Dr. Leslie Jacobson

Dr. Leslie Jacobson of Brooklyn, New York has served as a Board Member for the American Lung Association in New York, and its predecessor organizations, for 37 years. She’s been described by her board colleagues as an exceedingly positive force with a demonstrated ability to stay focused on advancing the American Lung Association's mission. Despite the challenges of a series of ongoing consolidations, Leslie’s dedication never wavered and it was evident that she always had the best interests of the Lung Association at heart – both at the local and national level.

Throughout Leslie’s tenure as a board member, she has taken a leadership role by serving as President-elect, V.P. and Chair of almost every New York committee. Most recently, she served as chair of the research committee and helped secure two major two-year grants for the association. Always an ardent supporter of securing funds to support the Lung Association’s mission, Leslie has been a continuous participant and benefactor of events including the New York City Fight for Air Walk and Breath of Life Gala.

In addition to her work at the state level, Leslie has served as a representative to the National Assembly and serves on both the National Strategic Planning and Advocacy Committees.

Professionally, Leslie has a very impressive training background in science having worked with and studied under a Nobel Prize winner, Linus Pauling. She has served many important positions in the City University of New York (CUNY) both as an educator and administrator. Currently professor and chair of health and nutrition sciences at CUNY’s Brooklyn College, her areas of expertise include human physiology and its relationships to health, disease and stress. She continues to be an invaluable resource to the Lung Association in identifying the most effective ways to educate the public about lung disease so as to reduce its burden and save lives.

As an educator, Leslie has remained focused on enlightening both adults and children about the dangers of tobacco use and how exposure to secondhand smoke and poor air quality can impair human health. This became especially apparent over the last two years as she played a major role in CUNY’s plan to go smokefree by September 2012. Serving as chair of the faculty group on the SmokeFree Committee at Brooklyn College, Leslie advanced the Lung Association’s mission at the grassroots level by being a tireless advocate for smokefree campuses. Leslie was able to educate stakeholders that reducing exposure to smoking on campus wasn’t an issue of convenience; it was an issue of saving lives and preventing future disease. As a result of her determination and persistence, the entire City University of New York system – the largest university in the state with a population of over 250, 000 students and thousands of faculty and other college employees – is making its campuses smokefree.

Leslie’s service to the Lung Association has been outstanding and her contributions manifold. Her work is not only making a difference in our Fight for Air today, but will no doubt continue to pay dividends tomorrow.