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85th Anniversary of March of Dimes

Mar 1, 2023

WHEREAS, founded by President Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1938, March of Dimes funded the development of two vaccines that virtually eliminated the crippling disease of polio; and

WHEREAS, in 1958, the organization shifted its attention from polio to the prevention of birth defects, and through federal and state advocacy, March of Dimes led the way in establishing a nationwide network of birth defect monitoring programs and research centers; and

WHEREAS, decades of groundbreaking research in maternal and infant health led to the discovery of life-saving products and tests, such as surfactant therapy for premature infants and tests to identify life-threatening birth defects; and

WHEREAS, March of Dimes authored the Prematurity Research Expansion and Education Act for Mothers who deliver Infants Early (PREEMIE) Act, enacted by Congress in 2006, to expand research, education, and services to limit premature births, and the organization set a national goal of reducing preterm birth to 8.1 percent in every state to enable a healthier start in the lives of tens of thousands of infants; and

WHEREAS, in 2008, March of Dimes urged Congress to pass and fund the Newborn Screening Saves Lives Act to establish national guidelines on the various conditions that states should include in newborn screening programs; and

WHEREAS, March of Dimes and its volunteers continue to advocate for policies and programs to improve the health of women of childbearing age, infants, children, and families, such as the Children’s Health Insurance Program and Medicaid coverage up to one-year postpartum, and in 2021, the organization was a leading advocate for bipartisan legislation to ensure reasonable accommodations in the workplace with passage and enactment of the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act; and

WHEREAS, March of Dimes is committed to mobilizing the nation by amplifying the voices of pregnant people and their families.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Mike Dunleavy, GOVERNOR OF THE STATE OF ALASKA, do hereby proclaim March 1, 2023 as:

85th Anniversary of March of Dimes

in Alaska, and extend special recognition to March of Dimes on the observance of its Eighty-Fifth Anniversary. I encourage all Alaskans to celebrate this outstanding institution and the essential contributions that March of Dimes, its volunteers, supporters, and staff have made to the health of our Nation.

Dated: March 1, 2023