Obituary: Dr Nancy L. Czaicki PhD, MSPH, BS

Obituary: Dr Nancy L. Czaicki PhD, MSPH, BS
A bright and shining light dimmed far too soon

It is with great sadness that we learned of the sudden passing of our colleague and friend, Nancy Czaicki, in a tragic accident in early January.

Nancy only formally joined CIDRZ as a full-time Scientist in October of 2016, but her important contributions to our research work, and her commitment and devotion to improving the health of those living with HIV and AIDS in Africa, started long before.

Intelligent and talented, Nancy earned her PhD in epidemiology at the University of California – Berkeley, MSPH in Global Epidemiology from Emory University, and BS in Honours Chemistry from the University of Pittsburgh. Prior to moving to Lusaka in October, she was serving as an epidemiologist at the University of California – San Francisco and collaborating with CIDRZ on our two large Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation-funded projects, Better Information for Health in Zambia, and Evaluating the Feasibility, Effectiveness, and Efficiency of Decentralized and Streamlined Antiretroviral Therapy Care Models (Community ART), as well as our US government-funded ACHIEVE project.

Nancy was passionate about using implementation science and research to improve patient care delivery and thus the lives of those we serve. Colleagues describe her “as a brilliant epidemiologist, a thoughtful colleague, a tireless advocate, and an insightful and patient mentor.” She was completely invested in her work with CIDRZ to improve the health of Zambians.

She brought not only her quick scientific mind, but her funny, bubbly personality, her brightness and optimism, and her beautiful sunny smile as she tackled any problem. We will miss her contributions to our work, but we regret even more the potential impact she could have had on overcoming global health challenges if she had been able to complete a long career. Sadly, this was not to be and the world will be a little less bright and the burden a little heavier without her. But in the all-too-short 30 years that Nancy Czaicki lived, she touched many and made enormous contributions. Her light will still shine on in those who had the privilege to know her.

— Dr Izukanji Sikazwe, CEO

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