Dr. Susan Klitzman, an accomplished public health leader, teacher and scholar, has been appointed Senior Associate Dean for Administration and Inter-Campus Coordination at the CUNY School of Public Health.
Previously serving as Associate Dean for Academic Affairs at the School of Public Health, Dr. Klitzman will oversee the launch of new inter-disciplinary and inter-campus academic programs and other collaborative opportunities, such as those in the areas of primary health care management, criminal justice and others. She will also be responsible for managing a sustainable central infrastructure for the school that can support initiatives for innovative educational programs, research collaborations and service opportunities for CUNY students and faculty and external partners.
“With over 25 years of progressive managerial experience, Dr. Klitzman brings a wealth of expertise and vision to our institution during its next critical phase of development,” said Ayman El-Mohandes, Dean of the CUNY School of Public Health. “She will play an important role within the senior leadership team in expanding opportunities and pathways for public health education at CUNY, from the associate degree through doctoral levels.”
Dr. Klitzman began her public health career as an environmental and occupational health epidemiologist at the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, from 1987 to 1999. During her tenure at the agency, Dr. Klitzman led investigations, designed interventions and public health campaigns and published articles on a range of urban environmental and occupational health issues, including asbestos, mold, lead, mercury and other metals, infectious diseases, injury, violence, cancer and other disease clusters. Her work in creating an integrated environmental and health tracking system and comprehensive safety standards for lead-based paint abatement resulted in dramatic reductions in lead-paint hazards and in children’s blood lead levels.
In 1999, Dr. Klitzman joined CUNY as a faculty member in the Urban Public Health Program at Hunter College. She taught courses at the bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral levels in environmental health, biostatistics, epidemiology, public health policy and leadership and redesigned and led fieldwork and capstone experiences for students. Her research focused on developing comprehensive, cost-effective approaches to addressing health hazards in high risk housing among low-income populations. In 2004, she was elected by the faculty as UPH Program Director.
In 2006, Dr. Klitzman was offered what she considers a “once-in-a-career opportunity” to help create the CUNY School of Public Health, the nation’s first public collaborative school of public health with a focus on urban health. In 2010 she was appointed acting and then permanent (2013) University Associate Dean for Academic Affairs. She led the school’s first self-study, which resulted in a full five-year accreditation by the Council on Education for Public Health; developed new master’s and doctoral degree programs; fostered consensus among the school’s partners to develop a common governance structure, by-laws, memoranda of understanding and strategic plans; and led hiring of over 30 faculty, administrators and staff.