Save on registration for APHA 2024! Join us in Minneapolis ×

State of the Public Health Union

Webinar //


Feb 15 2024, 3:00 PM - 4:30 PM EST


The loss of public health workers is an urgent issue we must address to modernize and strengthen the public health system. Community health workers, a growing component of the public health workforce, are an exception.

Join the American Journal of Public Health for the 2024 State of the Public Health Union to hear from our "prime minister" Denise Octavia Smith, director of the National Association of Community Health Workers.

A panel of public health leaders will immediately follow the address, moderated by Alfredo Morabia and Bisola Ojikutu.

Watch Live


  • Free for APHA members
  • $10 for non-members 

This event will be livestreamed on YouTube and you will receive a link in the confirmation email.

Speaker Bios

Kaye BenderKaye Bender, PhD, RN, FAAN

Kaye Bender is the executive director of the Mississippi Public Health Association and a past president of APHA. She was president and CEO of the Public Health Accreditation Board from 2009-2019, and dean of the University of Mississippi Medical Center School of Nursing prior to PHAB. She worked in state and local public health for more than 26 years and as deputy state health officer for Mississippi. She is a fellow in the American Academy of Nursing, a member of the National Board of Public Health Examiners and the Public Health Foundation and an honorary fellow in the Royal Society for Public Health.

Alice Chen headshotAlice Chen, MD

Alice T. Chen served as executive director of Doctors for America and senior advisor to Made to Save, a national COVID-19 vaccine campaign focused on communities of color. She currently serves on boards and advisory groups for organizations spanning climate change, public health, health information and graduate education.

Alfredo Morabia headshotAlfredo Morabia, MD, PhD, MPH

Alfredo Morabia is a Swiss American doctor, epidemiologist and historian. He is currently professor of epidemiology at the Barry Commoner Center for Health and the Environment at Queens College, City University of New York. He is the principal investigator of the World Trade Center-Heart cohort study, and he lectures and teaches on the history of epidemiology internationally in English, French, Spanish, Portuguese and Italian. He also serves as the editor-in-chief of the American Journal of Public Health and is also editor of "Epidemiology in History" in the American Journal of Epidemiology and was supported by the National Library of Medicine to write about the history of epidemiology.

Bisola Ojikutu headshotBisola Ojikutu, MD, MPH

Bisola Ojikutu is a nationally recognized physician leader, health equity researcher, community advocate and expert in the prevention, care and treatment of infectious diseases. Dr. Ojikutu was appointed executive director of the Boston Public Health Commission in July 2021.

Joshua Sharfstein headshotJoshua Sharfstein, MD

Joshua M. Sharfstein is distinguished professor of the practice in health policy and management at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, where he also serves as vice dean for public health practice and community engagement and as director of the Bloomberg American Health Initiative.

Denise Octavia Smith headshotDenise Octavia Smith, MBA, CHW, PN

Denise Octavia Smith is the inaugural executive director of the National Association of Community Health Workers. She is also senior scholar at the Harvard Medical School Center for Primary Care Program in Global Primary Care and Social Change, Aspen Institute Healthy Communities Fellow and a Robert Wood Johnson Culture of Health Leader.