The ScienceBlogs Book Club

In addition to author Mark Pendergrast, we have four more outstanding contributors here to discuss Inside the Outbreaks over the next few weeks. Though they all come from public health backgrounds, their experiences in and with the Epidemic Intelligence Service are all different. Check out their bios below and tune in to see what they have to say about the book!

i-e1e97f7765274308b8ce597f2e20a1fd-borkowski.jpgLiz Borkowski
Liz, who is one of our own bloggers here on ScienceBloggers over at The Pump Handle, is a Research Associate at the George Washington University School of Public Health’s Department of Environmental and Occupational Health. She received a BA in English from the University of Delaware and wote for several years about environmental and social justice issues for Co-op America (now Green America). She lives in Washington, DC and loves public transportation and pumpkin empanadas.


i-f4ccc8c916f7df1b02ea3b1e470ea55f-starko.jpgKaren Starko
Karen M. Starko, M.D., a graduate of Temple University School of Medicine, completed her internship and residency in internal medicine at Boston City Hospital and served as an infectious disease fellow at the Brown University Hospitals and a fellow in Clinical Medicine at Harvard University. She entered the Epidemic Intelligence Service (EIS) of the Centers for Disease Control in 1978 and was stationed at the Arizona Department of Health Services, Phoenix, Arizona when she conducted the first quantitative study linking salicylate, most commonly aspirin, with Reye’s syndrome and a study with Floribel Mullick, M.D. of the Armed Forces Institute of Pathology, showing the similarities between the pathology of Reye’s syndrome and salicylate intoxication.

Dr. Starko was Acting State Epidemiologist for Arizona and Assistant Bureau Chief at the Maricopa County Health Department in Phoenix and also worked as a clinical trials expert at several San Francisco Bay area biotechnology companies including for twelve years the groundbreaking company, Genentech.

In 2009, Dr. Starko was the keynote speaker for the 35th Annual Meeting of the National Reye’s Syndrome Foundation meeting. She recently published a paper in Clinical Infectious Diseases hypothesizing that aspirin played a role in the high mortality associated with the 1918 influenza pandemic. She is currently writing a book on the history of Reye’s syndrome.


i-47cb53ca1119479d1b1777f4111897b6-MARK.HeadShot-thumb-175x273-51765.jpgMark Rosenberg
Mark L. Rosenberg has worked in government, academia, and the private nonprofit sector. Dr. Rosenberg currently serves as President and CEO of the Task Force for Global Health. Before assuming his current position, Dr. Rosenberg served 20 years with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), including early work in smallpox eradication, enteric diseases, and HIV/AIDS. He was instrumental in establishing CDC’s National Center for Injury Prevention and Control (NCIPC) and became the first permanent director in 1994, serving as director and Assistant Surgeon General until 1999.

The Task Force for Global Health (formerly The Task Force for Child Survival and Development) is a not-for-profit organization that helps save and improve the lives of millions of people around the world each year by addressing specific health-related issues, from infectious diseases to injury prevention to child development. Its work focuses on the most vulnerable populations, whether in Atlanta, Georgia, or communities in Africa, Asia, and the Americas. The Task Force also served as the secretariat for a coalition working to promote global road traffic safety in developing nations–including UNICEF, UNDP, The UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs, The World Health Organization, The World Bank, and The FIA Foundation for the Automobile and Society.

Dr. Rosenberg has done research and consulted widely–with WHO, UNICEF, and the World Bank–on effective collaboration in global health and is the lead author of Real Collaboration: What Global Health Needs to Succeed, a book that will be published by the University of California Press in 2009. Dr. Rosenberg is a member of the Institute of Medicine, where he served 7 years on the Board on Global Health. He also served as co-editor-in-chief of the International Journal of Injury Control and Safety Promotion.

Dr. Rosenberg has broad experience in medicine and public health, ranging from infectious diseases, to injuries, and mental health. He is board certified in both psychiatry and internal medicine with training in public policy. He was educated at Harvard University where he received his undergraduate degree as well as degrees in public policy and medicine. He completed a residency in internal medicine and a fellowship in infectious diseases at Massachusetts General Hospital, a residency in psychiatry at the Boston Beth Israel Hospital, and a residency in preventive medicine at the CDC.


i-beb837c572ae1dcf3a66e767aa7e9aec-schoenbaum.jpgSteve Schoenbaum
Dr. Schoenbaum is Executive Vice President for Programs at The Commonwealth Fund and Executive Director of its Commission on a High Performance Health System. From 1993-1999, Dr. Schoenbaum was the medical director and then president of Harvard Pilgrim Health Care of New England, a mixed model HMO delivery system in Providence, Rhode Island. Prior to that, from 1981-1993, he was Deputy Medical Director at Harvard Community Health Plan in the Boston area, where his roles included developing specialty services, disease management programs, clinical guidelines, and enhancing the plan’s computerized clinical information systems. Nationally, he also played a significant role in the development of HEDIS (the Healthcare Effectiveness Data and Information Set).

He currently has an appointment as lecturer at Harvard Medical School in the Department of Population Medicine (formerly Ambulatory Care and Prevention), a department he helped to found, and is the author of over 150 medical publications. He is vice-chairman of the board of the Picker Institute; former president of the board of the American College of Physician Executives; a longstanding member and now chair of the International Advisory Committee to the Joyce and Irving Goldman Medical School, Ben Gurion University, Beer Sheva, Israel; an honorary member of the British Association of Medical Managers; and an honorary fellow of the Royal College of Physicians.