I had the honor of attending the Project HOPE gala Tuesday night in Washington, DC, where the organization presented John Lechleiter, Ph.D., Lilly chairman, president, and chief executive officer, with the inaugural Global Health Partner Award. The award recognizes Dr. Lechleiter's leadership and the longstanding partnership between Lilly and Project HOPE, which continues to help change the lives of people in need throughout the world.
It was a wonderful evening in which John and Lilly were recognized (for partnership) along with Colleen Conway-Welch, Ph.D., R.N., dean and professor of the Vanderbilt University School of Nursing (leadership) and Operation Smile (impact). More than 500 people attended.
Lilly's partnership with Project HOPE began in 1959, one year after the humanitarian health organization was founded. Since then, the company has contributed about $80 million in cash and in-kind gifts, including product donations. These collaborations have included diabetes education and training programs, as well as disaster relief efforts and medical donations in countries such as China, Haiti, India, Indonesia, and Japan.
Lilly also is working with Project HOPE in India and South Africa as part of The Lilly NCD Partnership, which the company announced in 2011, to fight the rising burden of non-communicable diseases (NCDs) in underserved communities. Through this initiative, Lilly will support the work at the HOPE Center in Johannesburg, South Africa, where Project HOPE trains diabetes health workers.
We're humbled by this recognition and inspired to continue our proud and productive partnership with Project HOPE.