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Town Hall Meeting Speakers

Cardiovascular Disease:
High Blood Pressure and Cholesterol in the United States
February 8, 2011
2:00PM - 3:00PM EST

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Speaker Biographies

Darwin R. Labarthe, MD, MPH, PhD, FAHA

Director, Division for Heart Disease and Stroke Prevention, NCCDPHP, CDC

Darwin R. Labarthe, MD, MPH, PhD, FAHA, is Director of the Division for Heart Disease and Stroke Prevention (DHDSP), National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion. The Division works with funded states and partners, conducts public health research, develops resources, and evaluates programs to help advance prevention and early detection efforts throughout the nation.

Dr. Labarthe received his AB from Princeton University, his MD from Columbia University, and his MPH and PhD degrees in epidemiology from the University of California at Berkeley. From 1970 to 1999 he worked primarily in the School of Public Health at the University of Texas in Houston, where he was the James W. Rockwell Professor of Epidemiology, Preventive Medicine, and Public Health.

He joined CDC in 2000 where he led the development and implementation of the long-range public health strategic plan, A Public Health Action Plan to Prevent Heart Disease and Stroke. He is the Past Chair of the National Forum for Heart Disease and Stroke Prevention and founding Director of DHDSP.

Dr. Labarthe′s research and teaching activities have primarily been in the area of cardiovascular epidemiology and prevention, with special interest in early development of risk factors in childhood and adolescence. At CDC, his work has turned to public health policy and practice in the prevention of heart disease, stroke, and other chronic diseases.

He has published more than 200 research articles and book chapters as well as the textbook, Epidemiology and Prevention of Cardiovascular Diseases: A Global Challenge. Dr. Labarthe has served in several key leadership roles with the American Heart Association over the past 40 years and just recently received the 2008 Charles C. Shepard Science Award for Assessment and Epidemiology.

Paula F. Clayton, MS, RD

Director, Bureau of Health Promotion, Kansas Department of Health and Environment

Paula F. Clayton (formerly Marmet) has worked as the director of health promotion and chronic disease prevention programs in the Kansas State Department of Health and Environment (KDHE) since 1989.  The Bureau of Health Promotion works to improve the quality of life and reduce the incidence of death and disability from chronic disease and injury in the state.

As Director of the Bureau of Health Promotion, she leads programs responsible for assessing the burden of the leading chronic diseases and injuries in the state, including heart disease, stroke, cancer, diabetes, and arthritis, and their risk factors (i.e., tobacco use, physical inactivity and inappropriate diet). She is responsible for a budget of over $12 million, of which over 90% is grant funded.  In this role, she is instrumental in facilitating the development of broad public-private partnerships and development of state’s response to Healthy People objectives.

She also serves as the state’s voting member of the National Association of Chronic Disease Directors (NACDD) and has served two terms as at large Board member in addition to serving 11 years as an Executive Board member (Treasurer, Pres Elect, President and Past President).  Ms. Clayton has contributed as a chair or member to multiple NACDD interest groups and committees over the years, including healthy aging, school health, diabetes primary prevention, physical activity, women’s health, and organizational strategic planning.  She is committed to working towards developing public health partnerships into a base of influence for supporting state and national efforts in disease prevention and control.  

Ms. Clayton holds a Master’s degree in Foods and Nutrition from Kansas State University and a bachelor’s of science degree in Nutrition.  She is a registered dietitian, licensed to practice in Kansas.  Prior professional work experience includes clinical dietetics, human resources, social services, food retail sales, nutrient research and wholesale food marketing.

Hattie Hanley, MPP

Director, Right Care Initiative Project, California Department of Managed Health Care

Hattie Hanley conceived of and launched a program in 2007 called the Right Care Initiative to improve patient outcomes focusing on the prevention of heart attacks, strokes, and hospital acquired infections; working with the director of the Department of Managed Health Care, industry and the deans of University of California (CA) Berkeley and UCLA’s Schools of Public Health. Since then, Ms. Hanley has raised approximately $400,000 for the UCs, RAND Corporation, and The California Chronic Care Coalition to support the Initiative. These partners successfully won a Comparative Effectiveness NIH grant for three million dollars to establish infrastructure for the Right Care Initiative with regard to comparative effectiveness.

Ms. Hanley has led the initiative since its inception on behalf of the State of California, creating the intellectual framework through close collaboration with leading academics in the field, establishing a multifaceted stakeholder body with industry and academia to tackle these difficult problems, and managing this complex multi-institutional collaboration with minimal funding and staff.  The hallmark of her public policy career is bridging and translating across the disparate arenas of business, government and academia.

Ms. Hanley received her Master’s of Public Policy from Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government in 1991, after studying health economics and pre-medical coursework at UC Davis.  Since that time, she has applied her background in science, politics and public policy in the state of California in the areas of clinical quality improvement, public health preparedness and value based coverage design.


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