Ebola Panel Bios

Dr. Larry Madoff is director of the Division of Epidemiology and Immunization at the Massachusetts Department of Public Health, and professor of medicine at the University of Massachusetts Medical School. He is an attending physician at the University of Massachusetts Memorial Medical Center in the Division of Infectious Diseases and Immunology. Dr. Madoff is also the editor of ProMED (the Program for Monitoring Emerging Diseases), an Internet-based emerging disease surveillance system.

Dr. Paul Biddinger is the Vice Chairman for Emergency Preparedness in the Department of Emergency Medicine at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston. He is also the Medical Director for Emergency Preparedness at MGH and at Partners Healthcare.
Dr. Biddinger also serves as the Director of the Emergency Preparedness and Response Exercise Program at the Harvard School of Public Health. He leads a team of experts who develop ways to respond to public health emergencies.

Mr. Sesay Johnson is the Executive Director of The Liberian Community of Metro-Boston. The organization serves the needs of Liberians living in the Boston area, and supports educational initiatives for students in Liberia. Mr. Johnson is the founder of The Rural Liberian Healthcare and Development, Inc., a non-profit organization that provides Healthcare Services, Education, Training and Community Development in the country.

Alexi Paraschos is a Boston-based soul artist, songwriter, teacher, and choir director. He has worked with the Harvard Kuumba Singers, Tufts’ Third Day Gospel Choir, and the Boston College Voices of Imani Gospel Choir. He teaches at the Noble and Greenough School as a choir director and a cappella instructor. He recently released his first full-length album, “Something Greater.”

Janae Johnson is a slam poet and teaching artist originally from Sacramento, CA. Ms. Johnson was named “Best Slam Poet” at the 2013 Massachusetts Poetry Awards. She is the coach and advisor for the Simmons College (Speaks) Slam Team.

Jerry Lanson is Associate Professor of Journalism and Associate Chair of the department. Prior to teaching, he was an editor at the San Jose Mercury News in San Jose, California. He was part of the city-desk staff awarded a Pulitzer Prize for earthquake coverage. He is the author or co-author of three books on writing, most recently “Writing for Others, Writing for Ourselves”

Nancy Allen is executive-in-residence in the Health Communication Program, Dept of Communication and Science Disorders.  She was the Senior Communication Associate at Health Resources in Action where she worked on public health marketing campaigns on tobacco, substance abuse, violence prevention, and teenage health. She also was the Health Communication Specialist at the Massachusetts Department of Public Health in the HIV/AIDS Bureau.