Dr. Harry Hannon’s Passing
We are deeply saddened to announce the death of long-time CLSI volunteer William Harry Hannon, PhD. For most of his long career, Dr. Hannon was known for his leadership in developing and supporting public health laboratory newborn screening using dried blood spots, preventing infant death, and enhancing the lives of children and families both here in the US and around the globe.
Dr. Hannon authored more than 250 scientific publications and served on over 30 national and international committees. He co-authored standards for the World Health Organization for implementing newborn screening for congenital hypothyroidism and phenylketonuria in developing and developed countries. Over his career, Dr. Hannon was awarded CDC Shepard Awards in 1992 and again in 2005. This is CDC’s highest honor for scientific excellence. He received the Robert Guthrie Award in 1999, the 2006 Walter Dowdle Award, the 2008 Association of Public Health Laboratories (APHL) Lifetime Achievement Award, and the 2008 Russell J. Eilers Award (the highest CLSI award). In 2009 he received the Jeffrey Modell Foundation’s Dream Makers Award for contributions to the early detection of severe combined immunodeficiency disorders by newborn screening.
In 1978, Harry created the Newborn Screening Quality Assurance Program (NSQAP)|CDC at the CDC which currently provides services to over 670 newborn screening laboratories across the US and in 88 countries. Harry retired from CDC in 2009 with 41 years of federal service, having spent over 25 years as the Chief of what is now known as the Newborn Screening and Molecular Biology Branch|CDC.
The Harry Hannon Laboratory Improvement Award in Newborn Screening, created by APHL, was awarded for the first time in 2008. This award commemorates Dr. Hannon’s longstanding contributions by honoring a person who has made significant contributions to improving the quality of laboratory results in the newborn screening field.
In retirement, Dr. Hannon enjoyed spending time with his children and grandchildren. He continued his work in the field of public health newborn screening, initiating, expanding, and improving newborn screening worldwide.
We extend heartfelt condolences to Dr. Hannon’s family and wish them peace and comfort during this difficult time.