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Press Release

March 30, 2017

Kathleen Reichert
American Skin Association


Event Funds Critical Medical Research to Fight Melanoma, Skin Cancer and Other Skin Diseases and Education Programs that Promote Skin Health

Gala honors Leading Figure in Dermatology, Dr. Pearl E. Grimes, Philanthropist and Business Leader, Dr. David E.I. Pyott (Hon.), and Outstanding Utah Researcher, Dr. Martin McMahon

March 30, 2017 - New York, New York – Monday night at The Plaza Hotel, American Skin Association celebrated a remarkable 30 years of funding research and educating youth on skin health, and presented awards to three exceptional honorees.

David I.E. Pyott, CBE, MD (Hon.) — 2017 Humanitarian of the Year Award for his extraordinary philanthropic commitment. The David E.I. Pyott Foundation has pledged millions of dollars to medical education and research. He is dedicated to helping physicians all over the world speed improvements in patient outcomes. During his 17 years at Allergan, Dr. Pyott helped transform a small eye-care business with $1 billion in sales into a global specialty pharmaceutical and medical device company, with sales over $7 billion. In his first year at Allergan, he helped to create their foundation with a mission to lend philanthropic support and involvement to organizations working hard to make the lives of individuals healthier and happier and to make their communities better places to live, now and in the future.

Pearl E. Grimes, MD, FAAD — 2017 Lifetime Achievement in Dermatology Award. Dr. Grimes is a pioneer and leading international authority on vitiligo and pigmentary disorders. She is a clinician, researcher and highly sought-after speaker, lecturing around the globe. Patients travel from all over the world to benefit from her expertise and her comprehensive and compassionate approach in treating these disorders. She is a Clinical Professor of Dermatology at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA and an accomplished author, having written over 100 professional articles, abstracts and two textbooks. In 2006, she founded CARRY (Coalition for At-Risk Restoring Youth), a non-profit dedicated to improving the lives of at-risk and foster care youth through a variety of innovative programs including: pro bono dermatology clinics and other programs designed to enhance self-esteem, self-worth, self-sufficiency and long-term success. The organization serves more than 400 youth annually.

Martin McMahon, PhD — 2017 Leadership in Melanoma Research Award. Dr. McMahon is the Cumming-Presidential Professor of Cancer Biology and the Senior Director for Preclinical Translation in the Department of Dermatology and the Huntsman Cancer Institute of the University of Utah. Dr. McMahon’s translational cancer research program focuses on the mechanisms underlying the development of metastatic melanoma, lung and thyroid cancer. Dr. McMahon is a distinguished scientist who is passionate about improving cancer outcomes and plays a major role in advancing the development of research discoveries to improve cancer treatments. He is a highly sought after speaker in national and international forums, giving dozens of invited lectures in recent years, both nationally and internationally.

"We were pleased to honor Dr. Pearl Grimes, Dr. David Pyott, and Dr. Martin McMahon for their outstanding dedication to the field of dermatology and commitment to medical advancements," commented ASA Chairman Howard P. Milstein. "Whether through education, research or innovation, their contributions help to further our important mission of defeating melanoma, skin cancer and other skin diseases."

President of ASA, Dr. David Norris, also offered his congratulations: "An amazing night for ASA! I am so proud of the work we do and congratulate our much-deserving honorees, Dr. Grimes, Dr. Pyott and Dr. McMahon on their awards."

For three decades, American Skin Association and its affiliates have funded over $50 million in grants to support the work of more than 300 promising young scientists. These recipients have gone on to become top researchers in their fields, working on breakthrough efforts to prevent, detect and treat skin cancer and other skin diseases. More than 100 million Americans — a third of the nation's population — are afflicted with skin disorders. The critical research they facilitate not only addresses the causes and treatments of melanoma, vitiligo, psoriasis and other skin diseases, but also promises remarkable breakthroughs in the search for long sought after cures.

ASA's mission to educate the public is no less crucial. Through the ASA Education Council, the organization has developed an invaluable tool for people of all ages to protect their health and quality of life, now and in the future: “The Seven Principles for a Lifetime of Healthy Skin.” They are part of a growing worldwide understanding of the importance of skin, beginning with the inclusion of skin health in the World Health Organization's groundbreaking new Health and Aging Strategy.

The evening’s Master of Ceremonies was Emmy award-winner Dave Price, weather anchor for NBC 4 New York. Prior to joining WNBC, Price co-anchored Good Day New York at WNYW FOX5. Before FOX5, Price was the weather anchor for CBS’s The Early Show for eight years and covered major weather events for the CBS Evening News.


A unique collaboration of patients, families, advocates, physicians and scientists, ASA has evolved over thirty years as a leading force in efforts to defeat melanoma, skin cancer, and other skin diseases. Established to serve the now more than 100 million Americans — one third of the U.S. population — afflicted with skin disorders, the organization's mission remains to: advance research, champion skin health — particularly among children, and drive public awareness about skin disease. For more information, visit