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January 3, 2017

Colleen Barry Appointed Chair of Department of Health Policy and Management at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health

Colleen L. Barry, PhD, MPP, a national leader in mental health and addiction policy, has been named the Fred and Julie Soper Professor and Chair of the Department of Health Policy and Management at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. 

Barry assumed her new roles on Jan. 1.

Colleen Barry“Colleen Barry is a highly respected member of our faculty and the right person to lead the department as we head into the next chapter in our School’s rich history,” says Michael J. Klag, MD, MPH ’87, dean of the Bloomberg School.  

Barry has been at the Bloomberg School since 2010. She is a founding director (with Elizabeth Stuart, associate dean for education) of the Johns Hopkins Center for Mental Health and Addiction Policy Research. Barry’s research focuses on how health and social policies can affect a range of outcomes for individuals with mental illness and substance use disorders, including access to medical care and social services, care quality and spending, financial protection and mortality.  She is involved in numerous research studies examining the implications of health insurance expansions and medical care delivery system financing reforms on the treatment of mental illness and substance use disorders. Barry also conducts empirical research to understand how communication strategies influence public attitudes about opioid addiction, mental illness, gun policy and obesity and food policy. One focus of this work is to identify evidence-based approaches to reducing stigma.

Since 2012, Barry has served as the Department of Health Policy and Management’s associate chair for Research and Practice. She has a joint faculty appointment in the Department of Mental Health, is a core faculty member of the Johns Hopkins Center for Gun Policy and Research and teaches courses in health policy and politics.  Outside Hopkins, Barry currently serves as vice president of the Association for Public Policy Analysis and Management. Barry received a PhD in health policy from Harvard University in 2004 and a master’s degree in public policy from the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard in 1999.  Barry came to Hopkins from Yale University where she was an associate professor in the Yale School of Public Health. 

Barry will succeed Ellen MacKenzie, PhD, who will step down as chair of the department. MacKenzie will remain on the faculty and continue her work as a national and international expert in research to advance limb trauma care for civilians and wounded warriors. 

“Health Policy and Management has flourished under Ellen MacKenzie’s guidance and direction over the past 12 years,” Klag says. “We are grateful for her exemplary leadership and her tremendous contributions to our School, to our students and to the public health field.”