Seven exceptional UBC alumni were recognized on November 14th for their extraordinary work and contributions at the annual alumni UBC Achievement Awards. Among this year’s recipients who have demonstrated years of commitment and passion for a better world is SPPH’s Dr. Ruth Elwood Martin, MD ’79, who received the Faculty Community Service Award.
Dr. Ruth Elwood Martin, a renowned researcher and physician, has committed a lot of her work to improve the mental, physical, emotional, and spiritual health of individuals in prison and their families. Having worked at B.C.’s provincial correctional centres for 17 years, she has significantly deepened understanding of interactions between mental and physical health and connections with social responses, such as incarceration and health care. She also introduced participatory health approaches to the correctional community, as well as the concept of engaging women in prison, prison staff, and academics in participatory health research (PHR) to address concerns raised by the women themselves.
She became a Clinical Professor, UBC Faculty of Medicine, in 2006, and joined UBC’s School of Population and Public Health in 2010. Her combination of research, advocacy, and service represents some of the best ideals of population and public health, and her work reflects genuine compassion for her peers, colleagues, and community members.