The Wyoming School Foundation is privileged to announce the 2022 Wyoming High School Distinguished Alumnus is Eve M. Lackritz, MD, member of the WHS Class of 1975.
Eve Lackritz is a medical epidemiologist and board-certified pediatrician. She has worked for more than 30 years in the field of public health, with extensive experience in research, surveillance, programs, and policy related to infectious diseases, maternal-child health, emerging pathogens, emergency response. Dr. Lackritz is currently the Deputy Director of the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy (CIDRAP) at the University of Minnesota.
In high school, Eve participated in many student groups including Academy of Science, Horizon, and Round-Up (yearbook). She was on Student Council, Thespian Society, and Drama Club. Eve worked evenings and weekends at Dairy Queen and summers at Kings Island. Additionally, she participate in two summer academic trips (to Kenya and Austria) with Mrs. King Johnson, WHS biology teacher.
Following high school, Eve attended Mount Holyoke College and graduated from the University of Cincinnati summa cum laude with a BA in psychology. During college, she worked part-time as a temporary secretary, a teaching assistant in statistics, and a case worker at a community-based mental health halfway house. She received her Doctor of Medicine degree from The Ohio State University in 1985, and completed her pediatric residency at Case Western Reserve University/University Hospitals of Cleveland in 1988.
Dr. Lackritz worked at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevent (CDC) for the first 23 years of her career. Her first five years there were spent working in the Malaria Branch conducting epidemiologic and clinical studies of malaria, anemia, and child survival, and her next 10 years were in the Division of HIV/AIDS Prevention. Dr. Lackritz led the implementation and evaluation of the first national AIDS treatment programs in Africa, conducted clinical trials of antiretroviral therapy to prevent mother-to-child HIV transmission in Africa and Asia, and studied HIV transmission by blood transfusion. She led a study in Uganda that identified that HHV-8, the virus that causes Kaposi's sarcoma, could be transmitted by blood transfusion. This discovery led to Dr. Lackritz and her colleagues receiving the CDC's Charles S. Shepard Science Award. This prestigious award is presented to the best manuscript on original research published by a CDC or Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) scientist in a reputable, peer-reviewed journal each year. Dr. Lackritz served as the Chief of the Maternal and Infant Health Branch during her final nine years at the CDC. During this time, she led research and programs in the area of maternal and infant morbidity and mortality in the United States and low-income countries.
In 2012, Dr. Lackritz joined the World Health Organization (WHO) to lead the global response to the Zika epidemic. Subsequently, she worked with Doctors Without Borders as the hospital director in the Rohingya refugee camp and was the medical director of the Rosebud Indian Health Service Hospital in Rosebud, SD, during the COVID pandemic.
Dr. Lackritz has published more than 50 scientific papers and international guidelines on malaria, HIV/AIDS, maternal child health, and emerging infectious diseases in journals, including JAMA, The Lancet, and The New England Journal of Medicine. She was awarded the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) Distinguished Service Award for deployments to Hurricane Katrina and other hurricane locations and 14 Public Health Service Awards for leadership and service addressing domestic and international public threats.
She has served as a scientific expert and advisor to the DHHS, the Surgeon General, numerous national and international organizations, including Congressional hearing and briefings. She was a consultant to Kenya and Tanzania following the bombing of the US embassies there, assisting in establishing the first national blood transfusion service in Tanzania.
Since 2002, The Distinguished Alumni Award has recognized alumni who have made significant contributions to society, and whose accomplishments, affiliations, and careers have honored the legacy of excellence of Wyoming schools. More information about the award and past recipients can be found here.