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Division of Global Health Protection: Jordan W. Tappero, MD, MPH, Director

CAPT Jordan W. Tappero, MD, MPH is Director of the Division of Global Health Protection (DGHP), Center for Global Health (CGH), Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).  Dr. Tappero brings extensive experience to this key leadership position, and provides strategic direction for strengthening global health capacity to prevent, accurately detect, and rapidly respond to emerging infectious disease threats, as well as mitigate and contain the negative effects that natural and complex humanitarian crises have on health worldwide. Under Dr. Tappero’s direction, the Division works with Ministries of Health across the globe to build capacity through training in applied epidemiology (surveillance and outbreak investigation), laboratory strengthening for specimen referral networks and diagnostics, public health research, and the development of National Public Health Institutes to bolster global health security and prevent disease, disability and death from communicable and non-communicable disease.

Since August, Dr. Tappero has been a leader in CDCs 2014 Ebola Response, serving in Liberia as the first CDC Lead for the Public Health and Medical Response within USG’s Disaster Assistance Response Team for West Africa. Since returning to Atlanta in late September, he has served as Deputy Incident Manager for the CDC Director’s Ebola Response, and assists with directing the day-to-day international and domestic response activities managed through CDC’s Emergency Operations Center (EOC).

Prior to his current role, from January - November 2013, Dr. Tappero served as the CGH Associate Director for Science, where he provided scientific leadership and oversight for CDC’s public health activities globally. From January 2010 - December 2012, he directed CDC’s Health Systems Reconstruction Office, an office opened to direct CDC’s response to the 2010 earthquake and cholera epidemic in Haiti. From August - December 2009, Dr. Tappero was detailed to DHHS to serve as the CDC Liaison to the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response for the 2009 H1N1 Flu Pandemic.

From August 2008 - July 2009, Dr. Tappero served as Acting Deputy Director for CDC’s Global AIDS Program (GAP), a major contributor to the success of President Bush’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR). In this capacity, he assisted in managing CDC’s $1.7 billion dollar annual international HIV/AIDS program, providing technical support for more than1700 direct hire and locally employed staff serving 43 country program offices. From August 2006 - July 2008, Dr. Tappero served as CDC Country Director in Uganda, overseeing GAP and the President’s Malaria Initiative (PMI) activities. Prior to Uganda, Dr. Tappero served from October 2000 - July 2006 as CDC Country Director in Thailand, a program with three components: GAP, HIV/AIDS Research, and Global Disease Detection. While in Thailand, he also served as the DHHS and State Dept. Health Attaché for the US Embassy – Bangkok.

From June 1998 - September 2000, Dr. Tappero served as the Epidemiology Section Chief for the Meningitis and Special Pathogens Branch, focusing on the prevention of meningococcal disease and other forms of bacterial meningitis, zoonotic bacterial infections, and bioterrorism preparedness against anthrax and brucellosis. Dr. Tappero was CDC’s first medical epidemiologist, July 1995 - May 1998, assigned by CDC to Botswana, where he conducted field research on HIV-associated tuberculosis (TB).

Dr. Tappero joined CDC in July 1992 as an Epidemic Intelligence Service (EIS) Officer with the MSPB/Respiratory Diseases Branch, and in June 1995 completed CDC’s Preventive Medicine Residency with the National Center for Infectious Diseases, and was assigned to State Department of Health in California.

Before joining CDC, Dr. Tappero was an Associate Professor with University of California (UC), San Francisco. Dr. Tappero is a Captain in the US Public Health Service, has three American Board Certifications, and a Master’s Degree in Public Health from UC, Berkeley. He remains clinically active as a Clinical Assistant Professor with Emory University, Atlanta, Georgia.

Dr. Tappero has worked extensively for HHS across four continents (North and South America, Africa and Asia) and the Caribbean, and has authored or co-authored more than 250 peer-reviewed publications, as well as textbook chapters on HIV, TB, malaria, meningococcal disease, leptospirosis, Ebola and Marburg Hemorrhagic Fever, cholera and other emerging infections.

For more information on the Division of Global Health Protection, please visit

  • Page last reviewed: December 19, 2014
  • Page last updated: December 19, 2014
  • Content source: Global Health
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