plastic materials have made the University’s campuses more “green.” Other benefits, according to the January 2012 OES Sustainability Bulletin, have included a 7.5 percent reduction in electricity usage and a $700,000-plus yearly saving on energy costs.

Armao, OCCRP Receive Daniel Pearl Award

Professor of Journalism Rosemary Armao and the Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project (OCCRP) received the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists’ prestigious 2011 Daniel Pearl Award last October.

As an editor, Armao worked with OCCRP, which focused on eastern European criminals and corrupt politicians using offshore havens as fronts for money laundering, tax evasion, and drug and weapons-smuggling activities. Reporters went undercover for six months, infiltrating havens in Delaware, the Cayman Islands, the Seychelles, New Zealand, Romania and Ukraine.

SEED Program Cultivates Local Businesses

Photo: Mark Schmidt

SEED local entrepreneurs

Local businesses are growing, thanks to the Small Enterprise Economic Development (SEED) program at UAlbany, a partnership with SEFCU and Empire State Development (ESD). To date, the character-based microloan program – which trains entrepreneurs in business planning, marketing, financial management and other aspects of business ownership – has awarded 11 local entrepreneurs $385,000 to create 52 new jobs. The businesses include a Web portal for people with disabilities, a spa and a recyclables-redemption center.


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