2018 Great Immigrants Recipient

Mona Hanna-Attisha
Pediatrician and Public Health Advocate
Born in:
United Kingdom

“As a young immigrant, I may have been scared, and my school lunches looked and smelled different (no one knew what hummus or falafel was back then), but I was embraced in the suburban Detroit community where I grew up as one of the few brown kids,” pediatrician and public health advocate Mona Hanna-Attisha wrote in a recent op-ed for “The New York Times.”  In 2015, Hanna-Attisha discovered that the water supply in Flint, Michigan was poisoned with lead. After she reported her results, state officials refuted her findings and accused her of "creating hysteria." But within weeks authorities reversed course, acknowledging that the number of children with high lead levels had jumped, and no one should be drinking the unfiltered tap water. For her actions, Hanna-Attisha received the PEN America Freedom of Expression Courage Award, was named one of Time magazine’s 100 Most Influential People in the World and publicly thanked by Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder. Her new book is "What The Eyes Don't See," a memoir about the Flint water crisis. Updated July 2018