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On Friday 1 September, Professor Louise Gunning-Schepers, University Professor of Health and Society at the University of Amsterdam (UvA) and former President of the UvA-AUAS Executive Board, was awarded the Silver Medal of the City of Amsterdam.

Foto: Daniƫl Rommens, Folia

The medal was presented to her by deputy mayor Kajsa Ollongren. Professor Gunning was awarded the medal in acknowledgement of her exceptional services to Amsterdam, especially her substantial contributions to Amsterdam's health care and childcare provisions and its scientific community.

The city recognises that professor Gunning, while serving as President of the UvA-AUAS Executive Board, provided a significant contribution to the national and international positioning of Amsterdam as a city of knowledge and as an excellent base for companies and international talent alike. In addition, she has demonstrated competence and compassion in times of crisis, for instance while working at the Academic Medical Center (AMC-UvA) during the aftermath of the Bijlmer disaster in the 1990s and after the Volendam New Year's fire in early 2001, but particularly in her capacity as chairperson of the committee of inquiry into the Amsterdam sex crimes case in early 2011.

Since her appointment as Professor of Social Medicine in 1991, Professor Gunning has held a number of influential positions both within and outside of the UvA. She has served as Chairperson of the Board of Directors of the AMC-UvA, dean of the Faculty of Medicine at the UvA and President of the UvA-AUAS Executive Board. She has also chaired the Dutch Health Council, an independent advisory body to the government and parliament. Moreover, Gunning has served as a member of various advisory councils and committees, such as the Scientific Council for Government Policy (WRR).

She is currently active as a University Professor. This is a special type of professorship within the university, aimed at providing an impetus to scientific developments that transcend the traditional disciplines. In addition to serving as University Professor, Gunning chairs the Supervisory Board of Royal Schiphol Group and is a Crown-appointed member of the Social and Economic Council of the Netherlands (SER).