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Faculty experts



Tomás Aragón, MD
Executive director of the Center for Infectious Diseases and Emergency Readiness at UC Berkeley
Phone: (510) 643-4935
Email: aragon@berkeley.edu
Media relations contact: Sarah Yang, (510) 643-7741, scyang@berkeley.edu

Expertise: Dr. Aragón is a medical epidemiologist heading the Center for Infectious Diseases and Emergency Readiness at UC Berkeley, which seeks to prepare public health agencies and staff to detect, investigate and respond to microbial threats. Before coming to the UC Berkeley School of Public Health, Dr. Aragón worked for eight years as director of Community Health Epidemiology and Disease Control at the San Francisco Department of Public Health, and as deputy county health officer for the City and County of San Francisco. At SFDPH, he directed communicable disease control and prevention, bioterrorism preparedness and response planning, and the epidemiologic and effectiveness research unit.

Arthur Reingold, MD
Professor and head of the Division of Epidemiology at UC Berkeley's School of Public Health
Phone: (510) 642-0327
Email: reingold@berkeley.edu
Media relations contact: Sarah Yang, (510) 643-7741, scyang@berkeley.edu

Expertise: Reingold is co-director of the CDC-funded California Emerging Infections Program, a joint program with state and local health departments. Reingold can talk about all aspects of infectious diseases: health risks, challenges of detecting outbreaks and safety precautions. "We are always concerned about influenza viruses being able to exchange genetic information with other viruses, especially ones that may be resistant to the drugs available," says Reingold. "It remains to be seen, however, if that will happen here."

Lee W. Riley, MD
Professor of epidemiology and infectious diseases at UC Berkeley's School of Public Health
Phone: (510) 642-9200
Email: lwriley@berkeley.edu
Media relations contact: Sarah Yang, (510) 643-7741, scyang@berkeley.edu

Expertise: Field epidemiology and international health; molecular mechanisms of drug-resistant pathogens. Dr. Riley says that at this point, people should continue to take the typical measures recommended to prevent the spread of the flu, particularly the frequent washing of hands. "I would keep on top of what the local health departments are recommending, since they will have the best knowledge of what is happening in your immediate area," he says.

John Swartzberg, MD
Clinical professor at the UC Berkeley School of Public Health and chair of the editorial board of the UC Berkeley Wellness Letter
Phone: (510) 643-0499
Email: jes@berkeley.edu
Media relations contact: Sarah Yang, (510) 643-7741, scyang@berkeley.edu

Expertise: Dr. Swartzberg is board certified in internal medicine and infectious diseases. Before joining UC Berkeley's faculty full time in 2001, he spent 25 years in clinical practice. He is also the hospital epidemiologist and chair of the infection control committee at the Alta Bates Medical Center in Berkeley.


Jennifer Lachance
Associate director of the Center for Health Leadership at the School of Public Health
Email: lachance@berkeley.edu
Media relations contact: Sarah Yang, (510) 643-7741, scyang@berkeley.edu

Expertise: Lachance's research and work in public health has focused primarily on preparedness for disaster situations, including electronic disease surveillance. Prior to coming to UC Berkeley, she consulted with the Office of Terrorism Preparedness and Emergency Response at the CDC, the Disaster Services departments in the Atlanta and New York Chapters of the American Red Cross, and the Chicago Department of Public Health to address disaster preparedness. Lachance's dissertation addresses the role employers are taking to help prepare workers for flu pandemics.

"We still don't know how severe this flu outbreak will be, but we do know this is an opportunity for businesses to think about what to do in the event of a flu outbreak," says Lachance. "It can take the fear of a pandemic for companies to focus their energies on developing a good plan of action for the health of their workers and the survival of their business. Even if the swine flu does not become a pandemic, the plans businesses set in place would help keep workers healthy during annual flu seasons and potential future pandemics."

Ian Mitroff
Senior researcher at UC Berkeley's Center for Catastrophic Risk Management
Phone: (510) 594-7640
Email: ianmitroff@earthlink.net
Media Relations contact: Kathleen Maclay, (510) 643-5651, kmaclay@berkeley.edu

Expertise: Crisis management and spirituality at work. He is the author of the books, "Dirty Rotten Strategies, How We Trick Ourselves and Others into Solving the Wrong Problems Precisely" (2009), and, "Why Some Companies Emerge Stronger and Better From a Crisis" (2005).

Karlene Roberts
Professor at the Graduate School, professor of organizational behavior and industrial relations at the Haas School of Business; director of UC Berkeley’s Center for Catastrophic Risk Management; and a research psychologist at UC Berkeley's Institute of Industrial Relations
Phone: (510) 642-5221
Email: karlene@haas.berkeley.edu
Media Relations contact: Kathleen Maclay, (510) 643-5651, kmaclay@berkeley.edu

Expertise: The design and management of organizations and systems of organizations in which errors can have catastrophic consequences. The results of her research have been applied to U.S. Navy aircraft carrier operations, the U.S. Coast Guard, the Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication, the Federal Aviation Administration's Air Traffic Control System, Gard Services, British Petroleum, NASA, the medical industry and the maritime and medical industries.  


Michael Ranney
Associate professor, cognition and development, Graduate School of Education
Phone: (510) 734-1578 (cell)
Email: ranney@berkeley.edu
Media Relations contact: Kathleen Maclay, (510) 643-5651 or kmaclay@berkeley.edu

Expertise: Ranney's latest research involves reasoning and policy-making relating to rates and statistics important to society. Some of his earlier research has shown that journalists and budding journalists often do not adequately appreciate the impact of even a single, critical statistic on citizens' views on social policy, and that journalism instructors find their students' quantitative skills notably insufficient.

He led "Numbers, News & Evidence," a project assisted by faculty at the Graduate School of Journalism that offered a short program to improve journalism students' and instructors' quantitative awareness, critical analysis and evidence-based perspectives. Its 10-question numeracy quiz is online at http://morenumerate.org/quiz/.