- Program Year
- Country of Current Residence
- City/Town of Current Residence
- San Francisco
- Current Position
- Lead Account Manager
Epidemiologist, Data geek, Social Justice advocate
- Business, Medicine / Healthcare, Science / Technology
- English, French, Spanish, Hebrew, Romanian, Hindi
- Professor Leslie Breitner, Desautels Faculty of Management, McGill University
- Interest(s) / Expertise
- civic engagement, data management, innovation, public healthcare
In September 2013, Naomi joined Health Behavioral Analytics startup Ginger.io in San Francisco as a Lead Account Manager. Inspired by research conducted at the MIT Media Lab, backed by Khosla ventures, Ginger.io is developing a check engine light for doctors and patients. She remains committed to her dream of building the next ‘Wikipedia for Data’, and to spur revolutionary gains in knowledge and productivity.
It was through her work with the Barbados Ministry of Health in 2004, mapping dengue fever hot spots during a field study semester at McGill University’s Bellairs Research Institute that Naomi first realized her potential for affecting change through data and information systems. Following graduation from McGill in 2005, she worked as a health geographic information systems consultant at a maternal and newborn health organization in Dharavi, the largest slum in Mumbai. In 2006, she assumed a position as research coordinator for an international project, led by Dr. Dick Menzies at McGill University, measuring the global economic burden of Tuberculosis. Over the next two years, Naomi established and led research efforts in eight countries including Brazil, China, and Malawi.
After completing her Masters of Public Health at Johns Hopkins University (JHU) in 2009, concentrating in Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Naomi was invited to the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DOHMH) as part of the Epi Scholar program. Proving her ability to highlight statistics to advocate for effective program planning, Naomi was requested to stay on as Lead Epidemiologist in the Bureau of Early Intervention for babies with development delays. In March 2011, Naomi transferred to the South Bronx District Public Health Office (DPHO) in order to work more closely with community partners on programs to prevent obesity, decrease unintended teen pregnancy, and reduce health inequalities. She also developed a novel research program for engaging pharmacies in the efforts to reduce unintended teen pregnancy in NYC. This experience solidified her desire to develop platforms for improved collaboration and data sharing among community partners.
As the daughter of a city councilor and active community leader, Naomi has always had a keen sense of civic responsibility and has assumed leadership roles in various other capacities. As a student, she served on international volunteer missions in Uruguay, Argentina and Ukraine. In 2008, she spent four months leading student volunteer missions in Central America for the American Jewish World Service, facilitating cross-cultural experiences with farmers’ collectives in remote rural villages. Naomi has also served in various leadership roles including President of the J.B. Grant International Health Society (2008-09); community leader with Pursue: Action for a Just World (2011-12); and currently as member of the Board of Advisors for Recrear International Youth Organization – a non-profit founded by Sauvé Fellow Gioel Gioacchino.
From maternal mortality in the slums of Mumbai to childhood obesity in the urban ghettos of the Bronx, Naomi has led a number of significant public health initiatives over the last eight years. Through her varied experiences, she has witnessed the constant need for new and innovative data to support and justify policies, programs, advocacy and research. Time and effort is wasted daily when people repeat the work of searching and manipulating the same numbers. To address this complex challenge, Naomi dedicated her Sauvé Year to developing better systems for policy makers, researchers, and advocates to collaborate on finding, analyzing, and understanding key facts, figures, and statistic.
With her colleague, Ted Strauss, Naomi founded and launched Trudat; an online platform for collaborative data discovery and analysis. Together, they also organized the first Open Data conference in Montreal – Open Data Exchange 2013. This conference brought together people from government, academia, business, technology, and civil society, to discuss the value being driven by the Open Data movement in civic engagement, transparency, innovation, and more.
During her Sauvé year, Naomi was invited to be a panelist for the Garnet Key Society: Academic and Leadership conference 2013. She also participated in two conferences for young social innovators – NU Montreal and ROI Summit. She also served as a mentor for Seize your Future.