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Local pediatrician honored for lifetime of humanitarian work

by Madelyn Reese | Sep 16, 2016

Dr. Phyllis Cavens climbed Mount Kilimanjaro — Africa’s highest mountain — the same year she spent six weeks abroad assisting Cambodian refugees. She married her husband of 53 years, Travis Cavens, in the thick of medical school.

“Life moves fast sometimes, and slower at other times,” Cavens said.

Cavens has always been quick to help humanity’s sick and unfortunate. As a result, the Longview pediatrician is Medical Teams International’s first “Humanitarian Woman of the Year.” She will be honored Sept. 28 at the Multnomah Athletic Club in Portland for her commitment to humanitarian medicine, particularly that aimed at serving women and children through health education and training.

 

“Phyllis is receiving this award to recognize her genuine compassion for vulnerable people, her courage to serve others in extreme circumstances, and generosity in sharing her time, talent and treasure,” Martha Newsome, Medical Teams CEO, said in a press release. The organization mobilizes expert volunteer medical, dental and support professionals to help people affected by disasters, conflict and poverty worldwide.

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