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Sara Quandt Wins Researcher of the Year Award

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. – Sara Quandt, Ph.D., a professor of public health sciences at Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center, has been named this year’s “Outstanding Researcher” by the National Rural Health Association (NRHA).

The organization annually recognizes rural health leaders “whose dedication and commitment exemplify the highest standards of care and service in health.” The winners were nominated by and selected from their peers around the country.

"The men, women and organizations honored here today were selected because of their outstanding contributions, significant achievements, and the innovative methods they use to make rural health care the quality standard," said Paul Moore, NRHA president-elect and emcee of the awards program.

Quandt was nominated by Lynne Wagenknecht, Ph.D., chair of the Department of Epidemiology and Prevention, who noted that Quandt has taken a community-based approach in her rural health research.

Quandt has directed a program of research on the nutrition and health self-management of rural older adults for the past two decades. She is considered a national and international leader in research to address the occupational and environmental health of immigrant workers in rural communities.

In her nomination letter, Wagenknecht said that Quandt not only publishes her results in professional journals, but also works to ensure that the at-risk populations and those who provide health care to these populations are informed about the results. For example, she has developed educational programs for workers and for health care providers about occupational injuries among immigrant poultry workers.

Quandt is a graduate of Lawrence University and earned a master’s and doctoral degree at Michigan State University.

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Contacts: Karen Richardson,; Shannon Koontz,; at 336-716-4587.

About Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center: Wake Forest Baptist is an academic health system comprised of North Carolina Baptist Hospital and Wake Forest University Health Sciences, which operates the university’s School of Medicine. The system comprises 1,282 acute care, psychiatric, rehabilitation and long-term care beds and is consistently ranked as one of “America’s Best Hospitals” by U.S. News & World Report.

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