The Richard and Barbara Hansen Leadership Award and Distinguished Lectureship was established in 2001, thanks to a generous gift from the first College of Public Health Founding Partners, Richard and Barbara Hansen. This annual award and lectureship honors persons who have demonstrated exemplary leadership in the public health field and brings them to the University of Iowa campus for interaction with students, faculty, and public health professionals. Nominations for the Hansen Leadership Award are solicited annually from faculty, staff, and students of the College of Public Health.
The criteria that are considered in selecting recipients are:
- Sustained and nationally recognized excellence in carrying out their professional roles and responsibilities;
- Superb leadership qualities, including commitment to high ideals, vision, and the ability to inspire others;
- Exemplary personal qualities, including integrity, respect for others, and high ethical and moral standards; and
- Enduring commitment and significant contributions to improving public health in the communities where he or she has served and/or on a national or international basis.
The award winners will be invited to the University of Iowa to deliver a formal lecture and participate in seminars, small group activities and other campus events organized by the College of Public Health. Ordinarily, these lectures will be held in concert with another important college gathering. Invitations to the lecture are extended to the the UI community and to persons and groups outside the University to whom the particular lecture topic is of interest.
About Richard and Barbara Hansen
The College of Public Health was deeply saddened to learn of the passing of Barbara and Richard Hansen of Iowa City, Iowa, on March 20, 2023, and May 27, 2023, respectively. The Hansens were longtime supporters of the college and the University of Iowa.
Prior to his retirement, Richard Hansen was founder, partner, and director of Hansen Lind Meyer, Inc., a leading health care architectural firm. During his career, he was project director, planner, and designer for over $1 billion in health facilities, including the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics, the Rush-Presbyterian-St. Luke’s Medical Center in Chicago, Elmhurst Hospital in Queens, N.Y., and the University of Michigan Hospitals and Clinics in Ann Arbor. Mr. Hansen was a graduate of Iowa State University and a fellow of the American Institute of Architects.
Barbara Hansen was also a graduate of Iowa State University and believed deeply in the value of education and the opportunities it offered. She was active in numerous educational and volunteer programs she established and nurtured. The Hansens were the parents of three children.
The Hansens were the first Founding Partners of the College of Public Health and, in 2001, established the Richard and Barbara Hansen Leadership Award and Distinguished Lectureship in the college. Their support for the University of Iowa covered a broad range of programs, including Athletics, Hancher Auditorium, the Department of Health Management and Policy, the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics, and the University of Iowa Museum of Art. The College of Public Health is forever grateful for their vision, trust, and generous support.