Hubert H. Humphrey Fellowship Program


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Humphrey Fellows 2021-2022

2021- 2022 Fellows

hubert h. humphrey fellowship alumni


The Hubert H. Humphrey Fellowship Program

The Hubert H. Humphrey Fellowship Program was initiated in 1979 by President Jimmy Carter to honor the late senator and vice president, an advocate of international cooperation and understanding. President Carter saw the program as a means to support the development of both public- and private-sector professionals who were committed to public service in their countries. The program brings accomplished mid-career professionals from designated countries of Africa, East Asia and the Pacific, Europe and Eurasia, the Near East, South and Central Asia, and the Western Hemisphere to the United States for one year of non-degree graduate study and practical professional experience.

Applicants apply through the U.S. Embassy in their country, where first-level screenings are conducted. Selection is highly competitive. Fellows are nominated by the United States Embassy or Fulbright Commission based on their potential for leadership and commitment to public service. Final selection is made in the United States by expert panels of review. Awards are made by the J. William Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board.

Since it began 42 years ago, 6,017 professionals representing 162 countries have participated in this non-degree program. Last year, 150 Fellows from 95 countries were assigned based on their professional fields to 13 U.S. host universities. Fellows at Emory University focus on epidemiology, health education, and public health policy and administration. Fellows at other campuses are professionals in fields that include economics and finance, public policy, agricultural and rural development, technology policy and management, journalism, communications, urban and regional planning, substance abuse, law and human rights, education, and natural resources, environmental policy and climate change.

The Humphrey Program at the Rollins School of Public Health began with a class of eleven Fellows in the fall of 1993. To date the School and the Hubert Department of Global Health have hosted 250 Fellows from over 100 different countries. This fall, twelve new Fellows arrived at Emory to pursue individualized curricula in all aspects of public health and to learn more about American society and culture, as well as to educate Americans about their societies and cultures.

Weekly seminars sponsored by the Hubert Department of Global Health add to the educational experience, as do cultural and community programs in which the Fellows participate. Fellows also draw upon the resources of other schools in the University, the CDC, other Atlanta-based universities, the Georgia Department of Human Resources, The Carter Center, The American Cancer Society, CARE USA, and county health departments. In addition, they travel to professional meetings and seminars, visit related organizations, and undertake collaborative work with American counterparts both here and when they return home.


2021-2022 Humphrey Fellows

Dr. Chimene Nze Nkogue

Dr Chimene NZE NKOGUE is a field virologist from Gabon, the Africa’s last Eden in terms of biodiversity. She graduated with her bachelor's in Biotechnology at University Sidi Mohammad Bin Abdellah, Fes, in 2003, and with her master’s degree in Microbiology at University Cadi Ayyad, Marrakech (Morocco) in 2005. She completed her PhD in Veterinary Science at Yamaguchi University, Japan in 2017.

Chimene is a Research scientist at the Research Institute in Tropical Ecology (IRET) within the National Center for Scientific and Technological Research (CENAREST) in Libreville, Gabon. For over 10 years, she worked on the investigation of the animal reservoirs of zoonotic viruses, combining field and lab skills. Her work on the screening of viruses infecting wild gorillas of Gabon has brought new insights into the primate bocaparvovirus evolution. She has been involved in several international projects including the project for Biodiversity Conservation through Sustainable Coexistence between Humans and Animals (PROCOBHA) and the Project for Establishment of Laboratory Surveillance System for Viral Diseases of Public Health Concern (SYMAV). Both projects were jointly implemented in Gabon by Japanese and Gabonese researchers. Chimene has facilitated the signature of a MoU between her home institution and The Institute of Tropical Medicine, Nagasaki University (Japan) for the surveillance of viral pathogens in wildlife in Gabon for the SYMAV project.

During her Humphrey Fellowship, Chimene wants to learn from the American experience in terms of public health surveillance using the “One Health” approach. Additionally, she wants to enhance her scientific, management and leadership skills as well as expanding her collaborative network.

Furthermore, Chimene is a pioneer in networking women scientists in Gabon within the Association of Gabonese Women in Science, Technology, Mathematics and Engineering (AFGASTEM). As an African woman scientist, she is advocating for empowering women in Science, Technology, Mathematics and Engineering (STEM) especially from underserved countries.

Dr. Elisaveta Petrova- Geretto

Elisaveta Petrova- Geretto is passionate about her job as assistant professor at the Faculty of Public Health in Sofia. This position harmoniously combines her professional and personal aspirations for a fairer and just society. Teaching is her small contribution to making the world a better place as she believes education is the single most powerful tool in bringing change. She researches medical ethics, patients’ safety, management and communications. Elisaveta has worked on projects in quality and patients’ safety, health literacy, and occupational health. Elisaveta is also part-time expert at the Bulgarian Medical Association.

Before joining her faculty, Elisaveta worked for a hospital on implementing quality and patient safety guidelines and was a member of the hospital’s accreditation team. She was employed at the National Health Insurance Fund and the Agency for Economic Analysis, and later transferred to the Ministry of Environment. As Head of the Cabinet, she liaised with various stakeholders to negotiate and adopt the acquis communautaire in environmental protection and management. She further worked as national staff during three consecutive OSCE/ODIHR Election Observation missions in Bulgaria. Elisaveta is deeply committed to justice, and she dedicates her private time to volunteering for initiatives on children's rights, poverty alleviation, and animal rights.

Elisaveta has a background in humanities: BA (Hons) in Social Policy, European Master’s in Human Rights, MSc in European Politics and master's and PhD in Public Health. She has participated in the International Leadership Program- USA, International Leadership Academy- Germany and capacity- building program in Ecole National D’administration, France.

As a Hubert Humphrey Fellow, Elisaveta has three main priorities: research more about communication as a key element of ethical public health and quality of healthcare; enhance her skills as a teacher and motivator; and lastly study approaches for prevention of burnout and improving well-being in healthcare establishments.

Dr. Nida Ali

Dr. Nida Ali graduated from Medical School in 2011 and interned in General Medicine, Gastroenterology, Pulmonology, Gynae + Obstetrics, and Anesthesia. Shortly after, she found her passion for Public Health and joined the Ministry of Population Welfare, where she headed the Sexual and Reproductive Health Unit in Holy Family Hospital Rawalpindi. As a young professional, she had a chance to understand the dynamics of sexual health in her country and realized how much of female health is lost simply due to lack of health literacy. Under her leadership, her team continuously strived for educating women in their catchment area by organizing communication events and going door to counsel married couples and fill their unmet need for contraception. Heading the unit for 2.5 years, she learned management, administration, finance, communications, operations and reporting skills.

Dr. Ali has worked with the World Health Organization's Polio Eradication Program. She has been in the field for 5 years at various administrative levels and travelled extensively in her home country of Pakistan. Using her extensive knowledge of program management, disease surveillance, immunization, monitoring and evaluation, and data analysis, Dr. Ali is heading Islamabad Division for technical support on Polio Eradication. With a team of four doctors and twenty-five field assistants, she is striving hard every day to close the gaps in health systems that slow down the pace for interruption of virus transmission.

As a Hubert Humphrey Fellow, Dr. Nida Ali strives to learn more about global health, disease surveillance, epidemiology, and control and elimination of infections. As a passionate public health professional, she aspires to devote her time to humanitarian services by continuing her work in health systems evaluation and support for closure of gaps and impediments. She sees herself promoting equity in healthcare in terms of larger investments and policies and bringing healthcare to every human’s doorstep.

Dr. Jihye Jeong

Jihye Jeong is a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine and has been working as a scientific officer of Ministry of Food and Drug Safety (MFDS) since 2006 in Osong, Korea. After finishing her M.D. in veterinary preventive medicine in 2011, she went on to complete her Ph.D. degree course at Chungbuk National University all while continuing her carrier as an inspector at Vaccines division, where she performs the national lot-release of vaccines since 2014. By attending personalized trainings regarding chemical analysis (Laboratory of Government Chemists (LGC), 2010) and vaccine quality controls (National Institute of Biological Standards & Control (NIBSC), 2016) in the UK, she strengthened her professional knowledge and communication skills.

As a quality manager of her national control lab, Dr. Jeong has overseen reviewing and inspecting the marketing authorization dossier for vaccine quality, managing the Biosafety Level 3 lab and ensuring the Lab Quality Management System, including IEC/ISO17025. She performs the Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) co-audit for vaccine manufacturing facilities and cooperates with global organizations including W.H.O.

Her recent accomplishments include:

  • Establishment of the 1st National Reference Material for national lot-release tests for Cell-derived Japanese Encephalitis Vaccines (Beijing strain), to assure long-term consistency of independent national lot release testing quality in 2017.
  • Designation of her lab as an official W.H.O.-designated training course counterpart in 2016 & 2018 for the ‘Global Learning Opportunity in Vaccine Quality (WHO-GLO/VQ) programs’, by sharing her experiences as a course facilitator from 2015 to 2020.
  • Establishment of a Trend Analysis System with the IT division in 2019, to intensify the MFDS’s data quality management for a higher global standard level.
  • Participation of international regulatory science meetings and working group meetings to draft the WHO-Listed Authority Performance Evaluation Framework (WLA-PEF).

As a Humphrey Fellow, Dr. Jeong hopes to get insights about the approaches and/or methodologies in the U.S., to assure the accuracy and quality of the national vaccine lot release data. She also hopes to learn more about new analyzing techniques for new vaccines against emerging diseases including Covid-19.

Fabiola Gamboa RossDr. Pyae Phyo Aung is a medical doctor from Myanmar. He graduated from the University of Medicine 2, Yangon, and pursued a Master of Public Health from the   National University of Singapore.

As he graduated in the year of Cyclone Nargis (2008), the worst cyclone of the    recorded history of Myanmar, Pyae worked as a volunteer medical doctor for the  cyclone-affected population. Later he joined the Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF), an international non-government organization, and worked in primary health care, HIV/AIDS, and drug-resistant tuberculosis. Pyae bridged the gaps by directly bringing health care services to the vulnerable populations in the conflict-affected and geographically hard-to-reach areas.

His passion and enthusiasm cannot stop him from working in different fields; he has worked for maternal and reproductive health, nutrition, and fund management with the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA). He has also worked with the United Nations Office for Project Service (UNOPS). With his technical expertise, he supported technical assistance to the government and the Civil Society Organization to effectively deliver essential health care services to the most vulnerable population. Due to his hard work and high performance, Pyae received the high-performing national staff award.

Working as a Nutrition Specialist with United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), Pyae has provided technical assistance to the Ministry of Health in developing multisectoral plans and organizing nationwide campaigns. He also coordinated with nutrition partners in emergency humanitarian response and COVID-19 related activities.

As a Humphrey Fellow, Pyae is looking forward to participating in seminars, coursework, and collaboration with respective entities and experts in pursuing knowledge and skillsets. He is planning to improve his technical expertise and skillsets through affiliation with various nutrition agencies. After his return, Dr. Aung wants to strengthen multisectoral responses in nutrition in collaboration with key stakeholders.

Dr. Lin Lin Htun

Dr. Lin Lin Htun is a medical doctor from Myanmar and has eleven years of experience in public health program management. He graduated from the University of Medicine (1), Yangon in 2006 and obtained a Master of Public Health degree from Mahidol University of Thailand in 2010. He is the Program Manager at the United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS) in Myanmar.

He began his career in public health at CARE with a project focused on women empowerment and promotion of reproductive health and rights for the ethnic minorities in Myanmar. Over the past eleven years, he has been employed with various international governmental organizations and United Nations agencies (WHO, UNFPA, PACT, UNICEF and UNOPS). He has worked on the management of programs, development assistance and multi donors pooled funds for HIV/AIDS prevention, Maternal, Newborn and Child Health (MNCH), routine immunization, Sexual Reproductive Health and Rights (SRHR), and health system strengthening.

He dedicated his professional life to reduce health disparities and increase health services accessibility for the most vulnerable women, children and young people. He is actively involved in the development of a National SRHR Policy and integrated national strategy for maternal, newborn, children and adolescent health. He strives to reach a point where there are routine immunization services to the areas affected by armed conflicts. In addition, he is strongly interested in capacity enhancement of Community Health Workers (CHWs) and engagement with Community Based Organizations (CBOs) for strengthening primary health care.

During his Humphrey Fellowship, he plans to develop knowledge and skills on leadership, policy formulation and advocacy, health system strengthening, and program management concentrated on MNCH and routine immunization. He is determined to apply the experiences he learns from the Humphrey Fellowship program to the health equity of women, children and young people. He is also keen to build networks with public health institutions and people of the USA for future partnership opportunities.

Hanh Bui Thi Minh

Hanh Bui Thi Minh is a laboratory quality manager at national standard laboratory in Hanoi Medical University (HMU), Vietnam. She has 9 years of experience in setting up, operating, and consulting management systems for the laboratory. She is also a public health researcher at the School of Preventive Medicine and Public Health, HMU. She completed her engineer degree in environmental engineering from Hanoi University of Science &Technology in 2013. She also holds a master's degree of public health in One Health from HMU, in 2017.

In 2013, she started working on Hanoi authority’s projects to recover more than 100 lakes in Hanoi city with the role of main researcher in evaluating water quality index and proposing solutions. In 2014, she was a founder member of the Center for Monitoring, Analysis Environment and Resource (CMARE), an organization that involves protecting the environment and support for government and local authority in monitoring polluted air/water indicators. Since 2015, she has worked in the public health field to determine to relationship between human health and the environment with the ambition of protecting the environment along with developing community healthcare. Especially, in the context of Covid – 19, she and her lab team were in charged with testing virus SARS CoV2, assisting CDCs at provincial level with technique or setting up new laboratory to early detect the virus and significantly contributed to Vietnam’s government in controlling the pandemic.

Her areas of interest include novel analysis techniques in preventive medicine, antibiotic resistance, environmental health, health impact assessment, and lastly bio risk and laboratory quality management. During her Hubert Humphrey Fellowship year, she intends to further her knowledge in laboratory management systems, strengthen her experiences in environmental health study, and broaden her networking for international collaboration in community healthcare.

Pavle Zelic

Pavle Zelic holds a Master of Science in Pharmacy. He serves as Serbia’s public health official, a certified diplomat, and an international expert and lecture. He is also an accomplished writer/scriptwriter.After completing master studies at the Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Belgrade he was headhunted by Big Pharma which he soon left pursuing a higher purpose. He found it in the position of manager for International Cooperation, European Integrations and Public Relations at the Medicines and Medical Devices Agency of Serbia which he has held for 13 years now. He is most proud of his completion of the prestigious Diplomatic Academy of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Serbia, where he became their best student/valedictorian for their 2010-11 class.

He initiated, negotiating and put into practice many agreements with national regulatory authorities worldwide: EU (Italy, France), Russian Federation and Canada and all Balkan countries. He is Serbia’s representative, but also an expert and elected official in WHO, many EU bodies, and the Council of Europe. He managed many various-scale (inter)national projects and major events and is very prominent in the media, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic with several thousand reports to his name. Finally, he also authored three fiction books, two graphic novels, and several movie scripts.

He believes the Humphrey Fellowship will help enable him to become an even better communicator and project manager, whilst learning about new sciences like environmental health, and open a world of opportunities for personal and institutional ties with U.S. counterparts.

This program bears name to another pharmacist that became praised for his work beyond that profession – Hubert H. Humphrey (HHH) himself. Like him, Pavle would like to help the people of Serbia and abroad and leave a legacy of his work to help inspire another kind of HHHHealthier, Happier and Hopeful for the better future that awaits us all – if we work for it, together.

Dr Vivian VerbeSarah is a public health professional specializing in sexual and reproductive  health, maternal health, and HIV/AIDS program. She graduated from University  of Khartoum in 2014 with a bachelor’s degree in Dental Surgery. Her passion for  reproductive health and rights led her to pursue the public health discipline.

Sarah worked in several national NGOs in Sudan. She led projects for elimination of female genital mutilation among internally displace people. Her engagement  in civil society and advocacy for sexual reproductive health have qualified her to  be selected for several young leadership programs. Namely, the Young African Leaders Initiative, and the Sudanese Young Leaders Program.

Sarah worked as a project coordinator at the Sudanese Fertility Care Association, in the national HIV/AIDS project. During this position she was selected to pursue a master’s degree in Public Health and Health Promotion through the Chevening scholarship (UK) scheme for young leaders from developing countries. After the completion of her degree, she went back to Sudan and worked as qualitative research analyst for several organization. For the last two years, Sarah has held a position as a Reproductive Health Program Associate at the United Nation’s Population Fund.

Sarah has worked on reforming the midwifery profession in Sudan. She has also worked in the support of the Maternal Death Surveillance System, Fistula prevention and treatment, Cervical Cancer Screening, and HIV/AIDS program. Sarah played an important role during the COVID-19 response in Sudan. She worked as member of the case management committee focusing on the infection control and prevention training for community midwives across Sudan.

Currently, Sarah is a young leader and advocate for sexual and reproductive health. She also volunteers at several initiatives in supporting young Sudanese females in career development. Sarah is committed to focus on improving the health of the Sudanese through evidence-based practice and development of research to inform designing and implementation of projects and national programs in the area of maternal and reproductive health.

Dr. Salma SulemanHaving grown up in a low-income neighborhood, where health inequities are  prevalent, and as the daughter of parents who value excellence, Yolande really  loves dedicating her time and energy to serving patients. After completing her  medical studies and specialization in Cardiology at the University Pr. Joseph KI-  ZERBO OUAGA I, she worked in public hospitals in her country, Burkina Faso. She  has performed patients’ physical examination and prevention of cardiovascular risk  factors. She was appointed Chief Doctor of a health district in 2014 where she has  worked hard on implementing health policies.

Dr. Tapsoba was awarded a letter of congratulations from the Central Health Officers, and as a result received additional funds to perform preventive health activities. In order to foster excellence in disease prevention, Yolande has decided to embrace Public Health. She strongly believes that Public Health is a relentless force for holistic and efficient medical practices.

Getting involved in the Hubert H. Humphrey Program is a chance to strengthen her desire to learn more on public health issues and come up with innovative strategies capable to boost activities of the national non communicable disease program in her country. Yolande’s specific areas of interest are prevention of cardiovascular risk factors, sustainability, and patients centered health systems evolving over time. She is planning to earn her Master of Public Health.

Dr. Osama TanousSina received her Doctoral Certificate in Medicine from the Faculty of Medicine of Tunis Univerisity El manar in 2004. She also earned a master's degree in public  health, family medicine, and emergency medicine from the Faculty of Medicine in  Tunis. She is currently working as Director I of the Carthage Health District and as a family medicine trainer. She acts as liaison with the Faculty of Medicine of Tunis  University El Manar. Sina is strongly interested in the field of communicable and  non-communicable diseases. She is a member of the Research Department on  Cardiovascular Disease Epidemiology &Prevention in Tunisia. She has been  responsible for implementing several activities for behavioral change and health promotion. She is also involved in health economics studies, and she is member of the National Health Account Team of Tunisia since 2014. In addition, Sina was a supervisor of projects and national surveys in collaboration with WHO and UNICEF since 2013.

During the Covid 19 Crisis, she provided training sessions for health professionals in the private and public sectors on measures to protect against the spread of Covid 19. She managed two containment centers for suspected cases and one containment center for Covid 19 positive cases. She volunteered to manage covid 19 clusters in other cities in Tunisia. She also was a coordinator of the vaccine center in Tunisia. Sina is an active member of Civil Society Organizations working for health promotion and health equity. She was Deputy Secretary General of the Palliative Care Association in 2010-2012 and president of Tunisian American Alumni Association (2018-2021).

Dr. Novil Wijesekara

Dr. Novil Wijesekara is a medical doctor In Sri Lanka. He holds a Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery, a Doctor of Medicine in Community Medicine, a Master of Science in Disaster Management, a Master of Science in Community Medicine, a Post Graduate Diploma in Diplomatic Studies and Foreign Relations, and a Diploma in Human Rights and Peace Education.

He is a consultant attached to the Disaster Preparedness and Response Division, Ministry of Health, Sri Lanka, working on all-hazard health system resilience. He functions as a visiting lecturer in disaster management for undergraduate and postgraduate medical curricula and a regional trainer for Hospital Preparedness in Emergencies (HOPE) for the Asian Disaster Preparedness Center. He has conducted several assessments on health emergency risk management for the World Health Organization. He was the National Consultant on Health and Disaster Management for the Sri Lanka Red Cross Society. He founded the Community Tsunami Early Warning Center (now known as the Community Tsunami Education Center), Resilience Research, Training and Consulting, Resilience Foundation, and the International Journal of Community Resilience. His contributions have been recognized through the National Disaster Resilience Leadership Award and Health Emergency Excellence Award. He is an Asia Foundation Development Fellow, Community Solutions Fellow, and Southeast Asia Interfaith Fellow. In 2021, Novil was selected as a Community Engagement Exchange Program (CEE) Specialist and Thought Leader by the US Department of State and IREX.

His areas of interest include: health system resilience, community resilience, community engagement, interfaith action, disaster preparedness and response, outbreak preparedness and response, environmental health, and drinking water quality.

During his time with Hubert Humphrey Fellowship at the Rollins School of Public Health Emory University, he plans to examine the health system and community attributes that make them resilient in the wake of challenges such as disasters, emergencies, conflicts, and pandemics.

Dr. Alexandra Marcano

Dr. Alexandra Marcano is a Venezuelan medical doctor. She graduated in 2006 from the “Luis Razetti” School of Medicine at the Central University of Venezuela and completed an Internal medicine specialization in the Caracas University Hospital.

Her first experience as a physician took place in difficult to access, rural communities of farmers and indigenous people. The completed this work with the NGO that hired her in 2007, The Maniapure Foundation. This was an inspiration to begin a path of service in rural community health, with an emphasis on indigenous populations.

Later, she continued working as an internal medicine consultant and hospitalist with an oncology team in parallel with developing different community health programs with the Maniapure Foundation. She helped shape and implement a telemedicine program that connects rural doctors in difficult to access underserved communities, with specialists in larger medical institutions for second opinion consultation and expert diagnostic/therapeutic guidance. This approach has proven to diminish the rural doctors and nurses’ sense of isolation and to improve the quality of healthcare provided to people in underserved areas, where they face serious challenges to accessing the health care system.

As a current Chief Medical Director of her NGO, she has taken the organization to the next level. She is now a highly active advocate for vulnerable indigenous and rural people’s needs via the UN’s coordination teams for the humanitarian response in her country. With the help of her team, she has designed and implemented several humanitarian projects in underserved communities and tailored response to the unique and diverse indigenous cosmovision and traditions.

Dr. Marcano has found Public Health to be her true passion, and thus the field of knowledge and expertise she wishes to further develop. She wishes to have an influence in public health policy making to help diminish health disparities for underserved rural and indigenous communities. Her focus in the Hubert Humphrey fellowship will be to improve leadership skills as well as in organizational development, with a goal set on gaining knowledge in response to complex humanitarian crises.

Program Coordinator:

Kenneth G. Castro, MD, FIDSA
Rollins School of Public Health,
Atlanta, GA 30322
1518 Clifton Road NE. Room 6013
Phone: (404) 727-5585

Associate Program Coordinator:

Christy Brozowski, MEd
Rollins School of Public Health,
Atlanta, GA 30322
1518 Clifton Road NE. Room 7022
Phone: (404) 726-0263


Program Assistant:

Lindsey Burton-Anderson

Program Assistant: