Prevention Advisory Group Members
Use the links below to view member profiles:
Jeffrey Levi (Chairperson) | JudyAnn Bigby | Richard Binder | Valerie Brown
Jonathan Fielding | Ned Helms | Patrik Johansson | Jerry L. Johnson | Janet R. Kahn | Charlotte Kerr | Jacob Lozada | Elizabeth Mayer-Davis | Vivek Murthy
Dean Ornish | Barbara Otto | Herminia Palacio | Linda Rosenstock | John Seffrin Ellen Semonoff | Susan Swider | Sharon Van Horn | Kimberlydawn Wisdom
Jeffrey Levi, Ph.D., Chairperson
Jeffrey Levi is Executive Director of Trust for America's Health (TFAH), a non-profit, non-partisan organization dedicated to making disease prevention a national priority. As Executive Director of TFAH, Dr. Levi leads the organization’s efforts to advance a modernized public health system. He is also a Professor of Health Policy at The George Washington University School of Public Health and Health Services, where he teaches courses in health policy and has conducted research on HIV/AIDS, Medicaid, integrating public health, and the healthcare delivery system. Prior to joining academia, Dr. Levi was Deputy Director of the White House Office of National AIDS Policy (1994-1996). Previously, he served as an associate editor of the American Journal of Public Health. Dr. Levi has been engaged in HIV policy work since the beginning of the epidemic and is widely recognized as a leading national advocate for gay-lesbian and HIV-related issues. He holds a B.A. from Oberlin College, an M.A. from Cornell University, and a Ph.D. from The George Washington University.
JudyAnn Bigby is the Secretary of Health and Human Services for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. She oversees 16 agencies, including the state’s Medicaid program, and was responsible for implementing many features of the 2006 Massachusetts health reform law. Prior to her appointment as Secretary in 2007, Dr. Bigby served as a primary care physician and Director of Community Health Programs at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston. She also served as an Associate Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School, where she was Director of the Harvard Medical School Center of Excellence in Women’s Health. Dr. Bigby is currently a member of the Board of Directors of the National Quality Forum. She holds a B.A. from Wellesley College and an M.D. from Harvard Medical School.
Dr. Richard Binder currently serves as Medical Director at McKesson/US Oncology, where he advises and mentors oncology practices throughout the country. Dr. Binder is also a Professor at Virginia Commonwealth University and Georgetown University School of Medicine. Previously, he served as an advisor in the Office of the President of Inova Health System. From 1975 to 2005, Dr. Binder practiced medicine in the fields of Hematology and Oncology at Inova Fairfax Hospital, where he served in a variety of roles, including President of the Medical Staff, Vice-Chairman of the Department of Medicine and Director of the Cancer Center. Earlier in his career, he was a full-time faculty member at Georgetown University School of Medicine. Dr. Binder is a member of the Inova Health System Foundation and the Montgomery County Hospice Board. He is the past recipient of the Vicennial Medal, awarded by Georgetown University School of Medicine, and the Inova Fairfax Hospital Vernon Vance Memorial Award. Dr. Binder holds a B.S. Ch.E. from Northeastern University College of Engineering and an M.D. from Tufts University School of Medicine.
Valerie Brown was appointed by the Governor of California to serve as First District County Supervisor for the County of Sonoma in 2002 and was elected to that position in 2004 and 2008. In her role as County Supervisor, Ms. Brown oversees all county departments and initiatives involving water management, transportation, mass transit and rail, economic development, environmental protection, and health services. She recently launched the nationally-acclaimed Network of Care for Healthy Communities Project, an innovative local delivery web portal that provides the public, healthcare providers, local government leaders, and community organizations with easy-to-find resources and understandable key data. Prior to her appointment, Ms. Brown served as a City Council member and Mayor for the City of Sonoma, California, and was an elected official in the California State Assembly from 1992 to 1998. She is an active member of the U.S. National Association of Counties, having served as Vice President in 2006 and as President in 2009. In 2010, Ms. Brown was selected as County Official of the Year by Public CEO and Leader of the Year by California Women Lead. She holds a B.S. in Education from the University of Missouri, and an M.A. in Counseling Psychology from Lindenwood College in Missouri.
Jonathan E. Fielding serves as Director of the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health and County Health Officer. He leads the nation’s largest county public health department and manages the county’s environmental health, communicable and chronic disease control, emergency preparedness and response, and health education initiatives, among others. Dr. Fielding is also Professor of Health Services and Pediatrics at UCLA and Vice Chair of the Los Angeles First 5 Commission, which works to improve children’s health, safety, and school readiness. He previously served as Massachusetts Commissioner of Public Health and as President of the American College of Preventive Medicine. Dr. Fielding is a founding member of the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force and Chair of the U.S. Community Preventive Services Task Force. He is also Chair of the Partnership for Prevention and the Advisory Committee on the 2020 Health Objectives for the Nation created by U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius. Dr. Fielding is a Board Member of the American Legacy Foundation, an elected member of the National Academy of Sciences Institute of Medicine, and Editor of the Annual Review of Public Health. He is the recipient of numerous awards, including the Sedgwick Memorial for Distinguished Public Health and the Roemer Award for creative public health practice, both from the American Public Health Association. Dr. Fielding holds a B.A. from Williams College, an M.A. from Harvard University, an M.D. from Harvard Medical School, an M.P.H. from the Harvard School of Public Health, and an M.B.A. from the Wharton School of Business.
Ned Helms serves as Director of the New Hampshire Institute for Health Policy and Practice at the University of New Hampshire, a position he has held since February of 2001, when he became its founding director. Mr. Helms oversees the Institute’s research efforts to improve population health and provide technical assistance to State and Health Care agencies in order to enhance their health care delivery systems. Over the past 30 years, he has focused on health policy and held key roles in public and private entities, including Chief Administrative Officer of Blue Cross/Blue Shield of New Hampshire, founder and President of Helms & Company (a health policy consulting firm), Commissioner of the Department of Health and Human Services for New Hampshire, and Executive Assistant to the Office of the Governor for Health Policy in New Hampshire. Earlier in his career, Mr. Helms served as Legislative and Administrative Assistant for Health Policy in the U.S. Senate. He holds a B.A. from Drew University and an M.A. from the University of New Hampshire.
Patrik Johansson, is currently the Director of the Rural Health Education Network and an Associate Professor at the University of Nebraska Medical Center College of Public Health. Previously, Dr. Johansson served as Deputy Chief Medical Officer at the Greater Southeast Community Hospital. He also served as Assistant Research Professor at The George Washington University Department of Prevention and Community Health. Earlier in his career, Dr. Johansson was an Instructor of Social Medicine at Harvard Medical School. He is a member of the American Public Health Association, the National Rural Health Association and the Nebraska Rural Health Association. Dr. Johansson is a past recipient of the Harvard Medical and Dental School Dean’s Community Service Award. He holds a B.A. from Brown University, an M.P.H. from the Harvard School of Public Health, and an M.D. from the University of Nebraska Medical Center College of Medicine.
Jerry L. Johnson currently serves as a principal partner for Heffler, Radetick & Saitta, LLP, a certified public accounting and consulting firm. He is also the founder and co-chairman of ESmith Legacy, Inc. and chairman of Auxum Partners, LLC, positions he has held since 2007 and 2000 respectively. From 2002 to 2006, Mr. Johnson served as the President of eMoney Advisory, Inc. Prior to joining eMoney, he was an Executive Vice President at Safeguard Scientifics, Inc., a position he held from 1995 to 2002. He currently serves on the boards of Bryn Mawr Trust Company, Savanna Inc., Coriell Institute, Arthur Ashe Youth Tennis and Education and the Union League of Philadelphia. He previously served as Vice Chairman of PWRT Services, Inc. In 2010, Mr. Johnson was awarded the Distinguished Community Leadership Award from Operation Understanding. He was previously named by Black Enterprise Magazine as one of the Top 40 Most Powerful Executives in Corporate America. Mr. Johnson holds a B.S. in Education from Truman University, a M.S. in Management from Massachusetts Institute Technology, and a M.A. in counseling and guidance from Northern Illinois University.
Janet R. Kahn is currently a Research Assistant Professor at the University of Vermont’s College of Medicine, a position she has held since 2002. Since 2000, Dr. Kahn has been a Faculty Preceptor in the Fellowship Program in Complementary, Alternative, and General Medicine at Harvard Medical School. Dr. Kahn helped found the Integrated Health Policy Consortium in 2002, where she was on the Steering Committee until 2005, thereafter serving as Executive Director until 2011. In addition, Dr. Kahn was the Director of Integrated Health Care of the Community Health Center of Burlington from 2008 to 2010, the Director of Research of the Massage Therapy Research Consortium from 2003 to 2008, and a Senior Research Scientist at the Wellesley College Center for Research on Women from 1997 to 2000. Dr. Kahn’s research focuses on equitable and affordable health care delivery models, the importance of massage therapy for the treatment of chronic pain, and supporting the well-being of veterans. Dr. Kahn has served on a number of boards, including the National Advisory Council for Complementary and Alternative Medicine at the National Institutes of Health since 2009. Dr. Kahn holds a B.A. from Antioch College, an Ed.M. from the Harvard Graduate School of Education, and a Ph.D. from Brandeis University.
Sister Charlotte Rose Kerr is a practitioner of traditional acupuncture, a healthcare consultant, and a faculty member of the Tai Sophia Institute. Prior to joining the Tai Sophia Institute, Sister Charlotte Kerr was an Assistant Professor of Nursing at the University of Maryland School of Nursing. She has served on various education and health-related boards, including the Center for Talented Youth at Johns Hopkins University, the White House Commission on Complementary and Alternative Medicine Policy, and the Advisory Council of the National Institutes of Health Alternative Medicine Program, among others. In 2002, Sister Charlotte Kerr was identified as one of Maryland's Top 100 Women by The Daily Record, a statewide daily business newspaper. She holds an R.N. from St. Joseph's Infirmary in Atlanta, a B.S.N. from the University of Maryland School of Nursing, an M.P.H. from the University of North Carolina, and an M.Ac. from the College of Traditional Acupuncture in England.
Dr. Jacob Lozada currently serves as Member of the Board of Directors of the American Association of Retired Persons, the National Medical Music Group, the Budget Committee of Andrews Federal Credit Union, and he is a Fellow of the American College of Healthcare Executives. Dr. Lozada previously served as a Senior Advisor for Diversity Strategies at the U.S. Office of Personnel Management (OPM), where he managed the Interagency Task Force on Hispanic Employment from 2003 to 2005. Prior to his work at OPM, Dr. Lozada was the Assistant Secretary of Human Resources and Administration at the Department of Veterans Affairs from 2001 to 2003. He was awarded the VA Exceptional Service Award and LULAC’s Presidential Citation Award for his extraordinary service. He has also worked as a Principal at Booz Allen & Hamilton’s Healthcare Practice, a Consultant at Electronic Data Systems, an Adjunct Assistant Professor at The George Washington University, Principal at the Council for Excellence in Government, and a Colonel for the U.S. Army Medical Department. Dr. Lozada holds a B.A. in Science from the University of Puerto Rico, an M.A. in Health Administration from Baylor University and a Ph.D. in Education from Walden University.
Elizabeth Mayer-Davis is currently Professor of Nutrition in the Gillings School of Global Public Health and Professor of Medicine in the School of Medicine at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. From 1997 to 2008, Dr. Mayer-Davis was Professor of Epidemiology at the University of South Carolina and Associate Chair of the Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics. During her tenure at the University of South Carolina, she played a key role in developing the Center for Research in Nutrition and Health Disparities and served as the Center’s Director. Prior to that, Dr. Mayer-Davis was on the faculty of Wake Forest University. Throughout her career, she has conducted research on prevention and treatment of diabetes and other obesity-related conditions in children and adults. Dr. Mayer-Davis currently serves as the President of Health Care and Education for the American Diabetes Association. She holds a B.S. in nutrition and dietetics from the University of Tennessee, an M.S. in public health from the University of Colorado, and a Ph.D. in epidemiology from the University of California at Berkeley.
Vivek H. Murthy is an attending physician at Brigham and Women's Hospital and an instructor at Harvard Medical School, where he is an internal medicine hospitalist. Dr. Murthy is co-founder and President of Doctors for America, a grassroots organization of over 15,000 doctors and medical students in 50 states who are working to build a better health care system for all Americans. He is also the co-founder and Chairman of Epernicus, LLC, a privately-held company that builds social networking platforms for scientific institutions and clinical trials. Dr. Murthy has lectured widely on health care reform and physician advocacy. His writings and research have been published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), Science, the Journal of the National Cancer Institute, and The Washington Post. Dr. Murthy received a B.A. from Harvard University, an M.D. from the Yale School of Medicine, and an M.B.A. from the Yale School of Management.
Dr. Dean Ornish is the founder and president of the non-profit Preventive Medicine Research Institute and Clinical Professor of Medicine at the University of California, San Francisco, positions he has held since 1995. Dr. Ornish is the author of six books, including The Spectrum. He serves on the board of directors for a number of non-profits, including the San Francisco Food Bank, and was previously appointed to the White House Commission on Complementary and Alternative Medicine Policy during the Clinton Administration. During his career, Dr. Ornish has received numerous awards and honors, including being selected as a “National Public Health Hero” by the University of California, Berkeley, “one of the 125 most extraordinary University of Texas alumni in the past 125 years,” “one of the fifty most influential members of his generation” by LIFE magazine, and one of the “TIME 100” in integrative medicine. He was a Clinical Fellow in Medicine at Harvard Medical School and completed his residency in internal medicine at the Massachusetts General Hospital from 1981 to 1984. Dr. Ornish received a B.A. in Humanities from the University of Texas in Austin in 1975 and his M.D. in 1980 from Baylor College of Medicine in Houston.
Barbara Otto is CEO and former Executive Director of Health & Disability Advocates, a national policy and advocacy organization centered on providing health care and employment-related services to people with disabilities. Ms. Otto is responsible for providing policy analysis and direction in the areas of Medicaid and Medicare as well as other public benefits programs for older adults, children and adults with disabilities. She is also a principal in the National Consortium for Health Systems Development, a state-to-state technical assistance center, where she focuses on the intersection of health and employment policy. Ms. Otto has over 20 years of experience working on health care reform and women’s issues in the workplace. She previously served as Adjunct Faculty in the Employment & Disability Institute of Cornell University and has been a consultant for Virginia Commonwealth University, among other organizations. Ms. Otto is a member of the National Academy of Social Insurance, and is an author of several publications including the No Nonsense Guide Series on Employment & Disability. She holds a B.A. from Marquette University in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
Dr. Herminia Palacio currently serves as the Executive Director of Harris County Public Health and Environmental Services, a local health department assisting approximately 2 million people. Dr. Palacio is also an adjunct faculty member of the Baylor College of Medicine and the University of Texas School of Public Health. Dr. Palacio previously served as Special Policy Advisor to the Director for the San Francisco Department of Public Health; and before that, she worked as an attending physician in various departments of San Francisco General Hospital. She has served on the advisory committee of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Preparedness and Emergency Response Research Center at UC Berkeley, the CDC Advisory Committee to the Director, and the Institute of Medicine’s Committee on Prepositioned Medical Countermeasures for the Public. Dr. Palacio has served on the Boards of the National Association of County and City Health Officials, the Leland National Urban Air Toxics Research Center, the Texas Association of Local Health Officials, and the Harris County Healthcare Alliance. She was awarded the Excellence in Health Administration Award by the American Public Health Association in 2007. Dr. Palacio received her M.D. from Mount Sinai School of Medicine, her M.P.H. from the University of California, Berkeley School of Public Health and her B.A. from Barnard College, Columbia University.
Linda Rosenstock is Dean of the School of Public Health and a Professor of Medicine and Environmental Health Sciences at UCLA. Dr. Rosenstock is a recognized authority in occupational and environmental health, and in the fields of public health and science policy. From 1994 to 2000, she served as the Director of the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), where she was instrumental in creating the National Occupational Research Agenda, a framework for guiding occupational safety and health research. In recognition of her efforts, Dr. Rosenstock received the Presidential Distinguished Executive Rank Award, the highest executive service award in the government. Prior to this appointment, she was a faculty member in Departments of Medicine and Environmental Health at the University of Washington. Dr. Rosenstock has held leadership roles in, and served on the boards of, various organizations, including the World Health Organization, the United Auto Workers/General Motors Occupational Health Advisory Board, the National Academy of Sciences’ Institute of Medicine, the Association of Schools of Public Health, and the Society of Medical Administrators, among others. She has also been active in teaching and research in many developing countries and is an Honorary Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians. Dr. Rosenstock holds an A.B. from Brandeis University, and an M.D. and an M.P.H. from The Johns Hopkins University.
John R. Seffrin is chief executive officer of the American Cancer Society. Dr. Seffrin also serves as an adjunct professor of behavioral science and health education at the Emory University Rollins School of Public Health. Prior to being named the American Cancer Society’s top executive, he served at Indiana University as Professor of Health Education and Chairman of the Department of Applied Health Science. Dr. Seffrin has been active in numerous organizations, including the Advisory Committee to the Director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Geneva-headquartered Union for International Cancer Control, and the Board of Independent Sector, among others. In 1999, he was selected to be a charter member of C-Change (formerly the National Dialogue on Cancer) Steering Committee, which was co-chaired by former President George H.W. Bush and former First Lady Barbara Bush. Also in the late 1990s, Dr. Seffrin served on the board of National Cancer Policy Board of the Institute of Medicine and was appointed by Senator Dianne Feinstein to co-chair the National Cancer Legislation Advisory Committee. He helped to create the National Center for Tobacco-Free Kids (now the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids), among his many collaborations and affiliations. Dr. Seffrin is the 2010 recipient of the Society for Public Health Education’s Elizabeth Fries Health Education Award. He holds a B.S. degree from Ball State University, an M.S. from the University of Illinois, and a Ph.D. in health education from Purdue University.
Ellen Semonoff is currently the Assistant City Manager for Human Services in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Ms. Semonoff also serves as the Vice Chair of the Board of the Cambridge Health Alliance, a public safety net hospital and teaching affiliate of Harvard Medical School. Previously, she served the City of Cambridge in various key management roles, including Deputy Director of the Department of Human Services and Assistant to the City Manager. Ms. Semonoff also served the State of Massachusetts as Coordinator of Employment Services in the Massachusetts Department of Employment and Training. Earlier in her career, she practiced law at the firm Hill & Barlow. Ms. Semonoff clerked for Chief Judge Frank Kaufman in the U.S. District Court in Maryland, Judge Spottswood Robinson III in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, and Justice Thurgood Marshall of the United States Supreme Court. She holds a B.A. from Brandeis University and a J.D. from Harvard Law School.
Susan Swider is a Professor in the College of Nursing at the Rush University Medical Center, an academic health sciences center in Chicago. Prior to joining Rush University, Dr. Swider served on the faculty of the School of Nursing at St. Xavier University and in the College of Nursing of the University of Illinois. Over the past 20 years, her research has focused on program development and evaluation of community health workers, and on engaging urban communities in health promotion. From 1992 to 2009, Dr. Swider served on the Board of Directors for the Erie Family Health Center, a Federally-qualified health center, and was a Kellogg International Leadership Program Fellow from 1995 to 1998. She has also been a member of numerous professional organizations in public health and nursing, including the American Public Health Association, the Institute of Medicine of Chicago, and the Association of Community Health Nursing Educators, where she serves as president. Dr. Swider holds a B.S. in Nursing from De Paul University, and an M.S. in Public Health Nursing and a Ph.D. in Nursing Science from the University of Illinois.
Sharon Van Horn is a pediatrician with a longstanding interest in the prevention of childhood and adolescent health and behavioral problems. In 2009, she completed a Fellowship in Integrative Medicine at the University of Arizona, where she focused on prevention and integrative health issues. Prior to that, Dr. Van Horn was a pediatrician at Chapel Hill Pediatrics and has served as an Adjunct Faculty in the Department of Pediatrics at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She also worked as a consultant for Healthy E Me, Inc., a company that uses technology and behavior modification to treat obesity via e-mail and text messaging. Dr. Van Horn holds a B.A. from Kansas Newman College, an M.D. from the University of Kansas School of Medicine, and an M.P.H. from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Dr. Kimberlydawn Wisdom is the Senior Vice President of Community Health & Equity and the Chief Wellness Officer at the Henry Ford Health System, positions she’s held since 2011. She is also a board-certified Emergency Medicine Physician at the Henry Ford Health System and serves as an assistant professor in the Department of Medical Education at the University of Michigan Medical School. From 2003 to 2010, Dr. Wisdom served as the first Surgeon General in Michigan’s history. Dr. Wisdom established the Institute on Multicultural Health at the Henry Ford Health System and created the “Generation with Promise” program, a W. K. Kellogg funded initiative focused on addressing issues of childhood obesity. She has also served as a Fellow with the American College of Emergency Physicians and has been widely recognized for her work on wellness issues, having been asked to present her research to numerous professional and academic audiences. Dr. Wisdom earned a B.A. from the University of Pennsylvania, an M.D. from the University of Michigan Medical School, and an M.S. from the University of Michigan School of Public Health.