Helping the Helpers: Recognizing Advances in Human & Environmental Welfare


By Mark Stubis

( – When longtime friend and publisher Mike McCurdy recently invited me to be a columnist for, I jumped at the chance. I had just come off what Queen Elizabeth so memorably termed an “Annus Horribilis” – a terrible year in which I lost my father to a rare and frightening illness, learned of serious health problems affecting dear friends and family members, witnessed one of the worst environmental disasters of all time, and watched many successful, talented colleagues lose their jobs, homes, and emotional well-being as the worldwide economy faltered.

Finally, enough was enough and action was needed. If I could not directly help my father, my cousins, and my dearest friends, I would at least try to support those helping them by spotlighting their innovations, sharing their stories, and perhaps generating support for their efforts on our collective behalf.

As a result, this column will feature those organizations, nonprofits, media companies and remarkable individuals involved in advancing human and environmental welfare through extraordinary efforts, medical breakthroughs, or contributions to public knowledge of the great issues of our day, improving our capacity for understanding, and motivating us to do – and fare – better in this world.

In the coming weeks and months, I’ll be looking at medical mysteries whose twists and turns would fit right into an episode of “House, M.D.”, inviting readers on excursions reminiscent of the 1960s Sci-Fi classic “Fantastic Voyage” in which we will join doctors and scientists who are traveling to the molecular, even atomic, level of the cells in our bodies in order to cheat death, and talking to those innovators, visionaries, and mad geniuses who are trying to make a difference not only in the realm of our own health but the overall health of the planet.

I welcome suggestions, research, trends and hard data from pioneers seeking a deeper understanding of some of the most daunting problems we face. Together, we may explore promising new treatments, discover worthy efforts that deserve support, and nurture the spirit of progress in a way that may yet transform the lingering effects of the Annus Horribilis that has affected so many into hope for a new Annus Mirabilis.

Editor’s Note: Mark Stubis is a national nonprofit, healthcare and media executive with more than 20 years of experience working with leading charities, Fortune 500 companies, and global news organizations. An award-winning creator of public-issue awareness and prevention campaigns, Stubis’ work has been carried by more than 100,000 newspapers, TV and radio stations, and websites in 100 countries around the world. In his free time, the Juilliard-trained musician plays the piano and chess in his castle in the New York City area. You can contact him at

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