Global WACh

January 2, 2020

Announcing leadership transitions within Global WACh

Global WACh is thrilled to begin 2020 with the announcement of two new members of our leadership team. Dr. Judd Walson will join Dr. Grace John-Stewart as Co-Director of the Center and Dr. Donna Denno will take over as the Center’s Associate Director, representing the Department of Pediatrics. Dr. Denno will be taking over this role from Dr. Maneesh Batra, who is stepping down after eight years in the position to expand his time working with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. He will continue to be an active Global WACh community member. We thank Dr. Batra for his outstanding contributions of wisdom and insight that have been invaluable to our success as a Center!

Dr. Judd Walson is Vice Chair of the Department of Global Health and Professor in the Departments of Global Health, Epidemiology, Pediatrics, and Medicine. Dr. Walson is a world leader in global health, leading studies throughout the world, including in Benin, Burkina Faso, Malawi, Kenya, Uganda, Ethiopia, Pakistan, Bangladesh, and India. He leads several large clinical and observational trials focused on neglected tropical diseases, enteric diseases, child survival, growth, and development. Dr. Walson has led the Gut Health and Child Survival Scientific Priority area in Global WACh and has provided key leadership and input on the development of Global WACh since the inception of the Center. Dr. Walson brings passions for improving health, mentoring trainees, and building sustainable equitable systems and a tremendous track record in establishing new collaborations and programs. As Co-Director of Global WACh, Dr. Walson will lead new directions for the Center and will oversee the continued growth and development of new faculty, research, and programs within the Center.

Dr. Donna Denno is Professor in the Departments of Pediatrics, Global Health, and Health Services. She is a practicing pediatrician and mentors pediatric residents in their continuity clinic. She has extensive experience working in South Asia and sub-Saharan Africa, including Ghana and Malawi. Dr. Denno has served as a consultant to non-governmental organizations and the World Health Organization and co-mentored students engaged in WHO internships. Her areas of advocacy and research interests include health service delivery among vulnerable and hard-to-reach child and adolescent populations and the intertwining effects of enteric infections, environmental enteric dysfunction, and undernutrition on child survival and “thrival”. Dr. Denno is an accomplished mentor and teacher – she instructs the core course on maternal and child health in low- and middle-income settings which is also a core requirement for the Global WACh Graduate Certificate Program. She is passionate about focusing her teaching, mentoring, research, and clinical work on reducing health and health care disparities among children and adolescents globally. Dr. Denno has been a member of and served as Global WACh technical advisor for over a decade and looks forward to her new role which will focus on expanding linkages to the Department of Pediatrics, a founding member of Global WACh.

We thank Dr. Batra and welcome Drs. Walson and Denno to their new leadership roles!