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Admiral Rachel Levine From HHS, Govs. Cooper, Evers, Lujan Grisham, Whitmer, and Wolf Added as Featured Speakers at The Bloomberg American Health Summit

Virtual event to kickoff at 9:30 a.m. EST on Wednesday, November 10 , Media registration:


New featured speakers have been added to the 2021 Bloomberg American Health Summit to be held virtually November 10. Admiral Rachel L. Levine, Assistant Secretary for Health at the Department of Health and Human Services, will speak about the challenges the pandemic presented and the opportunities the country should take from it to better address pressing public health issues. Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer and Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf will discuss their states’ efforts to stem the opioid crisis that continues to take a toll in overdose deaths. 

In a separate conversation, Govs. Michelle Lujan Grisham of New Mexico, Tony Evers of Wisconsin, and Roy Cooper of North Carolina will discuss how states can lead during a public health crisis. Michael R. Bloomberg, founder of Bloomberg LP and Bloomberg Philanthropies, will also make a special announcement.  

Now in its fourth year, the Summit, hosted by the Bloomberg American Health Initiative at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, will bring together innovators and policymakers from around the country who are working in the Initiative’s five focus areas: addiction and overdose, environmental challenges, obesity and the food system, adolescent health, and violence.

Topics to be discussed will include racism and inequities in public health, the health of adolescent immigrants crossing the border, the link between obesity and the food system, transit equity in Baltimore, better use of data in public health, and new community policing models being deployed by several cities.

Other speakers include Lisa Hamilton, President and CEO of The Annie E. Casey Foundation, who will talk about the benefits of the child tax credit that helped struggling families during the pandemic. Nicole Lurie, U.S. Director of the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations, will participate in a conversation about preparing for the next crisis by changing the way we approach everyday public health challenges. And Rev. Dr. Howard-John Wesley of Alfred Street Baptist Church will deliver a keynote on confronting racism in the pursuit of public health. David M. Carlisle, President and CEO of Charles R. Drew University of Medicine and Science, and James E.K. Hildreth, President and CEO, Professor of Internal Medicine, Meharry Medical College, will participate in a panel about equity and health disparities.

The conference will also feature the work of Bloomberg Fellows who, with the help of the Initiative, are working at the community level on challenging public health issues. Haven Wheelock will be featured in a conversation about her work to decriminalize simple drug possession in Oregon.  Mónica Guerrero Vázquez, Rocio Carranza Jacinto, and Casey Thomas will share their work improving the lives of immigrant children.

The Summit’s theme, “Public Health Visible,” recognizes the higher profile public health has taken since the start of the pandemic. The November 10 morning and afternoon sessions will be livestreamed and are open to the press.

Featured speakers include:

  • Beth Blauer, Associate Vice Provost for Public Sector Innovation, Johns Hopkins University
  • Charles T. Brown, Founder and Principal, Equitable Cities
  • The Honorable Sharice Davids, U.S. House of Representatives
  • Patricia E. Harris, CEO, Bloomberg Philanthropies
  • Joneigh S. Khaldun, Vice President and Chief Health Equity Officer, CVS Health

Speakers from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health include:

  • Ellen J. MacKenzie, Dean, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health
  • Joshua Sharfstein, Director, Bloomberg American Health Initiative and Vice Dean for Public
    Health Practice
  • Michelle Spencer, Associate Director, Bloomberg American Health Initiative

The Bloomberg American Health Initiative was created in 2016 with a $300 million gift from Bloomberg Philanthropies to the Bloomberg School, the world’s leading school of public health. It was formed in response to declining life expectancy in the U.S., with the goal of addressing some of the country’s most critical health challenges. The Initiative also administers the Bloomberg Fellows Program, which provides full-tuition scholarships for public health graduate degrees at the Bloomberg School to professionals whose work aligns with that of the Initiative.

The fourth annual Bloomberg American Health Summit


November 10, 9:30 a.m.–2:30 p.m.

For additional questions please contact Andrea K. McDaniels, 410-614-1892 or

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About the Bloomberg American Health Initiative
The Bloomberg American Health Initiative at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health works to tackle some of the most pressing challenges to public health in the United States: addiction and overdose, environmental challenges, obesity and the food system, adolescent health, and violence. The Initiative has set out to train a new generation of professionals committed to improving public health nationwide, awarding 50 full-tuition scholarships for Master of Public Health degrees and 8 to 10 full-tuition scholarships for Doctor of Public Health degrees each year. For more information, visit

About Bloomberg Philanthropies
Bloomberg Philanthropies invests in 810 cities and 170 countries around the world to ensure better, longer lives for the greatest number of people. The organization focuses on five key areas for creating lasting change: the Arts, Education, Environment, Government Innovation, and Public Health. Bloomberg Philanthropies encompasses all of Michael R. Bloomberg’s giving, including his foundation, corporate, and personal philanthropy as well as Bloomberg Associates, a pro bono consultancy that works in cities around the world. In 2020, Bloomberg Philanthropies distributed $1.6 billion. For more information, please visit or follow us on Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, and Twitter.