May 2011 Meeting

  • 03 May 2011
  • 7:00 PM - 9:00 PM
  • Charles Sumner School
Getting the Government to Listen: An Anthropologist’s Role in Restoring U.S. Support to the United Nations Population Fund

Presenter:  Barbara Pillsbury

Tuesday, 3 May 2011

Sumner School, 7:00 pm

Dinner, Beacon Bar and Grill, 5:30 pm


Dr. Barbara Pillsbury is a cultural and medical anthropologist who has worked for more than 25 years in international development, women’s health and public health, specializing eventually in reproductive and sexual health and rights. She was a co-founder and, in 1984, elected first president of the National Association for the Practice of Anthropology.

Dr. Pillsbury was winner in 2009 of WAPA’s PRAXIS Award, given for “excellence in the application of anthropology to solving real-world problems.”  During 2008, she led a team of Chinese colleagues for an evaluation of the Government of China-UNFPA 6th Country Programme (2006-2010).  This was the subject of her submission for the PRAXIS Award.

Barbara received her PhD in 1973 from Columbia University where she studied with Margaret Mead and did her thesis on Islam in China. She subsequently taught cultural anthropology at San Diego State University, where she received tenure, while realizing that her heart was in applying anthropology to addressing the problems of poverty and inequity in the world. This led to work with the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) where she became Chief for Research and Evaluation for Asia. She has worked since that time, especially in Asia and Africa,  with many governmental and non-governmental organizations, including WHO, UNFPA, UNICEF, the World Bank, International Planned Parenthood Federation, and the Rockefeller, Hewlett, Ford, Gates and Compton foundations. She was most recently employed by Social & Scientific Systems in Washington D.C., where she directed the USAID-funded Synergy Project, supporting U.S. efforts to combat HIV/AIDS in developing countries. Barbara has been a founder of six organizations (especially the Pacific Institute for Women’s Health) and has served on numerous boards of directors, including the American Anthropological Association, the Global Health Council, and the International Women’s Health Coalition. She works professionally in Chinese, French, Swedish and Spanish and is the mother of two daughters who helped her take principles to practice.

Meeting:  Charles Sumner School, corner of 17th St and M St NW, Washington, DC

How to get there:  The Sumner School is located at 1201 17th St NW (corner of 17th St and M St NW).  The entrance to the meeting area is on 17th St under the black metal stairway. Directions from Metro Red Line: From Farragut North station, take either L St exit, walk one block east to 17th St, turn left and walk 2 blocks north.

Dinner:  5:30 pm at the Beacon Bar & Grill (one block north of Sumner School).  All are welcome.

How to get there:  The Beacon Bar & Grill is in the Beacon Hotel located at 1615 Rhode Island Ave NW (corner of Rhode Island and 17th St).  Directions from Metro Red Line: From DuPont Circle station, take the south/P St exit, then walk 2 blocks southeast on Massachusetts Ave to 17th St. Cross 17th St and turn right (south) for two short blocks. From Farragut North station, take either L St exit, walk one block east to 17th St, turn left and walk 3 blocks north.

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