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Congratulations, Advocacy Award winner Lissa Knudsen!

Student News

Posted: October 30, 2019

I'm thrilled to announce that C&J PhD candidate Lissa Knudsen has been named the winner of the 2019 Felicia Stewart Advocacy Award. This honor is bestowed by the Sexual and Reproductive Health Section of the American Public Health Association (APHA). Lissa will receive the award in Philadelphia, at APHA's annual conference, this coming Monday.

This award honors individuals who have demonstrated a strong commitment to advocacy on behalf of reproductive health and rights. The selection committee was extremely impressed by Lissa's leadership and advocacy in New Mexico. 

As many of you know, in addition to being a student in our doctoral program, Lissa has been a tireless and effective advocate in our state for reproductive health, leading multiple successful reproductive justice policy campaigns over the last 12 years. Earlier this year, she led the effort to ensure that all inmate mothers receive breastfeeding support while they are incarcerated. At the same time, she also successfully advocated for a bill that now directs judges to take pregnancy and lactation status into consideration during sentencing and bond hearings. She was instrumental in every step of the legislative process, from drafting the bills, to organizing experts to testify, to writing opinion pieces and garnering TV news coverage, to finally lobbying the governor’s office for their signature into law. Her accomplishments this year build on decades of legislative lobbying work, including her efforts to get groundbreaking lactation care provider laws passed in New Mexico in 2017 and her major contributions to the successful 2007 passage of the New Mexico Breastpump Use in the Workplace Act.

Please join me in congratulating Lissa on this most impressive achievement and its national acknowledgment!

David Weiss, Ph.D.
Department Chair and Associate Professor
Dept. of Communication & Journalism
University of New Mexico