2022-2023 DELPH Cohort

With funding from the CDC-CSTLTS office, DELPH recruited 28 mid-to-senior-level governmental public health professionals from underrepresented groups to establish our second cohort of public health leaders. This program is committed to ensuring a well-prepared workforce of public health professionals, including practitioners who reflect the diversity of the jurisdictions they serve. 

ASTHO's second cohort includes public health professionals representing 17 state/local health departments and three island/territory health department partners. The DELPH Team is looking forward to seeing where Cohort 2's paths lead.


Meet the Cohort

Click on the name below to learn more about the participant.

Abraham Anderson, PhD, MS


Emergency Manager, Louisiana Department of Health

Abraham Anderson is a native of Baton Rouge, LA. He currently serves as an emergency manager for the Louisiana Department of Health Office of Public Health. He works within the LDH OPH Bureau of Community Preparedness for public health response efforts during man-made and natural disasters. He has dedicated the past two years to the COVID-19 response. He also serves as a lead on an initiative to advance health equity and address social determinants of health as they relate to COVID-19 health disparities among populations that are at higher risk and underserved. One of the components this initiative is to increase the number of minority clinicians in Louisiana. This is done by conducting outreach with medical professionals in educational settings such as early learning centers, primary and secondary schools, medical schools, trade schools, colleges and universities to peek interests in clinical and public health career tracks.

Anderson has previously served in other public health roles as a mental health technician, environmental laboratory scientist, and public health inspector. Anderson received a Bachelor of Science degree in Biological Sciences from Southeastern Louisiana University, a Master of Science degree in Biological Sciences from the Southern University and A&M College, and a Doctorate of Philosophy degree in Public Health/Epidemiology from Walden University. He has dedicated his work to improving his community and its resources. Anderson is a member of the 100 Black Men of Baton Rouge and a member of Kappa Alpha Psi

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Jillian Brown, MPH


Pediatric & Adult Vaccine Manager, Philadelphia Dept of Public Health

Jillian Brown currently serves as the pediatric and adult vaccine manager for the City of Philadelphia’s Department of Public Health. In this role, Jillian works to protect Philadelphians from vaccine-preventable disease through three main avenues. First, she leads two county-wide federal vaccine programs, the Vaccine for Children (VFC) program and the Vaccines at Risk Program (VFAAR) program. With more than 150 enrolled providers, the VFC and VFAAR programs remove cost as a barrier to vaccination for eligible individuals. Second, she facilitates the distribution of vaccines during disease outbreaks. Since 2019 she has supported Philadelphia’s response to outbreaks of Hepatitis A, Mumps, COVID-19, and Monkeypox. Finally, Jillian leads a team that collaborates with healthcare providers and public health leaders throughout the city to develop and distribute educational materials to the public. Jillian received her MPH from the Thomas Jefferson School of Population Health and her BA from Sarah Lawrence College. In her free time Jillian enjoys hiking, knitting, reading a good book and spending time with family and friends.

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Heather Crate, LCSW


Community Health Division Manager, Boulder County Public Health

Heather Crate (they/them) is the community health division manager at Boulder County Public Health (BCPH) in Boulder, Colorado. Prior to that role they served for nearly a decade as the lead for the OASOS program, supporting the rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer and questioning youth. Heather has also been a key player in leading many of the internal health and racial equity priorities within BCPH. Their career has been dedicated to working on issues of equity. They are a life-long learner and have a strong desire for continued learning in anti-racist practices. Heather is also a foster parent and  works hard to support families engaged in the foster care system through their volunteer work. They are a licensed clinical social worker and hold a Master’s in Social Work degree from George Mason University and a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology from Randolph-Macon Woman's College.

Fredrick Echols, MD


Chief Executive Officer, Cure Violence Global

Dr. Fredrick L. Echols is an accomplished physician and public health professional. He has experience in the public and private health sectors, and has served as the director of health and health commissioner for the City of St. Louis. In these roles, Dr. Echols oversaw all public health regulations and departmental operations and led the City of St. Louis’ COVID-19 pandemic response. Prior to serving as the director, Dr. Echols served as director of Communicable Disease, Emergency Preparedness, Vector and Veterinary Programs for the St. Louis County Department of Public Health, where he was responsible for overseeing daily operations, staff development and training, establishment of public-private partnerships, strategic planning, fiscal management of a multi-million-dollar budget, and program development and implementation.

Prior to starting his position with St. Louis County, Dr. Echols served as chief of communicable diseases for the Illinois Department of Public Health and as a physician in the U.S. Navy, where he managed a staff of medical and ancillary personnel. Furthermore, Dr. Echols has served as the principal investigator for local and federally funded public health research initiatives and provides guidance to national and international health workgroups.

Brandy Emily, DNP, RN, PCNS-BC


Health Equity Branch Chief, Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment

Brandy Emily, DNP, RN, PCNS-BC is the health equity branch chief for the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) where she has the honor of collaborating with community members and leaders in diverse communities across the state of Colorado. She does this while ensuring the state meets people where they are as it relates to vaccinations, which is a vital step in fighting the pandemic.

She served as the immunization deputy branch chief at CDPHE before transitioning to her current role as health equity branch chief in June 2021. Emily has a Doctorate of Nursing Practice, a Master’s Degree in Leadership and Administration in Nursing and Health Care Systems, a Master’s Degree in Pediatric Nurse Leadership and Special Needs, and a Bachelor’s of Science Degree in Nursing—all from the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus. Additionally, Emily has a Bachelor's of Arts degree in Spanish from Metropolitan State College of Denver. Emily worked in clinical nursing and as a pediatric RN case manager for more than ten years in a neonatal intensive care unit and pediatric oncology, hematology, and bone marrow transplant unit before transitioning to public health.

Emily is enthusiastic about health equity and growing the work of equal access to healthcare and championing the right of every community to be free from communicable diseases and their health effects, especially our most highly impacted and historically underserved communities across the state. Brandy is a mother of four children who inspire and motivate her daily. She is passionate about leaving a legacy of improvement for her children and generations to come.

Kandi Fredere, PhD, MHA, MCHES


Health Director, South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control

Kandi Fredere serves as the region health director with the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (SCDHEC) Upstate Public Health Region. She is responsible for public health services and systems coordination in 11 counties across the upstate area, including Greenville, Spartanburg, Cherokee, Pickens, Greenwood, Laurens, Oconee, Abbeville, Anderson, McCormick, and Union.

Fredere has a Bachelor of Science in Health Science, a Masters in Administration, and a PhD in Human Services with a concentration in Health Administration. She is a master certified health education specialist. Fredere’s experience crosses a variety of public health programs including chronic disease risk reduction, maternal child health, and administration. Community engagement is her passion and she has over 20 years of experience working with diverse partners in higher education, non-profit fields, faith based organizations, and K12 education.

In addition to her work at SCDHEC, Fredere serves as an adjunct professor in the Human Services program at Anderson University. She teaches classes including healthcare quality, documentation, and leadership.

In her spare time, Fredere enjoys spending time with her husband, two children and six dogs. As a family, they enjoy watching Clemson football and watching the kids play basketball and football.

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Edith Gaines, MAFM, MPA


Finance and Administrative Division Manager, Shawnee County Health Department

Edith Gaines has been employed with the Shawnee County Health Department since 2013. Since 2015 she has served as the finance and administrative division manager. In this capacity, she is the finance officer and oversees the Accounting Office, the Medical Billing Office, the Purchasing/Payroll Office, and the Medical Records Office. Edith oversees an $8 million budget and a staff of eight. She is also the incident command finance and administrative deputy section chief, Public Health Accreditation Board (PHAB) accreditation coordinator, chair of the Racial Equity Impact Analysis Group, and chair of the four-county northeast Kansas Electronic Health Record System collaboration.

Edith received her Bachelor of Science Degree in Organizational Management from the University of Mobile in 2001 and her Master’s degree in Public Administration from Troy State University in 2002. Edith went on to earn a Master’s Degree in Accounting and Financial Management in 2011 from Keller Graduate School of Management of DeVry University and is currently working on her doctorate in Instructional Design and Performance Technology from Baker University. Edith serves as a committee member for the NE Kansas Government Finance Officer’s Association, the Kansas Public Health and Medicaid Advisory Workgroup, the Greater Topeka Partnership’s Minority and Women’s Business Development Council, the KDHE Healthy People 2030 Steering Committee, and the Kansas Governor’s COVID Vaccine Equity Taskforce.

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Samara Heydon, BS


Healthy Communities Supervisor, Snohomish Health District

Samara Heydon was born and raised in Washington, spending most of her life in Tacoma. She was raised by her Japanese and Irish Mother and African-American Father, both who served in the military. She attended the University of Washington Seattle campus and graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Public Health. She then joined the United States Army reserve, where she still serves as a civil affairs officer. Heydon also sits on a Veteran Foundation board, is the chair on an Equity and Trauma Informed Leadership Committee, and coaches her kid’s sports teams. She is in the process of completing her Masters in Public Health from the University of Washington.

Heydon currently works at the Snohomish, Washington Health District as the healthy communities supervisor. The public health programs she oversees include opioid prevention, advancing health literacy, vaccine education, safe environments and schools, suicide prevention, tobacco, vaping, and marijuana prevention, and accessible dental care for children. She is honored to support such amazing people and the incredible work they do.

Heydon is married with three children: two boys ages 14 and six, and one girl aged three. In her spare time, she loves to spend time with her kids, going outdoors, playing sports, listening to music, and doing lots of art (Japanese ink painting, sketching, drawing, etc.).

Deborah Hinds, MPH


NAS Program Manager, Philadelphia Department of Public Health-Division of Substance Use Prevention and Harm Reduction

Deborah Hinds received a Master of Public Health degree, with a concentration in Quantitative Methods, from Rutgers School of Public of Public Health, formerly UMDNJ School of Public Health. She has served as the program manager for the Philadelphia Department of Public Health’s NAS Surveillance and Outreach Program since December 2018. Prior to this appointment, she was the epidemiologist for Philadelphia’s Perinatal Hepatitis B Prevention Program, during which she was awarded the Hepatitis B Hero award by the Hepatitis B Foundation and Hep B United. In May 2020, Deborah co-founded “Epis for Equity,” a work group consisting of epidemiologists and other data scientist, to specifically address the disparities in health outcomes of Philadelphia Black and Brown residents through data analysis. In January 2022 Deborah began serving as a member of the City of Philadelphia’s Institutional Review Board ensuring that all studies involving Philadelphian residents are ethical, equitable, and have scientific merit.

Donielle Hyde, PhD, RS


Sanitarian, Louisiana Department of Health

Donielle M. Hyde is a sanitarian with the Louisiana Department of Health and a recent doctoral graduate from Walden University’s Public Health program with a concentration in Epidemiology. She was born in Savannah, Georgia yet spent most of her childhood in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. After graduating high school, she attended Southeastern Louisiana University where she received a Bachelor of Science in Biological Sciences.

Early in her professional career, she utilized her Bachelor of Science in Biological Sciences by working in various environmental and chemical laboratories. She first became familiar with public health policies while working as an environmental lab analyst after receiving her Master of Science from Southern University and A&M College. This position is what piqued her interest and influenced her pursuit into the public health field.

As a sanitarian with the Louisiana Department of Health, she is able to advance her knowledge in the public health field by conducting regular inspections on health care institutions, schools, jails/prisons, and retail food establishments to reduce the risk and spread of food related infections, communicable diseases, and other infectious diseases that arise from unsanitary conditions. She regularly participates in emergency response initiatives during natural disasters and epidemics/pandemics that affect the state of Louisiana. Her career goal is to advance the field of public health by conducting needed research on chronic conditions that disproportionally affect African American women and create health-related initiatives to combat these diseases in high-risk communities.

Michelle Izumizaki, MPH


Senior Policy Analyst, Washington State Department of Health

Michelle Izumizaki has spent nearly her entire career in public health. Her professional experience includes mosquito and vector-borne disease surveillance for local governments, CDC’s Colorectal Cancer Control Program for Washington State, clinical quality improvement, early childhood clinical practices, and children’s and family health advocacy work. Michelle has also worked in community non-profit organizations as a development director and executive board member.

Currently, Michelle is a senior policy analyst in the Prevention and Community Health Division at the Washington State Department of Health. She supports legislative policy work for programs such as injury and violence prevention, cancer prevention, tobacco and cannabis prevention, oral health, and healthy eating. She loves the challenging work and diverse subject areas.

Michelle was born in California and has earned a Bachelors in Entomology from the University of California, Riverside, a Master’s in Public Health from Walden University, and Project Management Certification from the University of Washington. Michelle lives in Gig Harbor with her family and enjoys kayaking and working in her garden.

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Keith James, CPRP


Program Manager, US VIrgin Islands Department of Health

Keith currently serves as a program manager leading the Health Disparities Program and recruitment initiatives at the U.S. Virgin Islands (USVI) Department of Health. He has over 20 years of experience leading talent acquisition functions and leadership in the healthcare, government, and petrochemical industries. He has a track record for establishing and supporting organizational culture and employee experience, while maximizing human capital.

He has worked in administration and workforce development in the acute care and rural health settings for more than seven years, where he successfully built and led the first physician recruitment division in the USVI and has been a certified physician and provider recruiter for more than five years. Recently added sub certifications include On-Boarding & Retention and Diversity Equity & Inclusion from the Association for the Advancement of Physician and Provider Recruitment.

He is committed to developing and implementing culturally appropriate initiatives to reduce health disparities while increasing health equity in the USVI. In July 2022, he was invited to be a speaker at the ASTHO Health Equity Summit. August 2022 he successfully planned and executed the first health equity conference in the USVI.

Keith is a native of St. Croix, USVI and earned a BA degree in Business Administration from the University of the Virgin Islands. In his spare time, he supports youth leadership and development, serving as a member of the VI Future Business Leaders of American Executive Council and the National Academies Foundation Advisory Board in St. Croix, USVI.

Kurell Julien


Director, Office of Access & Disability Justice, City of New York Department of Health and Mental Hygiene

With over 17 years as a supply chain professional and over a decade as a diversity coach, community organizer, and social justice advocate, Kurell Osei Allister Julien is passionate about leveraging the unique convergence of his personal and professional experience to foster and drive cultural and structural change. Resulting from his intersecting identities as a gay, Trinidad-born, and culturally raised Black man, Kurell is precious about ensuring that all people can experience and observe themselves fully in the spaces that they occupy.

He has served in various roles in his community, and held positions of leadership in his work, most recently supporting the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene in New York City as the equity officer for its Citywide Health Emergency Field Operations' vaccine operations. He has been serving as the health department's LGBTQ+ employee resource group chair for the past four years, having drafted the first official charter for the ERG and providing support to the agency in the form of advocacy for LGBQ TGNCNB staff and communities. At present, he is the director of the office of access and disability justice, purposed with addressing structural and cultural inequities for people with disabilities from an intersectional lens.

Kurell has drafted many tools for identifying historical and contemporary forms of oppression present in government interventions, fully evidencing his passion as a structure and culture change agent.

Kurell currently attends Morehouse College, where he is pursuing his BA in Business Administration.

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KaShawna Lollis, MSPH


Performance Management/Quality Improvement Coordinator, Metro Nashville Public Health Department

KaShawna Lollis is the performance management/quality improvement coordinator in the Office of Strategic Planning, Performance and Evaluation at the Metro Public Health Department in Nashville, TN. She leads and manages the department’s performance management and customer satisfaction measurement systems, department’s quality improvement and accreditation efforts, and supports the strategic planning process. KaShawna has worked in many areas of public health and has honed skills in public health administration, evaluation, quality improvement, health education, and health promotion. She holds a MSPH degree from Meharry Medical College in Nashville, TN.

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Michelle Mathew, BS


Public Health Administrator, DHSS Division of Public Health

Michelle Mathew is a public health administrator with Delaware Health and Social Services in the Division of Public Health where she has served for over ten years. In her roles, she has successfully lead teams within various programs including lead poisoning prevention, immunizations, sexual and reproductive health, early childhood intervention and school-based health. Special projects included oversight and deployment of vaccination teams for the H1N1 Swine Flu outbreak to local schools in 2009, identifying a targeted lead poisoning outbreak in specific ZIP code and cultural group of people and practice and providing education to reduce the hazard, and the COVID-19 emergency response to post-acute care facilities throughout Delaware. Currently, Michelle serves as the bureau chief with Adolescent and Reproductive Health and strives to lead her team to address the gaps of health equity. With a personal interest in social determinants of health, she is dedicated to maximizing her role in addressing the gaps that face the community and impact Delaware’s overall health, one step at a time.

Ryan Natividad, MPP


Administrative Manager I, Orange County Health Care Agency

Ryan Natividad is an administrative manager I in the Office of Population Health and Equity of the Orange County Health Care Agency. In this role, Ryan works with local community partners to create a healthier, more resilient, and more equitable Orange County through improvement science, data democratization, and equitable grantmaking.

Ryan is well-versed in public health and health policy and has contributed to various community health interventions and policy research assessing chronic disease risk, community health worker impact, healthy eating and active living practices, and positive and adverse childhood experiences among communities of color. Ryan’s social justice advocacy and research interests lie at the intersections of public health, health policy, and urban planning and how these fields address the social and political determinants of health through equity-focused, place-based, built environmental approaches.

Ryan has a BA in Anthropology from Columbia University and a Master’s of Public Policy from University of California, Riverside School of Public Policy. Ryan is also on the Steering Committee of the APA California Planners4Health. Ryan is an alumnus of leadership and professional development programs of Coro New York Leadership Center, Asian and Pacific Islander American Health Forum, and Yale Ciencia Academy. In 2021, Ryan was recognized as a 40 Under 40 in Public Health by the de Beaumont Foundation.

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Alonza Pamplin, BS


Communicable Disease Supervisor, Wake County Department of Health and Human Services

Alonza Pamplin is the communicable disease supervisor for the disease intervention team at the Wake County Department of Health and Human Services. Since 2016, she has used her experience in infectious disease to conduct disease intervention via health education, risk reduction counseling, partner notification, providing technical assistance to providers, and serving as a representative of the Wake County HIV Task Force, Wake Partners HIV/STI Coalition, and a task force to combat the 2022 Monkeypox outbreak. She earned her BS degree in Psychology from Howard University in 2012, and a BS in Public Health Education from North Carolina Central University (NCCU) in 2016.

Her passion for HIV/STD prevention and education began in 2013 at NCCU where she served as a peer educator. She is committed to supporting initiatives that focus on health equity, HIV advocacy, comprehensive sexual health education, and human rights. She also serves as a member of the National Coalition of STD Directors and the National Association of County and City Health Officials. A native of Durham, NC, she enjoys spending time with her family, traveling, watching movies, attending comedy shows and concerts, and discovering new restaurants.

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Heather Pangelinan, MS


Director of Public Health Services, Commonwealth Healthcare Corporation, Northern Mariana Islands

Heather is the Director for Public Health Services for the Northern Mariana Islands and oversees maternal and child health, WIC, HIV/STD/viral hepatitis, non-communicable disease, and environmental health programs. She started her career in public health working with vulnerable families in a home visiting program that served pregnant women and families with infants. Later she served as the administrator for the health department’s Maternal and Child Health Bureau. As administrator, Heather was responsible for various public health programs focused on improving the health and wellbeing of women, children, and families in the territory, which included programs such as the Maternal and Child Health Title V Services Block Grant, Title X Family Planning, early hearing detection and intervention, immunization and vaccines for children, and maternal, infant, and early childhood home visiting.

In 2019 she was awarded the Region IX Emerging MCH Professional Award by the Association of Maternal and Child Health Programs. In 2020, she received the MCHB Director’s Award by the Health and Resources Services Administration.

During the COVID-19 pandemic response, Heather served in the role of COVID-19 vaccination operations chief, overseeing COVID-19 vaccination activities for the territory of the Northern Mariana Islands.

Heather was born and raised in the Northern Mariana Islands and is of the Chamorro indigenous people from the territory. She earned a Bachelor’s degree in Social Science and a Master’s of Science degree in Counseling.

Souni Phanthavong, MPH


Program Administrator, Adolescent, School, and Reproductive Health, Rhode Island Department of Health

Sounivone Phanthavong serves as the program administrator for adolescent, school, and reproductive health and deputy chief of the Center for Preventive Services with the Rhode Island Department of Health. Sounivone is passionately committed to promoting health and health equity. She specializes in strategic and innovative approaches to develop policy, advance systems coordination, implement programming, and foster collaborative partnerships. She actively applies her background in clinical research to mobilize data-informed decision-making. Sounivone prioritizes authentic engagement that centers the experiences and amplifies the voices of communities. She is dedicated to creating systems change that builds space for justice.

Sounivone completed her undergraduate studies in Biology at Providence College. She earned her Master of Public Health degree at Boston University. She is a New Englander for whom Rhode Island is home. Her greatest joys are travel, photography, and spending quality time with her dogs.

Gayatri Raol, MPH, MSc, Black Belt, PMI-ACP, A-CSM


Project Manager, Wisconsin Department of Health Services

Gayatri Raol is a project manager who oversees division-wide data management projects including data access, data quality, unmet data needs, and data training at the Wisconsin Department of Health Services. Gayatri has eight years of experience working with various public health programs and systems in Wisconsin and Illinois. In addition to leading data management projects for the division of public health, she serves on the Health Equity Advisory Team, social connectedness and isolation, workforce development, and art in public health. Gayatri believes health equity and data management should be the fundamental part of all processes, projects, and services that public health delivers. She strives for continuous improvement and purpose-driven approach in her professional and personal life. Gayatri holds a Master’s Degree in Public Health with a concentration of Health Education and Promotion/Health Management and
Policy from Benedictine University. She also holds a Master’s Degree in Polymer Science, and certification in Project Management Agile Practitioner and a Six Sigma Belt.

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Raquel Saludo, LPN, BS


CDC Coordinator II, Guam Department of Public Health and Social Services

Raquel Saludo has devoted herself to empower and educate underserved and displaced communities in her island on preventive health and infectious diseases. In her current role, she serves as a communicable disease coordinator with Guam Department of Public Health and Social Services. She closely oversees and monitors vaccine preventable diseases in the local community. Additionally, Raquel has been assigned as the travel branch deputy director for quarantine facilities and airport operations during COVID-19 pandemic. With response efforts, she assisted with grant writing and helped train more than 100 staff to conduct investigations, contact tracing, and process incoming travelers.

Saludo received her Bachelors in Health Science from Excelsior College and completed Public Health Leadership and Management Course from North Dakota University Public Health Training Center. She is an MPH apprentice at Columbia Southern University and is completing her first year. In addition, Saludo was honored with a prestigious commendation award from the Commanding Officer of U.S. Naval Hospital Guam Department of Navy in recognition for her services as the immunization program manager and employee of the quarter.

A true public health leader, Raquel also plays a prominent role in the LGBTQ+ community and continues to advocate for uninsured individuals’ access to healthcare and mental well-being. Her desire to help others is compelling as she volunteers at various community centers. In her spare time, she enjoys spending time with family, friends, and her fur babies, playing soccer, volleyball, and softball, going to the beach, and DIY projects.

Kimberly Seals, MSPH, MPA


Director, Bureau of Maternal and Child Health, South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control

Ms. Kimberly Seals is the director of the Bureau of Maternal and Child Health with the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control. As director, she oversees several Division that leads and educates initiative across the state. Ms. Seals recently received the Association of Maternal and Child Health Program’s (AMCHP’s) 2020 MCH Emerging Professional award, which recognizes outstanding state and local MCH professionals under the age of 45 and currently serves as director-at- large by AMCHP’s Board of Directors. In January 2021, Ms. Seals was featured in AMCHP’s widely shared publication on Bold Voices from the MCH Field: The Urgency of Accompliceship to Advance Racial Justice.

Prior to relocating to South Carolina, Ms. Seals was the maternal and child health director for the March of Dimes Alabama office. In this role, Ms. Seals led the state’s programmatic and mission related activities of giving every baby a fighting chance at life. She has also served as a public health advisor for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in the Division of Global Migration and Quarantine.

Ms. Seals received her Master’s of Public Administration degree from Texas Southern University and her Master’s of Public Health degree from Meharry Medical College. She completed her undergraduate work from University of Alabama at Birmingham, with a Bachelor’s degree in Biology. Ms. Seals participates on several committees across the state of South Carolina and is passionate about racial and ethnic disparities research and programs that minimize the impact of inequities among communities of color.

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Ahana Singh, MPH


Clinical Services Project Manager, Community Clinic Association of Los Angeles County

Ahana Singh (she/her) is a public health professional who specializes in health education, project management, pandemic response, and disability and health.

At a local level, Ahana has held many roles in COVID-19 response, including exposure prevention and management at K-12 schools, case investigation, and management of mobile vaccine, testing, and therapeutics at Los Angeles County Department of Public Health.

Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, Ahana provided health education to high school-aged youth and adolescents with intellectual and developmental disabilities. At a state level, Ahana has helped develop a sustainable infrastructure in implementing early care and K-12 school-located vaccines for children and students at California Department of Public Health and advising and advocating for meeting the needs of individuals living with disabilities for the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services. Ahana also serves as a project manager leading healthcare transformation initiatives at a nonprofit organization representing federally qualified health centers in Los Angeles County through the Community Clinic Association of Los Angeles County. In her free time, Ahana promotes mental wellbeing to South Asian communities living in the United States and globally.

Ahana holds a Master's in Public Health degree in Community Health Education, a Graduate Certificate in Applied Disabilities Studies, and a Bachelor's in Science degree in Neuroscience. Ahana feels passionately about promoting health equity at all levels, including, local, state, and federal governments, and globally. Lastly, Ahana envisions a world where people are able to attain the quality of life they desire and deserve.

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Eric Tang, MD, MPH


Public Health Medical Officer, California Department of Public Health

Eric was born and raised in St. Louis, Missouri. He first moved to California when he attended Pomona College, where he received his Bachelor’s degree in Neuroscience and later attended medical school in New York City at Columbia University. Before his residency training, he completed two research fellowships in Lima, Peru, focusing on HIV prevention and syphilis among men who have sex with men. After these fellowships, he completed a combined internal medicine and preventive medicine residency through Kaiser San Francisco and University California, San Francisco, where he rotated through HIV and sexually transmitted diseases (STD) programs at local health departments and obtained his Master’s of Public Health in epidemiology at the University of California, Berkeley.

After residency, Eric joined the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) STD Control Branch in 2018 as a Public Health Medical Officer, where he serves as the chief of the Medical & Scientific Affairs Section. In this role, he is the state lead for multiple CDC-funded grants and spearheaded the launch of the STD Control Branch Racial & Health Equity Workgroup. At the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, he was one of the foundational leaders and early advisors for California’s COVID-19 contact tracing program. Early in the 2022 monkeypox outbreak, he led the Monkeypox Contact Tracing and Outbreak Team for CDPH and serves as a subject matter expert in engaging the LGBTQ+ community. He currently is part of the clinical faculty for the California Prevention Training Center and provides STD care to patients at San Francisco City Clinic.

Kristine Tran, MS, BS


Laboratory & Epidemiology Coordinator, DC Public Health Laboratory and DC Department of Health

Kristine currently serve as the laboratory and epidemiology coordinator between the DC Public Health Laboratory and the DC Department of Health. She is responsible for the development of outbreak protocols involving both agencies to ensure effective communication and data sharing. She is the primary point of contact for healthcare facilities, commercial laboratories, and other facilities within Washington, D.C. She assists in producing surveillance reports and analyzing performance metrics as dictated by federal grants. She works with outside stakeholders, including sentinel clinical laboratories, hospitals, and local health clinics, to communicate and educate staff to optimize submissions to the Public Health Laboratory.

Kristine graduated from George Mason University with a Master of Science in Global Health, where her thesis was focused on antimicrobial resistance. Her undergraduate degree is in Microbiology from Virginia Tech. She began her career in public health in the spring of 2020, where she started as a COVID-19 case investigator with the Virginia Department of Health. Prior to her current role in Washington, D.C., she was awarded an APHL COVID-19 Response Fellowship and joined the Massachusetts State Public Health Laboratory in their Bureau of Infectious Disease and Laboratory Sciences. During her time there, she assisted in validating SARS-CoV-2 rapid diagnostic and molecular testing along with next-generation sequencing data management.

In her free time, she enjoys travelling, curling up with a good book, and cooking and baking.

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Feliciana Turner, BS


Maternal and Child Health Unit Manager, Wyoming Department of Health, Public Health Division

Feliciana serves as the maternal and child health (MCH) unit manager in the Wyoming Department of Health, Public Health Division (WDH-PHD). In this role, she works to advance equitable outcomes for MCH populations. She responsible for administrative oversight of planning, budgeting, personnel management/supervision, information processing, and programmatic evaluations for the following programs: Women and Infant Health, Child Health, Adolescent Health, Children and Youth with Special Health Care Needs, Newborn Screening, and the Healthy Baby Home Visitation, a program co-led by Public Health Nursing. She also manages the Title V Maternal and Child Health Services Block Grant.

Prior to her current role, she served as WDH-PHD’s performance improvement and health equity manager where she worked to advance the use of data and equity principles to improve public health delivery, and supported workforce development and other division-wide projects. Feliciana also previously worked in substance abuse, suicide, and chronic disease prevention programs in both state government and in a nonprofit setting.

She is passionate about public health and has over ten years of experience in the field. Outside of work, Feliciana loves to spend time with her family, play outdoors with her four-year-old daughter, and experiment in the kitchen (as only a long-time Chopped fan would).

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Felicia Veasey, MHA


Community Systems Director, South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control

Felicia Veasey is a community systems director with the Department of Health and Environmental Control. She received her B.A. in Psychology with a Minor in Chemistry from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and her Master’s of Health Administration from Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine.

Felicia has over 15 years of experience championing and facilitating healthier lifestyles for communities. As the CSD, she serves 11 counties, as well as leads and directs efforts to support the implementation of community systems development. She also works to address health equity by improving the systems involved in promoting health and reducing chronic disease in partnership with community, municipal, and state health departments. Felicia also coordinates required grant-funded activities, facilitates community assessment processes, and acts as a liaison to internal and external stakeholders.

Currently, Felicia also functions as the COVID response operations director, in which capacity she oversees the testing and vaccinations for the state’s lowcountry region. Under her leadership, the region has developed more than 1,250 testing sites, administering 91,000+ COVID tests, and delivering over 53,500 vaccines. She also eliminated the online registration requirement for vaccine appointments to allow walk-ups, which increased access to vaccines given in underserved areas historically plagued with access challenges.

Felicia was a recipient of the 2022 James Clyburn Health Equity Award. She has also received awards from state, faith-based and community organizations for her leadership, service, and valuable contributions during the pandemic.

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Krystle White, BSPH, MPA


Manager of Health Equity Outcomes, Gaston County DHHS Public Health

Krystle is the manager of health equity outcomes with DHHS Gaston County Public Health and the Manager of the DHHS Gaston County Health Equity Team. A native of Charlotte, North Carolina, a graduate of the very first BSPH (Bachelor of Science in Public Health) cohort at UNC-Charlotte in 2009, and with over 10 years of public health education, training and promotion, she started her journey of investing in the health of her community well over a decade ago. After obtaining her undergraduate degree, she began working within the non-profit sector with The American Red Cross while also simultaneously obtaining a Master’s in Public Administration (MPA) in 2014. In an effort to work closer within the field of public health, she accepted the role as the child care health consultant for Gaston County in 2017. During her tenure there, she has enthusiastically served as a resource and active committee member of over 10 professional organizations, including her county’s epidemiology team. In addition, she has also developed and launched a number of health education and promotion initiatives and campaigns for educators and those within our local community. She has made it her mission to invest in our community and empower the citizens through equitable and fair systemic practices that will in return yield a healthier and more productive society.

"Obtaining justice in health is a true investment in the justice of humanity." - Krystle White