Gary Mandelburg ’86 B.G.S., business administration; ’96 M.S., organizational management, is the associate director of facilities compliance at Pfizer Inc. in Groton. In 2005, he spent three months in Uganda, where he served as an advisor at the Infectious Disease Institute (IDI) in Kampala.
The IDI is on the campus of Makerere University, where Gary helped to get the new facility up and running. The focus of the IDI is combatting Africa’s AIDS pandemic. The immensity of the problem is seen in the numbers: two-thirds of all HIV/AIDS cases in the world are in Africa, with more than 22.5 million HIV-positive people in sub-Saharan Africa, more than 1.3 million deaths annually, and 15 million African children orphaned by AIDS.
Gary’s time in Uganda was sponsored by Pfizer as part of its Global Health Fellows initiative. As facilities advisor to IDI, he helped to put in place policies and processes such as human resources, purchasing, procurement, hazardous materials management, and preventative maintenance. For the Mandelburgs, the trip was a family affair; Gary’s wife volunteered at an orphanage filled to capacity by the effects of the AIDS epidemic, and their three daughters, ages 6, 11, and 16, were “changed forever by this experience.”