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Faculty and Staff


Jon Vernick

Jon S. Vernick, JD, MPH

Center Director

Jon S. Vernick, JD, MPH, is a Professor and Associate Chair of Health Policy and Management at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and Director of the Johns Hopkins Center for Law and the Public’s Health. He is the primary instructor for courses on Issues in Injury and Violence Prevention, and Public Health and the Law. He is also Director of the MPH/JD Program at Johns Hopkins. His research has concentrated on ways in which the law and legal interventions can improve the public's health. Prof. Vernick is particularly interested in epidemiologic, policy, legal, and ethical issues associated with the prevention of injuries. He also studied legal aspects of motor vehicle safety, tobacco control, public health preparedness, and obesity prevention, having published more than 150 scholarly articles, chapters, and reports on these and other topics. Prof. Vernick is committed to translating research findings into policy change, regularly working with legislators, media, courts, and advocates to provide information about effective policies. He is affiliated with the Eastern Region of the Network for Public Health Law. Prof. Vernick earned his BA from the Johns Hopkins University, a JD with honors from the George Washington University, and an MPH from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.

Joanne Rosen

Joanne Rosen, JD, MA

Center Co-Director

Joanne Rosen is a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Health Policy and Management at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and holds a joint appointment in the Department of Population, Family and Reproductive Health. She is the Co-Director of the Center for Law and the Public's Health. Educated in Canada, Joanne obtained her JD and MA at the University of Toronto. Her interests include reproductive health, intimate behavior and relationships, sexual and gender minorities, and discrimination. She is particularly interested in laws that regulate in these areas and their impact on public health. Joanne has written on abortion, LGBTQ health disparities, and crisis pregnancy centers. She teaches courses in LGBTQ Health Policy and Legal and Public Health Issues in the Regulation of Intimacy. Before moving to the United States, Joanne served as counsel to the Ontario Human Rights Commission, and specialized in human rights and administrative law.

Alex McCourt

Alex McCourt, JD, MPH, PhD

Center Assistant Director

Alex McCourt is an Assistant Professor of Health Policy and Management at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. Trained as a public health lawyer, he combines legal research with empirical methods to study instances in which law plays a role in shaping the public’s health. Much of his work has focused on firearm policy and violence, including homicide, suicide, and intimate partner violence. Dr. McCourt also works in the areas of transportation safety, opioid policy, and access to health care. He received his PhD from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and his JD/MPH from the University of Arizona.

Lainie Rutkow

Lainie Rutkow, JD, PhD, MPH

Center Senior Advisor

Lainie Rutkow is a Professor of Health Policy and Management at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, with joint appointments in the Bloomberg School’s Department of Health, Behavior and Society and the School of Medicine’s Department of Emergency Medicine. She is Vice Provost for Interdisciplinary Initiatives at Johns Hopkins and serves as senior advisor to the Center for Law and the Public’s Health. Dr. Rutkow works at the intersection of public policy, law, and health, using legal, qualitative, and quantitative methods to determine how law influences public health outcomes. She is particularly interested in sub-national natural experiments involving public health laws, and has led seminal evaluations of U.S. states’ legal efforts to promote emergency preparedness, address opioid use disorders, and mitigate childhood obesity. She has authored over 125 peer-reviewed publications on these and related topics in journals including JAMA, New England Journal of Medicine, and the American Journal of Public Health. Her work has been supported by the National Institutes of Health, National Science Foundation, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, and American Heart Association. Dr. Rutkow was the inaugural visiting scholar with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Public Health Law Program. She earned a BA in comparative literature and history of science and medicine from Yale University, and holds a JD from New York University School of Law, and an MPH and PhD, in health policy, from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. She is a member of the bar in New York.

Leonard Rubenstein

Leonard Rubenstein, JD, LLM

Center Faculty

Leonard Rubenstein, JD, LLM is a Professor of the Practice in the Department of Epidemiology at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. Prof. Rubenstein is a lawyer who has spent his career in the field of health and human rights. His current interests include strengthening data collection, prevention strategies and accountability mechanisms to assure respect for international law regarding protection of hospitals, clinics, patients, health workers, and ambulances in times of armed or civil conflict; developing a screening tool for identifying refugee women who have been subjected to sexual or gender-based violence; identifying the institutional policies and procedures that facilitated health professional involvement in abuse of alleged terrorists in the U.S. military and intelligence custody; and approaching regulation of industrialized animal farming from a human rights standpoint. He is affiliated with the Center for Public Health and Human Rights, the Center for a Livable Future, and the Berman Institute of Bioethics. Prof. Rubenstein earned his JD from Harvard Law School and an LLM from Georgetown University Law Center.

Paul A. Locke

Paul A. Locke, JD, MPH, DrPH

Center Faculty

Paul A. Locke, JD, MPH, DrPH, is an Associate Professor of Environmental Health Sciences at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. He studies how decisionmakers use environmental health sciences such as epidemiology, toxicology, and radiobiology in policymaking and how environmental health sciences influence the policymaking process. His research and practice have concentrated on both radiation law and alternatives to animals in toxicity testing. Locke’s work was instrumental in establishing U.S. policy for testing and mitigation of radon in homes, and his work on three National Academy studies has influenced the disposal of high-level waste from Cold War Legacy Sites. He holds an MPH from Yale University School of Medicine, a DrPH from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, and a JD from Vanderbilt University School of Law.


Christina Bailey

Senior Administrative Coordinator

Christina Bailey brings years of administrative experience to her role as a Senior Administrative Coordinator at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. She holds a BFA from the Maryland Institute College of Art and is working towards her MA in Writing from Johns Hopkins University. Christina appreciates the challenge of administrative work and enjoys working with students and faculty.