September 5, 2019 - On September 1, the Advancing a Healthier Wisconsin Endowment (AHW) welcomed Jesse M. Ehrenfeld, MD, MPH as its director and senior associate dean at the Medical College of Wisconsin (MCW) School of Medicine.
He succeeds Cheryl A. Maurana, PhD, who served as senior associate dean and founding director of AHW for 20 years. Dr. Maurana will continue to serve as senior vice president for strategic academic partnerships, responsible for expanding MCW inter-institutional academic efforts and fostering collaboration among existing and new partners. Dr. Maurana is also founding director of the Kern National Network for Caring and Character in Medicine.
As director, Dr. Ehrenfeld leads all strategy and operations to ensure AHW continues to impact positive health statewide. Since 2004, AHW has awarded more than $255 million to over 450 projects led by the Medical College of Wisconsin and community partners that focus on biomedical research, community health initiatives, and ongoing development of the health care and public health workforce.
Throughout Dr. Ehrenfeld’s career, he has worked to support and develop research, academic, and community programs by setting partner engagement and health equity as priorities. A practicing anesthesiologist, he was elected to the American Medical Association (AMA) Board of Trustees in 2014 and is currently chair of the AMA. Dr. Ehrenfeld previously served as Joseph A. Johnson, Jr., Distinguished Leadership Professor; professor of anesthesiology and professor of biomedical informatics at the Vanderbilt University School of Medicine in Nashville, Tennessee. He was also professor of surgery; professor of health policy; associate director of anesthesiology and Perioperative Informatics Research Division; director of education research in the Office of Health Sciences Education, and director of the Program for LGBTQ Health. He also served as co-chair of the Navy Surgeon General’s Taskforce on Personalized and Digital Medicine and as special advisor to the 20th U.S. Surgeon General.
For the past decade, Dr. Ehrenfeld has been a strong advocate for health equity. In 2017, he received the Diversity Champion Award from the Tennessee Hospital Association. In 2018, in recognition of his outstanding research contributions, he received the inaugural Sexual and Gender Minority Research Investigator Award from the Director of the National Institutes of Health (NIH).
Dr. Ehrenfeld is a combat veteran and former U.S. Navy Commander who deployed to Afghanistan during both Operation Enduring Freedom and Resolute Support Mission. For his work in capturing photographs and supporting the lives of LGBTQ people, Dr. Ehrenfeld was recognized in 2015 with a White House News Photographers Association award and, in 2016, with an Emmy nomination.
Dr. Ehrenfeld lives in Milwaukee with his husband, Judd Taback, an attorney, and their son Ethan.