ATLANTA, Sept. 6, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Council of State and Territorial Epidemiologists (CSTE) is pleased to announce the selection of Jeffrey Engel, M.D., as its Executive Director, effective Sept. 6. As Executive Director, Dr. Engel will be responsible for overall management and operations and will represent CSTE in working with other public health organizations. He will also work with the CSTE Executive Board to formulate and execute a strategic plan to help advance the cause of public health and applied epidemiology in the United States.
"We are thrilled to have Jeff Engel as our new executive director. He really knows applied epidemiology first hand from his work in hospital and health care settings and government public health," said Laurene Mascola, M.D., M.P.H., CSTE President and Chief of Acute Communicable Disease Control for the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health. "I'm excited about the talent, expertise, experience and vision that Dr. Engel will bring to the organization."
As State Epidemiologist in North Carolina, Dr. Engel was a member of CSTE and served on the Executive Board. "I feel like this is a natural fit for me," Engel said of his selection as Executive Director. "One of the easy parts of making the decision to join CSTE is because I know the people and organization so well."
"There are many challenges currently facing public health, so it's a good time for CSTE to look back and see where we've been and look forward as well," said Engel. "This will include strategic planning with our members, as CSTE is a very member-driven organization."
Prior to joining CSTE, Engel was the North Carolina State Health Director, managing the Division of Public Health since 2009. He led the state's response to the H1N1 influenza pandemic, and secured $23 million in federal funding for preventive health services. During his tenure as Director, North Carolina implemented a statewide ban on smoking in restaurants and bars, decreased the new HIV infection rate by 18 percent, and reduced infant mortality rates to the lowest ever recorded.
Engel served as the North Carolina State Epidemiologist from 2002-2009, and was Professor of Medicine at East Carolina University from 1988-2002. He received his medical degree from Johns Hopkins University.
Engel succeeds Pat McConnon, M.P.H., who retired after 10 years with CSTE and more than 30 years in local, state, federal and international public health.
CSTE is an organization of member states and territories that represents the perspective of epidemiologists working in state and local government. Its professional membership of more than 1,000 public health epidemiologists work in federal, state, local, tribal and territorial health agencies. CSTE works to establish more effective working relationships among state and federal agencies and with other public health agencies. It also provides technical advice and assistance to partner organizations and to federal public health agencies including the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
SOURCE Council of State and Territorial Epidemiologists