Health Disparities Symposium Presenters
NYU Langone’s Section for Health Equity is honored to announce Mary T. Bassett, MD, MPH, as the keynote speaker for the 2020 Health Disparities Symposium, which is centered around the theme “Turning Research into Action.”
With more than 30 years of experience in public health, Dr. Mary T. Bassett has dedicated her career to advancing health equity. Dr. Bassett is currently the director of the François-Xavier Bagnoud (FXB) Center for Health and Human Rights at Harvard University and the FXB Professor of the Practice of Health and Human Rights at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. Prior to joining the FXB Center, she served as New York City’s commissioner of health from 2014 to 2018. Dr. Bassett’s many awards and honors include the prestigious Frank A. Calderone Prize in Public Health, a Kenneth A. Forde Lifetime Achievement Award from Columbia University, and election to the National Academy of Medicine. She received her BA in history and science from Harvard University and her MD from Columbia University’s College of Physicians and Surgeons. She served her medical residency at Harlem Hospital Center and has a master’s degree in public health from the University of Washington, where she was a Robert Wood Johnson Clinical Scholar.
Our other distinguished speakers for this year’s event include the following.
Guedy Arniella, LCSW
Ms. Arniella is a licensed clinical social worker and director of community health at the Institute for Family Health. She has worked in Harlem and the Bronx for 25 years focusing on addressing the health disparities impacting black and brown communities. Ms. Arniella is a faculty member of the Harlem Family Medicine Residency training program, has been a co-principal investigator on several Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and National Institutes of Health (NIH) grants and mentors young adults interested in pursuing careers in health care.
Alison Bateman-House, PhD, MPH, MA
Dr. Bateman-House is an assistant professor in the Division of Medical Ethics at NYU Langone. She is co-chair, with Arthur Caplan, PhD, of the Working Group on Compassionate Use and Preapproval Access (CUPA), an academic group that studies ethical issues concerning access to investigational medical products and which is composed of patient advocates, clinicians, members of industry, former FDA staffers, lawyers, and academics. She also co-chairs, with Lesha Shah, MD, the Pediatric Gene Therapy and Medical Ethics (PGTME) working group, which includes academics, patient advocates, industry representatives, and a wide array of clinical and research professionals. Dr. Bateman-House serves as the nonvoting, nonpaid chair of the NYU/Janssen Pharmaceutical Compassionate Use Advisory Committees (CompACs) for Infectious Diseases and Neurology/Psychology. CompAC won the Reagan-Udall Foundation for the FDA’s 2019 Innovation Award. Dr. Bateman-House has published and spoken extensively on how to best handle requests for nontrial access to investigational drugs and on related ethical issues. She has also written and spoken frequently on the history and ethics of using humans as research subjects and on clinical trial accessibility.
Perla Chebli, PhD, MPH
Dr. Chebli is a postdoctoral fellow at the Section for Health Equity at NYU Langone’s Department of Population Health. Her research interests lie in community-engaged research, cancer disparities, immigrant health, and implementation science. Her projects include engaging multiple Arab American community stakeholders to define cancer-related needs in Chicago and guide the development of acceptable, culturally congruent cancer interventions; interviewing Latina breast cancer survivors to understand determinants of financial toxicity; and conducting a process evaluation of a community-based breast cancer intervention with Latina women in Chicago to explore organizational success factors. Dr. Chebli holds an MPH from NYU and a PhD in public health from the University of Illinois at Chicago.
Emily Foote, MSW
Ms. Foote is senior director for social determinants of health at NYC Health + Hospitals, where she leads strategy and programming related to systematic identification of social needs and connecting patients with hospital and community-based social services. She also manages NYC Health + Hospitals’ medical–legal partnership with the Legal Health division of the New York Legal Assistance Group, through which attorneys provide free and confidential advice to patients on a wide range of civil legal matters including immigration concerns. Ms. Foote completed a master’s degree in public and nonprofit management from the School of Social Work at Columbia University.
Max Hadler, MPH, MA
Mr. Hadler is the director of health policy at the New York Immigration Coalition. He works on a range of issues and campaigns at the city, state, and federal levels to improve health access, coverage, and delivery for immigrant communities. Prior to joining the New York Immigration Coalition, he worked in many capacities related to access to care for immigrants, including project director and research associate at the UCLA Center for Health Policy Research, researcher at the UCLA North American Integration and Development Center, and Spanish-English medical interpreter at Yale-New Haven Hospital.
Chidinma A. Ibe, PhD
Dr. Ibe is an assistant professor of general internal medicine at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, with a joint appointment in the school’s Department of Health, Behavior and Society. She is a core faculty member of the Johns Hopkins Center for Health Equity and its associate director of stakeholder engagement. Her program of research is based on optimizing the use of community health workers to address intransigent cardiovascular disparities observed among ethnic minority populations. This is achieved by elucidating the degree to which dimensions of the encounters between community health worker and patient communication influence cardiovascular and patient-centered outcomes; and exploring the application of implementation science principles and frameworks to discern intrapersonal, interpersonal, and institutional factors affecting community health workers’ integration into healthcare teams. Dr. Ibe received her BA from the University of Pennsylvania and her PhD from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.
Nadia Islam, PhD
Dr. Islam is an associate professor in NYU Langone’s Department of Population Health. Her research focuses on developing culturally relevant community–clinical linkage models to promote health equity in disadvantaged communities. Dr. Islam co-directs the NYU-CUNY Prevention Research Center (PRC) and the Community Engagement and Population Health Research core of NYU Langone’s Clinical and Translational Science Institute. She also serves as the principal investigator on several NIH- and CDC-funded initiatives evaluating the impact of community health worker interventions on chronic disease management and prevention in diverse populations.
Roopa Kalyanaraman Marcello, MPH, CPH
Ms. Marcello has more than 15 years of experience in public health research, policy and program development and implementation, and communication in government, academic, and private sectors. In her current role as director of research and evaluation in the Office of Population Health at NYC Health + Hospitals (H+H), she designs research and leads evaluations of priority population health initiatives. She is also the director of the H+H Clinical and Translational Science Institute, the public sector arm of the NYU–NYC Health + Hospitals Clinical and Translational Science Institute. Additionally, she is leading work to improve the food environment at all H+H facilities, including making healthy foods more easily accessible and removing unhealthy items from retail locations. Prior to joining H+H, she was a public health program, policy, and communications consultant, advising both private and government clients. She has worked policy and program development at the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene and spent several years in top HIV research labs in New York City working on the development of an HIV vaccine and microbicides. Ms. Roopa earned an MPH as well as certificates in health communication and vaccine science and policy from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. She also earned a BS in molecular biology with a minor in music performance from Yale University.
Michael McRae, PhD
Dr. McRae is a clinical psychologist and the assistant commissioner of the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene’s Bureau of Health Promotion for Justice-Impacted Populations (HPJIP), which aims to reduce the negative social and health consequences of justice system involvement through evidenced-based policy and practice change. Anchoring his work in a trauma-and-resilience-informed framework, Dr. McRae centers relationship building, racial and social justice, and inclusion to serve the most marginalized individuals and their communities, particularly with respect to behavioral health issues. Dr. McRae views these as fundamental to his history of effective program development and implementation as well as his ultimate goal of achieving health equity.
Ms. Newton-Dame is the assistant vice president for healthcare analytics in the Office of Population Health at NYC Health + Hospitals. She founded and runs the Data Core, a team of 10 analysts who harness big data to answer big questions for over 1 million vulnerable patients. Trained as an epidemiologist, she brings 12 years of experience in electronic heath record data and public health. As the senior manager of population health in the Primary Care Information Project (PCIP) at the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, she led the development of the NYC Macroscope, the first chronic disease surveillance system using distributed ambulatory data from primary care practices.
Mr. Oshiro helps lead Make the Road New York (MRNY), the largest grassroots community organization in New York offering services and organizing low-income and immigrant communities. He leads MRNY's Westchester office and oversees its services departments including MRNY's Legal Services, Adult Literacy and Health Advocacy, and serves as lead health policy expert. A Peruvian immigrant raised in Queens, he has been recognized several times for his contributions to immigrant communities, winning the New York Lawyers for the Public Interest’s Felix A. Fishman Award. He was appointed by Mayor de Blasio and Governor Cuomo to serve on city- and state-level policy task forces focused on immigrant health and health disparities. Mr. Oshiro joined Make the Road in 2005 after receiving a master’s degree from the University of Chicago. Since he began at Make the Road, he has been a leading fundraiser, building MRNY’s health access team from the ground up and expanding the organization’s overall services infrastructure by tripling MRNY's staff size and expanding services for members in Long Island. He led MRNY's expansion into Westchester and helped lead Make the Road’s expansion into New Jersey, Connecticut, and Pennsylvania. From his post at Make the Road, he has been a leader in improving language access policies in both New York City and New York State. He led MRNY’s advocacy that resulted in the passage of a city-level law and the state-level SafeRx legislation to require comprehensive interpretation and translation services to limited English proficient patients at chain and mail-order pharmacies. He also works on special projects focusing on immigrant integration, green space accessibility, census advocacy and outreach, and has been featured in various major media outlets commenting on Latino and low-income community needs, service, and organizing efforts.
Alonzo L. Plough, PhD, MPH, MA
Dr. Plough joined the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation as chief science officer and vice president, research-evaluation-learning, in January 2014. He is responsible for aligning all of the foundation’s work with best evidence from research and practice and incorporating program evaluations into organizational learning. He also oversees the two grantmaking portfolios focused on innovation and emerging issues: Pioneer and Global Ideas for U.S. Solutions. Dr. Plough has been a national leader in public health practice for over 25 years. He earned his PhD and MA at Cornell University, and his MPH at Yale University School of Medicine’s Department of Epidemiology and Public Health. He is currently clinical professor of health services at the University of Washington School of Public Health in Seattle.
Joseph Ravenell, MD
Dr. Ravenell is associate professor in NYU Langone’s Departments of Population Health and Medicine with tenure, and associate dean for diversity affairs and inclusion. He is a general internist and clinical educator, and a clinician investigator with a health disparities research focus. Dr. Ravenell has been principal investigator of multiple NIH and CDC grant-funded clinical trials to test community-based strategies to improve colon cancer screening and cardiovascular disease prevention among black men throughout New York City. This work has led to a community-based research network of over 200 community-based sites including churches, barbershops, mosques, and social service agencies. Dr. Ravenell’s community-based research was the subject of an invited TED talk he delivered in Vancouver, BC, in February 2016, which has received over 1 million views. Dr. Ravenell continually cultivates a holistic approach to promoting health equity through research, scholarship, and mentorship.
William E. Rosa, PhD, MBE, ACHPN, FAANP, FAAN
Dr. Rosa is currently a postdoctoral research fellow in psycho-oncology at Memorial Sloan Kettering (MSK) Cancer Center. He received his BSN magna cum laude from NYU Rory Meyers College of Nursing (2009); was valedictorian of his MSN class, Hunter College (2014); and completed his PhD and master of bioethics as a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Future of Nursing Scholar at the University of Pennsylvania (2020). Dr. Rosa spent one year with the Human Resources for Health Program in Rwanda, East Africa (2015–16), contributing to the curriculum content for the first master’s-prepared nursing cohort in the country and completed an interprofessional palliative care clinical fellowship at MSK (2017). He is the editor of three books on leadership, global health, and theory-guided practice and has contributed more than 130 publications in a host of diverse forums. Dr. Rosa has been recognized with numerous distinctions, including the international Spirit of Renewal Award from Sigma (2017); the national Lillian Wald Humanitarian Award from the National League for Nursing (2020); and the national Public Health Service Award for Distinguished Practice in Nursing from the American Nurses Association (2020). He serves on the editorial board for the Journal of Hospice and Palliative Nursing and as a board member for multiple global health and palliative care organizations. Dr. Rosa was recently selected to be a 2020 International Council of Nurses Global Nursing Leadership Institute Scholar, a highly competitive global policy and leadership development program. He is a Fellow of the American Academy of Nursing, the American Association of Nurse Practitioners, the American College of Critical Care Medicine, and the New York Academy of Medicine.
Iman Sharif, MD, MPH, MS
Dr. Sharif is clinical professor in NYU Langone’s Departments of Pediatrics and Population Health and medical director of research for the Family Health Centers at NYU Langone. She is a graduate of NYU School of Medicine and completed residency training in social pediatrics at Montefiore Medical Center in the Bronx. She has completed a fellowship in health disparities at the Bronx Center for Reducing and Eliminating Health Disparities (2006), and earned an MS in clinical research at Albert Einstein College of Medicine (2006) and an MPH at Columbia University (2009). Dr. Sharif serves on the editorial board of Academic Pediatrics and is a reviewer for major journals including Pediatrics, JAMA Pediatrics, Annals of Internal Medicine, Journal of Adolescent Health, and Patient Education and Counseling, among others. She has served as a grant reviewer for the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) and has been the recipient as principal investigator or co-principal investigator for grants from the NIH, HRSA, CDC, and several foundations. She has authored more than 50 peer-reviewed articles on literacy promotion, children’s media exposure, health literacy, asthma, obesity, care of children with special healthcare needs, and access to care and health disparities.
Denise Octavia Smith, MBA
Ms. Smith is a community health worker, healthcare administrator, and the founding executive director of the National Association of Community Health Workers (NACHW) whose mission is to unify and strengthen community health workers to support communities in achieving health equity and social justice. In her roles as national trainer, presenter, and advocate, she centers authentic collaboration with individuals, communities, and organizations to advance innovation, co-leadership, governance, and accountability and eliminate historic structural racism and inequities in health and social needs research, programs, and policy. She is on the frontlines of amplifying the roles of community health workers as essential critical infrastructure personnel to strengthen public health infrastructure’s response strategies during the 2019 coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic.