Dick Goldberg Photo by Marshall Smith
Dick Goldberg Photo by Marshall Smith

Dr. Richard Goldberg of Idyllwild will receive an award next week for helping to improve the health and well being of Riverside County residents.

At the Riverside County Board of Supervisors April 7 meeting, the Department of Public Health will honor five individuals, one from each supervisorial district. This is the third year the Department of Public Health will present the Public Health Community Champion Awards at the supervisors’ meeting.

The DPH staff who made the selections focused on collaboration with DPH or other public health organizations. Sensitivity to the needs of special populations and reducing health disparities in care and outcomes was another criterion.

“These individuals have gone beyond what would normally be expected of them,” said Susan Harrington, DPH director. “For some it is a personal tragedy or hardship that motivates them, while for others it is the dedication and commitment to help others. We are honored to give them such much-deserved recognition.”

“I was totally surprised,” Goldberg said. “I had no idea there was such an award.” He has been involved with the Hill’s Mountain Disaster Preparedness group for years and has helped organize the annual flu clinic for the HELP Center since 2004. But he has frequently participated in emergency disaster relief with other international medical groups, including Red Cross.

Goldberg’s local contributions will be presented to the board on Tuesday. He “has been instrumental in working with the Department of Public Health in establishing a cadre of medical volunteers in the Idyllwild area. He has also been the point person to coordinate trainings and exercises with the medical volunteers to ensure that they are ready to respond as part of the coordinated public health and medical response system,” wrote Jose Arballo Jr., senior public information specialist, in the release.

“Dr. Goldberg has spearheaded the annual flu clinics since 2006. As a result of his efforts, the community of Idyllwild is better prepared to respond to any public health emergency — which ultimately translates to reducing illness and/or saving lives,” Arballo added.

Other recipients are Robert Roy, District 1, Gabriel Maldonado, District 2, Aurora Wilson, District 4, and Melanie Nieman, District 5.