Chloe E. Bird, Ph.D., is a senior sociologist at the RAND Corporation, where she studies gender differences in physical and mental health and social determinants of health. She is also a professor at the Pardee RAND Graduate School. She is Principal Investigator of a study of the impact of neighborhoods and behaviors on allostatic load and morbidity and of a study funded by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute of neighborhood effects on incident cardiovascular disease among women based on data from the Women’s Health Initiative. In her book Gender and Health: The Effects of Constrained Choice and Social Policies (Cambridge University Press, 2008), Dr. Bird and coauthor Patricia P. Rieker highlight promising new approaches to integrating biological and social research and provide examples of innovative developments that transcend the long-standing, discipline-focused division of labor in the research community. Dr. Bird received her Ph.D. from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
Don Bishop, Ph.D., is director of the Center for Health Promotion at the Minnesota Department of Health and an adjunct associate professor at the University of Minnesota School of Public Health. He is a past president of the Directors of Health Promotion & Education, a national association of state health promotion directors. At the Minnesota Department of Health, he oversees the Heart & Stroke, Diabetes, Injury & Violence, and Oral Health state programs. He has served as principal investigator on several National Institutes of Health (NIH) research studies to design and test behavioral and environmental change programs that support healthy dietary choices and increased physical activity in preschool and primary
school settings with diverse student populations. These programs include WOLF (Work Out Low Fat), LANA Preschool Program (Learning About Nutrition through Activities), and American Indian Children Walking for Health. Dr. Bishop received his doctorate in psychology from North Carolina State University and was a postdoc in health psychology at Washington University in St. Louis.
Susan Bockrath, M.P.H., has worked for the past two decades to improve health care and educational opportunities for individuals and communities in Georgia, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, and Rhode Island. Since 2006, Bockrath has developed and implemented several health literacy programs and curricula for English-language learner (ELL) adults. More recently her work has focused on building health professionals’ and educators’ health literacy skills as well as improving their access to related resources and support.
Bockrath is a founding member and current chair of Health Literacy Nebraska. She is also the owner of the consulting firm, ELL Health Literacy, where she provides project management and evaluation services to clients in public health and health care. Since 2012, the biggest portion of her work has been as project director to the Outreach Partnership to Improve Health Literacy (OPIHL). In that role, she provides health literacy training, resources, and technical assistance to rural local health departments and their partners, serving 84 counties across Nebraska. OPIHL is a project of the Nebraska Association of Local Health Directors and is funded by the Health Resources and Services Administration’s Rural Health Care Services Outreach Program. She holds a master’s degree in public health from the Emory University Rollins School of Public Health and has completed doctoral coursework in Health Promotion and Disease Prevention Research at the University of Nebraska Medical University College of Public Health.
Jennifer Cabe, M.A., leads strategic and operations functions for Canyon Ranch Institute, a 501(c)3 nonprofit public charity. Canyon Ranch Institute catalyzes the possibility of optimal health for all people by translating the best practices of Canyon Ranch and our partners to help educate, inspire, and empower every person to prevent disease and choose a life of wellness. Partners include The Clorox Company, The George Washington University, LIVESTRONG, and the University of Arizona. Cabe joined Canyon Ranch Institute in 2007, and was elected to the Board of Directors in 2011.
Cabe previously served in the Office of the Surgeon General as communications director and speechwriter for U.S. Surgeon General Richard H. Carmona. In that capacity, she developed health literacy initiatives with advocacy groups, community leaders, health professionals, policy makers, and the public. In 2005, Cabe was awarded the Surgeon General’s Medal-
lion, which is the highest honor that the U.S. Surgeon General can confer. She also received the prestigious U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Honor Award for her role in developing the “U.S. Surgeon General’s Family History Initiative.” In 2006, she was awarded the NIH Team Merit Award for her work on The Cancer Genome Atlas, a collaboration of the National Cancer Institute and the National Human Genome Research Institute. Prior to joining the Office of the Surgeon General, Cabe was communications officer at the NIH Fogarty International Center.
Cabe is currently a member of the faculty of The Ohio State University College of Nursing. She is also chair of the National Call to Action on Cancer Prevention and Survivorship Council of Experts and serves on the advisory board of the Partnership to Fight Chronic Disease. She is also on the advisory board for Time to Talk CARDIO, an online health literacy program that received the Institute for Healthcare Advancement’s (IHA’s) Health Literacy Innovation Award in 2010. Cabe earned a B.A. in English and communication at Trinity University in San Antonio, Texas, and an M.A. in public communication at American University.
Olivia Carter-Pokras, Ph.D., is an associate professor in Epidemiology at the University of Maryland College Park School of Public Health (UMCP-SPH). A health disparities researcher for three decades in the federal government and academia, Dr. Carter-Pokras has been recognized by the Governor of Maryland, Surgeon General, Assistant Secretary for Health, and Latino Caucus of the American Public Health Association (APHA) for her career achievements in improving health care quality for Latinos, improving racial and ethnic data, and developing health policy to address health disparities. While at UMCP-SPH, she has focused her research, service, and education efforts on supporting translation of epidemiologic research into policy and practice to improve Latino population health. Dr. Carter-Pokras is an elected Fellow of the American College of Epidemiology and a member of the APHA’s Education Board. She currently chairs the American College of Epidemiology’s Policy Committee, and has served on the Institute of Medicine’s (IOM’s) Advancing Pain Research, Care, and Education Committee. A long-time member of Montgomery County, Maryland’s Latino Health Steering Committee, Dr. Carter-Pokras conducts health assessments of Latinos in Montgomery County and Baltimore in close partnership with local government and community-based organizations. She has led NIH-funded research projects to develop cultural competency and health literacy curricula, and addressed oral health of Latino and Ethiopian children and their mothers. She is the evaluation director for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention–funded Prevention Research Center at the University of Maryland. Dr. Carter-Pokras has published more than
55 peer-reviewed journal articles, and her research has played a critical role in national recognition of health disparities experienced by Latinos. Dr. Carter-Pokras lectures on chronic disease epidemiology, epidemiologic methods, cultural competency, and health disparities to public health students and health professionals.
Jennifer Dillaha, M.D., is director of the Center for Health Advancement for the Arkansas Department of Health. Since joining the department in 2001, she has played a leading role in the agency’s health promotion efforts, using a life-stage approach that focuses on population-based interventions to reduce the burden of chronic disease among all Arkansans. Under her leadership, the department has made improving health literacy a crosscutting strategic priority that is fundamental to its prevention efforts. Dr. Dillaha is a physician with specialty training in internal medicine and subspecialty training in infectious diseases and in geriatric medicine. She also has faculty appointments as an assistant professor in the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences College of Public Health and College of Medicine.
Cecilia C. Doak, M.P.H., has had a dual career: her first was as a commissioned officer in the U.S. Public Health Service, serving as a health educator in the Indian Health programs, and later as director of education for the Cancer Control Program. This included work on the initial pap test program and anti-smoking education. She was one of the first two women to receive the Surgeon General’s Commendation Medal for her work. With husband Leonard, they formed the nonprofit Patient Learning Associates. Together they presented more than 200 1- and 2-day workshops on health literacy for groups of doctors and allied health personnel. Over the years, they analyzed more than 2,000 health instructions in nearly all media. Doak is the lead author of their book Teaching Patients with Low Literacy Skills, which received a Book of the Year Award from the American Journal of Nursing.
Torrie T. Harris, Dr.P.H., M.P.H., is the division director for community health at the Louisiana Public Health Institute in New Orleans. Dr. Harris oversees the growth and development of community health programs that promote and improve health and quality of life at the state, local, and neighborhood levels in Louisiana. Through public–private partnerships with government, foundations, academia, and community groups, the Community Health Division implements programs such as the Louisiana Campaign for Tobacco-Free Living, Healthy New Orleans Neighborhoods Projects, Bike and Pedestrian Safety Infrastructure, and the Centers for Community Capacity. Previously, Dr. Harris served as the director of
Kentucky’s Office of Health Equity and was an assistant professor at the University of Kentucky College of Public Health, teaching courses on health disparities, public health leadership, and cultural and linguistic competency. While in Kentucky, Dr. Harris led initiatives to enhance health department organizational capacity to offer culturally appropriate services to disadvantaged populations. She also developed a statewide health equity coalition that influenced a focus by the state health department on health literacy to improve access to quality health care. Dr. Harris obtained her Doctorate in Public Health in Health Behavior at the University of Kentucky and completed a Postdoctoral Fellowship in Public Health Systems and Services Research. Dr. Harris also obtained a master’s of public health in maternal and child health from Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine and a B.S. in chemistry from Xavier University of Louisiana.
Alice M. Horowitz, Ph.D., RDH, is a research associate professor at the University of Maryland School of Public Health. Formerly she was a senior scientist in the Division of Population and Health Promotion Sciences at the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research (NIDCR). She was a primary architect of the Maryland State Oral Cancer Prevention and Early Detection coalition. She initiated both state and national research on what health care providers and the public know and do about oral cancer prevention and early detection. She has initiated statewide research on what the public knows and does about preventing dental caries and their perceptions of communication skills of dental providers, and on health care provider (physicians, nurse practitioners, dentists, and dental hygienists) reported use of recommended communication practices. She served as the NIH lead for the Healthy People 2010 oral health chapter and worked on Healthy People 2000. She organized the NIDCR’s workshop on oral health literacy and coauthored the resultant findings. She has published more than 125 scientific papers and book chapters and is the recipient of numerous awards. Dr. Horowitz holds a Ph.D. in Health Education from the University of Maryland, College Park.
Linda Neuhauser, Dr.P.H., M.P.H., is a clinical professor of Community Health and Human Development at the University of California (UC), Berkeley, School of Public Health. Her research, teaching, and practice focus on translating research findings into improved health programs and policies. She uses participatory approaches to create communication that is relevant to the literacy levels, languages, cultures, and functional needs of the intended audiences. She is internationally known for her success in helping government agencies, community programs, and private industry understand and design better health communication. She is the recipient of numerous awards, including the Charles Atkin Outstanding Translational
Health Communication Scholar Award, Archstone Foundation Award for Excellence, IHA First Place Health Literacy Award for Published Materials, and Pfizer Visiting Professor of Health Literacy Award.
Dr. Neuhauser is Principal Investigator of the UC Berkeley Health Research for Action Center, which works with diverse groups to research health issues and to codesign and evaluate multimedia health communication resources, which have now reached more than 40 million households in the United States and overseas. She has served on federal task forces on e-health communication; was a participant in the Surgeon General’s Workshop on Health Literacy and the federal Quality Health Website Usability Panel; and was a founding member and is currently an ad hoc advisor to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s Risk Communication Advisory Committee. She was previously a health officer in West and Central Africa with the U.S. Agency for International Development.
Andrew Pleasant, Ph.D., has had an interest in communication, literacy, and social change started while working on his parents’ small-town weekly newspapers. That early inspiration underpins his ongoing professional practice and research in health literacy; science, risk, and environmental communication; and social marketing.
He joined Canyon Ranch Institute in 2009. Canyon Ranch Institute catalyzes the possibility of optimal health for all people by translating the best practices of Canyon Ranch and its partners to help educate, inspire, and empower every person to prevent disease and choose a life of wellness. He is responsible for advancing the role of health literacy across Canyon Ranch activities. He also leads all research and evaluation activities, and is the program manager for partnerships with Time to Talk CARDIO, BSCS, The Cleveland Clinic, and The Clorox Company. Dr. Pleasant also has a faculty appointment with The Ohio State University College of Nursing.
Dr. Pleasant has led and participated in hundreds of presentations and trainings in the United States and around the world, primarily on health literacy and science, risk, and environmental communication. He has taught at Cornell University, Brown University, and Rutgers University. He served as a temporary advisor at the World Health Organization Health InterNetwork in Geneva, Switzerland, where he reviewed and evaluated the long-term sustainability and local ownership of the Health InterNetwork India pilot project.
Dr. Pleasant has published numerous peer-reviewed journal articles and technical reports, and is coauthor of the book Advancing Health Literacy: A Framework for Understanding and Action (2006). He has served on several advisory board committees, including the Community Advisory Committee of Horizon NJ Health, New Jersey’s largest health care management company; the New Jersey health literacy coalition; and
the Mayibuye Wetlands Programme in Soweto, South Africa. He is also a member of the scientific committee of the Public Communication of Science and Technology Network and represents Canyon Ranch Institute on the IOM’s Roundtable on Health Literacy. During his earlier career as a journalist, he received numerous awards for photojournalism and reporting on national and international topics. He earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism from Arizona State University; a master’s degree in environmental studies from Brown University; and a doctorate in communication from Cornell University.
Rima Rudd, Sc.D., M.S.P.H., is the senior lecturer on Health Literacy, Education, and Policy at the Harvard School of Public Health. Her work centers on health communication and on the design and evaluation of public health community-based programs. Since 1988, she has been teaching courses on innovative strategies in health education, program planning and evaluation, psychosocial and behavioral theory, and health literacy. Her research inquiries and policy work are focused on literacy-related disparities and barriers to health programs, services, and care, and she works closely with the adult education, public health, oral health, and medical sectors.
Dr. Rudd wrote several reports that helped shape the agenda in health literacy research and practice. They include the health literacy chapter of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services report Communicating Health: Priorities and Strategies for Progress (2003) and helped shape the 2010 National Call for Action. She coded all health-related items in the international surveys for assessments of adult literacy skills, enabling the United States, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and other countries to assess national health literacy skills. She authored the Educational Testing Services report Literacy and Health in America (2004) and contributed to other national assessments. Dr. Rudd provided two in-depth literature reviews (Review of Adult Learning and Literacy, volume 1 in 2000 and volume 7 in 2007). She served on the IOM Committee on Health Literacy, the National Research Council Committee on Measuring Adult Literacy, the NIDCR Workgroup on Oral Health Literacy, and the Joint Commission Advisory Committee on Health Literacy and Patient Safety. She contributed to the ensuing reports and white papers as well as to several IOM Roundtable on Health Literacy publications. She has received national and international awards for her work in health literacy. Most recently, the University of Maryland named a doctoral scholar’s award in her honor.
Dean Schillinger, M.D., is Professor of Medicine in Residence at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF), and chief of the UCSF Division of General Internal Medicine at San Francisco General Hospital (SFGH). He is a practicing primary care physician at SFGH, an urban public hospi-
tal, where he sees patients, teaches in the primary care residency program, and conducts research. Dr. Schillinger also serves as chief of the Diabetes Prevention and Control Program for the California Department of Public Health. He conducts research related to health care for vulnerable populations, and is an internationally recognized expert in health communication science. His work focuses on literacy, health communication, and chronic disease prevention and management. He has been honored with the 2003 Institute for Healthcare Advancement Research Award; the 2008 Research Award in Safety and Quality from the National Patient Safety Foundation; the 2009 Engel Award in Health Communication Research; and the 2010 Outstanding Bay Area Clinical Research Mentor. He authored a 2012 commissioned IOM paper on the attributes of Health Literate Healthcare Organizations. Dr. Schillinger is the founding director of the UCSF Center for Vulnerable Populations, whose mission is to carry out innovative research to prevent and treat chronic disease in populations for whom social conditions often conspire to both promote chronic disease and make its management more challenging. Dr. Schillinger currently directs the Center for Vulnerable Populations Health Communications Program.
Michael Villaire, M.S.L.M., is chief executive officer for the Institute for Healthcare Advancement (IHA), a nonprofit health care public charity dedicated to empowering people to have better health, with an emphasis on health literacy. Villaire produces IHA’s annual Health Literacy Conference. He has written numerous articles and lectures nationally on health literacy. He is coauthor of the textbook Health Literacy in Primary Care: A Clinician’s Guide and the easy-to-read, self-help book What to Do When Your Child Is Heavy. He is an adjunct faculty member at Brandman University, where he teaches a health literacy course for the master of science in health risk and crisis communication program.
Villaire’s background includes 20 years as an editor in health care publishing, including peer-reviewed journals in nursing, hospital publications, physician news magazines, and an online health care portal experiment. He has helped redesign and launch several medical and nursing journals, and managed the development of a multimedia, interactive curriculum in critical care. He earned his baccalaureate degrees in English and communications from Western Michigan University. He earned his M.S. in organizational leadership and management from the University of La Verne in California. His thesis examined health literacy in community clinics in regard to adequacy of patient education materials.