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Samuel E. Kelly Distinguished Faculty Lecture

Established in 2005 and named in honor of the UW’s first vice president for the Office of Minority Affairs, the annual Samuel E. Kelly Distinguished Faculty Lecture is dedicated to acknowledging the work of faculty whose nationally-recognized research focuses on diversity and social justice.


Health Disparities in the United States: Drivers and the Path Forward

Headshot of Dr Ali Mokdad

Featuring Dr. Ali Mokdad

Chief Strategy Officer
Population Health
University of Washington

Dr.Mokdad’s lecture will be followed by a Q&A session.

This event occurred  on Thursday, October 20, 2022

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Reception: 6:00 p.m.
Small bites and soft drinks

Lecture: 7:00 p.m.



Please find photos of the event on the OMA&D blog.

For questions, contact OMA&D Advancement at

To request disability accommodation, contact the Disability Services Office at 206-543-6450 (voice), 206-543-6452 (TTY), 206-685-7264 (fax), The University of Washington makes every effort to honor disability accommodation requests. Requests can be responded to most effectively if received as far in advance of the event as possible, preferably at least 10 days.


There are large and persistent health disparities in the United States among racial/ethnic groups. The extent of these patterns varies geographically at the local scale and it is not well understood. There is an urgent need to address the shared underlying factors driving these widespread disparities. In this lecture, the drivers of health disparities and the path forward to improve population health in the US. 


Ali H. Mokdad, PhD, is Professor of Health Metrics Sciences at the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME) and Chief Strategy Officer for Population Health at the University of Washington. Prior to IHME, Dr. Mokdad worked at the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. He has published groundbreaking research on local-level disease trends and leading risk factors for poor health. His work on obesity is among the most highly cited in the field.  


Dr. Samuel E. Kelly
Dr. Samuel E. Kelly

Dr. Samuel E. Kelly was hired as the first vice president for the newly formed Office of Minority Affairs in 1970. Also the first African American senior administrator at the UW, Dr. Kelly was an educational advocate who opened doors for hundreds of underrepresented students at the UW. Many of the programs and services that he established during his six-year tenure still exist today. Among his accomplishments was securing funding to house sites for both the Ethnic Cultural Center (renovated and renamed in his honor in 2015) and the Instructional Center in 1971. Dr. Kelly passed away on July 6, 2009.