Luther L. Terry Awards

Named after the late United States Surgeon General Luther L. Terry, M.D., whose groundbreaking work established the foundation for public health scrutiny of the dangers of tobacco use, the Awards honor outstanding leadership and accomplishment, are synonymous with excellence, and signify that the recipients are among the very best in the world at what they do.

The Luther L. Terry Awards are presented triennially and in conjunction with the World Conference on Tobacco OR Health. These awards recognize outstanding worldwide achievement in the field of tobacco control. Starting in 2018, the Awards will be presented in three categories: The Young Pioneer Award, The Outstanding Individual Leadership Award, and The Distinguished Career Award.

As Surgeon General, Luther L. Terry was charged by President John Kennedy to create a special Surgeon General's Committee on Smoking and Health. That committee's report, released in 1964 under Dr. Terry's leadership, unleashed a tide of political, medical, and corporate controversy regarding the health effects of tobacco use. During his tenure as Surgeon General, Dr. Terry fearlessly worked to eliminate television cigarette advertising, place health warnings on cigarette packs, and restrict the sale and distribution of cigarettes to minors, while he warned the nation of the deadly health consequences of smoking.

Through the Luther L. Terry Awards, the American Cancer Society wishes to recognize those individuals and organizations that carry on Dr. Terry’s legacy and the work he began and recognize the importance of continuing this effort.