Planning Committee: COVID Controversies – Ethical Challenges in Research & Treatment

Susan M. Wolf, JD, is Chair of the planning committee. She is McKnight Presidential Professor of Law, Medicine & Public Policy; Faegre Baker Daniels Professor of Law; and Professor of Medicine at the University of Minnesota. Prof. Wolf is Chair of the Consortium on Law and Values in Health, Environment & the Life Sciences. She is an elected member of the National Academy of Medicine (NAM) and a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. Prof. Wolf's research has been supported by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and National Science Foundation (NSF) as well as private foundations including the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and The Greenwall Foundation.

Joanne Billings MD, MPH, is Chair of the Institutional Review Board and Assistant Professor of Medicine, Division of Pulmonary, Allergy, Critical Care and Sleep Medicine at the University of Minnesota. Dr. Billings's primary research and clinical work focuses on cystic fibrosis (CF). She has a particular interest in the women's health issues in patients with CF. 

Bradley Benson, MD, FACP, FAAP, is Chief Academic Officer for the MHealth-Fairview Academic Health System. He is board certified in both Internal Medicine and Pediatrics. He served as Residency Program Director from 2002-2012. Dr. Benson served as the Director of the Division of General Internal Medicine from 2009 to 2018, during which time the Division grew from 25 to 60 faculty members with major expansion of the research and scholarship portfolio. 

Christopher Cramer, PhD, is Vice President for Research, Distinguished McKnight Professor, and University Teaching Professor at the University of Minnesota. His areas of research include modeling catalysis to advance sustainable chemistry and chemical processes, molecular and material phenomena associated with solar energy devices, theoretical characterization of small-molecule activation at transition-metal centers, and modeling remediation of environmental contaminants and chemical warfare agents.

James Neaton, PhD, is a Professor in the Division of Biostatistics at the University of Minnesota. Prof. Neaton leads a large network called INSIGHT that conducts international trials of HIV and influenza treatments and conducts observational studies of C. difficile infection and influenza. He also leads research on Ebola in West Africa that includes clinical trials of vaccines and treatments, and a large cohort study of Ebola survivors and their close contacts.

J. Michael Oakes, is Associate Vice President for Research and Professor, Division of Epidemiology and Community Health in the School of Public Health at the University of Minnesota. Associate Vice President Oakes has regulatory and compliance responsibilities associated with the Human Research Protection Program (HRPP), Institutional Review Board (IRB), the Research Compliance Office (RCO), and several academic centers and institutes in the Office of the Vice President for Research (OVPR). He also serves as OVPR’s point person for the AHC restructuring plan. He currently directs the Interdisciplinary Research Leaders (IRL), a nationwide research leadership program supported by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.

Michael T. Osterholm, PhD, MPH, is Regents Professor, McKnight Presidential Endowed Chair in Public Health, the director of the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy (CIDRAP), Distinguished Teaching Professor in the Division of Environmental Health Sciences, School of Public Health, a professor in the Technological Leadership Institute, College of Science and Engineering, and an adjunct professor in the Medical School, all at the University of Minnesota. From June 2018 through May 2019, he served as a Science Envoy for Health Security on behalf of the US Department of State. He is also on the Board of Regents at Luther College in Decorah, Iowa.

Michael Sadowsky, PhD, is Director of the BioTechnology Institute; Professor in the BioTechnology Institute and Department of Soil, Water & Climate; and serves on the faculty of 10 Graduate Programs, all at the University of Minnesota. Prof. Sadowsky is a Fellow of the American Academy of Microbiology and the American Association for the Advancement of Science. He is internationally known and respected for his research work in the area of fecal microbiota transplantation and environmental microbiology.

Jakub Tolar, MD, PhD, is the Dean of the University of Minnesota Medical School and a Distinguished McKnight Professor in the Department of Pediatrics, Blood and Marrow Transplantation. He is also the Vice President for Clinical Affairs at the University of Minnesota, Board Chair for University of Minnesota Physicians and co-leader of M Health Fairview, the Joint Clinical Enterprise between the University of Minnesota Medical School, University of Minnesota Physicians and Fairview Health Services.

Douglas Yee, MD, is Director of the Masonic Cancer Center, Professor of Medicine and Pharmacology, and John H. Kersey Chair in Cancer Research at the University of Minnesota. As Director of the Cancer Center, he serves as the point person for all cancer research at the University. He also treats patients with breast cancer and conducts research to improve cancer therapies.