Honorary Trustee Dorothy Humel Hovorka established this prize in 1994 in memory of her late husband, Frank, who was for many years a leading member of the university’s Department of Chemistry and an international authority in the field of electrochemistry. First presented that same year, the Hovorka Prize is awarded annually to recognize exceptional achievement by an active or emeritus member of the faculty whose accomplishments in teaching, research and scholarly service have benefited the community, the nation and the world.
Binstock’s contributions to the field of gerontology and public policy issues on aging extend far beyond campus. A former president of the Gerontological Society of America, he has served as director of a White House Task Force on Older Americans and as chair and member of a number of government advisory panels. He has frequently testified before the U.S. Congress as an expert on issues impacting aging Americans and is presently one of 12 members of the MacArthur Foundation’s Research Network on an Aging Society.
A prolific writer, Binstock has published about 300 articles, book chapters, monographs and books. The majority of his publications address policies on aging and the politics of aging.
He has received many honors for his work, including the Kent Award and the Brookdale Award from the Gerontological Society of America; the Lifetime Achievement Award and the Key Award from the American Public Health Association’s Gerontological Health Section; the American Society on Aging Award; the American Society on Aging’s Hall of Fame Award and the Ollie A. Randall Award from the National Council on Aging.
In addition to his wide-ranging contributions to public policy and research, Binstock maintains an intense commitment to his students as an outstanding educator. He says one of the joys of his career at Case Western Reserve has been the chance to work in a truly multidisciplinary scholarly environment—interacting with colleagues and students across the university’s many schools and programs.
Binstock teaches a popular cross-listed course on public policy and aging that attracts graduate students and undergraduates alike from multiple walks of life and paths of study. “I get a terrific variety of students—from epidemiology and biostatistics, medicine, nursing, bioethics, sociology, law, anthropology, political science, public health, nutrition and social work—and that really makes the teaching fun,” he says. “When class discussions touch on their core strengths, I learn a lot, and so do they.”
Binstock says that receiving the Hovorka prize is a humbling honor. “It’s exciting,” he says. “There is an impressive line of people before me who have received this award, and I feel privileged to be in their company.”
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