Conference Co-Chairs

Jarrod Goentzel

Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)
Director, MIT Humanitarian Supply Chain Lab
Research Scientist and Lecturer
Jarrod Goentzel

Jarrod Goentzel is founder and director of the MIT Humanitarian Supply Chain Lab in the MIT Center for Transportation & Logistics. His research focuses on meeting human needs in resource-constrained settings through better supply chain management, information systems, and decision support technology. Dr. Goentzel leads fieldwork in a range of contexts to develop insights that improve response efforts during emergencies and strengthen supply chains in vulnerable communities. Research involves direct engagement with the private sector, government agencies, humanitarian, international development, and community organizations on several continents. Dr. Goentzel has created residential and online courses and in humanitarian logistics, international operations, and supply chain finance, and has extensive experience using simulation games to build intuition and leadership skills.

Previously, Dr. Goentzel was Executive Director of the MIT Supply Chain Management (SCM) Program, a nine-month master’s degree program. He joined MIT in 2003 to establish the Zaragoza Logistics Center in Spain, which was the first node in the MIT Global SCALE Network. He received a Ph.D. from the School of Industrial and Systems Engineering at the Georgia Institute of Technology.

George Fenton

Humanitarian Logistics Association
Chairman & CEO
George Fenton

George Fenton is an experienced consultant and evaluator, working with both the aid and private sectors, in the fields of emergency preparedness, response and logistics, including digital cash transfers and market-based interventions. He is an expert in humanitarian supply chain management with over 30 years of experience and is a leader in his field, having co-founded: the Humanitarian Logistics Association, a global humanitarian logistics community of practice and professional development body; the global Fleet Forum which promotes aid transport knowledge sharing, road safety and capacity building; and the East Africa Inter-Agency Working Group for disaster preparedness. George has also played an influential role within international fora such as the World Humanitarian Summit and the Humanitarian Response Network. 

George has led and managed emergency operations and logistics teams to ensure successful multi-million dollar responses to a wide range of global humanitarian crises over the past decade. Constantly seeking new challenges, he uses his academic, private and aid sector networks, broad management experience and versatile skills to support improvements to the delivery of aid by influencing practical, innovative changes to ways in which resources are used.

As a senior executive George has worked for the United Nations and several of the world’s largest non-governmental organisations, leading the development of new technologies, such as mobile data solutions to facilitate cash transfers, developing national supply chain capacity, and managing key relationships with a broad range of stakeholders. He has recently been involved in several UN and donor evaluations of emergency preparedness, response and logistics services in East Africa.

Title: George Fenton

Özlem Ergun, PhD

Northeastern University
Co-founder, Center for Health & Humanitarian Systems (CHHS)
Professor, Mechanical and Industrial Engineering

Dr. Özlem Ergun is currently a Professor in the Department of Mechanical & Industrial Engineering at Northeastern University in Boston. Prior to beginning at Northeastern, Dr. Ergun was the Coca-Cola Associate Professor in the Stewart School of Industrial & Systems Engineering at Georgia Tech where she co-founded the Center for Health & Humanitarian Systems (CHHS). Dr. Ergun’s research focuses on the design and management of large-scale networks. She has applied her work on network design, management and collaboration to problems arising in the airline, ocean cargo and trucking industries. Recently, her work has been focused on the use of systems thinking and mathematical modeling in applications with societal impact, such as applying new algorithmic and analytical tools to important real world problems. She has worked with organizations that respond to humanitarian crisis around the world, including: UN WFP, IFRC, CARE USA, FEMA, USACE, CDC, AFCEMA, and MedShare International. Dr. Ergun received a B.S. in Operations Research and Industrial Engineering from Cornell University in 1996 and a Ph.D. in Operations Research from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 2001, and she was awarded the NSF Career Award in 2003.

Title: Özlem Ergun

Pinar Keskinocak, PhD

Georgia Institute of Technology
Director & Co-founder, Center for Health & Humanitarian Systems (CHHS)
William W. George Chair and ADVANCE Professor, School of Industrial & Systems Engineering

Pinar Keskinocak is the director and co-founder of the Center for Health & Humanitarian Systems (CHHS) at Georgia Tech. She has over 20 years of experience in logistics and supply management. Her work focuses on the applications of operations research and management science with societal impact, particularly health and humanitarian applications. Her recent work has addressed infectious disease modeling (e.g., cholera, pandemic flu), evaluating intervention strategies, and resource allocation; catch-up scheduling for vaccinations; medical decision-making (e.g., disease screening); hospital operations management; disaster preparedness and response (e.g., prepositioning inventory, debris management). Dr. Keskinocak has worked on a variety of projects with companies, governmental and non-governmental organizations, and healthcare providers, including American Red Cross, CARE, CDC, Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta, Emory University Hospital, Grady Memorial Hospital, Pan-American Health Organization, and the Task Force for Global Health.

Julie Swann, PhD

NC State University
Co-founder, Center for Health & Humanitarian Systems (CHHS)
Department Head and A. Doug Allison Distinguished Professor, Edward P. Fitts Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering

Julie Swann is Department Head and the A. Doug Allison Distinguished Professor at the Edward P. Fitts Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering (ISE) at North Carolina State University. She is also an Adjunct Professor in the Joint Department of Biomedical Engineering at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Prior to joining NC State, she was the Harold R. and Mary Anne Nash Professor in the Stewart School of Industrial and Systems Engineering at the Georgia Institute of Technology, where she co-founded the Center for Health and Humanitarian Systems, one of the first interdisciplinary research centers on the Georgia Tech campus. In 2009, she was on loan as a science advisor for the H1N1 pandemic response at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Dr. Swann is a research leader in using mathematical modeling to enable supply chain systems and health care to become more efficient, effective, or equitable. Recent collaborations have been to quantify the return on public investments to improve pediatric asthma, plan for infectious disease outbreaks, analyze administrative claims data from Medicaid patients across the US, and design systems with decentralized decision makers.

Title: Julie Swann

Luk Van Wassenhove, PhD

Academic Director, Humanitarian Research Group

Professor Van Wassenhove's research focus is on closed-loop supply chains (product take-back and end-of-life issues) and on disaster management (humanitarian logistics). He is the author of many award-winning teaching cases and regularly consults for major international corporations. He recently co-edited special issues on humanitarian operations for the Journal of Operations Management, the Production and Operations Management Journal and the European Journal of Operational Research.

Program Committee

Paulo Gonçalves, PhD

Università della Svizzera italiana
Professor of Management
Founder and Director of the Master of Humanitarian Logistics and Management (MASHLM)

Paulo Gonçalves is Professor of Management at the Università della Svizzera Italiana (USI) and Founder and Director of the Master of Humanitarian Logistics and Management (MASHLM). He is also a research affiliate at the MIT Sloan School of Management. He holds a Ph.D. in Management Science from MIT Sloan and an M.Sc. from MIT. Paulo received an Intel Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship Award in 2003. For his dissertation, he has won the 2004 Doctoral dissertation award given annually by the Council of Supply Chain Management Professionals (CSCMP). His research combines experiments, simulation, optimization, and econometrics to understand and improve procurement, pre-positioning, inventory, and resource allocation decisions in humanitarian settings.

Paul Molinaro

World Health Organization
Chief, Operations Support and Logistics
Paul Molinaro

Mr Paul Molinaro currently serves in WHO Health Emergency Programme, heading the Operations Support and Logistics team. A national of Kenya, he holds a master’s degree in Defence Logistics Management, from Cranfield University in the UK.  Prior to joining WHO last year, Paul was the Supply and Logistics Chief in the UNICEF Regional Office for the Middle East and North Africa. His professional experience also includes other assignments within the UNICEF Supply Division, first within the emergency department, and subsequently with the Change Management Unit, as project lead to transform the global supply function. Paul has extensive experience in managing emergency supply and logistics operations around the world, starting on the Kenya-Somalia border in 1993. Between 1993 and 1999, he performed multiple logistics roles with UNHCR and CARE International.

Judy Monroe

CDC Foundation
President and CEO

Dr. Judith Monroe, president and CEO of the CDC Foundation, has dedicated her career to protecting people and saving lives. She joined the CDC Foundation in February 2016 as president and CEO, following her role as a deputy director of CDC and director of CDC’s Office of State, Tribal, Local and Territorial Support. In her work at the CDC Foundation, Dr. Monroe advances priority programs that improve the health of people around the world and prepare other nations to better prevent, detect and respond to dangerous health threats, including the current COVID-19 pandemic. During her tenure as the state health commissioner for Indiana she served as president of the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials through the H1N1 pandemic. Dr. Monroe currently serves on the board of directors for the Center for Global Health Innovation and for the Georgia Global Health Alliance, and is a member of the Milken Institute’s Public Health Advisory Board. Additionally, she serves as a member of the World Health Organization Foundation’s Advisory group, as well as many national advisory committees and boards. Full Bio (PDF)

Edward O'Connor

Programmes Support Manager
Edward O'Connor

Edward joined Transaid in 2009 as a Project Manager and was appointed Programmes Support Manager in 2017. Edward has 20 years of experience working in both the private and development sectors relating to transport and logistics. Having worked on many Patient Referral Systems, Fleet Management and Medical Supply Chain projects, Edward has worked in several sub-Saharan African countries such as Ghana, Madagascar, Mozambique, Nigeria, Tanzania, Uganda and Zambia.

Nadia Olson

Humanitarian Resilience and Response Practice Lead
Senior Technical Advisor
Nadia Olson

As JSI's humanitarian resilience and response practice lead, Nadia Olson helps JSI design programs that bridge the humanitarian and development continuum to create resilient approaches to achieving universal health coverage. She is now a senior technical advisor at JSI providing strategic, technical, and operational support for JSI’s portfolio of health system and supply chain strengthening projects and is an advisor to a variety of global initiatives such as the Reproductive Health Supplies Coalition, the Inter-Agency Working Group on Reproductive Health in Crisis, the WHO Framework for Action on Health Systems Recovery in Emergencies, and the WHO Guide for Implementing the Humanitarian-Development-Peace Nexus for Health. Before JSI, Nadia worked on research initiatives, community-level maternal, child, and reproductive health programs, and approaches to mainstreaming a gender focus into international development. She has a BA in applied anthropology from the University of Arizona and an MA in international development studies from the George Washington University.  

Walter Proper

International Association of Public Health
Executive Director

Walter Proper currently is the Executive Director of the International Association of Public Health Logisticians (IAPHL).  He has over 30 years’ experience working to improve public health systems in the global south.  His extensive work in supply chain includes 7 ½ years of in-country experience as the Zambia country director for the USAID | DELIVER PROJECT, SCMS, and JSI Logistics Services projects, providing direction to an office of more than 160 staff with a budget of more than 90 million a year.  He also served as the global director of the Public Health Task Order on the USAID | DELIVER PROJECT managed by JSI.


Mr. Proper has worked extensively in the areas of HIV & AIDS, Reproductive Health, TB, Malaria and Essential Medicine Systems improvement. He has also presented on Supply Chain at international forums, including conducting courses for international organizations such as GFATM and the World Bank, as well as for graduate school programs at the following universities: George Washington, Columbia, Boston, and Tulane. Mr. Proper has direct work experience in more than 30 countries.


David Sarley

Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation
Senior Program Officer

David Sarley is an impact investor with BMGF, working on innovations to strengthen primary health care including boosting vaccines coverage and equity. He has 18 years’ experience in public health supply chains.  In the last few years he has been researching the innovation Eco-system. This has included managing Grand Challenges Exploration for Vaccines Delivery and now GDP. Some key investments include in Zipline, Macro-Eyes, the Africa Resource Center for Supply chain and the WFP Innovation Accelerator. He is Chair of WHO’s Immunization Agenda 2030 Innovation Working Group. He established the Foundation's initial supply chain strategy for primary health care and contributed to the vaccines supply chain strategy. Previous work included establishing the VAN control tower concept and supply chain strengthening in Nigeria, Tanzania, Kenya, Ethiopia and Rwanda. He also managed the initial Implants Access Program Coordinated Supply Planning work. He has worked in public health supply chain consulting with John Snow and economics policy modeling with Maxwell Stamp. He has worked in over 80 countries, managing and implementing long and short term investment, supply chain and economic development projects. He has worked in Philanthropy, NGO, private consulting, manufacturing and for Government. He is currently volunteering with Restart Partners supporting US communities manage their COVID-19 response.

Prashant Yadav

Senior Fellow, Center for Global Development & Affiliate Professor, INSEAD

Prashant Yadav is a globally recognized scholar in the area of healthcare supply chains. He is a Senior Fellow at the Center for Global Development, Affiliate Professor at INSEAD, and Lecturer at Harvard Medical School. Before his current role Prashant worked on supply chain at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and as advisor to global health agencies. He is the author of over 50 peer-reviewed scientific publications and his work has also been featured in prominent print and broadcast media. In addition to his roles in academia and think tank, Prashant serves on the boards of social enterprises and nonprofits working on healthcare supply chains. He trained as a Chemical Engineer and his PhD was in Management Science & Operations Research.

Shahrzad Yavari

Nexleaf Analytics
Director of the Cold Chain Strategy and Advocacy Nexleaf Analytics

Shahrzad Yavari is the Director of the Cold Chain Strategy and Advocacy at Nexleaf Analytics. Shahrzad established the cold chain program at Nexleaf, and is responsible for the strategy, growth, oversight, and management of the program and global operations. She serves as the key point of contact for Ministries of Health and partners around the world, as well as for global stakeholders like Gavi. Shahrzad received her B.S. in Public Health Sciences and B.A. in Psychology and Social Behavior from the University of California, Irvine, and her MPH degree from University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA).

Prior to joining Nexleaf, Shahrzad worked with UCLA Center for Global and Immigrant Health as a researcher to understand the impact of food insecurity on the prevalence of chronic illness among low-income families in the US. She also served as a health educator for local and global organizations in India and US to address challenges in Maternal and Child Health and chronic illnesses. Her background in psychology and public health enables her to integrate the elements of behavior change and health sciences to develop scalable and replicable data-driven solutions in low- and middle-income countries.

Dominique Zwinkels

People that Deliver Initiative
Executive Manager
Dominique Zwinkels

Dominique is the Executive Manager of the People that Deliver Initiative (PtD). She is an international development professional with 23 years of experience in managing programs with a focus on health supply chain management, livelihood, food security and nutrition.

Since 2016, Dominique has been responsible for the management and overall performance of PtD, a broad coalition of governments and international, regional and national organizations working together to raise the profile of the health supply chain workforce as a key strategic area of health systems. Prior to PtD, she worked for ten years on the HIV/AIDS supply chain for John Snow International (JSI) at the Partnership for Supply Chain Management (PFSCM), which procured and delivered essential lifesaving medicines and related commodities to HIV/AIDS programs around the world.

Dominique also has experience working with multilateral development agencies; the International Food Policy Research Institute, the Inter-American Development Bank, and the International Finance Corporation. She has both an MBA in International Business Administration and a Master's degree in Nutrition. She is fluent in English, Spanish and Dutch. As a native of The Netherlands and having lived in Latin America (Peru, Colombia, and Venezuela) and Washington, DC, she is now based at UNICEF Supply Division in Copenhagen, Denmark.

Conference Co-Organizers

Jarrod Goentzel - Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)

George Fenton - Humanitarian Logistics Association

Özlem Ergun, PhD - Northeastern University

Pinar Keskinocak, PhD - Georgia Institute of Technology

Julie Swann, PhD - NC State University

Program Committee

Paulo Gonçalves, PhD - Università della Svizzera italiana

Paul Molinaro - World Health Organization

Judy Monroe - CDC Foundation

Edward O'Connor - Transaid

Nadia Olson - JSI

Walter Proper - International Association of Public Health

David Sarley - Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation

Prashant Yadav - INSEAD

Shahrzad Yavari - Nexleaf Analytics

Dominique Zwinkels - People that Deliver Initiative

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About the Conference Series

The Health & Humanitarian Conference series is organized each year by the Center for Health and Humanitarian Systems (CHHS) at Georgia Tech in partnership with INSEAD, MIT, and Northeastern University, with generous support from corporate and other organizational sponsors.

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