Our Executive Committee serves as NCD Child’s executive body that provides operational oversight for all NCD Child activities. The Executive Committee is supported by the Secretariat based at the Centre for Global Child Health at The Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto, Canada.
Our Governing Council serves as NCD Child’s governing body and provides strategic guidance and direction in establishing policies and strategies that support NCD Child’s mission and goals that affect the integrity, effectiveness, and sustainability of activities and initiatives of NCD Child.
Meet our Committee and Council Members below.
Dr. Zulfiqar A. Bhutta is the Executive Director of NCD Child, the Inaugural Robert Harding Chair in Global Child Health and Inaugural Ibn Sina Scholar in Global Child Health at the Hospital for Sick Children, Co-Director of SickKids’ Centre for Global Child Health, and Founding Director of both the Centre of Excellence in Women and Child Health, and Institute of Global Health and Development at Aga Khan University. He holds adjunct professorships at universities including Johns HopkinsUniversity and the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine. Dr. Bhutta is a Distinguished National Professor of the Government of Pakistan, co-Chair of the Maternal and Child Health oversight committee of WHO Eastern Mediterranean Region, the Coalition of Centres in Global Child Health Chairman, and a leading voice for health professionals supporting integrated maternal, newborn and child health globally.
Dr. Bhutta leads large research groups in Toronto, Karachi and Nairobi with special interests in scaling up evidence-based, community setting interventions and implementation of RMNCAH&N interventions in humanitarian contexts. His work with community health workers influenced maternal and newborn outreach programs for marginalized populations internationally and his group’s work with the WHO and PMNCH is guiding essential global intervention policies for women, children and adolescents.
Dr. Bhutta obtained his MBBS from the University of Peshawar and his PhD from the Karolinska Institute. He is a Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians, the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health, and the Pakistan Academy of Sciences. In 2020 he was awarded the honour of Fellow of the Royal Society.
Dr. Alafia Samuels is the retired Director of the George Alleyne Chronic Disease Research Centre at the University of the West Indies (UWI) in Barbados and is currently Honorary Professor at the Caribbean Institute for Health Research, UWI, Jamaica.
She is a medical doctor trained at UWI in Jamaica and holds a MPH (Masters in Public Health) and a PhD in Chronic Disease Epidemiology. Both degrees were awarded with honors from Johns Hopkins University.
Her past employment includes being the Advisor in Chronic Diseases at PAHO/WHO, Professor of Public Health and Epidemiology at the University of the West Indies in Barbados, and managing Primary Health Care Services in Jamaica. She has served on the multi-sectoral Barbados National NCD (Non-Communicable Diseases) Commission.
Currently, Dr. Alafia Samuels is a Lancet One Health Commissioner, member of PAHO TAG for NCDs in the Caribbean, co-chair of the World Obesity Foundation Policy and Prevention committee, and Advisor to Healthy Caribbean Coalition
Her research interests include policy and practice in NCD prevention and control, clinical quality of care and evaluation of NCD programs. She was the Principal Investigator of the IDRC funded evaluation of the CARICOM Heads of Government 2007 Non-Communicable Diseases Declaration of Port of Spain.
Dr. Samuels has over 50 peer-reviewed publications.
Hanin Odeh is a Jordanian international development consultant and a public health advocate. She has 16+ years of experience working in the development domain leading programs in education, health, social and economic empowerment, and specifically in humanitarian contexts.
She was the former Director General of Royal Health Awareness Society, a non-profit initiative of Her Majesty Queen Rania of Jordan. RHAS focuses on promoting wellbeing behaviors and healthy lifestyles among children, youth and communities at large. During her tenure at RHAS, Hanin has contributed to the design and implementation to nation-wide programs with UN agencies (WHO, WFP, UNICEF, UNFPA), WDF, USAID, EU, as well as other regional and local partners. She has also led multiple communications and advocacy efforts with ministries of health and education, related to children’s healthy diets, physical activity, tobacco control, child and maternal health, reproductive health, drugs prevention, road safety, and chronic disease prevention at primary health care level, and more recently in national COVID response.
Hanin was the chair of the organizing committee for the “Third Regional Adolescent Health Conference”, and has also been a founding member of the Jordanian as well as the EMRO NCD Alliances.
Hanin is a current Member of the World Heart Federation’s Tobacco Expert Group, and has contributed to a recent published policy brief related to harmful impact of E-cigarettes on Cardio-vascular health.
Prior to her appointment at RHAS in 2015, Hanin worked about 8 years at the King Abdullah II Fund for Development, last role was the Fund’s Programs and Initiatives Manager. She also worked as an Assistant Manager at PwC’s Middle East Public Sector Institute, where she developed and delivered Learning and Development trainings for upskilling public sector leaders across the Middle East.
Hanin holds an MSc. in Social Policy and Development from the London School of Economics, where she focused her thesis on ‘Host Countries Responses to Refugees Influx: The case of Jordan’. She has extensive experience in nonprofit strategic management, business development, and public private partnerships. She attended an executive program on NGOs management at Harvard Kennedy School. She is also a certified Project Management Professional.
Heba AlSawahli is a technical officer in the non-communicable diseases (NCDs) unit at World Health Organization Representative Office in Egypt. She is a medical doctor with a master’s degree in public policy. Promoting healthy nutrition, tobacco control, and improving mental health are her main activities and interests. She works on policy and community levels to address the burden of NCDs and to highlight their link with other health and development challenges. To do so, she engages in situational analyses and discussions with decision-makers to adapt best practices to the national context of Egypt. In addition, she works with communities to implement solutions that inspire change in health behaviors.
Before her current role, Heba used to work with civil society organizations to encourage healthy practices and inform various populations to make healthy choices, especially among young girls and adolescents.
Research is another interesting area for her. As part of her experience in eye health, she successfully managed a population-based survey project on the Rapid Assessment of Avoidable Blindness; the first of its kind in Egypt, as its Principal Investigator.
Heba is also grateful for the clinical experience she gained and the insights that motivated her to study and provide policy actions about the retention of physicians in her country, as part of her master’s thesis.
By joining NCD child, Heba aims at putting children at the heart of the NCDs agenda, especially in low- and middle-income countries. She wants to contribute to evidence-based resources about children, adolescents, and NCDs, as well as build meaningful partnerships for synergistic impact. change.
Dr. Tamera Coyne-Beasley is the Derrol Dawkins, MD Endowed Chair in Adolescent Medicine, Division Director for Adolescent Medicine, Vice-Chair of Pediatrics for Community Engagement, and Professor of Pediatrics and Internal Medicine at the University of Alabama Birmingham.
Her areas of expertise and training include adolescent medicine, preventive medicine, health services research, epidemiology and public health.
Her research, academic, community engagement, and policy and program development focus on adolescent health and well-being, and risk behaviors including sexual and reproductive health, violence prevention, substance use prevention, health promotion and disease prevention, reducing health disparities, improving health care access, community engaged research, practice based research, immunizations and global health.
Her global heath work has included the strategic development of adolescent health plans for countries and international communities.
Dr. Coyne-Beasley was appointed by the U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services to the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP). She continues to contribute towards the review of scientific immunization evidence and development of ACIP vaccine policy.
She also served as a member of The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine’s committee on Applying Lessons of Optimal Adolescent Health to Improve Behavioral Outcomes for Youth.
Dr. Coyne-Beasley is also a Past President of the Society for Adolescent Health and Medicine, an international organization dedicated to the health and wellbeing of adolescents and young adults and the providers who serve them.
Dr. Marie Hauerslev is a Danish physician and the Chair of NCD Child. Dr. Hauerslev is the Chair of the WHO GCM/NCD Lab on Youth and the Next Generation and a Commissioner on the Lancet Commission on Gender-Based Violence and Maltreatment of Young People.
Alongside her global advocacy and research work, Marie is currently in her formal training in paediatrics at Herlev Hospital, Copenhagen. Previously, as Vice-President for External Affairs and Liaison Officer to WHO of the International Federation of Medical Students’ Associations (IFMSA), Dr. Hauerslev was the global leader of IFMSA’s external work, collaborating with the UN, WHO, World Medical Association and more. Marie was the driving force behind IFMSA’s leadership in the youth and NCDs movement in 2017.
Dr. Hauerslev has worked at WHO Global Coordination Mechanism for NCDs focusing on children and youth.
Martin is the Founding Chair, Framework Convention on Global Health Alliance and the 2020 Emerging Leader, World Heart Federation. Martin currently serves as the Vice-President of the Ibero-American Association of Law Schools and sits in the Academic Advisory Group of the Global Center for Legal Innovation on Food Environments at Georgetown University and the Advisory Board of the Interamerican Heart Foundation (Argentina).
He has also been a legal consultant to the Argentine National Congress on the reform, actualization, and unification of the Civil and Commercial Codes (2012 – 2013) and consulted as an Expert for the World Health Organization Public Health Law Consultation Group.
He has been a Fellow of the Reproductive and Sexual Health Law Program at the University of Toronto (2009).
Martin’s papers have been published in international journals such as the Harvard Journal of Health & Human Rights, the Texas Law Review, the International Review of Intellectual Property and Competition Law, the Florida Journal of International Law, the Canadian Journal of Law & Jurisprudence, and the International Journal of Gynecology and Obstetrics. He has been quoted by the the Chilean Constitutional Court the Argentine National Civil, and the Commercial Law Chamber.
He earned his doctorate in law in 2007 at the University of Toronto, Canada (Alan Marks Medal to the Best Graduate Thesis, Gordon Cressy Student Leadership Award for extraordinary extra-curricular contributions to university life, Louis & Mary Anisman in Law and Fairness (2005) and President of the Graduate Law Student´s Association (2004 – 2006).
Martín is convinced that law is a driver for innovative, positive social and policy change. Given the impact of NCDs on children and adolescents across the life-course, Martín brings a human rights perspective to NCD Child.
Maisha Hutton is the Executive Director of the Healthy Caribbean Coalition (HCC), the only regional alliance of over 100 NCD focused civil society organizations. Maisha holds a BSc in Microbiology, a MSc. in Molecular Biology and a PGDip in International Health and has been working in public health for over twenty years.
Prior to joining the Healthy Caribbean Coalition, she worked in HIV/AIDS and STI prevention and control.
Maisha has been with the HCC since 2012 where she is responsible for the daily operations and leading on the implementation of HCC’s strategic plan which is underpinned by five strategic pillars: accountability; advocacy; communication; capacity building; and sustainability. The HCC Secretariat in collaboration with its civil society members – works with national, regional and international public and private partners to drive NCD policy and programming in a number of priority areas including: civil society capacity building; cervical cancer prevention; alcohol policy; tobacco control; food policy; childhood obesity prevention; empowering and amplifying the voices of young people and people living with NCDs; and strengthening mechanisms for a whole of government and whole of society multi-sectoral response to NCDs.
Felicia Marie Knaul, BA (International Development, University of Toronto), MA, PhD (Economics, Harvard University) is a Professor at the Miller School of Medicine of the University of Miami and Director of the University of Miami Institute for Advanced Study of the Americas (UMIA). She is also a Senior Economist at the Mexican Health Foundation; member of the Mexican National Academy of Medicine; and Chair of the Lancet Commission on Gender-based Violence and Maltreatment of Young People.
In 2020, she was elected as a Fellow of the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences. Her research focuses on global health, cancer, particularly women’s and pediatric cancers, and especially in low and middle-income countries, women and health, health systems and reform, health financing, access to pain control and palliative care, poverty and inequity, gender equity and female labor force participation, and children in especially difficult circumstances.
After her breast cancer diagnosis, Knaul founded Cancer de Mama: Tómatelo a Pecho, a Mexico-based NGO that promotes research, advocacy, awareness, and early detection of women’s health issues in Latin America, and has lectured globally on the challenge of breast cancer in LMICs, both as patient-advocate and health systems researcher.
Dr. George Msengi is a recently graduated Tanzanian physician and member of the Executive Committee of NCD Child. He holds numerous leadership and volunteer positions as a youth and NCDs advocate.
In his home country Tanzania, he volunteers as a helpline counselor at the Tanzania Youth Alliance where they receive over a thousand toll free calls from youths all over the country. He volunteers with multiple screening and health educational programs such as Helping Babies Breathe (with Kairuki University), community based Breast and cervical cancer screening programs (with the Agha Khan Hospital) but also founded a research forum nurturing young researchers in Tanzania called TYRF(Tanzania Young Researcher’s Forum).
He also holds leadership roles as the secretariat of the African NCDs Network which is the regional national alliance network.
He founded the Young Professionals’ Chronic Disease Network Tanzania’s Chapter in 2016 and acts as the chapter chairperson to date, he is a member of the WHO’s Civil Society Working Group on NCDs as a co-leader of the Advocacy and Communication steering group.
In addition to his leadership positions, Dr. Msengi also completed a research project as the principal investigator, with the Government’s Ministry of Health; an interventional study to combat childhood obesity in secondary school children recently published in December 2020 by the East African Health Research Journal.
He has a number of other co-authored publications relating to NCDs and youth. He is currently part of the national STEPS committee for implementing the WHO 2021 STEPS survey in Tanzania. He is a member of the National organizing committee of the National NCDs conference in Tanzania.
He has received numerous awards and grants and has represented and steered youth-based events in multiple recognized regional and international gatherings such as the World Health Assembly (70, 71), The WHO Afro Regional Committee Meeting (70) and the United Nations General Assembly (74).
Dr. Msengi is currently spear heading a SEED grant by NCD Alliance to the African NCDs Network to strengthen the network by capacitating sub-regional and national structures to achieve SDG target 3.4. He is also the current chair of the organizing committee of the first 2021 African NCDs Alliances General Assembly.
Dr. Msengi is passionate about young people, NCDs and global advocacy.
Abdrahamane Ouedraogo (MBBS, PgDip in Public Health) is affiliated to Burkina Faso Public Health Association as researcher and contributor in health systems and reproductive health. He is founder and coordinator of Mahidol Public Health Association, a nonprofit active in the prevention and control of non-communicable diseases in Burkina Faso and in Africa. Abdrahamane also leads the national chapter of the Global Young Professional Chronic Diseases Network. He is recipient of the Unesco-Merck Emerging Research Talent Award in 2015 in Geneva. Abdrahamane led the process to establish the Burkina Faso NCD Alliance and is elected board member of the African NCDs Network.
Ellen Barnie Peprah is a medical doctor with interests in strengthening health systems for women, children and adolescents’ health, youth development and NCDs. She is currently a clinical researcher at the Faculty of Public Health, Ghana College of Physicians and Surgeons working on the STOP NCDs project – a UK NIHR-funded project to develop, implement and evaluate ways of improving the control of hypertension, diabetes and related stress, anxiety, and depression in Ghana, Burkina Faso and Niger.
Prior to this, Ellen worked as a primary care physician at the Ghana Health Service providing healthcare in both urban and rural settings. She also served as Coordinator for the Commonwealth Youth Health Network(CYHN) – a youth network that seeks to amplify the voices of young people from the Commonwealth on global health issues. She represented CYHN on the WHO Youth Council and played a pivotal role in the development of the Commonwealth NCD Strategy and Implementation Plan which prioritizes young people.
Dr. Peprah has won several awards in recognition for her work and advocacy for the health of adolescents and young people including the IMNHC Fellowship, Swiss Plexus Fellowship, World Bank Blog4Dev and the Millennium Fellowship. She holds a BSc. Human Biology and a Bachelor of Medicine and Surgery(MBChB) degree from the Kwame Nkrumah University Of Science and Technology, Ghana.
Aman Pulungan is a professor of pediatrics, executive director elect of the International Pediatric Association, the president of Indonesian Pediatric Society, president of the Asia Pacific Pediatric Association, senior consultant in Pediatric Endocrinology, Faculty of Medicine, University of Indonesia, committee for medical specialist deployment Ministry of Health (MOH) Republic of Indonesia, NCD Child Governing Council, and past president of the Asia Pacific Paediatric Endocrine Society (APPES). For the past 20 years, he has been involved in many programs for diabetes in Indonesia and in the region, amongst others, the project leader for the World Diabetes Foundation type 1 DM in Indonesia, and as a member of the advisory board of the Physician International Society for Pediatric and Adolescent Diabetes.
He has been awarded by the Indonesian MOH as one of the most eminent person who has been actively involved in the national immunization program, as a honorary fellowship by the Turkish National Pediatric Association for dedication and contribution to child health, and as a honorary fellow of the Royal College of Physicians of Ireland (RCPI).
He is also a member of the health advisory board of The Australia-Indonesia Centre and media and communications division of The Global Pediatric Endocrinology and Diabetes.
He initiated the formation of IKADAR, an organisation for families with diabetic children which includes patients, doctors and educators. He took important roles in the formation of Foundation for Congenital Adrenal hyperplasia Families (KAHAKI), Families Forum for Osteogenesis Imperfecta (FOSTEO), Turner Society Indonesia (TSI).
He is a member of various international organizations such as APPES, ESPE, ISPAD, International Fellow of American Academy of Pediatrics, GPED, DOHAD Society, and the Endocrine Society. He is part of the editorial board of International Journal of Pediatric Endocrinology and The Annals of Pediatric Endocrinology & Metabolism.
His research interests include the genetic profile of Pygmies Rampasasa in Flores, short stature and stunting, congenital hypothyroidism, early life and metabolic syndrome, as well as global health.
He is the copyright holder of the Indonesian National Growth Charts and the Pediatric Online Immunization Reporting System (I-Points) Application and Manual Book.
Ogweno Stephen is an award-winning global health enthusiast and practitioner, a non-communicable diseases (NCDs) advocate and an author. His background is in Global health having studied at Cambridge University and the University of Manchester. He is known for his vast work in developing programmes and innovations, aimed at improving health literacy and access to care for chronic diseases. As the founder and CEO of Stowelink, he has led the implementation of such programmes in over 8 countries in Africa and continues to develop innovations to make health accessible to the next 1 billion Africans. In addition to this Ogweno also currently serves in several boards and committees globally including in the World Health Organization where he is as a steering member of NCDs Labs under the thematic area NCDs and the Next Generation. Ogweno Stephen is also a published scientific researcher, a keynote speaker and the author of 6 books. Ogweno is an avid reader who loves traveling and enjoys a quiet meditation every morning.
Victoria Watson, MSc., is a global health research and policy specialist committed to achieving equity in how young people access services, care, and prevention within their community. As a cancer survivor, Victoria is compelled to improve the universality of quality primary care for all young people globally.
For over six years, Victoria worked at the intersection of health policy and program management: in 2015 Victoria interned at the Clinton Foundation in program development, and thereafter held positions in cancer screening program design for Cancer Care Ontario and in policy research for congressional advocacy at the Centre for Health and Gender Equity in Washington, DC. In 2019-2020, Victoria served as the Executive Director of the International Youth Alliance for Family Planning within the Gates Institute for Population and Reproductive Health at Johns Hopkins University, managing an 80-country network for youth-led advocacy relating to gender and SRHR, and overseeing research projects for the Gates Foundation and the WHO.
Since joining NCD Child in 2016 as a Governing Council member and a convener of young leaders, Victoria has led the coalition’s youth engagement efforts by serving as the chair to both the Youth Voices Committee and the Young Leader Program. In 2016 Victoria was recognized as a Youth Health Scholar as a part of the One Young World conference, and represented NCD Child in a series of workshops.
Victoria is now a law student at the Schulich School of Law at Dalhousie University where she actively contributes to research projects at the Health Law Institute.
Victoria currently lives between Halifax, NS and Toronto, ON.
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