Keynote Speakers

Dr. Judith Monroe

Deputy Director, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and Director, Office for State, Tribal, Local and Territorial Support

As a deputy director of CDC and director of its Office for State, Tribal, Local and Territorial Support, Dr. Judith Monroe oversees key activities that support the nation’s health departments and the public health system. She fosters collaboration between the fields of medicine and public health to navigate changes in the US health system and ultimately improve population health. Dr. Monroe supports building the public health workforce through programs such as the Public Health Associate Program and providing field support and technical assistance to public health professionals. Dr. Monroe envisioned and helped develop the National Leadership Academy for the Public's Health, a one-year leadership training program that trains teams of community stakeholders to tackle public health problems in their communities.


Dr. David Howard

Associate Professor, Department of Health Policy and Management, Rollins School of Public Health, Emory University

Dr. David Howard is an Associate Professor in the Department of Health Policy and Management at Emory University. A health economist by training, Dr. Howard's research employs economics and statistics to better understand physician decision-making and its implications for public policy. He has acted as an advisor or consultant to the Center for Medicare & Medicaid Services, MEDPAC, the American Cancer Society, the Division of Transplantation in the Department of Health and Human Services, and the Institute of Medicine. He is a member of the Cancer Prevention and Control research program at Winship Cancer Institute. He also holds memberships with CMS's Medicare Evidence Development & Coverage Advisory Committee and chairs the advisory board of the National Living Donation Assistance Center.


Guest Faculty

Dr. Janet Gilsdorf

Robert P. Kelch Professor of Pediatrics, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor and President, Pediatrics Infectious Diseases Society

Dr. Janet Gilsdorf is a pediatric infectious disease specialist, a faculty member of the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor where she presently serves as the Robert P. Kelch Professor of Pediatrics. Dr. Gilsdorf also is currently the President of Pediatric Infectious Diseases Society where she has been a member since 1984.  Dr. Gilsdorf’s research laboratory has been funded for many years by research awards from the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders and the National Institute of Heart, Lung, and Blood.  In addition to her professional accomplishments, Dr Gilsdorf is an accomplished writer.  She is the author of Inside/Outside: A Physician’s Journey with Breast Cancer and the novel Ten Days.


Panel Speakers

Adam Arthur

Virtual Platform Initiative Lead, CSELS Plain Language Lead, CSELS Liaison to CDC Health

Adam Arthur is the CDC’s Virtual Platform Initiative Lead – advancing learning and collaboration in the digital space by launching online and hybrid (both in-person and virtual) public health engagements. He held his first virtual use case pilot, (a hybrid event), with the CDC at the four-day Public Health Informatics Conference in 2011, with over 3,000 international attendees. He continues to evolve new ways to advance critical promotions, learning and collaboration in public health and medical communities, providing greener and more cost-effective virtual solutions to geographically dispersed participants across the globe.


Ivo Lukas

Founder and CEO, 24Notion

Ivo Lukas is the Founder/CEO for 24Notion, the first integrated marketing/digital PR & lifestyle agency with special emphasis on giving back to the global communities. She is an advocate and sits on the board of many non-profit organizations that encourage the empowerment of next generation leaders. Previously, she was part of the advisory board(volunteering her time)  for 6 years & the Chief Innovation Officers/Global Mentorship leader for Girls in Tech.  Ivo is passionate about leading, nurturing and mentoring the next generation, especially young girls, who are aspiring to be in technology and is an advocate of girls gaining an entrepreneurial spirit and leadership skills. In her downtime, she speaks, moderates & participates in many conversations in the field of entrepreneurship, technology, STEM, start-up, innovation, women in business and others. She sits in many STEM and entrepreneurship advisory boards.


Dr. Scott Pegan

Associate Professor, College of Pharmacy, University of Georgia

Dr. Scott Pegan is an Associate Professor at the University of Georgia’s College of Pharmacy and  is a member of multiple scientific research organizations.Highly experienced and driven, Dr. Pegan has published numerous publications and is runs a well funded research program supported by multiple organizations. Outside his role as a faculty member at UGA, he is a  captain in the United States Army Reserve.  He enlisted as a combat engineer before transitioning as an officer to the Adjutant General Corps, and then the Medical Service Corps where he serves today. Currently, he lends scientific, combat and command experience as a science and technology adviser to the U.S. Army’s Research, Development and Engineering Command, assisting the Army effort in identifying technology gaps for the armed forces, and assists and guides research projects to remediate those gaps.


Dr. Dirk Schroeder

Chief Health Officer and Co-founder of HolaDoctor and Adjunct Associate Professor of Global Health, Rollins School of Public Health, Emory University

Dr. Dirk G. Schroeder is Chief Health Office and Co-Founder of HolaDoctor, the leading provider of online culturally appropriate communications, wellness programs and business solutions to the U.S. healthcare industry. He is also Adjunct Associate Professor of Global Health at Emory University where he teaches courses on social entrepreneurship, research design and proposal development in the context of global public health. He is the founder and President of Entrepreneurs-4-Health, a non-profit organization that seeks to help entrepreneurs turn great ideas into real, sustainable companies. He speaks widely on how eHealth and mobile technologies can deliver culturally and linguistically appropriate wellness interventions to Hispanics and other multicultural groups.


Lerissa Smith

Lerissa Smith, Program Manager of the Health Policy Division, Morehouse School of Medicine's Satcher Health Leadership Institute

Ms. Smith is the Program Manager of the Health Policy Division at Morehouse School of Medicine's Satcher Health Leadership Institute, where she works towards the advancement of health equity and elimination of health disparities in a variety of traditional and non-traditional ways. Ms.Smith has ten plus years of public health experience in a variety of epidemiological and disease modeling, although her main focus has been HIV. Currently in her professional affiliation with the   Georgia Department of Public Health, Ms. Smith works to develop a multi-year, comprehensive, Statewide HIV Prevention Plan. Her goal is to align Georgia’s HIV prevention efforts with those set forth by President Barack Obama in his National HIV/AIDS Strategy.


Partha Unnava

CEO, Better Walk

Partha Unnava is the CEO of Better Walk and attended the Georgia Institute of Technology. Partha began his career as a biomedical engineering student at Georgia Tech. After breaking his ankle and spending six weeks on crutches, he realized there had to be a better way to move around on an injured limb. This led to him starting his first company, Better Walk. Partha has raised venture and angel funding, spoken at conferences and radio shows on healthcare and entrepreneurial innovation, and even been to the White House to present Better Walk to President Obama. He was named in the Manufacturing category of the 2015 Forbes 30 Under 30 List.In his free time, Partha teaches entrepreneurship at the Startup Semester program at Georgia Tech, helps build and scale other businesses, and plays club level ultimate frisbee.


Ken Zeff

Interim Superintendent, Fulton County Schools, Georgia

Kenneth Zeff is the Interim Superintendent of Fulton County Schools in Georgia. Fulton County Schools educates more than 96,000 students in the Atlanta metro area.  Previously, Zeff was the district's Chief Strategy and Innovation Officer. His main focus as a leader is to build school level autonomy through the innovative “charter system” model by providing authentic decision-making roles for teachers, parents, community members, and students. Zeff was previously the Chief Operating Officer of Green Dot Public Schools, an award-winning charter management organization in Los Angeles and has held several leadership roles in education reform at the Federal and District level.


Cindy Zeldin

Executive Director, Georgians for a Healthy Future

Cindy Zeldin is the Executive Director of Georgians for a Healthy Future, a non-profit consumer health advocacy organization that advocates for access to quality, affordable health care for all Georgians through public education and outreach, coalition building, and public policy advocacy. She also currently serves as a consumer representative to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC), was appointed to and served on the Governor’s Health Insurance Exchange Advisory Committee in 2011, and was named one of Georgia’s “40 Under 40:  Georgia’s Best and Brightest” by Georgia Trend magazine in 2010. She was also recognized by the League of Women Voters of Georgia with an Empowerment Award in the area of healthcare in 2014 and by HealthSTAT in 2011 with a Community Partner Award. Cindy holds MPH and BA degrees from Emory University.