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Islander earns honors as 2013 Rhodes Scholar

Katherine Warren of Bainbridge Island has been named a Rhodes Scholar. - Photo courtesy of Katherine Warren
Katherine Warren of Bainbridge Island has been named a Rhodes Scholar.
— image credit: Photo courtesy of Katherine Warren

Former Bainbridge Island resident Katherine Warren has been named one of only 32 newly selected Rhodes Scholars.

Announcements of this year’s Rhodes Scholars was made Saturday, Nov. 23 by Elliot F. Gerson, American Secretary of the Rhodes Trust.

“I’m both stunned and thrilled to be selected. It’s been a busy month so it is a welcome piece of good news,” Warren said.

Warren graduated from Harvard University in May with a concentration is anthropology. She won the prize for the top female graduate as well as the prize for the top undergraduate thesis.

Warren also co-founded and co-directed the Akili Initiative, a global youth-for-youth-health project that serves 25 non-government organizations and that has won awards from the Clinton Global Initiative and Ashoka. She also co-founded and co-directed the Athena Program mentoring underserved high school women in Boston.

She is a Truman Scholar and an Albright Fellow at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services doing work on women’s and Native American health issues.

Warren also ran the Boston Marathon to raise money for disability research.

Rhodes Scholarships provide all expenses for two or three years of study at the University of Oxford in England, and may allow funding in some instances for four years.

Warren intends to pursue a master of science degree in global health science at Oxford.

“I’m looking forward to observing the UK’s National Health Service while I’m there,” Warren said.

Rhodes Scholarships are the oldest and best known award for international study, and arguably the most famous academic award available to American college graduates.

The scholarship program was created in 1902 by the will of Cecil Rhodes, British philanthropist and African colonial pioneer, and is provided in partnership with the Second Century Founder, John McCall MacBain and other generous benefactors. The first class of American Rhodes Scholars entered Oxford in 1904.

Those selected this year will enter in October 2014.

“I see this as both an honor and as a commitment to the many people who have shaped me and my work in the past,” Warren said. “I plan to go to Oxford to get a public health degree and then to bring it back to the many indigenous communities struggling with mental health, addiction, and suicide-particularly American Indians and Alaska Natives.”

“There is a lot of work to be done, and a lot of wonderful people with whom I look forward to working! I hope that I can generate more interest in Native American issues here at home,” she said.

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