News Release 

Columbia Public Health Dean Linda Fried honored for pioneering work in aging

Gerontology trailblazer is 2019 Alma Dea Morani Award winner

Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health

October 21, 2019 -- Linda P. Fried, MD, MPH, dean of Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health, and a pioneer in the science of aging, is the 2019 recipient of the Alma Dea Morani Renaissance Woman Award, the most prestigious honor bestowed by The Women in Medicine Legacy Foundation.

A geriatrician and epidemiologist, Dr. Fried is an internationally known medical scientist, clinician, and leader in medicine and public health. Under her leadership, Columbia has become an innovator in public health education, addressing such critical issues as the health effects of climate change and increasing the quality of health for Americans who are living longer. She has been the principal investigator of a number of major studies, including the Women's Health and Aging Studies and the Cardiovascular Health Study.

The Alma Dea Morani Award recognizes an outstanding contemporary pioneer in medicine or science who has demonstrated professional excellence and a thirst for knowledge and service beyond her medical practice or scientific endeavors. The award is named for Alma Dea Morani, MD, the first woman admitted to the American Society of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeons and an advocate for humanism in medicine.

"Dr. Fried is a trailblazer in defining frailty in aging as a new medical syndrome and her work is contributing to keeping individuals healthy longer to match their life spans," says Julia Haller, MD, Foundation president.

The author of over 500 scientific articles and chapters, Fried has led 3 major lines of scientific investigation including research that defined frailty in aging as a new medical syndrome. As Dean, she led the transformation of the School's MPH curriculum for the 21st Century which has become the accreditation standard.

Fried also co-designed and founded Experience Corps, a community-based public health intervention to prevent frailty and cognitive and functional decline in older adults. Embedded in a volunteer program for older adults, serving in public elementary schools to improve the academic outcomes of the children, the program, is now in 24 U.S. cities and led by AARP.

She has received numerous honors and awards including the French INSERM International Prize for Medical Research. An elected member of the National Academy of Medicine and its Council, Fried is past President of the Association of American Physicians and an elected member of the Council on Foreign Relations. She is also a NYAM Fellow and former Trustee and a member of the Age-friendly NYC Commission.

Fried was honored at a breakfast on October 18th at The New York Academy of Medicine.


Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health

Founded in 1922, the Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health pursues an agenda of research, education, and service to address the critical and complex public health issues affecting New Yorkers, the nation and the world. The Columbia Mailman School is the seventh largest recipient of NIH grants among schools of public health. Its nearly 300 multi-disciplinary faculty members work in more than 100 countries around the world, addressing such issues as preventing infectious and chronic diseases, environmental health, maternal and child health, health policy, climate change and health, and public health preparedness. It is a leader in public health education with more than 1,300 graduate students from 55 nations pursuing a variety of master's and doctoral degree programs. The Columbia Mailman School is also home to numerous world-renowned research centers, including ICAP and the Center for Infection and Immunity. For more information, please visit

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