Suzanne Maman, PhD, professor of health behavior at the Gillings School of Global Public Health, has been appointed associate dean for global health, effective September 1, 2020. The associate dean for global health is the School’s chief global leader and liaison, responsible for evolving global strategy and global health initiatives.
Maman succeeds Margaret (Peggy) Bentley, PhD, Carla Smith Chamblee Distinguished Professor of global nutrition, who served in the role for 17 years. One of Bentley’s greatest legacies will be the widespread adoption of a concept and guiding principle that she brought to all global activities at the Gillings School: the interconnectivity of global and local.
Maman is the “complete” faculty member, recognized for her research, mentoring of students, teaching and service. She is a leader within health behavior as vice-chair of the department. She will continue with her faculty appointment as professor of health behavior and co-lead for the Master of Public Health Program’s global health concentration, which she helped to develop. She also will serve as the UNC faculty director at the Duke-UNC Rotary Peace Center.
As a national and international leader in global health research, practice and education, Maman’s work for the past 20 years has focused on the intersection of intimate partner violence and HIV/AIDS. Her work in Tanzania and South Africa has demonstrated how violence increases women’s risks for HIV infection, and how an HIV diagnosis may affect women’s experiences with violence. Programs she has developed, implemented and evaluated with global colleagues and community partners have helped mitigate women’s risks from both violence and HIV/AIDS. She has pioneered impactful intervention strategies to engage young men in Tanzania using microfinance and peer health leadership training to reduce HIV risk and intimate partner violence. She has collaborated for decades with the World Health Organization , the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and other governmental health agencies and educational institutions in the U.S. and globally to advance this work.
“Dr. Maman is a highly-skilled, experienced and ethical global health leader with a proven ability to make a difference in the lives and health of the communities she has worked with worldwide,” said Barbara Rimer, DrPH, dean and Alumni Distinguished Professor. “Her experience, global networks and inclusive approach to leadership will help us advance our goal to promote health and reduce inequities in the more than 60 countries we are working in. Her equity-based approaches to working with communities to prevent and reduce infectious diseases will be important guideposts as we continue to battle COVID-19 worldwide. We are thrilled she has said ‘yes’ to serving in this key Gillings leadership role.”
Bentley agreed. “I have known Dr. Maman for nearly 25 years, starting from when I was an assistant professor at Johns Hopkins University when she was completing her MSPH in the department of international health,” she said. “She is the consummate, visionary team player, and that is exactly what is needed to meet pressing challenges for the health of people in North Carolina and around the world. This important leadership role for Gillings and UNC is in the most capable hands I can imagine. I am absolutely delighted that Dr. Maman will succeed me as associate dean for global health.”
Maman will work closely with colleagues within the Gillings School’s Research, Innovation and Global Solutions unit to integrate global initiatives into innovation, entrepreneurship and research, and lead programming that supports the School’s domestic and international students. She also will continue to partner closely with key research centers and institutes, including UNC’s Institute for Global Health and Infectious Diseases and the Gillings School’s Water Institute at UNC. She also will enhance partnerships with global organizations and leaders throughout the Triangle, U.S. and world.
“I am excited to step into the role of associate dean for global health at Gillings,” Maman says. “As a faculty member, my global work has benefited in so many ways from the high-quality faculty colleagues and students that we have at Gillings. I love being part of the UNC global community. Peggy has laid a strong foundation for our global programs at Gillings. I am honored to serve as the next associate dean to continue to support and grow our vision for global health research, education, partnerships and leadership at Gillings, across campus and around the world.”
Maman holds a bachelor of science in human ecology from Cornell University and a master of health science and doctoral degrees in international health from Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. She joined the Gillings School in 2005.