Harold Rifkin Award for Distinguished International Service in the Cause of Diabetes
Peter H. Bennett, MB, ChB, FRCP, FFPH
Peter H. Bennett, MB, ChB, FRCP, FFPH, from Phoenix, Arizona received the American Diabetes Association’s prestigious 2010 Harold Rifkin Award for Distinguished International Service in the Cause of Diabetes. The award was presented at the Association’s 70th Scientific Sessions in Orlando, Florida.
The Harold Rifkin Award for Distinguished International Service in the Cause of Diabetes is named for Dr. Rifkin, former president of the American Diabetes Association. It is awarded to an individual whose outstanding service in the cause of diabetes has been performed with an international perspective and with international impact.
Currently scientist emeritus at the Phoenix Epidemiology and Clinical Research Branch, National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK), National Institutes of Health, Phoenix, Arizona, Dr. Bennett is best known for his many contributions to diabetes through the long-term studies of the Pima Indian population. Less well recognized are his many international contributions to diabetes over the past 30 years.
Dr. Bennett played a major role in the WHO Multinational Study of Vascular Disease in Diabetes, and he served as epidemiologist to the South Pacific Commission. In 1985, with the late Professor Pan Xiaoren, Dr. Bennett designed and initiated the China Da Qing Diabetes Study, the first randomized controlled clinical trial to demonstrate that diet and exercise interventions resulted in marked reduction in diabetes incidence. In the mid 1990s, he initiated the study of the Mexican Pima Indian population.
Dr. Bennett was a founding member of the National Diabetes Data Group. This group’s recommendations on diagnostic criteria and classification were largely accepted by the WHO in 1980. He is also a member of the IDF committees on Epidemiology and Global Guidelines and Diabetes. He was a founder and is a lifetime president of the International Diabetes Epidemiology Group.
Dr. Bennett has been involved for 25 years as a faculty member of international diabetes epidemiology courses. He has helped organize and teach courses throughout the world, mentoring more than 800 participants in the fundamentals and application of diabetes epidemiology.