Hackensack, NJ, May 24, 2006 – Children’s environmental health advocate Deirdre Imus was honored with the prestigious Lizette H. Sarnoff Award for Volunteer Service in early May by the National Women’s Division of the Albert Einstein College of Medicine of Yeshiva University.
Recent efforts by Deirdre Imus and her organization have helped usher in “Green Cleaning” Executive Orders from governors of three states (see below).
Ms. Imus is President and founder of The Deirdre Imus Environmental Health Center ™ at Hackensack University Medical Center (HUMC), a 501(c)3 not-for-profit corporation in Hackensack, N.J.
The Environmental Health Center represents one of the first hospital-based programs whose specific mission is to identify, control and ultimately prevent toxic exposures in the environment that threaten our children's health.
Fox 5 News Anchor Rosanna Scotto (left) presented the award at the 52nd Spirit of Achievement luncheon at the Waldorf-Astoria in Manhattan, May 2nd. Previous Sarnoff Award recipients include: Dana Reeve, Nancy Brinker, Mary Tyler Moore, Betty Ford and Elinor Guggenheimer.
“Deirdre Imus has clearly demonstrated the qualities the Lizette H. Sarnoff Award is designed to recognize each year,” said Linda Altman, President of the Albert Einstein College of Medicine’s Women’s Division. “The skills, dedication and enthusiasm she brings to her many philanthropic activities are exactly what our Spirit of Achievement Luncheon is all about.”
The Environmental Health Center operates the award-winning Greening the Cleaning® program, one of the Center’s most successful educational and outreach programs to date. More than 120 healthcare facilities, government authorities, businesses and schools have implemented the program since 2001, all with direct savings in cleaning costs. The Greening the Cleaning® program eliminates, to the greatest extent possible, cleaning agents containing hazardous ingredients and replacing them with environmentally responsible products, where available.
New York Governor George Pataki signed the first “Green Cleaning” Executive Order in the U.S. in January 2005. Former New Jersey Governor Richard J. Codey signed a similar order in January 2006, and Connecticut Governor M. Jodi Rell in April.
Both New York State and New York City have also enacted green cleaning legislation in the past year. These government initiatives direct state agencies and authorities to begin using less toxic cleaning products to help reduce exposure to toxic ingredients and improve indoor air quality.
“Deirdre Imus’ common-sense approach to improving children’s environmental health are inspiring real change in our hospitals, our schools, our homes and at all levels of our society,” said HUMC president and chief executive officer John P. Ferguson.
Bringing Greening Home
Last year, the Environmental Health Center also helped introduce a household line of Greening the Cleaning® products, now available at supermarkets and mass merchandisers nationwide and through Imus Ranch Foods (www.imusranchfoods.com). One hundred percent of after-tax profits go to the Imus Cattle Ranch for Kids with Cancer.
Ms. Imus calls on all people to embrace environmentally-responsible decision making. “Each of us can make an impact opening our mouths on the job and in the community -- and by making informed choices in everything we buy, from household cleaners to the food we eat,” she said.
In addition to her role as President and founder of the Environmental Health Center, Ms. Imus is co-founder and co-director of the Imus Cattle Ranch for Kids with Cancer, a 4,000 acre working cattle ranch in northern New Mexico, which provides the experience of the American cowboy to children suffering from cancer and various blood diseases, and to the siblings of children who have been victims of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS).
The National Women’s Division of the Albert Einstein College of Medicine of Yeshiva University -- the pre-eminent, nonsectarian center for research, medical education and clinical investigation -- has supported and encouraged the growth and development of the medical school since the Division was founded in 1953 – two years before the College opened. Since its first luncheon honoring women of achievement in 1954, the Division has grown to include 1,500 members with chapters in New York City, New Jersey and Westchester/Fairfield Counties. It has raised over $100 million for research and educational programs.
Hackensack University Medical Center is a nationally recognized healthcare organization offering patients the most comprehensive services, state-of-the art technologies, and facilities. A leader in providing the highest quality patient-centered care, Hackensack University Medical Center has been recognized for performance excellence encompassing the entire spectrum of hospital quality and service issues.
Green Cleaning Executive Orders in 3 States
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Connecticut: April 2006
Governor Rell to Issue Order Directing Purchase of Enviro-Friendly Cleaning Products