GW Epidemiologist Named to Biden-Harris Transition’s COVID-19 Advisory Board

Milken Institute School of Public Health Professor David Michaels is focused on improving protections for health care workers exposed to COVID-19.

David Michaels
GW Professor David Michaels has been named to President-elect Joe Biden’s Transition COVID-19 Advisory Board.
December 01, 2020

George Washington University Milken Institute School of Public Health Professor David Michaels has been named to President-elect Joe Biden’s Transition COVID-19 Advisory Board, a team of experts who will assist the new administration in developing public health plans that will be implemented when he assumes office. 

“The greatest challenge facing the country, and the new administration, is how to stop this pandemic, save lives and reopen the economy so it works for everyone,” Dr. Michaels said. “I hope that as a member of the Biden-Harris Transition COVID-19 Advisory Board I will be able to help address these pressing issues.”

Dr. Michaels is an epidemiologist whose primary expertise is in worker safety and health. Since the COVID-19 pandemic began, Dr. Michaels has focused on improving the protection of workers exposed to SARS-CoV-2. He also served on the National Academy of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine’s expert panel that developed a Framework for Equitable Allocation of Vaccine for the Novel Coronavirus and is a member of the Lancet COVID-19 Commission’s Task Force on Safe Work, Safe School and Safe Travel. 

Dr. Michaels will serve on the COVID-19 Advisory Board while continuing his “groundbreaking work” on COVID-19 exposures to health care workers, said Lynn Goldman, the Michael and Lori Milken Dean of the Milken Institute SPH. 

“He will bring to the presidential task force his very important expertise and perspectives on inequities in outcomes to workers and policies to prevent worker exposure to the SARS-CoV-2 virus,” she said. 

Dr. Michaels, who joined GW in 2001, previously served as assistant secretary of labor for occupational safety and health from during President Barack Obama’s administration, the longest administrator in OSHA’s history. Under President Bill Clinton he served as assistant secretary of energy for environment, safety and health, where he was charged with protecting the workers, community and environment around the nation’s nuclear weapons facilities. 

Earlier this year Dr. Michaels published a book that details how corporations manufacture scientific studies to create misinformation and potentially threaten public health, a challenge he said has worsened during President Donald Trump’s four years in office. 

Politics and Society


Q & A: Milken SPH Expert Discusses How the Biden Administration Will Combat COVID-19

November 23, 2020

Jeff Levi, professor of health policy and management at the Milken Institute School of Public Health, chaired a public health advisory group during the Obama administration. 

GW Experts Offer Predictions for Biden Administration

November 09, 2020

University faculty specialists discuss how policies ranging from battling COVID-19 to foreign affairs are likely to change with Joe Biden in the White House.

Q & A: How Corrupt Scientists Threaten Public Health

February 04, 2020

David Michaels, a GW professor and former Obama administration official, talks about his new book and how manufactured studies harm consumers.