Anthony D. So
Anthony D. So, MD, MPA, is the second Professor of the Practice and Founding Director of the Innovation+Design Enabling Access (IDEA) Initiative at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. Based in Health Systems in the Department of International Health, the IDEA Initiative fosters innovation and design of new technologies for greater health access and impact. He also serves as thematic lead of the Transformative Technologies and Institutions arm of the Johns Hopkins Alliance for a Healthier World. As Director of the Strategic Policy Program of ReAct--Action on Antibiotic Resistance, he works with a global network dedicated to meeting the challenge of antimicrobial resistance, and his program serves as the Secretariat to the Antibiotic Resistance Coalition. Previously, Dr. So has served as the Director of the Duke Program on Global Health and Technology Access, as Associate Director of the Rockefeller Foundation’s Health Equity Program, and as Senior Advisor to the Administrator of the U.S. Agency for Health Care Policy and Research. He was named a White House Fellow during the Clinton Administration and subsequently received the Secretary’s Distinguished Service Award for shepherding the Liaison Office for Quality in support of the President’s Advisory Commission on Consumer Protection and Quality in the Health Care Industry and the Consumer Bill of Rights and Responsibilities. Most recently, he served as Co-Convener of the UN Interagency Coordination Group on Antimicrobial Resistance. Currently, Dr. So serves on the Boards of two of the nation’s most prominent consumer and healthcare groups, Public Citizen and Community Catalyst.
Peter Maybarduk directs Public Citizen’s access to medicines and knowledge economy group, which helps partners around the world overcome high-price pharmaceutical monopolies and secure the benefits of science, technology and culture for all. Maybarduk has provided technical assistance to international organizations and to public agencies and civil society groups in more than three dozen countries. He is an intellectual property expert and presently a visiting fellow with the Information Society Program at Yale Law School. Maybarduk’s work has yielded HIV/AIDS medicine price reductions, new state access to medicines policies and global shifts toward anti-counterfeiting policies that safeguard generic competition. In addition, his analysis and strategy helped eliminate many harmful measures from the proposed Trans-Pacific Partnership. Maybarduk studied technology law at Berkeley Law School (University of California) and anthropology at The College of William & Mary in Virginia. His prior work includes ethnography in South America’s Orinoco river delta and organizing campaigns for voting rights and living wages, among others. He is also the co-founder of International Professional Partnerships for Sierra Leone, dedicated to supporting public sector development in one of the world’s least developed countries.
Dr. Leana Wen is a physician, public health leader, and patient advocate. Most recently, she was the President/CEO of the Planned Parenthood Federation of America and the Planned Parenthood Action Fund. She was the first physician in nearly 50 years to lead the organization. Previously, Dr. Wen served as the Commissioner of Health for Baltimore City. While at Baltimore, Dr. Wen issued a blanket prescription for naloxone, the opioid antidote, saving nearly 3,000 lives in three years. A board-certified emergency physician, Dr. Wen was a Rhodes Scholar, Clinical Fellow at Harvard, and consultant with the World Health Organization. She has written the book When Doctors Don't Listen and more than 100 articles. A Fellow of the American Academy of Emergency Medicine and Academy of Medicine, she serves on the faculty at George Washington University School of Medicine and Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. Dr. Wen has received recognition as Modern Healthcare’s 50 Most Influential Physician Executives and Leaders and Top 25 Minority Executives in Healthcare. In 2016, Dr. Wen was honored to be the recipient American Public Health Association’s highest award for local public health work. In 2017, she was named one of Governing’s Public Officials of the Year. TIME magazine named her one of the 100 most influential people of 2019.
Peter Lurie is President of Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI). CSPI is one of the oldest independent, science-based consumer advocacy organizations with an variety of accomplishments and a clear and ambitious agenda for improving the food system to support healthy eating. Previously, Lurie was the Associate Commissioner for Public Health Strategy and Analysis at the Food and Drug Administration, where he worked on antimicrobial resistance, transparency, caffeinated beverages, arsenic in rice, fish consumption by pregnant and nursing women, expanded access to investigational drugs, and prescription drug abuse. Prior to that, he was Deputy Director of Public Citizen’s Health Research Group, where he addressed drug and device issues, co-authored the organization’s Worst Pills, Best Pills consumer guide to medications, and led efforts to reduce worker exposure to hexavalent chromium and beryllium. Earlier, as a faculty member at the University of California, San Francisco and the University of Michigan, he studied needle exchange programs, ethical aspects of mother-to-infant HIV transmission studies, and other HIV policy issues domestically and abroad.
Dr. Josh Sharfstein is serves as Associate Dean for Public Health Practice and Training and Professor of the Practice in Health Policy and Management at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. In addition, Dr. Sharfstein oversees the Office of Public Health Practice and Training and is director of the Bloomberg American Health Initiative. From 2011 to 2014, Sharfstein was secretary of the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, where he was involved in creating the state's groundbreaking model for hospital payment. From 2009 to 2011, Sharfstein was principal deputy commissioner of the US Food and Drug Administration, where he led the agency's transparency and performance management initiatives. From 2005 to 2009, as commissioner of health for Baltimore City, Sharfstein led innovative efforts that contributed to major declines in overdose deaths and infant mortality rates. From 2001 to 2005, he was minority professional staff and health policy adviser for Congressman Henry A. Waxman.
Robert Weissman is a staunch public interest advocate and activist, as well as an expert on a wide variety of issues ranging from corporate accountability and government transparency, to trade and globalization, to economic and regulatory policy. Leading Public Citizen since 2009, Weissman has spearheaded a variety of efforts, including loosening corporate power over government, fighting for financial regulation on Wall Street to hold corporations and big banks accountable, advocating to hold corporations accountable for their environmental actions, working to curb climate change, and pushing for a single-payer, Medicare-for-all health care system. He is an expert in intellectual property issues associated with drug patients, and has appeared on CBS, ABC, NBC, PBS, CNBC, NPR, and Marketplace Radio, in addition to a multitude of various publications.
Reshma Ramachandran, MD, MPP is a Family Medicine resident at Kaiser Permanente Los Angeles Medical Center and Associate of the IDEA (Innovation+Design Enabling Access) Initiative in the Department of International Health at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. Prior to this role, Reshma worked as an Assistant Scientist as part of the IDEA Initiative at Johns Hopkins, where she focused on antimicrobial resistance and access to medicines including state drug pricing proposals. She and her colleagues supported efforts in Maryland to curb high drug prices by helping draft legislation, providing background materials, and offering testimony at the Maryland General Assembly. She also helped edit the recent White Paper co-authored by the Yale Global Health Justice Project and Universal Healthcare Foundation of Connecticut entitled, “Curbing Unfair Drug Prices: A Primer for States.” Reshma trained in both medicine at the Alpert Medical School at Brown University and in public policy at the Harvard Kennedy School of Government. Previously, she served as the first PharmFree Fellow with the American Medical Student Association focused on removing the undue influence of pharmaceutical companies on both prescribing and medical education from academic medical centers. She also currently serves as a board member of Universities Allied for Essential Medicines (UAEM) North America.
More speakers to be announced!
*Speakers are tentative and subject to change