Angela K. McGowan, JD, MPH, senior program officer, joined the Foundation in 2007 to focus on public health issues. She hopes to use her public health and legal background to focus on building a broad national understanding of and constituency for public health law. She was drawn to RWJF by the Foundation’s “ability to identify the right people and encourage them to work together to really make an impact.” To that end, she works on projects that facilitate and nurture new partnerships, whether with large funders, between public health practitioners and lawyers, or even between business, not-for-profit, and governmental leaders. More closely, McGowan is tasked with advancing the use of policy, advocacy, and law to aid in creating a strong and comprehensive public health system. She works on issues ranging from public health preparedness to healthy eating and active living for RWJF’s efforts in public health and childhood obesity.
Previously, McGowan was a health scientist/public health law analyst at the Office of Planning, Evaluation, and Legislation at the National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in Atlanta. There her focus was how law can be used as a tool to improve health, concentrating on chronic disease prevention issues such as obesity prevention, cardiovascular health, improving physical activity and nutrition, tobacco prevention, cancer, and oral health. Her prior public health experience includes serving in CDC’s Epidemic Intelligence Service, as a “disease detective,” where she worked primarily with the Community Guide (the Guide to Community Preventive Services) on violence issues such as the effect on violence of the transfer of juveniles to the adult court system. McGowan also worked as a legal services officer with Georgia’s Division of Public Health and as an attorney at an Atlanta law firm.
She received a JD from Vanderbilt University School of Law, an MPH with a focus on health policy and management from the Rollins School of Public Health (RSPH) of Emory University, and a BA in international relations from the College of William and Mary. She is admitted to the State Bar of Georgia. Currently, McGowan serves as president of the RSPH Alumni Board of Governors.
A Georgia native, McGowan resides in Philadelphia. She enjoys travel, spending time with family and friends, reading, and trying not to bring up the rear in running and triathlon events.