Lourdes Baezconde-Garbanati, Ph.D., M.P.H. (Chair)
USC Keck School of Medicine
Dr. Lourdes Baezconde-Garbanati is Associate Dean for Community Initiatives and Distinguished tenured Professor in the Department of Population and Public Health Sciences at the Keck School of Medicine (KSOM) of the University of Southern California. She holds a Courtesy appointment in the Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism. She is the Director of the KSOM Center for Health Equity in the Americas and Associate Director of the Community Outreach and Engagement Office at the USC Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center. She oversees community engagement for the Department of Population and Public Health Sciences and of the Institute for Health Promotion and Disease Prevention Research (IPR). Further, she is co-investigator in the Community Outreach and Engagement core of the Southern California Clinical and Translation Science Institute (CTSI).
Dr. Baezconde-Garbanati is the Executive Producer of the Tamale Lesson, a video that transformed the way we deliver cancer knowledge through narrative to populations, winning awards from APHA and the 10 Year NIH Common Fund. She is also the Director of Es Tiempo, an award-winning public education campaign to deliver culturally developed cervical cancer and other HPV related cancers screening messages and monitors increases in information and in screening in Hispanic communities.
Dr. Baezconde-Garbanati has a long history of successful NIH funded grants and impactful publications in scientific journals. She has been part of 8 NIH funded Centers and currently is Associate Director of the Southern California Center for Latino Health (SCCLH) a joint venture between USC and Children's Hospital Los Angeles with a focus on reducing the burden of diseases produced by obesity and fatty liver disease among Latino children and their families in 10 counties in Southern California. She is known for her innovative research on eliminating health disparities, including her work with adolescents, acculturation, drug and tobacco use, obesity, and physical activity, conducted with communities themselves using community participatory methods. During COVID-19 she developed two impactful programs, Vaccinate L.A. and Stay Connected L.A.. With Vaccinate L.A. she worked with the CTSI to deliver a campaign that yielded a 30% higher than expected vaccination rate in targeted zip codes in Los Angeles in Black and Latino communities with low vaccination rates. With Stay Connected L.A. she worked with 11 local artists and muralists in the Latino community to deliver impactful mitigation and vaccination messages through social and outdoor media messages at the height of COVID. She is the developer of CVNS (Community Vaccine Navigators Network), with through the National Alliance for Hispanic Health, trained approximately 500 community health workers in 38 cities, resulting in over 250,000 vaccinations. She has mentored over 200 students, including undergraduates, graduate and postdoctoral fellows and junior faculty from underrepresented groups in her participant and community engagement methods. Many of these mentees have become successful researchers and educators with high level positions in local and international governments, universities, research, and industry. For her mentorship she received a prestigious USC Faculty Mentorship award. She is recognized nationally and internationally for her extensive record of publications in high impact journals in her field and has won numerous awards and recognitions locally, nationally and internationally for her work. She has been the lead at USC of the Latino Tobacco Coordinating Center, helping to establish 38 tobacco policies in California since 2018. She was recently inducted into the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health Hall of Fame and received the 2023 Lester Breslow Lifetime Achievement Award for her work globally in public health. Dr. Baezconde-Garbanati speaks multiple languages fluently, including French and Spanish and is highly sought out as a speaker for her work.
Originally from the Dominican Republic and established in Los Angeles, Dr. Baezconde-Garbanati has studied in different parts of the world and educational systems in different languages. Dr. Baezconde-Garbanati has a Ph.D. in Public Health and an M.P.H. from the University of California, Los Angeles, and a M.A. in Medical Psychology from Universite Catholique de Louvain, in Belgium. a Bachelor's in Clinical and one in Social Psychology from the Universidad Nacional Pedro H. Urena in the Dominican Republic. Other studies have been at Cambridge University in the United Kingdom and at Laval University in Quebec, Canada.