The department addresses some of the world’s most pressing health challenges, using cutting-edge multidisciplinary approaches. Our research has touched on the causes of cancer and the role of genetics, air pollution in California and worldwide, ending the tobacco epidemic, health and human rights, minority health, and behavioral health. We prepare our trainees for careers that will prepare them to engage with such challenges and to make a difference.”
Jonathan M. Samet, MD, MS
Distinguished Professor and Flora L. Thornton Chair for the Department of Preventive Medicine
Dr. Samet, a pulmonary physician and epidemiologist, is distinguished professor and Flora L. Thornton chair, Department of Preventive Medicine at the University of Southern California Keck School of Medicine and Director of the USC Institute for Global Health. Previously, he was chair of the Department of Epidemiology of the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.
His career has centered on epidemiologic research on threats to public health and using research findings to support policies that protect population health. His research has addressed indoor and outdoor air pollution, smoking, radiation risks, cancer etiology and outcomes, and sleep. He has been involved with numerous committees related to use of scientific evidence in characterizing risks and making decisions, including chairing the Clean Air Scientific Advisory Committee of the U.S. EPA and the FDA’s Tobacco Products Scientific Advisory Committee (TPSAC). For three decades he has authored and edited the reports of the Surgeon General on smoking and health, including serving as Senior Scientific Editor for the 50th Anniversary 2014 report.
Dr. Samet received the 2004 Prince Mahidol Award for Global Health awarded by the King of Thailand, the Surgeon General’s Medallion in 1990 and 2006, and the Luther L. Terry Award from the American Cancer Society in 2015. He is a member of the National Academy of Medicine.