NRDC Senior Scientist Dr. Gina Solomon Wins ALA Clean Air Award

SAN FRANCISCO (April 29, 2004) - Dr. Gina Solomon, M.D., M.P.H., a senior scientist with NRDC (Natural Resources Defense Council), was recognized today for her contributions in the fight against air pollution. The American Lung Association (ALA) of the Bay Area presented Solomon with a Clean Air Award at its annual luncheon at the World Trade Club in San Francisco.

Solomon is one of 13 community businesses, organizations, agencies and individuals to receive the awards. In nominating Solomon for the research award category, Linda Weiner, director of air quality advocacy for the American Lung Associations of the Bay Area, wrote that Solomon's "research is used often and widely to substantiate the direct relationship between diesel exhaust and respiratory disease."

Solomon was lead author of the groundbreaking 2001 study, "No Breathing in the Aisles: Diesel Exhaust Inside School Buses." The study by NRDC and the Coalition for Clean Air found that children who ride a diesel school bus may be exposed to up to four times more toxic diesel exhaust than someone traveling in a car directly in front of it. It also found that excess exhaust levels on school buses were 23 to 46 times higher than levels considered to be a significant cancer risk, according to the U.S Environmental Protection Agency.

Solomon's original research also includes "Diesel Exhaust and Asthma: Potential Hypotheses and Molecular Mechanisms of Action," published in the peer-reviewed journal Environmental Health Perspectives. The 2002 paper reviewed existing research to develop a new unifying theory of how diesel exhaust can trigger asthma.

"Dr. Solomon's tireless research and advocacy are a tremendous asset to everyone who breathes the air," said NRDC Executive Director Frances Beinecke. "The more we know about the causes and dangers of air pollution, the better we can work to reduce this serious environmental health risk."

In addition to working at NRDC, Solomon is an assistant clinical professor of medicine at the University of California, San Francisco where she teaches and consults at the university's Pediatric Environmental Health Specialty Unit. She serves on the Board of Directors of San Francisco Bay Area Physicians for Social Responsibility, on the Scientific Advisory Group on Environmental Epidemiology for the California Department of Health Services, and the Environmental Health and Justice Advisory Committee for the San Francisco Foundation. She often testifies on key environmental health issues and lends advice on clean air issues. Dr. Solomon received her undergraduate training at Brown University, attended medical school at Yale University and underwent post-graduate training in medicine and public health at Harvard University.

Senior Scientist, Natural Resources Defense Council, San Francisco
Assistant Clinical Professor of Medicine, University of California at San Francisco

Gina Solomon is a specialist in adult internal medicine, preventive medicine, and occupational and environmental medicine. She is a Senior Scientist in the Health and Environment Program of the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC). NRDC is a national nonprofit organization with over 550,000 members dedicated to the protection of public health and the environment. Dr. Solomon is also an Assistant Clinical Professor of Medicine at the University of California at San Francisco where she is an attending physician at the U.C. Pediatric Environmental Health Specialty Unit. Her work has included research on asthma, diesel exhaust, breast cancer, pesticides, contaminants in breast milk, and threats to reproductive health and child development. Dr. Solomon attended medical school at Yale and did her residency and fellowship training at Harvard.

Dr. Solomon served on the U.S. EPA's Federal Advisory Committee on endocrine disrupting chemicals, on the EPA Science Advisory Board Panel on trichloroethylene, and on the California Expert Working Group on Environmental Health Tracking. She is a scientific advisor to numerous organizations including the California Department of Health Services Environmental Epidemiology Section, the National Environmental Education and Training Foundation and the San Francisco Foundation. She is also co-coordinator of the San Francisco Bay Area Physicians for Social Responsibility's Environmental Health Project as well as a member of its Board of Directors. Dr. Solomon has authored numerous articles and reports, and is co-author of the book, Generations at Risk: Reproductive Health and the Environment, published by MIT Press in 1999. Dr. Solomon received The Breast Cancer Fund's Heroes Award in 2002.