Mayur Desai, an associate professor in the Department of Chronic Disease Epidemiology, has been appointed as the Yale School of Public Health’s inaugural associate dean for diversity, equity, and inclusion.
A longstanding professor who also serves as director of the Advanced Professional MPH Program, Desai will work with school leadership to create a learning and working environment that promotes belonging, inclusion, social justice and health equity. The associate dean’s responsibilities include developing and implementing training to reduce conscious and unconscious bias and aggression, and engaging students, staff, faculty and alumni to increase diversity at the school. The associate deanship is a part-time faculty position that will report to the dean. Desai will also serve as the YSPH Title IX Coordinator.
Popular with students and staff, Desai, MPH ’94, PH.D. ’97, is a four-time recipient of the YSPH Distinguished Teaching Award, the school’s highest honor. Students praise Desai for his exceptional teaching skills and ability to make complex information relevant, as well as his transparency and engagement in student activities. Desai’s work focuses on improving the quality and outcomes of medical care in complex and vulnerable populations, developing quality metrics that drive improvements in health care delivery, and health system strengthening in low- and middle-income settings.
Desai’s work has had a global impact. He has developed and taught short courses and workshops focused on epidemiology, biostatistics, monitoring and evaluation, strategic problem solving, and mentorship in nearly a dozen countries.
Desai is a core faculty member in Yale’s Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Clinical Scholars Program, an American College of Epidemiology Fellow and a recipient of the U.S. Department of Health & Human Service’s Secretary Award for Distinguished Service.
In announcing Desai’s appointment, Dean Sten H. Vermund praised Professor and Department of Social and Behavioral Sciences Chair Trace Kershaw, chair of the YSPH Committee on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, for his leadership and steadfast commitment to diversity issues. Desai’s appointment is effective July 1.