Dr. David McEwan To Receive 2020 Suzanne Richmond-Crum Award on World AIDS Day
Dr. David McEwan has been named the 17th recipient of the 2020 Suzanne Richmond-Crum Award, which annually honors a person who has made outstanding contributions to HIV/AIDS services in Hawai‘i.
The Hawaiʻi State Department of Health will present the award during the annual World AIDS Day ceremony in Honolulu on Dec. 1 at 6 pm. This virtual community ceremony (on ZOOM) will be hosted by the Church of the Crossroads in Honolulu. For more information on this and all statewide World AIDS Day events, go to: https://worldaidsdayhawaii.org/.
Dr. McEwan, a native of Canada, resolved to become a doctor at age eight. Five years later, he read about Father Damien, the Catholic priest who devoted his life to caring for people with Hansen’s disease (more commonly known as leprosy) on Molokaʻi. Deeply moved by Father Damien’s example, McEwan dreamt of one day devoting his abilities to helping people at the margins of society. After graduating from medical school at the University of Manitoba in 1972, he set off to hitchhike around the world. But as soon as his feet touched the sand in Hawai’i, he knew he was home.
For the past 40 years, McEwan has provided vital contributions to HIV/AIDS care and prevention services in Hawai’i. As the first physician in the state to care for persons with HIV/AIDS, he has dedicated his professional life to providing excellent care and to educating clinicians in the state on how to best provide care for their patients with HIV/AIDS.
In addition to serving as one of the few providers of quality HIV primary care in the state, he has and continues to be a unique contributor to HIV care through his advocacy role. He co-founded Hawai’i’s first AIDS Service Organization (ASO), the Life Foundation (now Hawai’i Health & Harm Reduction Center) on O‘ahu. This was one of the first ASO’s in the nation and it continues to provide essential case management, prevention and support services for persons living with HIV/AIDS.
Suzanne Richmond-Crum passed away in August 2004 after serving for more than 10 years as director of the Hawai‘i Seropositivity and Medical Management Program (HSPAMM) of the DOH Harm Reduction Services Branch. The annual award was established in honor of the competence and compassion she demonstrated in her HIV/AIDS work.