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UNC Cares receives Provost Award for Engaged Partnership  

By Chris Hilburn-Trenkle 

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Social Work received another accolade on Friday, this time from the Carolina Center for Public Service. 

UNC Center for Aging and Adult Research and Educational Services (Cares) was the recipient of the Office of the Provost Award for Engaged Partnership thanks to its work in promoting the well-being of individuals with disabilities and older adults across the state.  

UNC Cares is one of nine award recipients for the 25th annual Public Service Awards, which will be presented on Friday afternoon at the Carolina Club by the Carolina Center for Public Service and Interim Chancellor Lee Roberts. 

“The Cares Program, established nearly 40 years ago under Dr. Gary Nelson’s visionary leadership, is made up of a remarkable group of individuals that work diligently every day to improve the well-being of older adults, adults with disabilities, and their families across North Carolina,” said UNC Cares director Linda Kendall-Fields. “We are proud of the work we do and so grateful for this recognition.” 

Established in 1987 by Clinical Professor Gary Nelson, Cares works tirelessly to benefit the lives of aging adults and North Carolinians of any age living with a disability as part of the Jordan Institute for Families. Cares helps individuals and families to feel dignity and choice through its policy analysis, educational programs and engagement with communities in North Carolina. 

“Congratulations to the UNC Cares team for their remarkable partnership and dedication to the Money Follows the Person Demonstration Project for North Carolina,” said Steve Strom, director, Money Follows the Person, NC Department of Health and Human Services. “For over a decade, UNC Cares has been an invaluable ally to MFP and NCDHHS, providing essential support through stakeholder engagement, communications, and technical assistance to grantees. This prestigious award is a testament to their staff and the significant impact of our collaboration.” 

You can read the full release from Carolina Center for Public Service below.

– Nine Carolina faculty, staff, students and organizations to be recognized at the 25th annual Public Service Awards on Fri., April 05, 2024, for their outstanding contributions to the campus and broader communities. The awards ceremony will take place at the Carolina Club from 3-5 p.m. 

At the ceremony, the Carolina Center for Public Service, along with Interim Chancellor Lee H. Roberts and Provost Chris Clemens, presented the following awards: Robert E. Bryan Public Service Awards, Office of the Provost Engaged Scholarship Awards and Ned Brooks Award for Public Service. 

The winners of each of the nine awards will be announced at the ceremony.  

  • Undergraduate Bryan Public Service Award Recipient: Lydia Rowen, recognized for her outstanding environmental work and leadership in the ReCYCLEry, a nonprofit community bicycle shop serving the Chapel Hill-Carrboro Community. 
  • Graduate Bryan Public Service Award Recipient: Margarett McBride, recognized for her outstanding community engagement and contributions through her work at Cities United, as well as her leadership throughout several graduate school initiatives including groups such as Diversity Student Success, Institute of Minority Excellence, and the Black Graduate and Professional Student Association. 
  • Staff Bryan Public Service Award Recipient: Roy Zwahlen, recognized for years of dedicated service and leadership in remodeling and awakening the potential of the Eshelman innovation institute and directing innovations towards the most impactful science for patients in need across NC and beyond. 
  • Faculty Bryan Public Service Award Recipient: Dr. Evan Ashkin, recognized for his work in improving the health of incarcerated individuals, a historically marginalized group. 
  • Bryan Public Service Student Organization Award Recipient: The Middle East Refugee Aid (MERA) Organization, recognized for their continued work of providing equitable access to medical and dental aid for Middle Eastern refugees, both locally and abroad, while promoting sustainable solutions through health literacy and education all while upholding fundamental human rights 
  • Office of the Provost Award for Engaged Teaching Recipient: Kristin Papoi, recognized for her work with DREAM (Diverse and Resilient Educators Advised through Mentorship) and continued efforts cultivating mutually beneficial relationships between the School of Education and the larger community. 
  • Office of the Provost Award for Engaged Research Recipient: Antwain Hunter, recognized for his longstanding commitment to outreach and engagement in classrooms and educational spaces beyond the University, as well as his continued championing of diversity in these spaces. 
  • Office of the Provost Award for Engaged Partnership Recipient: UNC Cares, recognized for their outstanding efforts in championing the rights and well-being of older adults and individuals with disabilities across North Carolina. 
  • Ned Brooks Award for Public Service: Lisa Carey, recognized for her distinguished and sustained record of service over the years to Carolina and the larger community through outstanding clinical and translational research and work in eradicating health disparities.  

The recording of the event will be available on the Carolina Center for Public Service YouTube page. 

For media and event inquiries, please contact: 

Tasia Muse 

Carolina Center for Public Service Content and Communication Specialist 


About CCPS 

The Carolina Center for Public Service connects the energy and expertise of both the University and the community to provide students, faculty and staff with deep and transformative experiences. Through engaged scholarship and service, we work together to create collaborative and interdisciplinary solutions to local and global challenges. 

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