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CDC director to speak about pandemic March 3 on Medical Campus

Discussion featuring Rochelle Walensky will be livestreamed

by Tamara BhandariFebruary 23, 2022

CDC

The director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Rochelle P. Walensky, MD, will participate in a conversation about the pandemic Thursday, March 3, from 8 to 9 a.m. at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. The virtual event, available via livestream, will be geared toward faculty, staff, students and trainees on the Medical Campus and also will be available to the public. No registration is required.

Walensky, a Washington University alum, is the 2022 Gerald Medoff Visiting Professor in the Department of Medicine. Medoff, who died in 2019, was a beloved and visionary infectious diseases physician and former director of the Division of Infectious Diseases at the School of Medicine. The visiting professorship was established last year to honor Medoff and bring noteworthy infectious diseases experts to the School of Medicine as part of the department’s Grand Rounds lectures. Last year’s Gerald Medoff Visiting Professor was Anthony S. Fauci, MD, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases at the National Institutes of Health (NIH).

As part of the March 3 event, Walensky will discuss the pandemic with William G. Powderly, MD, the J. William Campbell Professor of Medicine and co-director of the Division of Infectious Diseases. Their conversation will center on domestic and global challenges facing public health officials as we emerge from the COVID-19 pandemic and will include questions posed by Powderly. Viewers will not be able to submit questions.

Walensky and Powderly, who also is the associate dean for clinical and translational research, the Larry J. Shapiro Director of the Institute for Public Health and the director of the Institute of Clinical and Translational Sciences, will be joined by Victoria Fraser, MD, the Adolphus Busch Professor and head of the Department of Medicine.

Walensky earned a bachelor of arts in chemistry with a concentration in biochemistry from Washington University’s College of Arts & Sciences in 1991. Before being named CDC director, she was a professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School and chief of the Division of Infectious Diseases at Massachusetts General Hospital, where she served at the outset of the COVID-19 pandemic. She is an internationally recognized HIV/AIDS researcher whose pioneering work has helped advance the national and global response to the deadly infection.

A recording of the event will be available within 24 hours on the School of Medicine’s YouTube channel and the Department of Medicine’s Grand Rounds website.

Washington University School of Medicine’s 1,700 faculty physicians also are the medical staff of Barnes-Jewish and St. Louis Children’s hospitals. The School of Medicine is a leader in medical research, teaching and patient care, and currently is No. 4 in research funding from the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Through its affiliations with Barnes-Jewish and St. Louis Children’s hospitals, the School of Medicine is linked to BJC HealthCare.

Tamara covers pathology, immunology, medical microbiology, cell biology, neurology, and radiology. She holds a bachelor's degree in molecular biophysics and biochemistry and in sociology from Yale University, a master's in public health/infectious diseases from the University of California, Berkeley, and a PhD in infectious disease immunology from the University of California, San Diego. Tamara worked in laboratories for about a decade before switching to science journalism. She joined Medical Public Affairs in 2016.