Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Magee-Womens Health Summit Dinner

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Magee-Womens Health Summit Dinner

Article excerpt

When and where: The David L. Lawrence Convention Center, Downtown, on Tuesday night.

#MageeSummit: Magee-Womens Research Institute launched a global initiative with a $1 million Magee Prize presented by former CBS News chief foreign affairs correspondent and Emmy-winner Lara Logan, a breast cancer and sexual assault survivor. Ms. Logan speaks on the topic of women's health around the globe and was on hand Tuesday night to share her experiences.

"Many people talk about the mental health effects of sexual assault, but few discuss the physical implications of what happens to your body after enduring such an assault," she said. While covering the Arab Spring demonstrations in Egypt in 2011, a mob attacked Ms. Logan, violently raping and assaulting her in the public space while her camera crew fought to get to her. The assault lasted more than 25 minutes. "They don't tell you the physical effects never ends. I had a hysterectomy I didn't need. My joints were distended from the mob trying to rip me apart. It took time for me to function again."

She recalled after going public with the assault the outpouring of letters she received from tens of thousands of people, men and women, who had experienced their own trauma. "I didn't want this to define me," she said. "I am not afraid of who I am and I've paid for it. When you've been tested and are still able to hold on to who you are, you realize no one can own you. No one owns me. I don't define myself from that night." Ms. Logan noted that many people shy away from the conversation of sexual assault, afraid to bring it up. "It's like they think by not talking about it, it will somehow be erased," she said. She hopes that by speaking at events like the Summit, she can shed light on an all-too common experience shared by many. …

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