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triangle global health Career day

FEBRUARY 16, 2018


AND speakers 


Smisha Agarwal

Smisha Agarwal is an Associate at the Population Council where she leads a 7-country initiative to strengthen evidence on community health worker programs. Prior to this she worked at the WHO where she led the development of a number of Cochrane Reviews to support WHO guidelines on mobile/digital health investments and served on the WHO's mHealth technical and evidence review group. As an Associate Faculty at Johns Hopkins Global mHealth Initiative, Smisha provided technical support in M&E to a number of digital health programs including MAMA in Bangladesh, cStock in Malawi, and MomConnect in South Africa, and led the development of WHO’s M&E Workbook for digital health. Smisha completed her MPH and MBA from Johns Hopkins in 2009 and then moved back home to India where she worked in the primary health care and rural development sector and co-founded a non-profit that focused on digitizing community maternal health data in real time in rural Maharashtra. During her doctoral work in maternal and child health and epidemiology at University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, Smisha supported research and data analyses for a number of national-level impact evaluations led by MEASURE Evaluation.

Linda S. Birnbaum

Linda S. Birnbaum, Ph.D., D.A.B.T., A.T.S., became the Director of the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS), one of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), and the National Toxicology Program (NTP) on January 18, 2009. In these roles Birnbaum oversees federal funding for biomedical research to discover how the environment influences human health and disease. Birnbaum is the first toxicologist and the first woman to lead the NIEHS/NTP. She has spent most of her career as a federal scientist. Birnbaum has received numerous awards and recognitions, including being elected to the Institute of Medicine of the National Academies, in October 2010, one of the highest honors in the fields of medicine and health.

Phaedra Boinodiris

Phaedra Boinodiris is a member of IBM’s Academy of Technology where effectively she is an INTRA-preneur, kicking off internal startups that range from IBM’s first Serious Games and Advanced Simulation program to IBM’s first K-12 program- influencing curriculum in traditional and non-traditional learning spaces through entrepreneurship and social impact. She is keenly and wholeheartedly invested in Tech for Good and Ethics. As a member of IBM’s Blockchain team she is responsible for strategy and engagement. Boinodiris happily mentors startups around the world as well as business school students at her alma-mater UNC-Chapel Hill where she is an active Adam’s Coach. She is also the author of Serious Games for Business, published in 2014 by Megan-Kiffer press. Boinodiris' earlier work in serious games are being used in over 1000 schools worldwide to teach students the fundamentals of business optimization. Boinodiris was honored by Women in Games International as one of the top 100 women in the games industry. Prior to working at IBM, she was a serial entrepreneur for 14 years where she co-founded WomenGamers.Com, a popular women’s gaming portal. There she subsequently started the first scholarship for women to pursue degrees in game design and development in the US.

Katelyn Bryant-Comstock

Katelyn Bryant-Comstock is a passionate sexual and reproductive health researcher and advocate who specializes in quality of care and adolescent health. She is currently the program manager for the Center for Global Reproductive Health at the Duke Global Health Institute. Through the Center for Global Reproductive Health, Katelyn is bringing an increased focus to current DGHI work on reproductive health in East Africa, and developing partnerships with local researchers to increase research capacity on the most urgent reproductive health needs in the region. Prior to joining DGHI, Katelyn was a research associate at PAI, an international advocacy and research organization in Washington, D.C. She received her master's degree in public health with a concentration in maternal and child health from the Gillings School of Global Public Health at UNC-CH.

Julie Casani

Dr. Julie Casani is the Director and Medical Director of Student Health Services at NC State University where she oversees the delivery of primary care, women’s services, physical therapy, nutrition services and pharmacy to students, faculty and staff. She is an Adjunct Associate Professor in Biological Sciences where she instructs in Global Public Health, Agriculture Security and One Health and mentors pre-health students. Until June of 2017, she was the Director of Public Health Preparedness and Response in the North Carolina Division of Public Health. This Branch coordinates the preparedness system for 85 Local Health Departments and 4 regional offices and provides response/recovery coordination, subject expertise and support to the Local Health Departments. From 1999-2006, she was the Preparedness Director at the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene. She has been a policy and health practice consultant to several national workshops and committees in Weapons of Mass Destruction for Federal and State agencies, serving on 3 Defense Science Boards.  She also served three consecutive terms as a member of the Homeland Security Science and Technology Advisory Committee for DHS. She recently co-authored the text: Disasters and Public Health: Planning and Response. Dr. Casani practiced clinical Emergency Medicine in the Johns Hopkins system for 17 years. She has been actively involved in Emergency Medical Services since the 1970’s serving at every level from ambulance provider to an appointed member of the Maryland State EMS Board. Dr. Casani received her Medical Degree from New York University School of Medicine and her Masters in Public Health from Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.

Terry Conlon

Terry Conlon successfully coaches people leading startups and people needing to change directions in their careers. He does this by drawing on his leadership experiences in manufacturing, technology, coaching and consulting, including his own consulting and coaching firm. He has excelled throughout his career as a mentor/coach, leader, strategy planner/implementer, financial and operations executive, and a highly effective people change leader at Nortel Networks, Siemens, and Vishay InterTechnology. He is currently associated with several entrepreneurial incubator/accelerators like EntreDot, A Million Cups of Coffee and BunkerLabs, all of which are located at The Frontier. His experience, enthusiasm and talent for helping people and teams successfully navigate major changes in their lives enables him to help his clients achieve extraordinary results. He does this in both group and one on one coaching.

Denali Dahl

Denali is the CEO and Co-Founder of MoyoMedical Technologies, a biotech startup dedicated to developing women's healthcare technologies for use in low-resource settings. She is a first year PhD student in Biomedical Engineering at UNC Chapel Hill, received her M.S. in Global Health from Duke University, and B.S. in Nanoengineering from UC San Diego. She is passionate about applying nanomedical techniques to address global health challenges. 

Gabriele Gardenal

Gabriele has ten years of experience as a manager in the development and humanitarian sector. His studies focus on health systems, policy evaluation and leadership and current interests include health sector reform, peace and conflict management. Gabriele just finished a 10-year journey where his passion for the work and people took him to four continents and five countries - Colombia, Uganda, India, Bolivia, Democratic Republic of Congo - holding management positions. As an economist, Gabriele has managed projects and organizations delivering health care and households livelihoods programs; in particular, he has focused on unconditional cash transfer and livelihood programs, health care access and impact evaluations.

Diego Garza

Diego Garza, MD, MPH., is a Mexican Primary Care Physician and a committed public health practitioner. His focus over the last seven years has been on Telehealth and the idea of increasing access to healthcare services to vulnerable populations through technology. He has experience in developing and implementing telehealth programs in Mexico and the US. He is currently leading the biggest telepsychiatry program in the state of North Carolina, acting as the Director of Telehealth for Carolina Partners in Mental HealthCare. Dr. Garza is also an adjunct professor at the Leadership Program of Gillings School of Global Public Health at the University of North Carolina. 

Virginia Guidry

Virginia T. Guidry, Ph.D., M.P.H. is a communications specialist in the Office of Communications and Public Liaison at the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS). She earned her graduate degrees at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, including a master’s in maternal and child health, and a Ph.D. in epidemiology. She began her science communication training as a postdoc, when she completed a Science Communication Fellowship with Environmental Health News. She now provides communications support to multiple NIEHS divisions, including the National Toxicology Program and the Division of Extramural Research and Training. She believes strongly in helping the public understand environmental health sciences, and helping scientists communicate clearly about their work.

Jennifer Kaindi

Jennifer Kaindi has more than ten years of international recruitment experience specializing in the global health and international development professions. As the Lead for recruitment with the Global Health Fellows Program II (GHFP-II), she has experience working with both non-profits and for profit government contractors within the international development space. In her current role, she is responsible for overseeing the recruitment of diverse global health professionals who are placed within USAID in support of the agency’s current and future health programs. She has served in this role for close to 5 years. Prior to this role, she served as the Senior Recruitment Associate at Danya International where she was responsible for the recruitment of executive, professional and administrative roles in a wide variety of fields including global health both in the US and in Africa for over 5.5 years. Jennifer received her MBA from Morgan State University, Maryland and her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from Lincoln University, Pennsylvania.

Rebecca Kohler

As IntraHealth International’s Senior Vice President of Corporate Strategy and Development, Rebecca Kohler guides the organization toward its vision of a healthier global population by creating stronger health systems around the world. Kohler works to expand IntraHealth’s portfolio of programs, funders, and partnerships, and leads IntraHealth’s many engagements with the community of global health and development professionals and organizations around the world that share our values and goals. As head of the corporate strategy and development division, Kohler oversees functions such as program development, communications, advocacy, fundraising, private-sector partnerships, and business strategy. Her experience spans more than 20 countries across several continents, including long-term assignments in Armenia, Eritrea, Kenya, and Tanzania. She holds a MPH from the UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health and a BS from Duke University.

Manish Kumar

Manish Kumar, MPH, MS is a public health professional with more than 15 years of global experience as program manager, technical adviser, researcher and project leader. He specializes in health systems strengthening, global digital health, health information systems, and health informatics projects and programs. Kumar is Senior Technical Specialist for Health Systems Strengthening at MEASURE Evaluation project where he leads HIS implementation and research activities and collaborates with international organizations including the World Health Organization. He is also an adjunct assistant professor in the Public Health Leadership Program of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. 

Andrea Liebmann-Vinson

Andrea Liebmann-Vinson is the Senior Director of Global Health Technologies and she has a strong background and interest in advancing early stage technologies through technology development and commercialization. As the Director of the Advanced Diagnostics group at BDT, she has experience with developing technologies, such as nanotechnologies, for in vitro diagnostics applications for both Developed and Developing Markets. In particular, Andrea has been working closely with BD’s Global Health Initiative on the development of better TB diagnostics. She also led the technology development effort for BD’s Point-of-Care immunoassay platform that was launched as the BD Veritor™ System. Andrea joined BDT in 1995 as a scientist working on projects related to Polymer Processing, such as polymer structure-property relationships and friction and lubrication of syringes. Andrea has a MS and PhD in Physics from the Technical University of Darmstadt, Germany. Before joining BDT, she spent two years at the University of Akron as a Postdoctoral Fellow.

Maddy Marasciulo

Maddy is a certified clinical nurse specialist in HIV/AIDS and infectious disease with a graduate degree in global health training and health worker performance improvement.  In her current role as the Global Case Management Specialist for the UK based NGO, Malaria Consortium, Maddy provides technical assistance to country programmes in Africa and Asia on prevention, diagnosis and treatment of malaria, pneumonia, diarrhoea, and malnutrition.  She is also a technical advisor for the design and evaluation of competency-based training and supervision tools aimed at improving the quality health service delivery. Maddy also serves the U.S. Business Representative for Malaria Consortium, responsible for managing strategic business relationships with U.S. donors and global health partners. Prior to joining Malaria Consortium, Maddy worked on global health and clinical research projects for USAID, FHI360, and IPM. Her private sector experience includes GlaxoSmithKline in the HIV and Care Management Divisions and as VP of Development for CorSolutions (now Alere). A graduate of Georgetown University Nursing School, Maddy began her nursing career at NIH in Bethesda, Maryland and received the prestigious award of NIH Nurse-of-the-Year, and later Nurse-of-the-Year for the state of Maryland.  Maddy also served for three years as the U.S. Peace Corps Medical Officer in Guatemala. Maddy was born in Bolivia and grew up in several countries in Central America.  She has travelled to over 55 countries, and lived and worked in Latin America, Africa, and Asia.  She currently resides in Raleigh, North Carolina.

Sarah Martin

Sarah manages graduate admissions for the Duke Master of Science in Global Health program, as well as two opportunities for doctoral-level students at Duke University. She also helps DGHI develop new programs and respond to opportunities to enhance existing global health educational programming at Duke. A Durham-native, Sarah returned to North Carolina after many years living in colder climates. She holds a M.Ed. in Higher Education and Student Affairs Administration from the University of Vermont, and before coming to DGHI, served as the Director of University Relations at World Learning/SIT Study Abroad.

Cynthia Meurling

Ms. Meurling is Ipas’s Director of Global Award Management, responsible for creating and strengthening contractual, financial, and program management capacity. She has 15 years of international management, operations, and safety/security experience gained through professional, study, and travel experience in 50 countries. Prior to joining Ipas, Ms. Meurling worked at IntraHealth International and Family Care International (now a program of Management Sciences for Health), served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Gabon, and was a graduate intern with UNFPA in Vietnam. Ms. Meurling has a B.A. from Tufts University and a Master of Public Administration in International Management from the Middlebury Institute of International Studies.

Barbara Muffoletto

Barbara Muffoletto is a Program & Operations Manager at Curamericas Global, an organization that partners with underserved communities to end preventable maternal and child death by providing health services and education. Barbara works across international and domestic programs with a focus on monitoring and evaluation, program development and financial management. Before joining Curamericas Global in 2013, Barbara worked for Rise Against Hunger (formally Stop Hunger Now), International Focus, AmeriCorps VISTA, and a literacy organization in El Salvador called Contextos. Barbara holds an MPH from UNC Gillings School of Global Health, a B.A from UNC Asheville, a certificate in Nonprofit Management from Duke University.  

Edna Ogwangi

Edna Ogwangi is the Chief Impact Officer for Rise Against Hunger (formerly known as Stop Hunger Now). She leads Rise Against Hunger’s organization’s strategic efforts in advancing food security, humanitarian relief response and resilience efforts. Ogwangi also spearheads initiatives pertaining to measuring effectiveness, impact and sustainability of all Rise Against Hunger programs globally. Ogwangi has worked in the international development field for more than 20 years with in depth experience in areas of economic development, food and nutrition security and non-profit management. Over the course of her career, Ogwangi has managed and/or supported several US Federal Government-United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) programs in more than 30 countries. Her passion is to alleviate hunger and create spaces among underprivileged and vulnerable populations and empower communities to thrive.

David L. Piet

David, through his work with USAID and NGO organizations, has over 40 years of international public health experience working in Southeast/South Asia, Africa, the Middle East and Europe.  He has extensive experience in providing technical assistance and managing international assistance for in public health in numerous countries. He has first-hand experience in cross-cultural negotiation, strategic planning, and policy and program development and implementation with senior government officials, donor representatives, and directors/staff of non-governmental organizations. David holds degrees from Hope College (B.A.), Michigan State University (M.A.) and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (MPH).  He has authored /co-authored book chapters; country program evaluations; print and audio-visual communications materials for Indonesia’s family planning program; and contributed to numerous USAID-related strategies, programs and documents.

Nancy J. Piet-Pelon

Nancy has been engaged in family planning and reproductive health work for more than 40 years working with national and local governments, NGOs, and private sector organizations in South-east Asia, South Asia and southern Africa. Her activities have been diverse – at national level on policy to community activities for MCH. Her experience includes being Regional Director of a program in Asia which implemented projects in 7 countries. She has been employed by international technical assistance organizations, USAID contractors, UNFPA, the Asian Development Bank and many others.

Marta Pirzadeh

Marta Pirzadeh, MPH, has over 15 years of experience in the public health field with a primary focus on youth; maternal and infant health; HIV prevention; and sexual and reproductive health programming. Marta earned her MPH in Health Behavior and Health Education from the UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health. She is a Senior Technical Officer within the Research Utilization unit of the department of Global Health, Population and Nutrition at FHI 360. Her primary responsibilities include synthesizing and disseminating evidence; knowledge management activities; developing and promoting evidence-based programs; and providing technical assistance to field activities. She has been a key leader in the planning of several global technical meetings, with a focus on HIV prevention and family planning.

Mark Smith

Mark Smith comes to IntraHealth via an IBM Fellows Program. Mark is an IT Architect on a quest: uniting his long-term interest in Tech-for-Good and belief in adequate health care for all. Mark started his career as a Biomedical Engineer at Duke University Hospitals then moved to BD Research Labs. After undergraduate and graduate school in Electrical Engineering at Duke University, Virginia Tech, and Cornell University, he held Engineer & Architect positions for 30+ years, mainly at IBM. Mark teaches courses and manages online communities for the Architect profession, the Maker movement, Tech-for-Good movements, and Amateur Radio (call sign W4CHL).

Andy Stringer

Dr. Andy Stringer has a veterinary degree from the University of Liverpool and a PhD from the same institution focused on evaluating the efficacy of knowledge-transfer interventions for communicating animal health messages to rural farmers in Ethiopia. Dr. Stringer has worked for a non-governmental organization as Director of Veterinary Programs, where he was responsible for managing the organization’s global veterinary programs. Dr. Stringer is now Director of Global Health Education and Clinical Assistant Professor in the College of Veterinary Medicine, NC State. Dr. Stringer also holds a position as an Honorary Lecturer in International Animal Health at the Institute of Infection and Global Health, University of Liverpool.

Andy Taylor

Andy Taylor graduated from NC State University in 2015 with a B.S. in Biomedical Engineering. While there he helped develop a novel platform for osteochondral tissue regeneration utilizing 3D printed, electrospun, and biologic materials. He also worked with a global health design team to develop, build, an deliver the BiliSol. Since graduating, Andy has co-founded The Medical Innovators Collaborative (MEDIC) where he works with clinical innovators and student interns to turn novel medical device concepts into a reality. He is currently the acting President of MEDIC.

Katherine L. Turner

Katherine L. Turner, MPH is Founder and President of Global Citizen, LLC, an international health, human rights, global competence and organizational and leadership development consulting firm, and Adjunct Faculty at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill Gillings School of Global Public Health. She has over 25 years of experience as an organizational and community thought leader, senior global health advisor, public speaker, educator, author and change agent in more than 50 countries spanning five continents. Katherine consults and presents in English and French on women’s and LGBTQ+ health and rights; diversity, equity and inclusion; global cultural competence; organizational transformation; health systems strengthening; evidence-based and sustainable public health program design and implementation; strategic planning and partnerships; business development and resource mobilization; advocacy; values clarification; effective training and curriculum design and ethical global engagement.


Connect with Katherine and Global Citizen, LLC for a better world on LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook.

Heather Vahdat

Heather Vahdat, MPH, is the Associate Director of the Contraceptive Technology Innovation Department at FHI 360. Dedicated to applying novel approaches to improve reproductive health outcomes, she particularly enjoys collaborating and learning across disciplines. She has spent a large portion of her career working on new contraceptive product development, in the pre-clinical and early clinical research stages and on regulatory innovations. With a focus on the use of new technologies and human centered design for product development, Heather is the co-developer of the Mobile 4 Reproductive Health (m4RH) SMS-based application and the lead for a series of international ideation events focusing on contraceptive technology.

Anne Katharine Wales

Anne Katharine Wales serves as the Senior Philanthropy Portfolio Lead at the Medtronic Foundation. She brings a passion for social entrepreneurship and healthcare innovation and enjoys developing and executing a high-impact strategic vision. Throughout her career, she’s been involved in the social entrepreneurship/innovation space-marketing and raising impact capital at Calvert Foundation and Agora Partnerships, providing strategic consulting to entrepreneurs and foundations at Community Wealth Partners and UNC Health Care, and building the social entrepreneurship ecosystem through work at the Council for Entrepreneurial Development and Innovations in Healthcare. Anne Katharine holds an MBA from Wake Forest University and a BA in public policy from Duke University.

Holly Watkins

Holly Watkins, MPH has many years of experience in program development, building program capacity, community engagement and health policy. She currently works for The Arc of North Carolina as the Public Relations Manager. In her role, she focuses on advocacy, communications, and public relations. Her career in public health includes developing and managing a statewide public health campaign “Get Real Get Tested Get Treatment”, participating on the state response teams for Ebola and Zika virus, opioid abuse and hepatitis C. She has been a public health advocate and spokesperson on both state and national levels. 

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