The Forensic Unit of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) Is Honored With the 2023 AAFS HHRRC Clyde Snow Award


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Source:  Dawnie Steadman, PhD, AAFS Humanitarian and Human Rights Resource Center Chair

The American Academy of Forensic Sciences Humanitarian and Human Rights Resource Center (AAFS HHRRC) offers the Clyde Snow Award to a forensic scientist or organization that has made outstanding contributions to humanitarian action and the global community.

The award recognizes the pioneering contributions of forensic anthropologist Clyde Collins Snow, PhD, (1928-2014) in the application of forensic science to human rights. Dr. Snow helped catalyze the development of forensic science to support human rights throughout Latin America and around the world. His career accomplishments present an extraordinary model for forensic scientists to reflect upon.

Many accomplished individuals and organizations were nominated this year for the Clyde Snow Award. All candidates were reviewed and ranked by the HHRRC International Advisory Council and Subcommittee Chairs. The HHRRC is pleased to announce that the Forensic Unit of the ICRC has been selected for the Clyde Snow Award.

The forensic team of the ICRC has, since its foundation, performed highly commendable work in the field of humanitarian forensics. Such intervention has been carried out through capacity building of medicolegal systems in multiple countries on the five continents affected by conflicts, natural disasters, or other situations of violence. The forensic unit grew rapidly to answer the different humanitarian needs, from training first responders and experts, supporting material development of infrastructures, to strengthening policies and procedures of forensic services, with an emphasis on medicolegal services in particularly deprived countries.

Recipients of the Clyde Snow Award embody the spirit and far-reaching contributions made by Dr. Snow. The Award is also intended to stimulate the career development and minds of young forensic scientists. In addition, the Clyde Snow Award exemplifies the commitment of the American Academy of Forensic Sciences to the application of forensic science to help resolve important issues in the international and global domain.

Candidates for this award (individuals or organizations) are nominated by a member of the international forensic science community. Selection criteria focus on the sustained body of work in humanitarian forensic science. The Clyde Snow Award is not for any specific contribution in the forensic sciences, but is intended to recognize a sustained effort in the global application of forensic science to human rights investigations and/or humanitarian action.

The Clyde Snow Award will be presented to a representative of the Forensic Unit during the 2023 AAFS Annual Business Meeting in February.