Professor and vice chair of the department of obstetrics, gynecology and reproductive sciences at UPMC and Magee-Womens Research Institute, Dr. Sharon Hillier received the 2019 Pittsburgh Women who Rock Award in May. As principal investigator for the Microbicide Trials Network, Dr. Hillier empowers women worldwide “with agency over their bodies, health and safety.” Addressing the urgent global HIV/AIDS epidemic, she’s leading an international team at clinical trial sites across Africa, Asia, South America and the U.S.

What upcoming events are you excited to attend?

My husband and I will be attending a CLO performance Downtown next weekend. We are so lucky in Pittsburgh to have an amazing regional company which celebrates musical theater.

What is the best part of your job?

Working with people from around the world. I have learned that people have more in common than we have differences. We need to embrace those things we have in common.

What is your big idea for Pittsburgh?

Pittsburgh is a city of renaissance. I would like Pittsburgh to take a leading role in the battle against climate change.

Sharon Hillier

Dr. Hillier in Harare, Zimbabwe, after a consultation with young African women to discuss an HIV prevention trial. Courtesy of the Microbicide Trials Network.

What’s been bugging you lately?

All this rain! I feel like Pittsburgh’s rains have turned into a full-blown monsoon season.

Ideal date night in Pittsburgh?

A dinner Downtown at fl.2 or Roost and then to the Pittsburgh Symphony — my favorite.

Write three words to describe Pittsburgh:

Genuine, fun, unpretentious.

What’s one thing you would love to change about Pittsburgh?

Route 28. It has been under construction for the past 25 years, and it is still a mess!

Sharon Hillier

Fox Chapel resident Dr. Hillier with her husband Butch, her daughter Louise (second from left) and her son Phillip (second from right) on vacation.

Where will we find you this Saturday night?

Sitting on my deck listening to the crickets and birds while watching the fireflies.

What is the one thing that would surprise Pittsburghers most about you?

Even though I was born and spent the first 40 years of my life in Seattle, this is my home. I am a Steelers fan through and through.

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