Close up photo of people meeting at a conference table

November 19, 2020

1:00–3:00 pm ET

Covid-19 has forced a global reckoning. Every individual, institution, and business is acutely aware of how interconnected we are when it comes to health. We believe this moment will usher in the “health-first” era—an era defined by shifting expectations and demands around health equity and health promotion. This future is being determined by the decisions we make today, and we—the public health and business communities—have the opportunity, and the responsibility, to shape it together and advance health for all.

This event will engage business and public health leaders in shaping this health-first era. The event will act as a kickoff for a new certificate program aimed at business leaders interested in applying public health principles to business practice.

Hosted by the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health


Lawrence S. Bacow

Lawrence S. Bacow is the 29th President of Harvard University. Read Lawrence’s full bio here.

Photo of President Bacow

Opening remarks
Michelle A. Williams

Michelle A. Williams, ScD ’91, is dean of the faculty at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health and Angelopoulos Professor in Public Health and International Development at the Harvard Chan School and Harvard Kennedy School. Read Michelle’s full bio here.

Photo of Dean Michelle Williams

COVID-19: Insights Beyond the Headlines
Caroline Buckee

One of the most challenging aspects of this pandemic is navigating the constant stream of information from scientists in the U.S. and across the globe. Professor Buckee will lead us through what we know, what we don’t know, and what’s on the horizon.

Photo of Caroline Buckee

Caroline Buckee, DPhil, is associate professor of epidemiology and associate director of the Center for Communicable Disease Dynamics at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, as well as co-founder of the COVID-19 Mobility Data Network and CrisisReady. Read Caroline’s full bio here.

Healthier Buildings
Joseph G. Allen and John D. Macomber

COVID-19 has made it clear that the places where we live and work have a significant impact on our health, which has accelerated the shift toward healthy buildings. Professor Allen and Professor Macomber will present their new Harvard Business School case, “A Tower for the People,” which examines the health science and business case for better buildings, and lead a discussion of the issues raised in the case. They will also explore new healthy building certifications, who is responsible for building health, and changing technology.

Photo of Joseph G. Allen and John D. Macomber

Joseph G. Allen, DSc, MPH, is associate professor of exposure assessment science and director of the Healthy Buildings Program at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. Read Joe’s full bio here.

John D. Macomber, MBA ’83, is senior lecturer of business administration at Harvard Business School. Read John’s full bio here.

What’s Next?
Juliette Kayyem and Sara Bleich

Professor Kayyem and Professor Bleich will look to the future and lead a discussion on what we might expect following the national elections on November 3, including a new and emerging world, reinvention and differentiation, preparing your workforce for re-entry, and other trends that are shaping the new Health First Era.

Photo of Juliette Kayyem and Sara Bleich

Juliette Kayyem, AB ’91, JD ’95, is Belfer Senior Lecturer in International Security, faculty director of the Homeland Security Project, and faculty director of the Security and Global Health Project at the Harvard Kennedy School. Read Juliette’s full bio here.

Sara Bleich, PhD ’07, is professor of public health policy in the Department of Health Policy and Management at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Carol K. Pforzheimer Professor at the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study, and a member of the faculty at the Harvard Kennedy School. Read Sara’s full bio here.

Concluding remarks
Michelle Williams, Joseph Allen, and Richard Siegrist

Business and public health shaping the coming Health First Era

Richard B. Siegrist Jr., MS, MBA ’82, is faculty director of the doctor of public health program, director of the master in health care management program, director of innovation and entrepreneurship, and senior lecturer on health care management at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. Read Rick’s full bio here.

Photo of DMichelle Williams, Joseph Allen, and Richard Siegrist

Questions about the program? Please email