Dear Members of the Harvard Chan School Community,
I’m writing with the news that Aaron Bernstein, interim director at the Center for Climate, Health, and the Global Environment, will be taking a leave from his appointments at Harvard Chan School and Harvard Medical School to join the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and serve as the Director of the National Center for Environmental Health and the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry.
In this post, Ari will be the nation’s highest-ranking public health official focused on environmental health — a critical role for the U.S.
I am so proud of the work Harvard Chan C-CHANGE has done under Ari’s leadership to advance science, education, and outreach on climate actions that lead to a healthier, more just, and more sustainable world. He has spent decades researching and educating about the health effects of the climate crisis, especially for children, and has become a nationally recognized leader on climate change and health. At Harvard Chan School, he has been an instrumental player in developing research and educational opportunities for our students; for over a decade, he has taught a popular course on Human Health and Global Environmental Change. This course served as the basis of a HarvardX course that has reached more than 100,000 students in over 100 countries. Ari has also contributed to University-wide efforts on climate, including service on the University’s climate change task force that established our University-wide goal of being fossil fuel free by 2050.
Kari Nadeau, chair of the Department of Environmental Health, will serve as interim director of Harvard Chan C-CHANGE as we conduct a national search for a director.
Please join me in congratulating Ari and wishing him well at the CDC.
Michelle A. Williams, ScD
Dean of the Faculty, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health
Angelopoulos Professor in Public Health and International Development,
Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health and Harvard Kennedy School