DVBD Director

Staff Bio

Lyle Petersen, MD, MPH

Division of Vector-Borne Diseases

Lyle Petersen, MD, MPH, is the director of the Division of Vector-Borne Diseases in CDC’s National Center for Emerging and Zoonotic Infectious Diseases.

Portrait of Lyle Petersen, MD, MPH
Lyle Petersen, MD, MPH

Role at CDC

Dr. Petersen is Director of NCEZID's Division of Vector-Borne Diseases (DVBD). Dr. Petersen's career at CDC began in the Epidemic Intelligence Service (EIS) in 1985. After his EIS training, he joined CDC's Division of HIV/AIDS where he worked until 1995, serving in several posts, including the Chief of the HIV Seroepidemiology Branch. Dr. Petersen served as Deputy Director for Science of DVBD starting in 2000 until he became the division's director in 2004. He also has experience in infectious disease outbreak investigations, having served on the National Security Staff at the White House during the 2014 Ebola Response and as Incident Manager of CDC's Zika Response in 2016.

Previous experience

In 1996, Dr. Petersen accepted an assignment in Germany where he helped guide the country’s efforts to create a new national infectious disease epidemiology program at the Robert Koch Institute in Berlin. In 2000, he returned to CDC.


Dr. Petersen earned his medical degree from the University of California, San Francisco, and completed an internship and residency in internal medicine at Stanford University. While working in CDC's Division of HIV/AIDS, he completed CDC's Preventive Medicine Residency Program and received a Master of Public Health degree from Emory University.