Liberia: Tolbert Nyenswah Earns Ph. D. at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health


MONROVIA – Dr. Jennifer Nuzzo, Professor of Epidemiology and Director of the Pandemic Center at Brown University School of Public Health, has congratulated Mr. Tolbert Nyenswah for successfully passing his Ph.D. dissertation defense at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.

In her congratulatory tweet, Dr. Nuzzo recalled one of Dr. Tolbert’s observations: “If the community is not on your side you cannot do any public health intervention.”

Tolbert Nyenswah, LL.B., M.P.H., is a senior research associate with the Department of International Health at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. He is an internationally recognized legal scholar and a global public health expert.

Prior to joining Johns Hopkins University, he was the deputy minister of health of Liberia, director general/chief executive officer of the National Public Health Institute, and the assistant minister of health of the Republic of Liberia during the administration of President Ellen Johns Sirleaf, appointed by the president and confirmed by the senate three times.

He specializes in health policies and systems and public health emergency preparedness and response, advising on incident management system functionalities. He has been engaged with several public health emergencies, including as the incident manager of the 2014–2016 Ebola epidemic in West Africa, Lassa Fever, Zika, meningitis, and COVID-19. Some of his major contributions to the COVID-19 response include developing a contact tracing course adopted by all US 50 States, that has more than 15 million viewers, including 1.1 million enrolled and certified.

During the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, he has been interviewed by multiple African, North American, Asian, European, and South American media outlets, including The Washington Post, The Hill, Business Insider, Bloomberg, USA Today, NPR Radio, BBC, VOA News, World Economic Forum, The Philadelphia Inquirer, VOA Africa, The New Yorker, STAT, and Politico.