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SUNY Downstate Medical Center

Brooklyn Health Disparities Center

Administrative Core

The Administrative Core provides overall administrative and scientific oversight and coordination of research projects. Specifically, it provides the scientific leadership, organizational structure, and support staff necessary for center investigators to realize their scientific potential through multidisciplinary collaborations. It facilitates communication and fosters collaborations among core members and with community members in its catchment area. It ensures sound fiscal management and accountability of all activities of the Center. It also ensures that its goals are achieved, and that the proposed activities of each CORE function optimally and in a synergistic, interacting manner with each other.


photo of Moro Salifu

Moro O. Salifu, MD, MBA, MPH, FACP

Dr. Moro Salifu is Chair of the Department of Medicine, Chief of the Division of Nephrology and Director of the Kidney Transplant Program at SUNY Downstate. Dr. Salifu came to SUNY Downstate after medical school in Turkey to pursue residency training in internal medicine. After internship, Dr. Salifu rapidly excelled as resident in medicine, subsequently meriting him fellowships in kidney diseases, kidney transplantation and interventional nephrology, for which he graduated as a stellar scholar in all three subspecialties. While in residency and Fellowship training, Dr. Salifu won annual awards in the basic science category in the Department of Medicine for six consecutive years as well as four consecutive awards from the American College of Physicians. After fellowship training, Dr. Salifu was retained by SUNY Downstate as Assistant Professor in 2001. He rapidly rose through the ranks to Associate Professor and Professor within 7 years, a milestone that is credited to his outstanding original research contributions, clinical acumen and medical education. In about the same time, Dr. Salifu, earned two masters degrees in public health and healthcare business administration respectively. He has directed the nephrology fellowship training program since 2001 and in 2008 assumed the roles of Chief of Nephrology and Director of the Transplant Program, roles that were crucial to the restructuring of the kidney dialysis and transplant programs at Downstate. He is a recipient of many grants and has published extensively. He is a member and journal reviewer for many nephrology and transplant societies and has served in many local and national professional committees. He is also a fellow of the American College of Physicians. Dr. Salifu's research interest are CKD disease progression, vascular biology and kidney transplant outcomes.

photo of Ruth Browne

Ruth C. Browne, ScD, MPH

Dr. Ruth C. Browne is a nationally recognized visionary and innovator in the field of urban health and education. As Chief Executive Officer of the Arthur Ashe Institute for Urban Health (AAIUH), Dr. Browne has served as the Institute's spokesperson and public persona since its inception. Founded by legendary tennis champion and humanitarian Arthur Ashe just 3 months prior to his death in 1992, under Dr. Browne's leadership the Institute has gained national recognition as a pioneer in developing culturally competent services that address racial, ethnic and gender disparities in health. Her efforts to advance Ashe's legacy span 19 years, during which she led AAIUH in expanding its reach as a best practice harbinger of interventions that improve health and education for multi-ethnic populations locally and nationally. Dr. Browne is the chief architect of the Institute's partnership with SUNY Downstate Medical Center, where she is also an Associate Professor in the Colleges of Medicine and Health Related Professions. Dr. Browne has led several teams of researchers conducting behavioral health intervention and training projects aimed at addressing health equity issues. She is the Director of the Brooklyn Health Disparities Center, an NIH funded Center of Excellence, and a partnership between the Institute, the academic health center and the Brooklyn Borough President's Office. She recently completed her tenure as a Fulbright Regional Nexus Scholar, her second Fulbright Award, under which she developed and implemented an internship Program focused on Social Determinants of Health in Trinidad and Tobago. Dr. Browne is a resident of Brooklyn, New York and is Fulbright Short Term Research Specialist alumnus and Regional Nexus Scholar. She earned a Bachelor's Degree from Princeton University, a Master of Public Health and Master of Public Policy from the University of Michigan, and a Doctor of Science from Harvard University School of Public Health.

Dr. Browne brings a solid reputation in building partnerships and institutions to the BHDC. Her expertise in promoting expanding access to educational opportunity at the pre-collegiate level coupled with a solid network of relationships with community based organizations is an asset for the Center. Dr. Browne is a steward for social innovation and believes passionately in the potential for community stakeholders to solve seemingly intractable human service challenges. She has provided extensive leadership for three iterations of this Brooklyn based NIH funded Health Disparities Center.

photo of Sandra Chapman

Sandra Chapman

Deputy Borough President Sandra Chapman joined the leadership of the Brooklyn Health Disparities Center in 2012 as the representative for the Brooklyn Borough President's Office. She has nearly three decades of experience as a manager, problem solver and advocate in the public sector with special emphasis on streamlining services between a busy city agency and its residents. Prior to her appointment as deputy borough president, Chapman served as director of the borough president's Community Service Center (CSC). Long dedicated to serving others, Chapman built a team committed to helping residents struggling to access city services and she continues to supervise the CSC.

Faculty Collaborators

Samy I. McFarlane, MD, MPH, MBA (Research Core)

Professor, Department of Medicine, Division of Endocrinology , Diabetes and Hypertension
SUNY Downstate Medical Center

Jason M. Lazar, MD (Research & Training Cores)

Director of Non-Invasive Cardiology
Visiting Associate Professor of Medicine
SUNY Downstate Medical Center

William Solomon, MD (Research Core)

Attending Hematologist Oncologist, Maimonides Cancer Center
Professor of Medicine, SUNY Downstate Medical Center

M.A.Q. Siddiqui, PhD (Research Core)

Professor and Chairman of the Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology
SUNY Downstate Medical Center

Olugbenga Ogedegbe, MD, MPH, MS, FAHA (Research Core)

Associate Professor of Medicine
Director, Center for Healthful Behavior Change, Division of General Internal Medicine
Department of Medicine, New York University School of Medicine

Carla Boutin-Foster, MD (Research Core)

Associate Professor of Medicine
Associate Professor of Public Health
Weill Medical College of Cornell University

Susana Morales, MD (Training Core)

Associate Professor
Director of the Center for Multicultural and Minority Health
Weill Medical College of Cornell University

Mohamed Boutjidir, PhD (Training Core)

Professor of Medicine, Anatomy and Cell Biology, Physiology & Pharmacology
SUNY Downstate Medical Center

Judith H. LaRosa, PhD, RN (Training Core)

Professor and Vice Dean of the School of Public Health
SUNY Downstate Medical Center

Dawn Morton-Rias, EdD, PA-C (Training Core)

Dean of the College of Health Related Professions
SUNY Downstate Medical Center

Ferdinand Zizi, MBA (Research & Training Cores)

Clinical Instructor, Department of Health Sciences
SUNY Downstate Medical Center

Program Advisory Committee

Dennis P. Andrulis, PhD, MPH

Senior Research Scientist at the Texas Health Institute and Associate Professor at the University of Texas School of Public Health

Marcia Bayne-Smith, PhD

Chair of the Board of Directors of Caribbean Women's Health Association and faculty member at Queens College, CUNY

Francesca Gany, MD, MS

Director of the Cancer and Communication Project and Director of the Center for Immigrant Health at New York University School of Medicine

Daniel F. Kripke, MD

Professor of Psychiatry, and Director of the Circadian Pacemaker Laboratory University of California San Diego

Mariano Rey, MD

Senior Associate Dean of Community Health at New York University School of Medicine

James Sowers, MD

Thomas W. and John F. Burns Missouri Chair in Diabetology, Director of the Diabetes and Cardiovascular Center at the University of Missouri - Columbia

M. Monica Sweeney, MD, MPH

Assistant Commissioner for HIV/AIDS Prevention and Control at New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene

Donald Wilson, MD

Dean Emeritus of the University of Maryland School of Medicine, and past chair of the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC), Senior Vice President for Health Science, Howard University

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