Presenter Bio’s 2008

Ahbay Bang, MD, MPH. Director of Society for Education, Action and Research in Community Health (SEARCH), India. Raised in Mahatma Gandhi’s dr-bangashram at Sevagram, India, Dr. Ahbay Bang pursued a medical career and completed his training with three gold medals. After receiving a degree in public health at the Johns Hopkins University, in Baltimore, Maryland, Dr. Bang returned to India in 1984 to a remote district, Gadchiroli, where he started a new organization, SEARCH. Through SEARCH, Dr. Bang and his wife, Dr. Rani Bang, provide medical care and conduct research in 100 villages to improve the health of women and children. Their grassroots studies have repeatedly broken new ground and pioneered international trends, including a new approach, home-based newborn and child care, which has been successfully implemented in several countries and five Indian states. Dr. Bang and his organization have received numerous awards, including the ‘Maharashtra Bhushan,’ – the highest state award, and a national award from the Indian Council of Medical Research. He has been honored by Save the Children US, for his contribution to global neonatal health, by the MacArthur Foundation in 2006, and together with his wife, Dr. Bang was featured in Time magazine as “Global Health Heroes” in 2005. His research was also chosen as one of the ‘milestone’ papers published in the Lancet.

Read the July 2008 Interview with Abhay Bang

Roger Glass, MD, PhD. Dr. Glass was named Director of the Fogarty International Center and Associate Director for International Research in 2006. He glassgraduated from Harvard College in 1967, received a Fulbright Fellowship to study at the University of Buenos Aires in 1967, and received his M.D. from Harvard Medical School and his M.P.H. from the Harvard School of Public Health in 1972. In 1977, he joined the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention as a medical officer assigned to the Environmental Hazards Branch and in 1984, he received his doctorate from the University of Goteborg, Sweden, and joined the National Institutes of Health Laboratory of Infectious Diseases, where he worked on the molecular biology of rotavirus. In 1986, Dr. Glass returned to the CDC to become Chief of the Viral Gastroenteritis Unit at the National Center for Infectious Diseases. His research interests are in the prevention of gastroenteritis from rotaviruses and noroviruses through the application of novel scientific research. He has maintained field studies in India, Bangladesh, Brazil, Mexico, Israel, Russia, Vietnam, China and elsewhere. His research has been targeted toward epidemiologic studies to anticipate the introduction of rotavirus vaccines. Dr. Glass has received numerous awards including the prestigious Charles C. Shepard Lifetime Scientific Achievement Award presented by the CDC.

Jane Kengeya-Kayondo, Coordinator of Strategic Alliances for the WHO Special Programme for Research and Training in Tropical Diseases – TDR.

Photo and bio will be added soon.

Read the April 2009 Interview with Jane Kengeya-Kayondo

Mwelecele Ntuli Malecela Bsc, Msc, PhD. Dr Malecela is the Director of Research Coordination and Promotion of the National Institute for Medical malacelaResearch (NIMR) in Tanzania and Director of the Tanzania Lymphatic Filariasis Elimination Programmme (TLFEP). She has worked at NIMR for 21 years, mainly in the field of Lymphatic Filariasis immunoepidemiology, and has also worked in the area of Health Systems and Policy research. As Director for Research at NIMR, her focus is now mainly research capacity building and the translation of research into action, policy and practice. Dr Malecela has been in the forefront of priority setting for health research activities in Tanzania – where she facilitated the Tanzania National Health Research Priority Setting process in 1999 and the revision of these priorities in 2005. As Director of the TLFEP she brings her research experience to efforts to eliminate filariasis and she has run the national program since its inception in 2000. She is well known for her role in advocacy campaigns that have brought to light the real extent of the problem in Tanzania and also for her efforts in ensuring that the LF programme has a strong operational research component. She has served on a number of international committees including the Technical Advisory Group of The Global Program to Eliminate Lymphatic Filariasis, the Mectizan Expert Committee and the advisory board of the Initiative on Public-Private Partnerships in Health.

Therese McGinn, DrPH, MPH. Therese McGinn is the Associate Professor of Clinical Population and Family Health at the Columbia University Mailman mcginnSchool of Public Health and is principal investigator and director of the Reproductive Health Access, Information and Services in Emergencies (RAISE) Initiative. Previously at the Mailman School, she served as deputy director of the Averting Maternal Death and Disability Program (AMDD) and as principal investigator of the Monitoring and Evaluation Program of the Reproductive Health Response in Conflict Consortium. During her more than 20 years of public health work in resource-poor settings globally, Dr. McGinn has focused on using sound data collection and analysis to improve the scope and quality of reproductive health services, in order for men and women to make important choices about their sexual and reproductive lives. She has worked most extensively in Africa, and also in Latin America and Asia. In addition to her applied research activities globally and teaching responsibilities, Dr. McGinn participates in professional conferences and contributes to professional literature.

Maria Merritt, Ph.D. Maria Merritt is a core faculty member of the Johns Hopkins Berman Institute of Bioethics. She has research interests in bioethics, merritglobal health ethics, international research ethics, moral philosophy, and moral psychology. Several of Dr. Merritt’s recent and current projects focus on practical problems of global justice. What do citizens of affluent countries owe to the poor who live in other countries? More specifically, to whom and for what are outside agencies morally responsible in their work with low- and middle-income countries? Topics include the impact of foreign-sponsored research projects on local health systems. Other projects relate the philosophical understanding of ethical character to relevant findings in social psychology, focusing on interpersonal aspects of the psychological processes (such as self-evaluation and self-esteem) through which individuals sustain their commitments to ethical values. At Johns Hopkins University, Dr. Merritt is a core faculty member of Berman Institute of Bioethics, where she is also co-Associate Director of the Greenwall Fellowship Program in Bioethics and Health Policy, and a faculty affiliate of the Johns Hopkins-Fogarty African Bioethics Training Program. In 2005-06 she was a Faculty Fellow in the Edmond J. Safra Foundation Center for Ethics at Harvard University; from 2002 to 2006 she was Assistant Professor of Philosophy at the College of William and Mary.

Professor Catherine Peckham, CBE, MD, FRCP, FMedSci. Professor Catherine Peckham founded the Centre for Paediatric Epidemiology and peckhamBiostatistics at the Institute of Child Health, University College London. The common theme of her work is the impact of infections and other external factors on children’s health and the adult consequences of ill-health in childhood. From 2005 to 2007 she chaired the Scientific Coordinating Group of the Government’s Foresight Programme on the Future Challenge of Infectious Diseases in humans, animals and plants with particular reference to Europe, China and Africa. She has worked extensively with WHO, the National Institutes of Health, the Centre for Communicable Diseases in Atlanta, the EU and other bodies on issues relating to infectious disease in children and adults internationally. She was Vice-Chair of the Nuffield Council for Bioethics and many of her commitments have tackled issues where ethical considerations are to the fore. She chaired, for example, the MRC Human Fertilization and Embryology Working Group on children conceived by ART and in 2008. Her interests have extended outside the sphere of medicine; she was non-executive director of the Advertising Standards Authority, a Fulbright Commissioner and Governor of St Paul’s School in London.

Seema Shah, JD. Seema Shah’s research focuses on the ethics of international research, the ethics of research with children, and the intersection of law and bioethics. She currently serves as a consultant for the Division of AIDS on its clinical sciences review committee and as an ethics consultant for the Clinical Center. She has published in the field of bioethics in peer-reviewed journals such as the Journal of the American Medical Association, the American Journal of Bioethics, and the Journal of Clinical Ethics. She earned her bachelor’s and juris doctor degrees from Stanford University. She previously served as a federal law clerk in the Eastern District of California and a fellow in the NIH Department of Bioethics. She has lectured on human subjects research issues at conferences run by PRIM&R, ASBH, ASTMH, and internationally in such locations as Botswana, South Africa, and Mali.

Jeff Spieler, PhD (Hon), MSc. Jeff Spieler, Senior Science Advisor, was appointed to the position of Senior Science Advisor, Office of Population and spielerReproductive Health (PRH) in March 2007. Prior to that Jeff was the Chief of the Research, Technology and Utilization Division in PRH since 1993. He joined USAID in 1983 as the Senior Biomedical Research Advisor in Population after spending 11 years as a Scientist in the Special Programme of Research, Development and Research Training in Human Reproduction, World Health Organization, Geneva, Switzerland. Before joining WHO, he worked for 5 years as a bench scientist at Lederle Laboratories Pharmaceutical Company in Pearl River, NY. Jeff earned a B.Sc. degree in Zoology from the University of Florida in 1967, a M.Sc. in Zoological Sciences and Reproductive Biology from Rutgers University in 1971, and an Honorary Doctorate in Public Service from the University of Florida in 2002.

Susan Zimicki, PhD. Susan Zimicki has more than twenty-five years experience in applied research for developing and evaluating public health interventions in Africa and Asia, with an emphasis on behavior/social change and communications interventions. Since 1998 she has worked at AED in Washington DC, where she currently leads the Infectious Diseases Initiative and is Director of the Communication for Change (C-Change) Program, USAID’s flagship communication project. Previously she was senior technical advisor to several behavior change and communication activities on avian influenza and directed the USAID-funded CHANGE Project (1998-2005), which identified, developed and evaluated new tools and approaches for achieving behavior change relevant to health outcomes. Prior to coming to AED, she worked at the Harvard Institute for International Development and at the Annenberg School for Communication. Her career has included five years at ICDDR,B in Bangladesh and stints as a visiting researcher at ORSTOM’s population laboratory in Senegal and at the Medical Research Council field station in The Gambia. From 2004-2007 Dr Zimicki chaired the WHO/TDR Steering Committee on Implementation Research. She has a PhD in Demography from the University of Pennsylvania and a ScM in Epidemiology and Tropical Public Health from the Harvard School of Public Health.


  1. […] Presenter Bio’s 2008 « Blog 4 Global HealthProfessor Catherine Peckham, CBE, MD, FRCP, FMedSci. Professor Catherine Peckham founded the Centre for Paediatric Epidemiology and peckham … […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: