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Citizens of the World: A couple's spirit lives on by safeguarding health for women and children. By Pam Auchmutey
Uldeen Terry on a visit to China and Jules Terry.

Carol Hogue will always be indebted to Jules and Uldeen (“Deen”) Terry, whom she never met. The couple made possible the Jules and Uldeen Terry Chair in Maternal and Child Health—the first endowed professorship in the RSPH—and formation of the Women’s and Children’s Center (WCC) in 1992.
     “It is a seed that has generated quite a flowering,” says Hogue, the first Terry professor and director of the center that brings faculty and staff within the RSPH and across Emory together to improve health for women, children, and communities.
     The WCC would not have evolved without the Terrys’ caring and adventurous spirit. One night in the late 1960s, Jules came home to learn that Deen had put their Connecticut home on the market. It was her way of encouraging Jules to trade his demanding OB/GYN practice for something new. Her foresight would bring the Terrys to Atlanta by way of San Francisco, where Jules earned an MPH degree.
     Jules applied his public health expertise by establishing the Emory Regional Training Center (RTC) in 1970. Based in the Department of Gynecology and Obstetrics in the School of Medicine, the RTC still provides continuing education for family planning clinicians and staff in the Southeast. Later, as director of family health for Georgia, Jules established Women, Infant, and Children (WIC)—the federally funded state initiative that promotes health and nutrition—and hired the first nutritionists to staff it.
     In the mid-1970s, Jules took a group of Emory, CDC, and other experts to observe health care in China, just as the United States was normalizing relations with that country. Deen, an accomplished cook with a keen interest in Chinese cooking, of course went along.
     “Jules really wanted to extend maternal and child health to people who had no access to it,” says Bob Wells, a former RTC staff member who went on the trip. “At that time, such services were not available in this country, and the difference between private medicine and public health bothered him. It troubled him that medicine was curative rather than preventive. That’s what he was about. Jules and Deen were citizens of the world.”
     Those citizens would come to provide a public health legacy. Jules died of cancer in 1982; Deen succumbed to cancer in 1988. Before his death, Jules created an award to honor state public health workers for the delivery of services to patients. The Georgia Public Health Association gives the award annually. After Deen became ill, it was her wish to create a professorship in maternal and child health at Emory.
     “It was a logical decision,” says Claire McElveen Pearson, 77MPH, a former colleague and close friend of the Terrys. “She wanted to do it because of Jules’ background in obstetrics and gynecology and his interest in Emory and Georgia. That was just like Deen.”
     The seed planted by the Terry endowment has grown to include a host of WCC initiatives in maternal and child health.

These students are studying maternal and child health (MCH) epidemiology in the distance learning program. Starting this fall, the MCH concentration is one of two specialty options in a new epidemiology track.
spacer A new generation of experts
Programs rooted in the WCC are vital to training the next generation of maternal and child health experts—a concern shared by the Health Services and Research Administration (HRSA) and the CDC. Larissa Brunner Huber, assistant professor of epidemiology at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, was the first graduate of the HRSA-funded doctoral program in maternal and child health epidemiology. She is a promising expert on the effects of obesity on hormonal contraceptive effectiveness. Just last year, the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development awarded one of the nation’s first two doctoral training grants in reproductive, perinatal, and pediatric epidemiology to the RSPH.
     The WCC also has funded two postdoctoral fellows with support from the Terry endowment. Anne Lifflander, a physician who earned her MPH in behavioral sciences and health education, now works with a public health agency in New York City. Laura Gaydos, a faculty member in the RSPH Department of Health Policy and Management, established the Women’s Health Partnership in the WCC to share information with Georgia legislators and other stakeholders.
      At the master’s level, the RSPH offered a maternal and child health epidemiology concentration in its Career Master of Public Health (CMPH) program for working professionals. Given the success of this concentration, it is now one of two specialty options in a new epidemiology track offered by the CMPH this fall. The maternal and child track enlarges the students’ vision and passion by providing them with a contextual knowledge base to improve the health of communities.
     Community partnerships have been central to the WCC’s research efforts from the beginning. In 1992, the WCC teamed with Atlanta’s Spelman College to determine why more college-educated African American women have low birth weight babies than college-educated Caucasian women. As a result, researchers developed a scale to measure the stresses and strains on African American women, many of whom have little time to care for themselves. Subsequent projects include PRISE, the work-site fitness study now under way for black women who work at Grady Memorial Hospital.
     Other WCC projects are key to advancing knowledge about women’s health: ongoing research by Godfrey Oakley, one of the world’s leading experts on the benefits of folic acid for women; the causes of repeat teen pregnancies; the effective delivery of vaccines; and the impact of locating WIC programs in managed care facilities.
     Since its inception, the WCC has developed a special focus on unintended pregnancies among adults. Faculty in the RSPH and Emory’s Department of Religion, for instance, are studying religious communities in Atlanta to learn how congregational and political influences may affect couples’ reproductive behavior. Their study seeks to explain why couples in the United States are less likely to use contraceptives or use them effectively than couples in Canada, Great Britain, and Western Europe.
     Ultimately, such studies may help prevent unwanted or mistimed pregnancies and further safeguard the health of women.
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