Tobacco Info

From Tobacco Info No. 8 - January 2012
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Nova Scotia’s chief public health officer

Dr. Robert Strang honoured by the Non-Smokers’ Rights Association

The Non-Smokers’ Rights Association honours annually individual actors in tobacco control for their outstanding contributions to public health.

At its annual general meeting last October, the NSRA gave Dr. Robert Strang, chief public health officer of Nova Scotia, its Non-Smoker of the Year Award. The NSRA recognized Dr. Strang for invaluable leadership while heading Smoke-Free Nova Scotia, where he led successful advocacy campaigns for provincial smoke-free legislation and for a comprehensive ban on retail tobacco displays. Later, on behalf of the Atlantic province, his advocacy on the national stage played a significant role in the enactment of a federal ban on flavoured tobacco.  His efforts to achieve the implementation of Canada’s new tobacco package warning system were considered particularly noteworthy, said the NSRA.

Previous recipients of the Non-Smoker of the Year Award include Neil Collishaw, Cynthia Callard, Heidi Rathjen, Louis Gauvin and Rob Cunningham.

Also honoured at the NSRA’s Annual Meeting with a Lifetime Achievement Award in recognition of an outstanding contribution to public health related to tobacco control was Dr. John Blatherwick, former chief health officer of Vancouver and Vancouver Coastal Health.  Dr. Blatherwick’s leadership in precedent-setting campaigns to eliminate second-hand tobacco smoke from workplaces and restaurants was especially noteworthy.

Finally, the NSRA’s Award of Merit was given to former Member of Parliament Judy Wasylicia-Leis for her outstanding leadership on behalf of tobacco control; in particular, for her ongoing efforts to keep the tobacco issue high on the federal government’s agenda.

The Non-Smokers’ Rights Association is a national, non-profit health agency with members across Canada.  The NSRA was the inaugural winner of the international Luther L. Terry Award established by the American Cancer Society for global leadership in tobacco control. 

Written by Joe Strizzi with files from the NSRA