Department of Native Hawaiian Health chair selected to serve on NIH Director's Council of Public Representatives

University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa
Posted: Jul 13, 2005

BETHESDA, Md. — Dr. Marjorie Mau, professor and chair of the Department of Native Hawaiian Health at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa‘s John A. Burns School of Medicine, was recently selected to serve as a member of the National Institutes of Health‘s (NIH) Director‘s Council of Public Representatives (COPR). Since 1999, COPR has advised the NIH Director on issues of public importance.

Mau is one of seven new members to join the 12 current members of the council. Amongst the other new members recently selected are Nicole Johnson Baker of Pittsburgh, Pa.; Christina Clark of Metamora, Mich.; Valda Boyd-Ford of Omaha, Neb.; Cynthia A. Lindquist of Devils Lake, N.D.; Nicolas Linares-Orama, Ph.D. of San Juan, Puerto Rico; and Michael Manganiello of Washington, D.C.

"These new members bring a wealth of knowledge, a clear, public perspective, and professional experience in the areas of public service, health care, medicine, and underserved communities, and the visual media, as well as a strong commitment to the advancement of public health and medical research. I am delighted to welcome them to the Council," said NIH Director Dr. Elias A. Zerhouni.

Born and raised in Honolulu, Mau has spent more than 12 years working with Native Hawaiian communities to improve their health status and eliminate health disparities. A major focus of her career continues to be the prevention and control of diabetes mellitus in Native Hawaiians and other ethnic populations.

Her work has led to the development and implementation of the Kulia Ola Kino Maikaʻi ("strive for good health") Program, a peer educator-led program that has been shown to improve diet and exercise behaviors in Native Hawaiians with or at risk for diabetes.

Mau is also a strong advocate for increasing the number of Native Hawaiians and other underrepresented ethnic minority students in higher education. In the Department of Native Hawaiian Health, two programs—the Imi Hoʻola ("those who seek to heal") Program and the Native Hawaiian Center of Excellence—are aimed at recruiting and supporting medical students and faculty of Native Hawaiian or other Pacific Island ancestry to pursue careers in health and medicine.

An active member of the Ahahui O Na Kauka (The Association of Native Hawaiian Physicians), the American Diabetes Association, and the Endocrine Society, Mau is also a Fellow of the American College of Physicians and the American Society of Internal Medicine. She received her undergraduate and medical degrees from Creighton University and her M.S. from Harvard School of Public Health.

New COPR members joined the full council for their first meeting in April 2005 at the NIH campus. The meeting, chaired by Zerhouni, highlighted topics including the role of public trust in medical research and clinical trials, and how NIH solicits public input into its operations. The COPR next meets in the fall of 2005.

The COPR brings important matters of public interest forward for discussion and advises and assists in enhancing public participation in NIH activities and in increasing public understanding of NIH. Additional information is available at

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