Roy Vagelos Pro Bono Humanum award

The Galien Foundation’s  Prix Galien, Roy Vagelos, Pro Bono Humanum Award is in honor of Dr. P. Roy Vagelos, Retired Chairman and CEO, Merck & Co., Inc. Chairman of the Board, Regeneron Pharmaceuticals. Dr. Vagelos, who chaired the Prix Galien USA Awards Committee from its inception until December 2017, was also the first recipient of the Pro Bono Humanum Award, established in 2007 under the sponsorship of the late Foundation Honorary President and 1986 Nobel Peace Prize recipient, Pr. Elie Wiesel.

The annual Prix Galien, Roy Vagelos, Pro Bono Humanum Award recognizes an individual’s outstanding efforts to improving the human condition through the application of pharmaceutical science to problems of developing or underserved populations worldwide.

Vagelos Regeneron

Jim and Marilyn Simons will be the 2019 Roy Vagelos Pro Bono Humanum Award Laureates.

In recognition of  their proactive support of basic scientific research undertaken in the pursuit of understanding the phenomena of our world, often including research by scientists in the early stages of their careers, a new collaborative funding model to facilitate cross-disciplinary breakthroughs, and efforts to inspire emerging and current philanthropists to dedicate a portion of their philanthropy to basic science.

More aboutthe ElieWieselFoundationfor Humanity

The Past Pro Bono Humanum Award winners include:


Bill and Melinda Gates

Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

In recognition of their extraordinary work championing scientific and technological innovation to improve life for the world’s poorest people. As co-chairs of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, they have catalyzed unprecedented progress in global health, poverty reduction, and public education in the U.S.


Jimmy Carter

Former U.S. President & Co-Founder, The Carter Center

For playing a leadership role in the elimination of river blindness in four of the six Latin American countries where it was endemic and halting the disease’s transmission in several locations in Africa where more than 99 percent of the global cases exist.


Paula S. Apsell

Executive Producer, PBS NOVA series & Director, Science Unit, WGBH

For turning great science into a human story, showing that scientific literacy is society’s first line of defense against the destructive forces of fear and ignorance that challenge further progress in human health.


Mary-Claire King

Professor, Genome Sciences and Medical Genetics, University of Washington

In recognition of her work in transforming the application of human genetics to medicine through identification of the first gene, BRCA1, responsible for inherited susceptibility to breast cancer. And for pioneering the application of genetic sequencing in forensics to identify victims of human rights abuse.


Bernard Kouchner

Co-Founder, Doctors Without Border & Former French Minister of Foreign and European Affairs

For his role in the creation of Doctors Without Borders and for his fieldwork, which has nurtured and develop the modern concept of the Non-Governmental Organization.


Anthoy Fauci

Director, U.S. National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases

For his paramount contributions to basic and clinical research on the pathogenesis and treatment of immune mediated and infectious diseases.


Francis Collins

Director, U.S. National Institutes of Health

For his founding leadership of the Human Genome Project, which laid the groundwork for the genomics revolution and its impact on global medicines innovation.


Paul Farmer

Chief Strategist and Co-Founder, Partners In Health

For his humanitarian work in Haiti and throughout the world, including advancing the fight against infectious diseases, including AIDS and tuberculosis.


Bill Clinton and Philippe Douste-Blazy

Founder, Clinton Foundation and Former U.S. President; Chairman, UNITAID

In recognition of their achievements in providing treatment and increasing access to medicines for underserved populations through the UNITAID and Clinton Foundation HIV/AIDS Initiative (CHAI) partnership.


Barry Bloom and Jeffrey Sachs

Professor of Public Health, Harvard University; Director, Earth Institute, Columbia University

For applying science and economics to global health problems in ways that have changed the lives of the world’s most impoverished people.


Sheldon Segal and the Population Council of New York

Former Chairman, Population Council

For their science-based, global effort in support of reproductive planning and family health.


Roy Vagelos

Chairman, Regeneron & Former CEO, Merck & Co.

For the River Blindness Program and his historic decision to donate the drug Mectizan to more than 530 million people in 34 countries to treat and prevent river blindness “as much as necessary for as long as necessary.”