Celebration of the Life and Career of Jane Murphy

About the May 19 Forum

The late Dr. Jane Murphy was a renowned psychiatric epidemiologist and former professor in the Department of Epidemiology at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. She was a pioneer in promoting population mental health research and led the Stirling County Study that started in 1975. Dr. Murphy is remembered as a cherished colleague, mentor and scholar. This panel brought together some of Dr. Murphy’s close colleagues to her remember her impactful life and career.

Wednesday May 19, 11AM – 12PM EDT

Watch the forum:

Speaker bios


Dr. Deborah Blacker, MD, ScD, is Professor of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School and Deputy Chair and Professor in the Department of Epidemiology at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. She is a geriatric psychiatrist and epidemiologist based at Mass General Hospital, where she directs the Gerontology Research Unit and serves Associate Chief for Research in the Department of Psychiatry. Her work focuses on the epidemiology, genetics, assessment, and early recognition of Alzheimer’s disease.

Dr. Joshua Breslau, PhD, ScD, a senior behavioral/social scientist at the RAND Corporation, is an anthropologist and psychiatric epidemiologist. His work focuses on social and cultural influences on the onset and course of psychiatric disorders and use of mental health services.


Dr. Steven E. Gilman, ScD, is a social epidemiologist investigating the emergence and persistence of socioeconomic and race/ethnic inequalities in common mental disorders over the life course. His work demonstrates the importance of the childhood environment for neurodevelopment and the subsequent onset and recurrence of psychiatric illness in adults. His current studies address the development origins of inequalities as early as the prenatal period including the role of stress-related physiology during pregnancy in children’s neurodevelopment as well as the developmental origins of suicide mortality. Dr. Gilman received his Doctor of Science degree in Health and Social Behavior from Harvard School of Public Health and post-doctoral training in Behavioral Medicine from Brown Medical School. He is a Senior Investigator in the Intramural Research Program of the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, where he serves as Chief of the Social and Behavioral Sciences Branch of the Division of Intramural Population Health Research; he is also Adjunct Professor in the Department of Mental Health at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.

Dr. Olivia I. Okereke, MD, MS, is a Board-certified geriatric psychiatrist and Associate Professor of Psychiatry and Associate Professor of Epidemiology at Harvard Medical School and the Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health.  She is Director of Geriatric Psychiatry at Massachusetts General Hospital.  Dr. Okereke’s programmatic goals are: (1) to identify modifiable risk factors involved in adverse mental aging and (2) to translate and apply knowledge gained into strategies for large-scale prevention of late-life depression and cognitive decline. Her research portfolio has been supported by numerous National Institutes of Health, University and foundation awards. Currently, she is: evaluating the role of dietary factors, such as vitamin D and omega-3, along with novel biologic markers in relation to risk of late-life cognitive decline and depression; testing effects of nutritional interventions on late-life mood in large-scale randomized trial settings; and addressing relations of later-life depression and anxiety to molecular markers of biological aging, with attention to their potential contributions to disparities in health and aging.