Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

Unsung Vaccine Heroes

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March 06, 2013

A recently compiled list of Vaccine Influencers is making the rounds. It is dominated by the usual suspects such as heads of agencies and departments, including our own. So many other women and men in many countries came immediately to mind for us—those who have been just as valuable as influencers in ensuring access to valuable vaccines for children globally. We would like to acknowledge some of these unsung heroes, people who greatly influence immunization programs the world over.


To all of you below—we thank you all for all the work you do—you amaze and inspire us.


In alphabetical order: 




  1. Mercy Ahun, Special Representative to GAVI Eligible Countries, GAVI Alliance
  2. Amie Batson, Chief Strategy Director, PATH
  3. Agnes Binagwaho, Minister of Health, Rwanda
  4. Diana Chang-Blanc, Programme Manager, World Health Organization
  5. Thomas Cherian,  Coordinator of the Expanded Programme on Immunization, WHO Department of Immunization, Vaccines and Biologicals, World Health Organization
  6. Felicity Cutts, Independent Consultant, France
  7. Suraya Dalil, Minister of Public Health, Afghanistan
  8. Helen Evans, Deputy CEO, GAVI Alliance
  9. Anuradha Gupta, Joint Secretary, Ministry of Health and Family Planning
  10. Shanelle Hall, Director,  UNICEF Supply Division
  11. Louise Ivers, Chief of Mission (Haiti), Partners in Health (for her work on cholera vaccine introduction)
  12. Penny Kalesha, Child Health Specialist, Zambia Ministry of Health
  13. Lidija Kamara, Program Manager, IVB, WHO
  14. Tatu Kamau, EPI Manager, Kenya
  15. Alice Kange’the, Executive Vice President of Vaccine Delivery and Maternal Child Health Programs, CHAI, Kenya (for work in vaccine delivery)
  16. Marie-Paule Kieny, Assistant Director-General Health Systems and Innovation, World Health Organization
  17. Dafrossa Lyimo, EPI Manager, Tanzania
  18. Hélène Mambu-ma-Disu, Senior Program Officer, Sabin Vaccine Institute
  19. Rebecca Martin, Director, Global Immunization Division, Centers for Disease Control, USA
  20. Margarida Matsinhe, Field Officer, Village Reach, Mozambique (for her work in vaccine delivery)
  21. Gill Mayers, Technical Officer, EPI, World Health Organization
  22. Richard Mihigo, Programme Manager, WHO/AFRO
  23. Elizabeth Miller, Head, Immunization Department, Health Protection Agency, UK
  24. Julie Milstien, Independent  Consultant, France
  25. Ann Ottosen, Contracts Manager, UNICEF Supply Division
  26. William Pape, Director of Medicine, GHESKIO & Professor of Medicine, Cornell University  (for his work on cholera vaccine introduction)
  27. Muhammad Ali Pate, Minister for State for Health, Nigeria
  28. Helen Rees, Chair, Strategic Advisory Group of Experts (SAGE) on Immunization
  29. Katinka Rosenbom, Contracts Manager, UNICEF Supply Division
  30. Keita Sakoba, Chief of Prevention and Control of Communicable Diseases, Ministry of Health Guinea
  31. Anne Schuchat, Acting Director, Center for Global Health, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, USA
  32. Nina Schwalbe, Managing Director, Policy and Performance, GAVI Alliance
  33. Meredith Shirey, Chief, Immunization, UNICEF Supply Division
  34. Michel Zaffran, Coordinator WHO, EPI, World Health Organization

Who inspires you? Please let us know.


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