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Current Members: International Task Force for Disease Eradication


Stephen B. Blount, M.D., M.P.H. (Chair, 2016-Present; member since 2009)
Director of Special Health Projects
The Carter Center

Former Associate Director for Global Health Development, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, responsible for leading CDC's collaborations with CARE to more closely link health programs to broader social and economic development efforts, particularly in Haiti, India, and Mozambique. Assigned to the World Health Organization (WHO) from 1993 to 1997, when he served as Director of the Caribbean Epidemiology Centre in Trinidad and Tobago.

Dirk Engels, M.D., Ph.D. (2013—Present)
Department of Control of Neglected Tropical Diseases (NTDs)
World Health Organization
As the former Coordinator of the Preventive Chemotherapy and Transmission Control Unit in the Department of Neglected Tropical Diseases in the World Health Organization in Geneva, Dr. Engels was part of a small team of experts who contributed to developing a clear and comprehensive strategy for the integrated control of 'neglected tropical diseases'. After the creation of the NTD Department and for almost nine years he led a team of professionals in producing and disseminating norms and standards for the implementation of integrated large-scale preventive treatment interventions for the control or elimination of lymphatic filariasis, onchocerciasis, schistosomiasis, soil-transmitted helminthiasis and trachoma. This resulted in one of the largest global public health interventions to date, with over 700 million people benefitting annually from preventive chemotherapy treatment worldwide.

J. Peter Figueroa, Ph.D. (2017—Present)
Professor of Public Health
Epidemiology and HIV/AIDS
The University of the West Indies
Developed a doctorate program in public health at The University of the West Indies, Jamaica. He was formerly the Chief Medical Officer at the Ministry of Health and for many years the Chief Epidemiologist and Director of the National HIV/STI Program in Jamaica and a Scientific Secretary of the Caribbean Health Research Council. He has represented the Government of Jamaica on regional and international health-related agencies and conducted consultancies in the Caribbean, Africa and the Middle East. He has chaired the Caribbean Immunization Managers’ annual meeting since 1989 and served on the PAHO Technical Advisory Group for the Expanded Program of Immunization since 1990. He has been rapporteur of the WHO Advisory Committee on Polio Eradication since 2004. Between 2002 and 2005 he served on the independent review committee of GAVI. He is Chair of the UNAIDS HIV Prevention Reference Group and Deputy Chair of the Regional Coordinating Mechanism of the Pan Caribbean AIDS Partnership, PANCAP.

Donald R. Hopkins, M.D., M.P.H. (2001-Present)
Special Advisor for Guinea Worm Eradication
The Carter Center
Participated in the Smallpox Eradication Program (Sierra Leone, India, Ethiopia); initiated the Guinea Worm Eradication Program; co-chaired the 1997 Dahlem Conference (Berlin); Project Director for the first International Task Force for Disease Eradication; former Deputy Director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Julie Jacobson, M.D., D.T.M.H. (2013—Present)
Senior Program Officer
Neglected Infectious Diseases
Global Health Program
Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

Manages the Gates Foundation's investments in efforts to reduce the burden of Neglected Tropical Diseases (NTDs) through the development of more effective methods of control, elimination, or eradication; former Scientific Director of Immunization Solutions and Director of PATH's Japanese encephalitis (JE) project, managing a US$35 million grant to accelerate the control of JE in endemic countries; worked at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention as an Epidemic Intelligence Officer in disaster epidemiology and conducted needs assessments for disaster victims, evaluated national surveillance systems, and evaluated the health impact of earthquakes on displaced persons.

Hamid S. Jafari, M.D., M.B.B.S. (2016—Present)
Principal Deputy Director
Center for Global Health
U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
Former Director of Global Polio Eradication and Research at the World Health Organization (WHO), Geneva; served as the Project Manager of WHO’s National Polio Surveillance Project in India on assignment from CDC; Director of the Global Immunization Division in the National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases, CDC; began his career at CDC in 1992 as an EIS Officer at the National Center for Infectious Diseases, and later worked at the National Immunization Program; served as Medical Officer for Polio Eradication in the Regional Office of the WHO for Eastern Mediterranean from 1996-2002 on assignment from the CDC; completed his residency training in Pediatrics at Dartmouth Medical School and his Pediatric Infectious Disease fellowship training at University of Texas Southwestern Medical School, Dallas; also completed a research fellowship at Harvard Medical School.

David Molyneux, Ph.D., D.Sc., Hon.FRCP. (2001-Present) 
DSc (Honoris Causa) Georgetown University
Hon. Fellow Liverpool John Moores Unviversity 
Emeritus Professor and Senior Professorial Fellow
Centre for Neglected Tropical Diseases
Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine
Former Director of the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine (United Kingdom); member of the WHO Expert Panel on Parasitic Diseases; former President of the British Society of Parasitology and Royal Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene; member WHO Scientific and Technical Advisory Group for Neglected Tropical Diseases; member of the International Commission for the Certification of Dracunculiasis Eradication.

Patrick L. Osewe, M.D., M.P.H. (2015—Present) 
Global Lead
Healthy Societies Global Solutions Group
The World Bank
Over 20 years of experience in International Public Health. He has worked in various
technical and leadership capacities in the World Bank, and was formerly a Senior
Epidemiologist in the Division of Public Health in Georgia. He graduated from the
University of Nairobi medical school and holds an MPH from Harvard University.

Dr. Stefan Swartling Peterson (2016—Present)
Chief, Health Section and
Associate Director, Programme Division
Professor of Global Health at Uppsala University and, prior to that, at the Global Health Division of Karolinska Institutet; Visiting Professor at Makerere University in Uganda.  As a health systems researcher and medical doctor, he has done extensive field work in Tanzania and Uganda, and has worked with different ministries of health, organisations such as the World Health Organization (WHO), and implemented projects supported by the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (SIDA), the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and the European Union.  He was also a co-founder of Medicins Sans Frontieres Sweden and the CCM Task Force Operations Research Group.  He is a medical doctor with degrees in medicine, Public Health and a PHD in International Pediatrics.

David A. Ross, ScD (2016-Present)
President & CEO
The Task Force for Global Health
Provides strategic direction to The Task Force and oversees seven programs focused on neglected tropical diseases, vaccines, field epidemiology, and public health informatics. Dr. Ross assumed leadership of The Task Force on May 1, 2016, after 16 years as director of The Task Force’s Public Health Informatics Institute (PHII) and its predecessor All Kids Count. Prior to joining The Task Force, Dr. Ross was founding director of the Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s first national initiative to improve the information infrastructure of public health in the United States.

Dean Sienko, M.D., M.S. (2016—Present)
Vice President for Health Programs
The Carter Center
Former Associate Dean for Prevention and Public Health at the Michigan State University College of Human Medicine, where he also was Acting Director of the Institute for Health Policy and Senior Adviser to the Provost; Retired as a Major General after a 33-year career with the U.S. Army and for two years was Commanding General of the U.S. Army Public Health Command at Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland; served as an Epidemic Intelligence Service Officer with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; Medical Director/Medical Examiner with the Ingham County (Michigan) Health Department, and Interim Chief Medical Executive for the State of Michigan.

Nilanthi R. de Silva, M.D. (2016-Present)
Faculty of Medicine
University of Kelaniya
Current Chair of the World Health Organization’s (WHO) Strategic and Technical Advisory Group (STAG) for Neglected Tropical Diseases; Professor of Parasitology and Dean, Faculty of Medicine, University of Kelaniya, Sri Lanka; presides over WHO's Working Group on Access to Assured Quality, Essential Medicines for Neglected Tropical Diseases – position held since May 2009; formerly served on WHO’s Foodborne Diseases Epidemiology Reference Group (2007–2015) and on WHO's Expert Advisory Panel on Parasitic Diseases (2001–2006); research interests include the epidemiology, prevention and control of soil-transmitted helminthiases and lymphatic filariasis.

Laurence (Larry) Slutsker, M.D., M.P.H. (2013—Present)
Program Leader
Malaria and Neglected Tropical Diseases
Experience in HIV/AIDS and diarrheal diseases, conducted epidemiologic research on a broad range of topics, including malaria (with over 17 years with the Malaria Branch at CDC), causes of infant mortality in developing countries, and reproductive and general tropical public health. Former Director of the KEMRI/CDC Research Station in western Kenya (2001-2005), Chief of the Malaria Branch at CDC (2005-2010), and Associate Director for Science, CGH (2010-2012). He has held past or current senior advisory roles with WHO, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, NIH (NIAID and Fogarty International Center), Consortium of the Universities of Global Health, FDA, The Carter Center, Roll Back Malaria Partnership, and Malaria No More. He has authored or coauthored more than 200 scientific journal articles, book chapters, and other publications.

Roberto Tapia Conyer, M.D., D.Sc., M.P.H., M.Sc. (2013-Present)
Carlos Slim Foundation
Joined Mexico's Ministry of Health in 1982; appointed in 1997 Vice-Minister of Prevention and Health Promotion; appointed as the Director-General of the Carlos Slim Health Institute in 2007, before becoming the Director-General for the Carlos Slim Foundation in 2013; is a professor at the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM) and University of California, and active member of diverse academic organizations and scientific boards.

Ricardo Thompson, Ph.D. (2014-Present)
Senior Researcher
National Institute of Health
Republic of Mozambique
Epidemiologist by training, currently serves as Director and Principal Investigator of Chókwè Health Research and Training Centre (CITSC), in Mozambique. Also Vice-Chair of the Regional Program Review Group (RPRG) for Neglected Tropical Diseases since 2014. Formerly Scientific Director of the National Institute of Health, Mozambique (2001-2008); and Chair of the RPRG for Lymphatic Filariasis in the African Region of the World Health Organization (2011-2014). His research interests includes the epidemiology of HIV/AIDS, malaria, lymphatic filariasis, onchocerciasis, schistosomiasis, Human African Trypanosomiasis, and Toxoplasmosis.

Dyann Wirth, Ph.D., M.A. (2001-Present) 
Professor of Immunology and Infectious Diseases
Harvard School of Public Health
Director of Harvard Malaria Initiative
Former Chair of the WHO/UNDP/World Bank Tropical Disease Research Steering Committee on Drugs for Malaria; recipient of the Burroughs Wellcome Award in Molecular Parasitology; Immediate Past President of the American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene; present Chair of the Harvard's Division of Biological Sciences.


Former Members

Dr. Olusoji Adeyi (2005—2009)
The World Bank

Sir George Alleyne, M.D., F.R.C.P. (2001-2017)
Pan-American Health Organization (PAHO)

Dr. Yves Bergevin (2001—2003)

Dr. Ekkehard Betsch (2009—2011)
The World Bank

Mickey Chopra, M.D., M.P.H., Ph.D. (2009-2016)

Dr. Maria Claeson (2002—2003)
The World Bank

Dr. Julie Gerberding (2002—2009)
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Dr. Robert Hecht (2003—2005)
The World Bank

David L. Heymann, M.D. (2001—2008)
World Health Organization

Jeff Koplan, M.D., M.P.H. (2001—2002)
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

James "Chris" Lovelace (2001—2002)
The World Bank

Adetokunbo Lucas, M.D. (2001-2017)
Harvard University

Dr. Montserrat Meiro-Lorenzo (2011—2015)
The World Bank

Mark L. Rosenberg, M.D., M.P.H. (2001-2016)
The Task Force for Global Health

Dr. Peter Salama (2007—2009)

Dr. Lorenzo Savioli (2008—2013)
World Health Organization

Laurence Slutsker, M.D., M.P.H. (2013-2016)
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

Harrison Spencer, M.D., M.P.H., D.T.M.H. (2001-2016)
Association of Schools of Public Health

Dr. Pascal Villeneuve (2003—2007)

Yoichi Yamagata, Ph.D., M.Sc. (2001—2015)
Japan International Cooperation Agency

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