Scholars by Year of Admission

The Lown Scholars Program supports the work of 86 senior and mid-career health professionals from 23 countries. Their public health work aims to address our three priority areas of cardiovascular health: universal primary healthcare and health inequities, cardiovascular health in urban poor, and psychosocial stress and cardiovascular disease. Our support has facilitated productive and long-term collaborations between Lown Scholars and Harvard faculty members.


Ariel Bardach    Argentina

Dr. Ariel Bardach

Dr. Ariel Bardach, MD MSc PhD, is a physician trained in internal medicine and an epidemiologist at the Institute for Clinical Effectiveness and Health Policy in Buenos Aires (IECS). He is also the Deputy Director of the Center for Research in Epidemiology and Public Health there. He is also faculty for various undergraduate and postgraduate programs at IECS, and the University of Buenos Aires. He served as a Consultant for the Ministry of Health in chronic diseases surveillance. His research interests include non-communicable disease epidemiology, evidence synthesis, and global health. His Lown Scholars proposal is entitled: “Equity and efficiency of interventions for non-communicable diseases: development and application of an extended cost-effectiveness model to estimate the impact of tobacco tax increases in Argentina” (Publications)




Dr. Andrea Beratarrechea

Andrea Beratarrechea     Argentina

Dr. Andrea Beratarrechea is an internist and Senior Researcher at the Institute of Clinical Effectiveness and Health Policy and at the National Research Council in Argentina. She holds a master in Clinical Effectiveness from the University of Buenos Aires. Her research includes the development, implementation, and evaluation of complex interventions to prevent and control NCDs in low resource settings in LMIC countries. She is currently leading two projects to study the effect of digital health for diabetes prevention and control. Her Lown Scholars proposal is entitled ” Use of eHealth strategies to strengthen the implementation of a medication Adherence Program for persons with type 2 diabetes in public primary care clinics in Argentina: A Feasibility Study”. (Publications)



Priti Gupta    India

Dr. Priti Gupta

Dr. Priti Gupta is a senior research associate at the Centre for Chronic Disease Control in New Delhi. She is currently working in a NIH-funded implementation science study designed to develop an Integrated Tracking, Referral, Electronic Decision Support and Care Coordination (I-TREC) package focused on hypertension and diabetes management in India. She was awarded a VECD consortium post-doctoral Fogarty fellowship in 2018-2019.  She also has experience in implementation and management of a National Health Program at primary and secondary care levels. Her professional areas of interest include CVD, implementation science research, multi-morbidity, diabetes, and mHealth. Her Lown Scholar project proposal is entitled: “Development and Evaluation of a multicomponent salt reduction intervention in schools. (Publications)



Kamran Iqbal   Pakistan

Dr. Kamran Iqbal is currently working with World Bank for

Dr. Kamran Iqbal

Public Private Partnerships in Healthcare. He also serves as a senior medical expert and core team member of the Infection Prevention Control Taskforce of the Sindh Healthcare Commission, Founder, Pakistan Digital Health Initiative, also Founder Curator of Global Shapers Hub, Karachi, an initiative of World Economic Forum. Having served in senior leadership roles in key healthcare organizations of Pakistan, Dr. Kamran’s focus areas include strategic program development, management in healthcare delivery systems, integration of primary healthcare, health promotion/disease prevention in communicable and non-communicable diseases, social innovation, and enterprise development. His research interest is innovation in healthcare. His Lown Scholar project proposal is: Social behavioral change in cardiovascular disease prevention and treatment adherence through personalized gamification”


Maryam Kabootari    Iran

Dr. Maryam Kabootari

Dr. Maryam Kabootari is an assistant professor at Golestan University of Medical Sciences in Gorgan. She also serves as a clinical researcher at the Metabolic Disorders Research Center, Research Institute for Endocrine Sciences (RIES), at Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Science in Tehran.  She specializes in endocrinology and metabolism and has worked on a population-based cohort called Tehran Lipid and Glucose Study (TLGS) in the prevention of metabolic disorders  Her Lown Scholar project proposal is entitled: “Age at diagnosis of prediabetes and risk of cardiovascular disease: Comparing results from Iranian and US cohort studies” (Publications)





Ms. Garima Kapila

Garima Gupta Kapila       India

Ms. Garima Gupta Kapila is the Founder of the Swasth Yog Institute in Mumbai, an initiative of the Swasth Foundation. Their mission is to create a health ecosystem which enables a state of internal harmony, thus, enabling a state of physical, mental, social and spiritual well-being. The Institute is creating a new cadre of wellbeing professionals, and demonstrating models for integrated care delivery. An engineer by education, she is certified in various areas of yoga therapy, nutrition, and life coaching, and is currently pursuing an MS in Yoga and studying Integral Somatic Psychology. Her Lown Scholar project proposal is entitled: “A Randomized Trial to test the Efficacy of Integrated Care for Hypertension Management.”



Mahdi Mahdavi      Iran

Dr. Mahdi Mahdavi

Dr. Mahdi Mahdavi is an Assistant Professor of Health Policy at the National Institute for Health Research at Tehran University of Medical Sciences. From 2009-2012, he worked in the ‘Managed Outcomes’ research consortium, which was funded by the European Commission under the 7th Framework Programme to develop European best-practice regional healthcare delivery networks. His professional areas of interest include universal health coverage of diabetes and hypertension, best-practice healthcare delivery models, health policymaking, operational benchmarking, and patient experience. His research has been sponsored by various organizations including the Iranian Ministry of Health and the Iranian Social Security Organization. The title of his Lown Scholar project proposal is: “Feasibility and Economic Impact of Intensive Blood Pressure Control to Enhance the Universal Health Coverage of Hypertension in Iran.” (Publications)



Jaideep Menon      India

Dr. Jaideep Menon

Dr. Jaideep Menon is the head of Preventive Cardiology & Public Health (Cardiology) Amrita Institute of Medical Sciences, Kochi, Kerala. A practicing cardiologist for over 20 years, Dr. Menon has shifted his professional focus toward prevention and community health. He is also the Principal Invesitigator in the project “ENDIRA, Epidemiology of Non-communicable Diseases in Rural Areas, the largest single door to door survey for non-communicable diseases in India. This project has now been taken up by the state National Rural Health Mission as a pilot project targeting lifestyle change as a means to combat non-communicable diseases. His Lown Scholar project proposal in entitled: “Improving adherence to medications among patients with cardiovascular disease through m-health and help of non-physician health workers.” (Publications)



Isabel Pereyra Gonzalez     Uruguay

Dr. Isabel Pereyra

Dr. Isabel Pereyra Gonzalez is an Associate Professor in the Department of Nutrition at the Universidad Católica del Uruguay. She holds a Master in Nutrition and Public Health from Universidad Católica del Uruguay and a degree in Nutrition and Dietetics from Universidad de la República, Uruguay. Currently she is a PhD candidate at Universidad de Chile. She has been involved in projects regarding childhood health with various organizations including UNICEF, UNDP, and the Uruguay Ministries of Public Health and Social Development. Her other research activities have also focused on nutritional status, food habits and non-communicable diseases. Her Lown Scholar project proposal is entitled: “Effectiveness of a worksite intervention to reduce cardiovascular risk in workers: the Inpeca (interventions to prevent cardiovascular disease) study.”(Publications)


Dr. Pranil Pradhan


Pranil Pradhan      Nepal

Dr. Pranil Man Singh Pradhan is an Assistant Professor of Community Medicine at the Institute of Medicine, Tribhuvan University, in Kathmandu. His research interests lie primarily in non-communicable diseases and tobacco use, nutrition, and occupational health. He has also collaborated in projects exploring social determinants of tobacco use and its policy implications. Recently in 2019, Dr. Pradhan was awarded the Mrigendra Samjhana Medical Trust Young Health Researcher Award at the Fifth National Summit of Health and Population Scientists organized by the Nepal Health Research Council. His Lown Scholar project proposal is entitled: “Tobacco Control Law Compliance among Local Vendors around Educational and Health Institutions in Kathmandu, Nepal.” (Publications)



Chitra Venkateswaran       India

Dr. Chitra Venkateswaran


Dr. Chitra Venkateswaran is an associate professor in Psychiatry and Palliative Care at Believers Church Medical College Hospital in Kerala. She is also the Clinical Director of the Mehac Foundation in Kochi, a non-profit based on a palliative care model, which strives to deliver exceptional care to improve the quality of life of people with mental illnesses in the community. Dr. Venkateswaran’s focus is to strengthen the perspective on chronic mental health and palliative care within NCD programs. She received a grant from the Indian Council of Medical Research for a five-year project, looking at models of long-term care for chronic mental health across India in four rural settings. Her Lown Scholar project proposal is entitled: “Assessment the prevalence of psychosocial distress (depression, anxiety and stress) in persons with cardiovascular disease in an urban and rural setting in Kerala.” (Publications)



Indah Suci Widyahening       Indonesia

Dr. Indah Widyahening

Dr. Indah Widyahening is an associate professor in the Department of Community Medicine at the Faculty of Medicine Universitas Indonesia (FMUI). She also holds a position as research manager in the Southeast Asian Ministers of Education Regional Center for Food and Nutrition (SEAMEO RECFON). She completed her education as a family medicine and primary care physician specialist and a PhD in epidemiology. Dr. Widyahening has won multiple awards for her research at FMUI, which focuses heavily on primary care delivery and Diabetes. She is working in various nation-wide research and community development projects, including consulting for the Indonesian Ministry of Health in primary health care strengthening and control of non-communicable diseases. Her Lown Scholar project proposal is entitled: “The effectiveness of school-based nutrition intervention in the achievement of healthy eating behaviour among primary school children in Indonesia.” (Publications)



Pilly Chillo     Tanzania

Dr. Chillo is a cardiologist and Senior Lecturer in the Department of Internal Medicine at the Muhimbili University of Health and Allied Sciences. At MUHAS she aims to raise awareness about CVDs as a public health concern among the doctors she trains. She was recently recognized as the International Society of Hypertension’s New Investigator of the Month. Her Lown Scholars proposal is entitled: “Feasibility, Acceptability and Effectiveness of a School based Rheumatic Heart Disease (RHD) control program in high risk communities in Tanzania.” (Publications)


Juan Pablo González-Rivas     Venezuela

Dr. González-Rivas is a fulltime researcher in the Foundation for Clinical, Public Health, and Epidemiological Research in Venezuela (FISPEVEN). González-Rivas has been part of the two largest cross-sectional studies assessing the prevalence of cardiometabolic risk factors and behaviors in Venezuela, including the EVESCAM study (, and is coordinating an academic project to educate more than 200 novice researchers ( His project aims to prevent cardiovascular disease, translating an evidence-based intervention to primary care settings. (Publications)


Sundeep Kapila     India

Sundeep Kapila is co-founder and CEO of Swasth Foundation (, a not-for-profit social enterprise committed to Health and Joy for All. Sundeep has worked as a Management Consultant with McKinsey & Company for 7 years, where he specialized in the Healthcare and Development sectors. In 2008, he left McKinsey to setup Swasth with the mission of building a sustainable and accountable health eco-system for the low income people in India. Sundeep graduated with a B.Tech in Computer Science from IIT Bombay in 2001. Post that, he has undergone different programs to gain domain knowledge that is required to build a a health eco-system. He has completed a Diploma of Associateship in Insurance, 2 years of Law Studies, M.D. in Alternative Medicine, a Yoga Instructor Certificate and is a Certified Professional Coach from the International Coaching Federation. In 2019, Sundeep was selected for a Fellowship to the Skoll World Forum on Social Entrepreneurship.His proposal for the Lown Scholars Program is to conduct an individually randomized controlled trial to test efficacy of a Yoga based intervention for hypertension management. The project is called “Sanjeevani”, which literally translates to “Right Living”, and is centered around an 8 week course for hypertension patients to enable “Right Living” through a combination of “Right Activity”, “Right Food” and “Right Thought”


Paula Margozzini     Chile

Dr. Paula Margozzini is Assistant Professor of Public Health and Epidemiology at Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile and Director of the National Health Survey. She also works as a clinician in adult family medicine. Her research has focused mainly on chronic disease prevention and surveillance. She is an advisor and consultant for the Chilean Ministry of Health and National Alcohol and Drug Prevention Agency. Her proposal for the Lown Scholars Program is entitled: “The Determinants of Effective Health Coverage in High Cardiovascular Risk Populations in Chile: Analysis of National Health Surveys, ENS 2003, 2010 and 2017.” (Publications)


Sairu Philip     India

Dr. Sairu Philip is Professor & Head of Community Medicine at Government T.D. Medical College in Kerala, India. She has an MD in Community Medicine, MPhil in Clinical Epidemiology, and PG Certificate in Health and Family Welfare Management. She has been the recipient of many distinguished awards- the Rehna award for women for outstanding social service (2006), Kerala Government Best Doctor award in Medical Education (2010), Kerala Social Justice Department Vanitharatnam (2016) and Kairali People TV Best Doctor award in Government sector (2017). She has successfully completed FAIMER Fellow, ASCEND Fellow and the WHO SORT IT model National Operation Research Course. Innovations in Medical Education include mainstreaming Brief Intervention Skills for Tobacco Cessation Counseling in undergraduate curriculum and sustaining the student volunteered community based home care for bedridden patients. Along with a Local Self Government, she has initiated many community based public health projects, such as blood pressure screening community clinics (2002), self-help groups for filarial lymphedema patients for morbidity management (2006), and palliative care (2007) in her district. Around 1500 volunteers in four Local Self Governments are regularly trained by her for gender sensitive, family level interventions for cardiovascular health. (Publications)


Sudha Ramalingam     India

Dr. Sudha Ramalingam is a Professor in Community Medicine and Director, Research & Innovation  and Co-Director of the PSG FAIMER Regional Institute at PSG Institute of Medical Sciences and Research, Coimbatore, India. She holds an MD in Community Medicine and has completed two postdoctoral fellowships at Stanford University and University of Chicago in Genetics and Genetic Epidemiology, respectively. She was a Fulbright visiting scientist at the Harvard School of Public Health where she worked on Environmental Epigenetics. She has also completed her FAIMER fellowship in Medical Education and was a recipient of the International Fellowship in Medical Education to pursue her Masters in Health Professions Education in 2017. She is in charge of the rural health training center which provides primary care to more than 25,000 population. She also conceptualized and implemented the Non-Communicable Diseases clinic (NCD) in the rural center, providing comprehensive approach in NCD management including yoga and stress management that is well received by the community. She is working on several funded projects by national and international agencies. Her main area of research interest is the role of environmental toxins in cardiovascular disease and diabetes mellitus. (Publications)


Jacques Sebisaho     Democratic Republic of Congo

Dr. Jacques Sebisaho is from Idjwi Island in Lake Kivu between the Democratic Republic of Congo and Rwanda. He is the founder and executive director of Amani Global Works, an organization that is developing, implementing and managing a primary healthcare model, combining Community Health Workers, Health Clinics and Referral Hospital as one unit, to improve the health delivery, quality and decrease child and maternal mortality in the Great Lakes Region of Africa, with Idjwi Island as a model. Sebisaho holds a Medical Degree from the National University of Rwanda, an Executive Degree in Non-Profit Leadership from Stanford University Business School, a Master Degree in Public Administration from Baruch College, a Bachelor’s degree in Biomedical Science from Catholic University of Bukavu (D.R. Congo) and a diploma in Philosophy from Grand Séminaire Monseigneur Busimba in Goma (D.R. Congo). He has been recipient of the Richard C. Holbrook Leadership Award from Refugee International, the Rising Star Award from Segal Family Foundation, a Visionary Making an Impact on Global Health Award from Afya Foundation, and a Pharmacy Team Excellence Award from New York Presbyterian/Columbia University Medical Center. He is an Aspen Institute New Voices Fellow (Aspen Institute) and a Rainer Arnhold Fellow (Mulago Foundation).


Natasha Sobers     Barbados

Dr. Natasha Sobers is a Lecturer in Epidemiology and Head of Surveillance at the George Alleyne Chronic Disease Research Center, University of the West Indies in Barbados. She has a Bachelor’s Degree in Medicine and is a former Fulbright Scholar with a Masters of Public Health from the University of South Florida. Natasha obtained a Postgraduate Diploma in Epidemiology from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (LSHTM) and a Doctor of Philosophy in Public Health from the University of the West Indies. Natasha is interested in the social determinants of cardiovascular diseases and cancers. She won the Caribbean Public Health Agency’s David Picou Researcher Prize in 2018 for her work examining disparities in coronary heart disease and stroke mortality trends in the Caribbean. She was co-investigator on a National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities funded study to describe existing health inequities in diabetes, hypertension, breast and prostate cancer in the Caribbean. (Publications)


Bruce Twinamasiko     Uganda

Dr. Bruce Twinamasiko is an Internal Medicine trained Physician at Kisiizi hospital in rural South Western Uganda. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Medicine from Mbarara University of Science and Technology (MUST), Advanced Diploma in Tropical Medicine from London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, and a Master’s degree in Internal Medicine from MUST, Uganda. Bruce has taken a lead role in providing quality clinical services at Kisiizi hospital, a facility with a catchment area of 8 million people, most of who receive health care through a community health insurance scheme. He leads the NCD clinics i.e., cardiac, hypertension, diabetes, and respiratory clinics at the hospital. He is an advocate for provision of high-quality clinical care at affordable costs to control the NCD burden. He is interested in investigating options for optimal blood pressure control and options for integration of non-communicable disease control in low cost community initiative such as the Kisiizi community health insurance scheme. (Publications)


Abhinav Vaidya     Nepal

Dr. Vaidya is Professor of Community Medicine at Kathmandu Medical College under Kathmandu University. He holds bachelor’s degree in medicine from Bangladesh, MD in Community Medicine from Nepal, and PhD in Medical Sciences from Sweden.  With a career objective of contributing towards NCD control and prevention in Nepal, he has been involved in NCD-related research, academics, policy-development, projects, advocacy, and health promotion. He was actively involved in formulation of Nepal’s Multisectoral action plan on prevention and control of NCDs. He is an active member of Nepal Hypertension Society and Nepal NCD Alliance. He is also functioning as a National Commissioner for Lancet-commissioned NCDI Poverty Commission. Currently, he is a co-investigator in a NIH-funded research on Translational Research Capacity Building Initiate to Address CVDs In Nepal. He has played key roles in development and implementation of three innovative and effective health promotional projects: the HARDIC trial that targets young mothers to improve diet and physical activity of their children; BISHES, a WHO-supported school intervention; and a pesticide-related project targeting farmers and health workers. (Publications)


Frederick Wekesah     Kenya

Mr. Frederick Murunga Wekesah is an Epidemiologist and Research Officer at the African Population and Health Research Center. Frederick holds a Master of Science degree in Medicine (Population-Based Field Epidemiology) from the University of the Witwatersrand, South Africa (2010) and is currently pursuing a doctoral training in Epidemiology at the Julius Center for Health Sciences and Primary Care, University Medical Center of Utrecht University, The Netherlands. His PhD thesis is on the ‘cardiovascular disease risk profile of the urban poor in the informal settlements of Nairobi’. Frederick’s research interests are generally in non-communicable disease epidemiology, and specifically in cardiovascular diseases among disadvantaged communities, including the urban poor. He is fascinated by the concept of developmental origins for health and disease (DOHaD), and has identified childhood obesity and hyperglycemia in pregnancy (GDM) as areas to focus on going forward in his career. Frederick is also keen in incorporating issues of adolescent health, not least their mental health, in the study of CVD. (Publications)



Eleonora d’Orsi      Brazil

Eleonora d’Orsi is Lecturer of Epidemiology at the Department of Public Health from Universidade Federal de Santa Catarina, South Brazil. She is the Principal Investigator of the Epifloripa Cohort Study of Aging ( in Florianópolis, South Brazil. She earned her M.D. and PhD in  Epidemiology and Public Health at Escola Nacional de Saúde Pública/Fundação Oswaldo Cruz (ENSP/FIOCRUZ), Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Dr. d’Orsi’s research field is epidemiology of aging, healthy aging, active aging, cognitive stimulation, and risk prediction of cardiovascular diseases. She has been awarded two grants from Conselho Nacional de Pesquisa (CNPq), Brazil.(Publications)


Ghada El-Hajj Fuleihan      Lebanon

Ghada El-Hajj Fuleihan, MD, MPH is Professor of Medicine, founding Director of the Calcium Metabolism and Osteoporosis Program and WHO Collaborating Center for Metabolic Bone Disorders, and founding director of  the Scholars in HeAlth Research Program (SHARP) at the American University of Beirut, Beirut, Lebanon. SHARP was established in 2012, with NIH funding, and offers a clinical research intensive summer certificate and a master of science degree in health research. Dr. El-Hajj Fuleihan obtained her MD degree from the American University of Beirut, Lebanon, and her Master in Public Health from the Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health. Her laboratory focuses on the pathophysiology, prevention, and treatment of hypovitaminosis D, osteoporosis, and other metabolic bone disorders by generating and translating evidence from epidemiologic and clinical studies into practice and public health strategies (Publications). She also focuses on noncommunicable diseases-the leading cause of mortality in the Middle East and worldwide-and has co-developed and launched a country-specific fracture risk calculator, and contributed to the development of national and international osteoporosis guidelines.


Farshad Farzadfar      Iran

Farshad Farzadfar earned his Medical Doctorate degree from Tehran University of Medical Sciences in 1994. He served as general practitioner in remote areas in Kurdistan province for two years, before becoming a manager in the primary healthcare system at district, provincial, and national levels. He also completed a  Master of Public Health from Tehran University of Medical Sciences in 2003. After being awarded the opportunity to study at Harvard School of Public Health, he graduated with a Master of Health Sciences and Doctor of Sciences in 2007 and 2011, respectively. Coming back to Iran, he has become the chair of Non-Communicable Diseases Research Center of Endocrinology and Metabolism Research Institute, Tehran University of Medical Sciences (NCDRC). National and Sub-National Burden of Diseases (NASBOD), STEPs survey 2016, Behvarz Health Study (BHS: a prospective observational study),IMPACT study (evaluating Metrofmin effects on CVDs events), and Telematics survey are major projects which Farshad has led or is leading at NCDRC. (Publications)


Shukri Mohamed      Kenya

Dr. Shukri Mohamed is a public health specialist at the African Population and Health Research Center with over 9 years’ experience in research, project planning and management, and has four years of clinical pharmacy practice experience. She attained a Masters in Public Health from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and a Doctor of Pharmacy Degree from the University Of Maryland School Of Pharmacy. She is currently pursuing her doctoral training at University of Warwick in the UK focussing on hypertension in sub-Saharan Africa.  Her areas of interest include non-communicable disease prevention and control with an emphasis on cardiovascular disease, health systems research and translating research to policy and action. Dr. Mohamed has served on a number of expert/technical working group such as the technical working group on non-communicable diseases prevention policies and the Kenya Cancer Research track group. Dr. Mohamed successfully coordinated the first ever peer-reviewed special issue from Kenya’s WHO STEPS (national NCD risk factor) data. (Publications)


Mithun Mohan      India

Dr. Mithun Abe Mohan heads the Swasth India Centre of Excellence at Swasth Foundation, Mumbai, India.  His work enables him to combine his clinical experience as a dentist and expertise in social education as a Teach for India fellow in building high-quality, sustainable, patient-centric medical practices that can be augmented through quantitative metrics. His interests include prevention of hypertension and diabetes, epidemiology of hypertension in the urban poor, disease reversal in hypertension and diabetes, and capacity building in primary physicians to enable them in treating chronic diseases.


Alfa Muhihi      Tanzania

Dr. Alfa Muhihi earned his Doctor of Medicine degree from Muhimbili University of Health and Allied Sciences (MUHAS) in 2008, and Masters of Public Health degree from Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public in 2011. He is currently a PhD candidate in the Department of Community Health at MUHAS and serves as a Clinical trials and regulatory affairs coordinator at Management and Development for Health (MDH) in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. His research focuses on community based approaches for prevention of cardiovascular disease risk factors. He is particularly interested in simple, culturally acceptable community-based methods for health education, such as screening for early identification and referral of community members at high risk for CVD. He is also planning to research individual and health system enablers and barriers to provision of Cardiovascular disease services among poor communities in Tanzania. (Publications)


Mohsin Ali Mustafa      Pakistan

Dr. Mustafa is co-founder of Clinic5. He graduated from the Aga Khan University and chose to pursue public health for the scale of impact that this field offers. In the past, he managed strategy for health ventures at the Aman Foundation. This position allowed him to engage at several levels of healthcare delivery within Pakistan, and during this time he developed a particular interest in sustainable, market-based health solutions. He is a 2015 Asia 21 Young Leader at the Asia Society and a regional fellow at the Acumen fellowship for social entrepreneurs. Dr. Mustafa dreams of a Pakistan where basic rights are afforded to all and is working towards that dream through his enterprise, Clinic5. He balances the love for his work with a passion for the outdoors & reading. (Publications)


Caleb Ochimana      Nigeria                                                               

Caleb Ochimana is the Founder and CEO of Ochimana Healthcare and Foundation which works towards improving access to quality and cost effective healthcare delivery in urban slums and rural communities in Nigeria. He has provided free medical care to over 3,000 people in rural communities in Nigeria. His mission is to add value to lives through healthcare, education, entrepreneurship and leadership development.  He is an alumnus of Harvard School of Public Health (MPH), Hult International Business School (MBA) and Ahmadu Bello University, Nigeria (B.PHARM). Caleb has over 8 years experience in the Nigeria healthcare industry and has keen interest in health system strengthening, primary healthcare, and pharmaceuticals. He hopes to place a pharmacy and health center in every community in Nigeria.


Abayomi Oluwasanu      Nigeria

Dr. Oluwasanu is a primary care physician and public health professional working at the University Health Service, University of Ibadan, Nigeria. He is the Pioneer Coordinator of the Workplace Wellness Programme, University of Ibadan. He obtained his medical degree, Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery (MBBS) and a Masters degree in Public Health (MPH, Community Health) from the University of Ibadan. He obtained a certificate in Work, Health, and Well-being: Frameworks, Evidence, and Applications at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health in 2017. His research interests focus on developing programs, policies and practices to influence work organization, and psychosocial environment for the prevention of cardiovascular and obesity-related diseases. (Publications)


Ricardo Peña Silva      Colombia

Dr. Peña is an Associate professor at the Medical School of the Universidad de los Andes in Bogotá. He received his PhD in Pharmacology from the University of Iowa, where he studied the impact of vasoactive peptides, oxidative stress and inflammation on cerebrovascular function and intracranial aneurysms. He is interested in aging, hypertension, cerebrovascular disease and medical education. Dr. Peña’s current research focuses on translational medicine and the impact of environmental factors, such as residence at high altitudes, in cardiovascular disease. He also plans to study the importance of addressing health literacy and the use of information technologies in the evaluation of cardiovascular healthcare outcomes. (Publications)


Rosana Poggio      Argentina

Dr. Poggio is a Cardiologist, Senior Researcher at the Institute for Clinical Effectiveness and Health Policy (IECS) and at the National Research Council (CONICET)​ ​of Argentina. She holds an MD, MSc in Clinical Epidemiology and a PhD in Health Sciences from the University of Buenos Aires. Her research is focused on cardiovascular disease prevention as well as health promotion, and involves both epidemiology and implementation research in Argentina and Latin America. She has extensive experience in the conduction of large cardiovascular epidemiologic studies. She is the study coordinator of an important population-based cohort study carried out in Argentina, Chile and Uruguay (CESCAS I Study). She has also coordinated important cluster randomized control trials that evaluated multi-component interventions targeting the health care system, providers and patients, to promote healthy lifestyles and improve risk factor management in Argentina. (Publications)


Rajesh Kumar Rai      India

Rajesh Kumar Rai, MA MPhil MPH, is a Senior Research Scientist with the Society for Health and Demographic Surveillance (SHDS), an initiative of the West Bengal State Department of Health and Family Welfare, India. Prior to SHDS, he worked at the International Institute for Population Sciences (IIPS), the Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS) and was a Public Policy Scholar at the Hindu Centre for Politics and Public Policy. His research interests include reproductive, maternal, newborn and child health (RMNCH) and non-communicable diseases (NCDs), with several peer-reviewed articles, opinion pieces and commentaries published on these issues in the Indian and other low to middle-income country settings. He is an Associate Editor of global health for the BMC Public Health, and is an editorial board member of Public Health Reviews. (Publications)


Aswathy Sreedevi      India

Dr. Sreedevi is a Professor in the Department of Community Medicine at the Amrita Institute of Medical Sciences in Kochi, India. She holds a Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery from Stanley Medical College in Chennai, as well as an MD from VSS Medical College, Burla and a postgraduate diploma in Adolescent Pediatrics from Kerala University. At Amrita she has developed a rural health training center to provide preventative, promotive, and curative care and created self-help groups in the community to promote economic development. As a public health practitioner, Dr. Sreedevi has also initiated training programs for health workers in 101 remote villages across India. She was selected as an NIH ASCEND (Asian Collaboration for Excellence in Non-communicable Diseases) fellow from 2011-2015. As part of the Quit Tobacco India project, she worked to promote smoke free homes and was recognized as an Emerging Leader by the World Heart Federation in 2016. Currently, Dr. Sreedevi is collaborating on a multi-centric study in India and Kenya on the facilitators and barriers to tobacco cessation among health care providers in those countries. (Publications)


Nikhil Venkateshmurthy      India

Dr. Venkateshmurthy holds MD in Community Medicine from All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi. He is currently based in Visakhapatnam, Andhra Pradesh, India, working as Project Manager at Public Health Foundation of India. He is responsible for ‘on the ground’ implementation of two projects: “UDAY,” a comprehensive diabetes and hypertension prevention and management program and “mPower Heart Project,” a cluster randomized trial to test the effectiveness of an m-Health enabled intervention that is nurse care coordinator-led to control hypertension. Dr. Venkateshmurthy is pursing a PhD from Deakin University, Melbourne, Australia and project is a theory-based process evaluation of mPower Heart Project. (Publications)



Soter Ameh      Nigeria

Dr. Ameh is a Senior Lecturer and Acting Head of the Department of Community Medicine at the College of Medical Sciences at the University of Calabar. Ameh has conducted independent research and worked as a member of multidisciplinary research teams in the Health and Socio-demographic Surveillance System sites in Nigeria, Ghana and South Africa for the last eight years. His project is titled: Feasibility of an integrated approach to HIV and hypertension care among urban poor in Nigeria. (Publications)




Oladimeji Bolarinwa      Nigeria

Dr. Bolarinwa completed a Ph.D. in Health Service Management at Universiti Putra Malaysia and has worked independently and in research teams for the last nine years. He is Senior Lecturer and Public Health Physician in the Department of Epidemiology and Community Health at the University of Ilorin in Nigeria. He earned Principal Investigator role in 2014, with two national grants on hypertension and CVD prevention researches; one for a study on the profile and predictors of health-related quality of life of hypertensive and diabetic patients attending outpatient clinics in Ilorin, Nigeria. The other, a home-based CVD prevention intervention among hypertensive patients. (Publications)


Davood Khalili      Iran

Dr. Khalili is a physician and Assistant Professor in Epidemiology at The Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences. Khalili works in the Prevention of Metabolic Disorders Research Centre which focuses on research in the field of cardiometabolic risk factors and CVD prevention. His main interest is clinical predication models, in which he wrote his Ph.D. thesis on the validity and clinical usefulness of the Framingham cardiovascular risk score in a population-based cohort study in Tehran. His proposal is titled: Clinical usefulness of the Globorisk cardiovascular risk function to be implemented in primary health care setting in rural and urban areas in Iran. (Publications)


Paulo Lotufo      Brazil

Paulo A. Lotufo is Professor of Medicine and Director of the Center for Clinical and Epidemiologic Research at the University of São Paulo Medical School. He is the Principal Investigator of the Brazilian Longitudinal Study of Adult Health (ELSA.) He earned his M.D., MPH and Doctor of Public Health at the University of São Paulo, Brazil. Lotufo’s research field is chronic diseases epidemiology, more precisely risk prediction of cardiovascular diseases. He has been awarded two grants from Conselho Nacional de Pesquisa, Brasilia, Brazil and from Faculdade Medicina Foundation, Sao Paulo, Brazil as a senior scientist. His proposal is titled: Green areas, clean air and cardiovascular health. (Publications)


Jaime Miranda      Peru

Dr. Miranda is the founder Director of the CRONICAS Centre of Excellence in Chronic Diseases at Universidad Peruana Cayetano Heredia, a research center that promotes a horizontal, open, interdisciplinary environment to develop meaningful high-quality research in physical and mental chronic non-communicable diseases with direct applicability for low- and middle-income settings. CRONICAS values are generosity, innovation, integrity, and quality. In 2018, Nature wrote that “CRONICAS has evolved into one of Latin America’s leading NCD research centres […] as a model of interdisciplinary research that is scarce in any part of the world”. In 2014 he was listed as one of the “30 scientists under 40 who are redefining science in the Latin American region” by  (Publications)


Alberto Morales      Cuba

Alberto Morales is the head of research at the “Ernesto Che Guevara” Cardiology Hospital. Morales has 20 years of experience in the Cuban control and treatment of the cardiovascular disease in the primordial, primary and secondary levels of the prevention. The Lown Scholars Program was supporting his project titled: “Access to medications in Cuban moderate-high cardiovascular risk hypertensive patients. Pilot study.” (Publications)

*Dr. Alberto Morales Salinas passed away in July 2019. He was a distinguished clinician and researcher, and respected member of the Lown Scholars community.


Ramfis Nieto-Martinez      Venezuela

Dr. Nieto-Martinez is a Venezuelan physician-scientist and professor whose research has focused on transcultural endocrinology, specifically adapting diabetes and cardiovascular prevention interventions to the context in which they will be implemented. Currently, he coordinates the NIH-funded GRADE, a comparative effectiveness research study in patients with type 2 diabetes in the Miami VA Medical Center. He has been full-time Professor in the Physiology Department at the UCLA Medical School in Barquisimeto, Venezuela (1991-2016) and visiting professor in the University of Panama Medical School. He holds an MD (1991), MSc in Nutrition (1997) working in nutritional biochemistry, and Internal Medicine Specialization (2002). His clinical profile includes the foundation of a private Cardiometabolic Lifestyle Clinic in Venezuela based on a multidisciplinary approach of the chronic diseases care model mainly cardiometabolic risk factors, diabetes and obesity (~12,000 patients and more than 25,000 visits between 2002-2016). He founded the Foundation for Clinical, Public Health, and Epidemiological Research in Venezuela (FISPEVEN) and is the principal investigator of the first sub-national (Venezuelan Metabolic Syndrome, Obesity and Lifestyle Study – VEMSOLS) and the first national study (Venezuelan Study of Cardiometabolic Health – EVESCAM, 2014-2017). ( The Lown Scholars Program is currently supporting his project for the follow-up of the EVESCAM cohort to characterize the changes in cardiometabolic health of the Venezuelans according to their socioeconomic status. Currently, he is promoting the organization lifestyle centers in Latin America. (Publications)


Agbonvihele Oko-oboh      Nigeria

Dr. Oko-oboh works at the Centre for Disease Control, University of Benin Teaching Hospital where he manages the data generated from the NCD screening program, and participates in the implementation of the Integrated Disease Surveillance and Response (IDSR) strategy in the teaching hospital and the Local Government Areas. His project is titled: Prediction and community–based preventive interventions of cardiovascular diseases in two rural settings in South-south Nigeria: a community-based intervention study. (Publications)



Marcia Scazufca      Brazil

Dr. Scazufca is a Scientific Researcher at the Department of Psychiatry at the University of São Paulo. Her main research interest is the epidemiology of mental disorders, with focus on depression and dementia in late life and its comorbidities, particularly cardiovascular diseases. The Lown Scholars Program is currently supporting her project titled: “A cluster randomized controlled trial for improving cardiovascular health in socioeconomically deprived areas of São Paulo, Brazil: pilot study.” (Publications)



Dalia Stern      Mexico

Dr. Stern is an Assistant Professor at the Population Health Research Center at the National Institute of Public Health. Dr. Stern received her PhD in Nutrition Epidemiology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Dr. Stern coordinates the diabetes and cardiovascular disease research are of The Mexican Teacher’s Cohort, the largest prospective study in Latin America. Dr. Stern’s research focuses on understanding modifiable risk factors for diabetes, cardiovascular disease and cancer. Stern’s Lown work focuses on a worksite intervention to improve cardiometabolic health in Mexico. The Lown Scholars Program is currently supporting her project titled: “Acceptability, feasibility and effectiveness of a worksite intervention to reduce cardiometabolic risk in Mexico.” (Publications)


Rakesh Suseela      India

Dr. Suseela is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Community Medicine at the Amrita Institute of Medical Sciences. Suseela’s key contributions to public health include planning and implementation of the national pilot project on WHO recommended Practical Approach to Lung Health (PAL) in India, educating around 25,000 school children on life style disease prevention and compiling the community education book series for NCD prevention. His proposal is focused on the effectiveness of a community-based peer education led by women self-help group members in improving the control of hypertension: an implementation research in urban slums of Kochi City, Kerala, India.



Seyed Hesameddin Abbasi      Iran

Dr. Seyed Hesameddin (Hesam) Abbasi studied medicine at Shiraz University of Medical Sciences, Iran. He received a PhD in Epidemiology at Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Iran, followed by a PhD in Heath Science at Mid Sweden University, Sweden. Upon the inauguration of Tehran Heart Center (affiliated to Tehran University of Medical Sciences) in 2002, he served as the hospital’s Director of the Research Department, and then as the Director of the International Affairs. He has been involved in several domestic and international studies, including as the Principal Investigator on some well-known large, multinational, multi-center clinical trials such as the SIRS (Steroids in Cardiac Surgery) and the LAAOS III (Left Atrial Appendage Occlusion Study III) studies. Dr. Abbasi is also the founder of the Family Health Research Center and the Occupational and Environmental Health Research Center, affiliated with the Iranian Petroleum Industry’s Health Research Institute. In 2012, he was elected as the Distinguished Research Manager in All Iranian Ministries and Executive Organizations (awarded by the Minister of Science, Research and Technology of Iran).

Among Dr. Abbasi’s research priorities are secondary prevention in the cardiovascular field and secondary prevention in premature coronary artery disease. In his capacity as the Principal Investigator, Dr. Abbasi started Tehran Heart Center’s Premature Coronary Atherosclerosis Cohort (THC-PAC) study in 2012, which is still running.  He was accepted into the Lown Scholars Program in 2016 and the Program is currently supporting his project, “Association between socioeconomic factors and major adverse cardiac events (MACE) in patients with premature coronary artery disease in Iran.” (Publications)


Tala Al-Rousan      Jordan 

Tala Al Rousan Photo

Dr. Tala Al-Rousan, a Jordanian physician and epidemiologist, received her M.D. at Cairo University, Egypt and her MPH at the University of Iowa. While in Egypt, she engaged in public health work against female genital mutilation, and later served as a medical officer with Doctors Without Borders (MSF) in Yemen. She completed her medical residency at Jordan University Hospital and has pursued a career as a public health professional. She is affiliated faculty at the Harvard Humanitarian Initiative studying primary care in post conflict settings. Tala focuses her work studying migration as a social determinant of health and is currently the principal investigator on two projects assessing how cognitive and mental health of refugees in Jordan affect their cardiovascular disease risk and vise verse. She is also leading a project introducing creative and tailored hypertension management interventions among Iraqi, Syrian and Afghani refugees who have been resettled in San Diego, California. (Publications)



Victor Dourado      Brazil

Dr. Victor Dourado is Associate Professor at the Federal University of São Paulo (UNIFESP), Santos, São Paulo, Brazil. He holds a Bachelors in Physiotherapy from Londrina State University and an MSc and PhD in Pulmonary Rehabilitation from São Paulo State University. His research interests include Epidemiology of Physical Activity and Fitness examining the impact of sedentary behavior and low levels of physical activity and fitness on cardiovascular, respiratory, and locomotor health and the impact of environmental factors on physical activity and fitness and cardiovascular disease. His research is also committed to investigating the use and development of technologies to assess and improve the level of physical activity and fitness in low-income communities in Brazil. He is the Principal Investigator of the Epidemiology and Human Movement Study (EPIMOV), in Santos, and the Playful Data-driven Active Urban Living (PAUL) in partnership with the University of Amsterdam. (Publications)



Trevor Ferguson      Jamaica

Dr. Trevor Ferguson is a Senior Lecturer in Epidemiology and Consultant Physician (Internal Medicine) at the University of the West Indies, Mona Campus, in Jamaica. He is also an Honorary Consultant in General Internal Medicine at the University Hospital of the West Indies and a Consultant in General Internal Medicine at Andrews Memorial Hospital in Kingston. He holds a Doctor of Medicine in Internal Medicine from the University of the West indies and a Master of Science in Epidemiology from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. Dr. Ferguson is part of the Chronic Disease Research Group at the Epidemiology Research Unit and conducts research in the fields of cardiovascular disease, epidemiology, and diabetes.  The Lown Scholars Program is currently supporting Dr. Ferguson’s project, “Cardiovascular health in urban poor and middle income communities in Jamaica: Impact of psychological stress, social networks, and social support.” (Publications)



Vilma Irazola       Argentina

Dr Irazola is a cardiologist and epidemiologist. She is the Director of the Department of Chronic Diseases at the Institute for Clinical Effectiveness and Health Policy (IECS) and Director and PI of the South American Center of Excellence for Cardiovascular Health (CESCAS), based at IECS. Her research is focused on implementation science and scaling-up public health interventions in cardiovascular health, diabetes and cancer. The Lown Scholars Program is currently supporting Dr. Irazola’s project, “Assessing the interaction between built environment and cardiometabolic risk factors: its role on health disparities.” (Publications)


Duygu Islek      Turkey

Dr Islek is a PhD Student in Department of Epidemiology, Emory University, Rollins School of Public Health. Previously, she worked as a research associate at the University of Liverpool in the United Kingdom and she was a medical resident at the Dokuz Eylul University, Public Health Department in Turkey. She holds an MPH degree from Dokuz Eylül Üniversitesi and an M.D. from Ege Ünivertesi. Her research interests include cardiovascular disease epidemiology, global health, decision modeling and health inequalities. (Publications)



Seyed Ebrahim Kassaian      Iran

Ebrahim Kassaian is Associate Professor of Cardiology at Tehran Heart Center and also works on Cardiovascular Quality Improvement at the Texas Heart Institute in Houston. He holds an M.D. from the Tehran University of Medical Sciences. His current research focuses on socioeconomic determinants of survival among a cohort of premature coronary artery disease patients in Tehran. (Publications)



Devaki Nambiar      India

Dr. Nambiar is a Post-doctoral Fellow at Public Health Foundation India and Adjunct Faculty at the Indian Institute of Public Health Delhi. She received her doctorate in Public Health from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, specializing in theory-based research on the structural production of social exclusion, specifically HIV/AIDS-related stigma, drawing on fieldwork in India. Her research applies critical theory towards understanding various aspects of health governance, specifically the role of community participation, mass media, and private philanthropy in creating and reproducing resistance and hegemony in resource-poor settings.   The Lown Scholars Program is currently supporting Dr. Nambiar’s project, “Assessing coverage, inequalities, and frontline provider workflows for hypertension and diabetes screening, treatment, and follow-up in two Indian states.” (Publications)


Okechukwu Ogah      Nigeria

Dr Ogah is Consultant Physician/Cardiologist in the Division of Cardiology, Department of Medicine, at University College Hospital, Ibadan. He holds a Ph.D. in Medicine/Cardiology from the University of the Witwatersrand, and an MSc in Epidemiology and Global Health and a Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery (MBBS) from the University of Ibadan. His research interests include surveys on cardiovascular risk factors, national heart disease registries, continental heart failure registries, pericarditis, rheumatic heart disease, pulmonary hypertension and systemic hypertension. The Lown Scholars Program is currently supporting Dr. Ogah’s project, “A study to explore the cardiovascular disease risk factors profile and burden of cardiovascular diseases in urban slums of Aba, Abia State, Nigeria.” (Publications)


Prajjwal Pyakurel      Nepal

Dr. Pyakurel is Assistant Professor at B.P. Koirala Institute of Health Sciences in Dharan, Nepal. He holds a Doctorate in Medicine (MD) in Community Medicine and Tropical Diseases and a Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery (M.B.B.S) from B.P. Koirala Institute of Health Sciences,Dharan,Nepal.His research interests include assessing the cardiovascular risk factors among industrial workers in Eastern Nepal. He is currently the Regional Councillor of Word NCD Federation for South Asia region. He is also involved as a Co-Investigator in “Transalational Research Capacity Building Initiative to Address Cardiovascular Disease in Nepal funded by National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, USA.The Lown Scholars Program is currently supporting his project, “Worksite Intervention Study to Prevent Diabetes in Nepal.” (Publications)


Belgin Unal      Turkey

Dr Unal is Professor of Public Health at the Dokuz Eylul University (DEU), a leading Public Health Department in Turkey. She obtained an MPH degree from Hebrew University of Jerusalem in Israel, and a Ph.D. degree from the University of Liverpool. She also had public health specialty training from Dokuz Eylul University and became a public health specialist. Her research focuses on noncommunicable disease epidemiology, especially cardiovascular disease epidemiology, prevention, and modeling the impacts of risk factor trends on mortality and morbidity. (Publications)



Rajani Ved      India

Dr. Rajani Ved is currently Advisor to the National Health Systems Resource Center, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare in India. She is a public health physician, technical advisor and implementation specialist with nearly 30 years of experience working on community-based health services delivery, health systems strengthening and in scaling up. Her areas of expertise include the design and evaluation of large-scale health policy and programs, implementation research, and scaling up, particularly in maternal, reproductive and child health, primary health care, community health workers and civil society action.  She has worked with national and state governments, research institutions, aid agencies and grassroots community organizations. (Publications)



Sally Adebamowo      Nigeria

Dr. Sally Akarolo-Anthony

Dr. Adebamowo is Assistant Professor at the University of Maryland School of Medicine. Previously, she was a Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the National Human Genome Research Institute and at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, and a Predoctoral Research Fellow at Brigham and Women’s Hospital. She obtained her medical degree from the University of Ibadan, a Masters degree in Clinical Trials from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, and an ScD in Nutritional Epidemiology from the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. Her research interests include the epidemiology of cardiovascular disease in Africa with the goal of reducing the burden of this disease. (Publications)


Ikeoluwapo O. Ajayi      Nigeria

Dr. Ikeoluwapo Ajayi

Dr. Ajayi is a Professor in Epidemiology in the Department of Epidemiology and Medical Statistics and Coordinator of the Epidemiology and Biostatistics Research Unit, in the Institute of Advanced Medical Research and Training, College of Medicine, University of Ibadan. She is also a Consultant Family Physician at University College Hospital in Ibadan, Nigeria. She holds a PhD in Epidemiology and an MPH in Public Health from the University of Ibadan and an MCl.Sc. from the University of Western Ontario, Canada. Dr. Ajayi is a Fellow of the National Postgraduate Medical College, Nigeria and West African College of Physicians. Dr. Ajayi conducts operational research evaluating the effectiveness and impact of health system interventions. Her work has focused on cardiovascular disease prevention, cancer (especially in women), hypertension, diabetes, obesity and malaria. (Publications)


Laila Al-Shaar      Lebanon

Laila Al-Shaar is a Lebanese researcher who received her doctorate degree in Population Health Sciences-Nutritional Epidemiology from Harvard University. She also holds a Master’s degree in Biochemistry and a Master’s degree in Public Health, both earned from the American University of Beirut, Lebanon.  Laila has been working as an instructor and a researcher in cardiovascular diseases and metabolic disorders. She is currently a postdoctoral fellow at the Nutrition Department at Harvard, studying metabolomics and cardiovascular diseases.She also serves as a member of the EPI Early Career Committee of the Council on Epi and Prevention at the American Heart Association. Laila is a Co-Investigator of the Lebanese Cardiovascular-Cerebrovascular Health Cohort, a longitudinal cohort aiming to assess risk factors associated with the growing epidemic of these diseases in Lebanon. (Publications)


Tonatiuh Barrientos-Gutierrez      Mexico

Dr. Barrientos-Gutierrezis the Director of the Analytical Laboratory for Tobacco Compounds and a Medical Science Researcher at the Center for Population Health Research in the National Institute of Public Health in Cuernavaca, Mexico. He holds an M.D. and a Master of Science in Occupational Health from the Autonomous Metropolitan University in Mexico, and a PhD in Epidemiology from the University of Texas School of Public Health in Houston. His research interests include cardiovascular epidemiology; social, occupation, and environmental epidemiology; evidence-based medicine; and epidemiology of alcohol and tobacco. (Publications)


Shifalika Goenka      India                                          

Dr. Shifalika Goenka is Additional Professor at the Indian Institute of Public Health, Public Health Foundation of India, Center for Chronic Disease Control in New Delhi. She is presently leading the qualitative component of the M-well care trial, evaluating the effectiveness of a mobile health (mHealth) system for an integrated management of hypertension and diabetes in rural India. She designed and subsequently upgraded the health promotion component for cardiovascular risk reduction, involving ten large, industrial townships across India. She possesses a strong commitment to enhance population levels of physical activity and prevent non-communicable diseases, especially cardiovascular diseases, through multi-sectoral, multi-disciplinary, and multi-level approaches. She is working towards a Center of Excellence in Physical Activity, and believes that ‘health should be the litmus test in all local, state and national policies.’ (Publications)


William Joe      India

Dr. Joe is an Assistant Professor at Institute of Economic Growth, India.  He received his PhD in Economics and MPhil in Applied Economics from Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi and Master of Economics from Goa University, Goa.  His PhD work focused on measurement and interpretation of socioeconomic inequalities in health with empirical applications in the Indian context. Dr. Joe has been involved in monitoring and evaluation of National Health Mission of India with specific focus on high focus regions in the country.  He is interested in policy research on social determinants of cardiovascular diseases and its risk factors.  Dr. Joe is currently engaged with research on sources of health care financing and financial protection against cardiovascular diseases. (Publications)


Martin Lajous      Mexico

Dr. Martin Lajous

Dr. Lajous holds an M.D. from the National Autonomous University of Mexico and obtained an S.M and S.D in epidemiology from the Department of Epidemiology at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. Currently, he is a faculty researcher at the National Institute of Public Health of Mexico and serves as the co-Principal Investigator of the Mexican Teachers Cohort. Dr. Lajous’s work focuses on nutrition and chronic disease, including cardiovascular disease, diabetes and breast cancer. (Publications)



Fredirick Mashili      Tanzania

Frederick Mashili Croppped

Dr. Mashili is a lecturer in the department of Physiology at the Muhimbili University of Health and Allied Sciences (MUHAS) in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. He received his medical degree from the University of Dar es Salaam and his PhD in medical sciences from the Karolinska Institute in Sweden. Dr. Mashili’s main interest is the application of exercise physiology principles in the prevention of cardiovascular diseases in both research and health care. He is involved in several studies examining the effects of physical activity on major cardio-metabolic risk factors in different cohorts in Tanzania. (Publications)



Bongani Mayosi      South Africa

Dr. Mayosi is a South African cardiology professor who was awarded his country’s highest honor, the Order of Mapungubwe (Silver) in 2009. He is the Dean-elect of the Faculty of Health Sciences at the University of Cape Town and is an A-rate National Research Foundation researcher. Prior, he was head of the Department of Medicine at the University of Cape Town and Groote Schuur Hospital. He is also a former President of the College of Physicians of South Africa. His research focuses on the relationship between poverty and cardiovascular disease and the genetic factors affecting heart disease in sub-Saharan Africa. (Publications)

Dr. Bongani Mayosi passed away in July, 2018. He was a respected and cherished member of the Lown Scholars community.


Carlos Mendivil Anaya      Colombia

carlos cropped

Dr. Mendivil is a medical doctor and diabetologist from Bogota. He received his ScD in Nutritional Biochemistry and Metabolism at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health and is currently an Associate Professor at the School of Medicine at the Universidad de los Andes. His research is located at the interface between physiology, basic science and clinical medicine, particularly in the area of diabetes and lipoprotein metabolism. Current projects advanced under the sponsorship of his Lown Scholarship include a study of metabolic hormones in bronchoalveolar lavage of normal individuals, and a project on the development of a platform for the evaluation of the overall metabolism of high-density lipoproteins. (Publications)


Marina Njelekela      Tanzania

Dr. Njelekela received her medical degree from the University of Dar es Salaam, her PhD in Human and Environmental Sciences from Kyoto University in Japan, and her Master of Public Health from Muhimbili University of Health and Allied Sciences in Dar es Salaam. Dr. Njelekela’s research is focused on both infectious diseases and noncommunicable diseases. Until recently, she served as the executive director of the Muhimbili National Hospital. (Publications)




Samson Okello      Uganda

Dr. Samson Okello is Lecturer in the Department of Internal Medicine at Mbarara University of Science and Technology (MUST) in Uganda and Visiting Professor of Medicine at University of Virginia. He received both undergraduate and graduate training in internal medicine at MUST and holds an MSc in Epidemiology from the Harvard Chan School.  During his MSc studies he worked with Dr. Danaei on a large epidemiologic study of cardiovascular risk factors in the periurban areas around Mbarara, and they continue to work  on projects to improve health care delivery to rural Ugandan communities. His research topics include assessing the burden of non-communicable disease in people living with HIV in Uganda, establishing a registry of acute heart failure in Mbarara and examining links between Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbon exposure and dietary risk of esophageal cancer. Dr. Okello is also engaged in clinical work, including screening and managing cardiovascular risk factors in high risk groups. He has also developed a CVD screening program for HIV-infected people in Mbarara. (Publications)



Sanghamitra Pati      India

Dr. Sanghamitra Pati

Dr.  Sanghamitra Pati, a physician turned public health professional, is currently working as Additional Professor at Indian Institute of Public Health, Bhubaneswar under the aegis of Public Health Foundation of India (PHFI). After graduating from MKCG Medical College, Odisha, She received an MPH degree from University of Maastricht, The Netherlands, 2001 under Joint Japan/World Bank Graduate Scholarship. Prior to joining PHFI, she was a faculty member in state medical colleges and also adjunct faculty in nursing, pharmacy and physiotherapy colleges. At PHFI, her work focuses on primary care based prevention of cardiovascular diseases through capacity building of health care providers. She is involved in teaching Non-communicable and Chronic Diseases, Health Communication and Promotion, Public Health Nutrition, Primary care quality and equity, Implementation research.  Under the Lown Scholars Program, she examined how cardiovascular risk reduction (healthy nutrition, tobacco cessation, physical activity) could be effectively integrated into existing health professional education in India. (Publications)


Adolfo Rubinstein      Argentina

Photo credit: Nilagia McCoy

Dr. Rubinstein was appointed as Argentina’s Minister of Health at the end of 2017. He is the founder and former Director General of the Institute for Clinical Effectiveness and Health Policy (IECS), and former Director of the Master’s program in Clinical Effectiveness of the University of Buenos Aires. Dr. Rubinstein has also served as Professor of Public Health and Professor of Family Medicine at the School of Medicine of the University of Buenos Aires. His research focuses on cardiovascular and NCD epidemiology as well as implementation research to improve prevention and control of cardiovascular disease and cardio-metabolic risk factors in Argentina and Latin America. As a recognized expert in the field, he has authored or co-authored more than 50 papers in international and national peer-reviewed journals on cardiovascular epidemiology and prevention as well as implementation of preventative interventions to reduce cardio-metabolic diseases and risk factors, and economic evaluations on cardiovascular prevention. (Publications)


Pierre A. Zalloua      Lebanon


Dr. Pierre Zalloua, a Lebanese geneticist, and serves as the Dean of Graduate Studies and Research at the Lebanese American University (LAU). Dr. Zalloua is a leading authority on the genetics of complex diseases in Middle Eastern populations. His investigative studies have addressed molecular anomalies in people with coronary artery disease (CAD). His focus is to identify CAD susceptibility genes, to study their interaction with the environment, and to correlate these interactions with disease onset and manifestation. Dr. Zalloua graduated from the American University of Beirut in 1987 with a B.S. in Biology, earned his M.A. in Biological Sciences from San Jose State University, and his Ph.D. in Genetics from the University of California, Davis after which he completed a postdoctoral research fellowship in population genetics at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.