Former Massachusetts Commissioner of Public Health John Auerbach Honored with Lifetime Achievement Award for Unwavering Leadership in Response to the Domestic HIV/AIDS Epidemic

By Meico Whitlock June 7, 2013

Contact: Meico Whitlock

Washington, DC – The National Alliance of State and Territorial AIDS Directors (NASTAD) recognized John Auerbach with its Lifetime Achievement Award at its 22nd Annual Meeting of state health department HIV and hepatitis program leaders last month. The meeting takes place every May in Washington, D.C. Mr. Auerbach is the former Massachusetts Commissioner of Public Health where he oversaw more than 3,000 employees that included four public health hospitals, the State Laboratory, several regulatory bodies, and numerous programmatic units addressing chronic and infectious disease, substance abuse, environmental health, tobacco control, children and adolescent health, and emergency preparedness.

He is also the former AIDS Director for Massachusetts and was on the steering committee that laid the groundwork for the founding of NASTAD. Mr. Auerbach served as NASTAD Vice Chair and Chair in the first and second year respectively of the organization’s existence. He has had a career in public health and health care administration spanning 33 years with 25 years in public health at the city and state levels. Many of these years were spent shaping Massachusetts’ first governmental public health response to the AIDS epidemic. “John was instrumental during the early days of NASTAD in helping us navigate the controversial and highly political issues related to funding and policy and helping us get our feet on solid ground,” noted NASTAD Executive Director Julie Scofield. “No one is perhaps more deserving of this award than John. He was my mentor, my strategist, my Hill companion and through all of these years, a friend.”


The National Alliance of State & Territorial AIDS Directors (NASTAD), founded in 1992, is a nonprofit national association of state and territorial health department HIV/AIDS program directors who have programmatic responsibility for administering HIV/AIDS, viral hepatitis and associated public health programs. NASTAD works to strengthen the role and promote the success of state and territorial public health programs in the U.S. and internationally. For more information, visit