Dean’s Leaders & Lagniappe Lecture Series: Speaker Bios

Nancy Messonier headshot
  Nancy Messonnier, MD
Dean and Bryson Distinguished Professor in Public Health, UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health

Nancy Messonnier, MD, is dean of the UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health and Bryson Distinguished Professor in Public Health. She has more than 25 years of experience as a public health leader, including as director of the National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases (NCIRD) at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) from 2014-2021. She was inducted into the National Academy of Medicine in 2021. Dean Messonnier’s dedication to achieving public health impact, both locally and globally, through successful implementation informs her leadership of the Gillings School across academics, research, practice, policy, and outreach.

Donna Peterson headshot
  Donna J. Petersen, ScD, MHS, CPH
Dean and Professor, College of Public Health at the University of South Florida

Dr. Petersen is chief health officer and interim associate vice provost for student health and wellness, University of South Florida, senior associate vice president, USF Health and professor and dean, College of Public Health at the University of South Florida. She earned her masters and doctoral degrees in maternal and child health from The Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health. She has been honored for her work by the American Public Health Association, the Delta Omega National Public Health Honor Society, the National Healthy Mothers Healthy Babies Coalition, the Association of Maternal and Child Health Programs and the US Health Resources and Services Administration. In May 2021 she was presented a USF President’s Fellow Medallion for her work leading the USF COVID-19 Task Force. In October 2021, she received the Martha May Eliot award from the American Public Health Association.

Sandro Galea headshot
  Sandro Galea, MD, MPH, DrPH
Dean and Robert A. Knox Professor, Boston University School of Public Health

Sandro Galea, a physician, epidemiologist, and author, is dean and Robert A. Knox Professor at Boston University School of Public Health. He previously held academic and leadership positions at Columbia University, the University of Michigan, and the New York Academy of Medicine. He has published extensively in the peer-reviewed literature, and is a regular contributor to a range of public media, about the social causes of health, mental health, and the consequences of trauma. He has been listed as one of the most widely cited scholars in the social sciences. He is past chair of the board of the Association of Schools and Programs of Public Health and past president of the Society for Epidemiologic Research and of the Interdisciplinary Association for Population Health Science. He is an elected member of the National Academy of Medicine. Galea has received several lifetime achievement awards. Galea holds a medical degree from the University of Toronto, graduate degrees from Harvard University and Columbia University, and an honorary doctorate from the University of Glasgow.

Hillary Godwin photo
  Hilary Godwin, PhD
Professor and Dean, University of Washington School of Public Health

Hilary Godwin joined the University of Washington in 2018 as Dean of the School of Public Health and Professor of Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences. Prior to that, Godwin spent twelve years on the faculty at the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health and ten years in the Department of Chemistry at Northwestern University and held a number of different leadership positions at both institutions. She earned a PhD in Chemistry from Stanford University and a BS in Chemistry with honors from the University of Chicago. She is deeply committed to promoting the health of all people, locally and globally.

Tracie Collins headshot
  Tracie C. Collins, MD, MPH, MHCDS
Dean and Professor, College of Population Health at the University of New Mexico

During her tenure, Dr. Collins responded to the COVID-19 emergency by completing nine months as New Mexico Secretary of Health. She returned to serve as dean of the College of Population Health at the University of New Mexico, bolstering the state’s public health and pandemic-response leadership. Collins has served in a variety of academic leadership roles, in addition to providing clinical care and conducting and overseeing clinical research. In addition to her clinical education and research in the United States, Collins has also lectured in Nepal and Kenya. She has produced more than 80 scholarly publications over the course of her career, and she maintains a clinical practice as a vascular specialist.

Paul Erwin headshot
  Paul C. Erwin, MD, DrPH, MPH
Dean, University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Public Health

Paul Campbell Erwin, MD, DrPH is Dean of the School of Public Health at the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) and Professor in the Department of Health Policy and Organization. He is board certified in internal medicine, and public health and preventive medicine, and is a Fellow of the American College of Preventive Medicine. He is an associate editor of the American Journal of Public Health and a member of the editorial boards for Medical Education Cooperation with Cuba (MEDICC) Review and the Journal of Public Health Management and Practice.

Ashish Joshi headshot
  Dean Ashish Joshi, Ph.D., MBBS, MPH
Dean and Distinguished Professor, University of Memphis School of Public Health

Dr. Joshi is Dean and a Distinguished University Professor of the School of Public Health of the University of Memphis. He is an innovator, entrepreneur, educator, researcher, administrator, and mentor. Dr. Joshi conceptualized the SMAART model to advance achievement of Sustainable Development Goals. He aims to bring public health research into action through multisector partnerships, data-driven, evidence-informed, digital health interventions, innovations, and sustainable community programs to promote health equity.