Outstanding Recent Graduate Award 2013

Alison A. Hill, SPH ’08, Bus ’08 (MBA)
Alison Hill is the managing director for Vestergaard Frandsen's Climate Business Unit and leads the LifeStraw Carbon for Water program in Western Kenya. Under her leadership, the program is now fully sustainable and provides free safe drinking water annually for 4.5 million Kenyans through the distribution of over 800,000 units of the LifeStraw water filters since 2011. The program is credited with improving the health and socio-economic wellbeing of communities by reducing waterborne diseases and respiratory illnesses; advancing the quality of life for women and girls by reducing their burden for collection of water and firewood for boiling; and increasing local employment among the communities. In addition, the Carbon for Water program is entirely self-funded through an innovative carbon finance system that documents and trades carbon emission reductions from the use of the LifeStraw filters in place of the burning of biomass for boiling water. The program prevents the emission of 2.9 million tons of carbon dioxide annually. As recognition of the impact of the LifeStraw Carbon for Water program, the program recently received prestigious accolades including the Global Business Coalition Health Business on Action Award 2012, the Environmental Finance Awards 2012 Carbon Transaction of the Year Award, and the Just Means Best Social Investment Strategy Award 2012. It has also been nominated for the Nature Conservancy Environment and Conservation Award. The program has further received press coverage in the New York Times, Scientific American, and African news agencies. Top

Samuel H. Huleatt, Bus ’08
Samuel Huleatt was an active student and a is particularly active alumni advocate for the Carey Business School and the university. While a student at Carey, Sam became involved in venture capital and was selected as an entrepreneur-fellow at the University of Maryland’s Dingman Center for Entrepreneurship. This would serve him well, as he founded his first company immediately after graduation. The company was Workstreamer LLC, and Sam was its first CEO. The company was acquired in September 2009 and Sam continued working with it for another year. He then began working in Strategy and Corporate Finance for Rocket Fuel Inc., where he co-founded Audience Amplify, an innovative publisher-focused technology. He continues to serve as a consultant for numerous companies including AOL and the Overseas Private Investment Corporation. While Sam’s professional accomplishments are impressive, he always has time for the Carey Dean’s Alumni Advisory Board and the Johns Hopkins Alumni Association. He serves as chair for the nomination committee for the DAAB. Last year, he led the design process for a new nominations process, and this year he is leading two vital new initiatives for the committee. He advises the school on social media, and leads numerous on-line conversations promoting the Carey Business School. He attends as many events as he can in New York, DC, and Baltimore, and was the inaugural speaker for the Social Media Affinity Group kick-off in Philadelphia last year. He speaks to students regularly and is a true leader in the community. Top

Neilesh S. Patel, Engr ’03
Dr. Neilesh Patel is a social entrepreneur and leader in global public health as well as an advocator for the welfare of children in California. Born in Boston, Massachusetts, Dr. Patel was raised in California. He attended both public and parochial schools in the San Francisco Bay area and graduated from St. Francis High School. He received his B.S. in biomedical engineering with a concentration on computer science in 2003, and simultaneously earned a minor in Entrepreneurship and Management from Johns Hopkins University. Following graduation, Dr. Patel worked in the cardiac device market in both Minneapolis and Tokyo. He helped gain regulatory approval from Japan’s Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare for one of the most needed life-saving cardiac defibrillators in 2004. The device’s approval for sale in Japan helped save the lives of many of Japan's elderly citizens. Subsequently, he matriculated at UCLA School of Dentistry and received his Doctor of Dental Surgery (DDS). He also received a certificate in Global Health from UCLA School of Public Health. Dr. Patel is currently pursuing a Masters in Public Health (MPH) at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health through its Europe-based online program. Following dental school, Dr. Patel went to work in Bakersfield, CA, and along the US-Mexico Border in some of the most poverty-stricken areas of the United States, where he treated migrant farm workers and other underserved populations. Neil has started three non-profits in the State of California since 1997. His first was started during the dot-com boom in the Silicon Valley. StudentsHelp.org provided free computing services to some of the state's most disadvantaged youth in East Palo Alto, CA and numerous other California cities. The organization eventually helped thousands of non-profits and underserved people statewide with their computing needs. In 2006 while still at UCLA, Patel started HealthCare Volunteer, a 501 (c) (3) non-profit organization that has helped thousands of underserved children receive medical and dental services they would otherwise not receive. Patel was awarded the CEY Humanitarian Award at UCLA for his efforts and his name was permanently engraved on display in UCLA's Ackerman Hall. In 2007, a law was passed in California requiring all children entering kindergarten to receive a dental screening before entry into any public elementary school's kindergarten or first grade. To help ease the burden on the families of these children, Neil offered free dental screenings at his practice. Dr. Patel has a long history of serving in public service positions including having volunteered in the US Armed Forces Component's Reserve Health Readiness Program, the US Army ROTC, and the Indian Health Service. Moreover, Neil worked in the Food and Drug Administration in the Pacing, Defibrillators and Leads Branch as an expert reviewer of software cardiac devices in 2003. In 2011, Dr. Patel was appointed by Commissioner Suehs as the public services representative for the Children's Policy Council for the Texas Health And Human Services. Dr. Patel was also appointed as an expert consultant for the U.S. FDA Medical Devices Advisory Committee Dental Products Panel in 2011. Top

Daniel A. Salmon, SPH ’03 (PhD)
Daniel Salmon is currently the director of vaccine safety for the National Vaccine Program Office at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, where he coordinates, evaluates, and provides leadership for federal vaccine safety programs. He played an important role in the federal government's response to the H1N1 pandemic, where he was instrumental in establishing, in a very short amount of time, a large surveillance system for evaluating vaccine safety for the H1N1 vaccine. This system has now evolved into the Post Licensure Rapid Immunization Safety Monitoring (PRISM), which captures vaccine histories from eight state immunization registries linked with health records for about 35 million people through five large health insurance companies. This system has now been taken over by the Food and Drug Administration to assess the safety of multiple vaccines. While at HHS, Dr. Salmon also developed a document that describes federal vaccine safety infrastructure and programs, guest edited a supplement for pediatrics to improve understanding of vaccine safety systems and science and enable effective communications by pediatricians when discussing vaccine safety with parents, and developed task force (Federal Immunization Safety Task Force) issuing a report to the Secretary to enhance safety systems and programs. By using solid science to answer important applied public health questions Dr. Salmon has earned wide recognition in the field of vaccinology and pandemic response. Top

Michael A. Straus, Peab ’07 (MM, MM)
Michael Straus was suggested by Conservatory faculty member Gary Louie who wrote: “Michael is a very unique musician and he continues to push the music boundaries of our new musical scene. He is a Fulbright award winner, a touring artist, an improviser, composer, writer, and arts organizer and, quite simply, an important figure in the new American music. He is a multimedia specialist and has performed with computers and live video; he has improvised with robots. He puts a tickle in my stomach when I think of him. I am certainly proud of him.” Michael is currently director of operations at Other Minds, a contemporary music organization in San Francisco, and founder of the multimedia performance project “What are you looking at?” He has only been out of school a few years and has already received: a 2010 American-Scandinavian Foundation Creative Arts Grant (Oslo), 2008–2009 J. William Fulbright Fellowship (Amsterdam), American Composers Forum Encore Grant, and Meet the Composer Creative Connections Grant. He has presented guest lectures on topics surrounding music, technology and improvisation for students at Yale University's Music & Technology Lab, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Amsterdam's STEIM, the University of Michigan's Performing Arts Technology Department, Oberlin’s TIMARA Program, Brandeis University, and the University of Miami among others. Peabody strives to produce musicians who are leaders in their communities, and innovative in their career development. Top

Crystal C. Watkins, Med ’03 (MD/PhD)
Dr. Watkins received both her MD and PhD degrees from the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine under the mentorship of Dr. Solomon Snyder in molecular and cellular neuroscience. She distinguished herself as a young investigator by being accepted as a Society for Neuroscience Fellow, an Academic Medicine Fellow of the National Medical Fellowships and Bristol-Myers Squibb, Inc., and a National Research Service Award recipient from the National Institutes of Mental Health and the NIH. Her thesis research led to a patented discovery for a new treatment for nerve disorders that affect diabetic patients. Named Outstanding Intern of the Year at the Johns Hopkins/Sinai Program in Internal Medicine, Dr. Watkins completed her residency in Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine where she served as chief resident for the 2007-2008 academic year. From 2008 to 2010, Dr. Watkins was the Alexander Wilson Schweizer Fellow in Mood Disorders and Neuroimaging. The fellowship is part of the interdisciplinary training program in Psychiatry, Neuroscience and Radiology at the School of Medicine. Additionally, Dr. Watkins has a commitment to community education and volunteers with the Adolescent Depression Awareness Program, a school-based initiative at Johns Hopkins to educate high school students, faculty and parents about adolescent depression. She has been actively involved in mentoring programs and has traveled internationally to Guatemala and Ghana to volunteer in underserved areas. She is a member of the American Psychological Association, American Medical Association, the Society for Neuroscience and Alpha Kappa Alpha sorority. Top