First Luncheon of 2020
RCNY’s first luncheon meeting of 2020 took place on Thurs Jan 23rd at the Tudor City Steakhouse. Our guest speaker was Stephan D. Bognar, Executive Director of the New York Dermatological Group Foundation.
        full report inside.

Report of the Week – Meeting of Jan 23
by Andreas Runggatscher

The first luncheon of the Rotary Club of New York in 2020 took place at the Tudor City Steakhouse of NYC on January 23, 2020. The guest speaker was Stephan D. Bognar, Executive Director of the New York Dermatological Group Foundation, one of the leading health organizations in the U.S. Stephan became involved with albinism after working 25 years on global development projects with vulnerable and marginalized groups in Iraq, Southeast Asia and across the globe. Stephan shed light on the discrimination faced by those with albinism and the progress made in education and awareness around the globe.

Stephan spoke on the different levels of discrimination faced by persons with albinism that has kept this marginalized group in a cycle of fear and poverty. He called to Rotarians’ attention a UN report on how persons with albinism are facing systematic discrimination and extinction due to tribal attacks and lack of accessibility to sunscreen products. For instance, life expectancy in Tanzania for person with Albinism is 40 years. While some countries are implementing stricter regulations on albinism attacks, cross-border activity is on the rise. Persons with albinism become afraid to attend school for safety reasons and face challenges with employment and healthcare services.

Stephan started a campaign named ColorFull to shape a collective response to the discrimination and violence that individuals with albinism face around the world. ColorFull is a program that is partnered with the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights to promote education and awareness of albinism for inclusivity in employment, education, and other areas of everyday life.

He ended his presentation by thanking Rotarians for their support of albinism rights and welcoming potential collaboration from Rotarians in attendance and around the world.


New York Dermatological Group Foundation

Tudor City Steakhouse