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Frederick M. Burkle, Jr.

Senior Fellow & Scientist; Retired professor; Harvard Humanitarian Initiative; Global Health, Harvard University

Frederick "Skip" M. Burkle, Jr., MD, MPH, DTM, PhD (Hon.), FAAP, FACEP
Professor Burkle is a Senior Fellow & Scientist with the Harvard Humanitarian Initiative, Harvard University and the Harvard School of Public Health. He is a Senior International Public Policy Scholar at the Woodrow Wilson Centre for International Scholars in Washington DC, and former Senior Scholar and now Senior Associate Faculty, Department of International Health with the Centre for Refugee & Disaster Response, Johns Hopkins University Medical Institutes where he also served as the Senior Medical and Public Health Advisor, Advanced Systems Concept Office of the Defence Threat Reduction Agency. He holds Adjunct Professorships at Monash University School of Medicine and James Cook University in Australia and is Adjunct Professor of Surgery, Division of Military and Emergency Medicine, the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences in Bethesda, Maryland. He is the recipient of the prestigious William Crawford Gorgas Medal for "distinguished work in preventive medicine, groundbreaking work in disaster management and humanitarian assistance and the training of an entire generation of U.S. and international personnel. ” In 2007 he was elected to the prestigious National Academy of Medicine, in 2012 was selected by the National Institutes of Health to receive the Joseph Leiter Lecture Award that recognizes the “best and brightest” in science and medicine and in 2014 received the Disaster Medical Sciences Award from the American College of Emergency Physicians.
Dr. Burkle has published over 240 peer reviewed scientific research and policy studies, 60 book chapters, and four books, three on disaster management including Disaster Medicine (1984). He has worked in and consulted on numerous humanitarian crises and large-scale international disasters in Asia, Africa, the Middle East, and Eastern Europe. From 2002-03, Dr. Burkle served as Deputy Assistant Administrator for the Bureau of Global Health at the U.S. Agency for International Development and as the Interim Minister of Health in Iraq. A 1961 Saint Michael’s College and 1965 University of Vermont College of Medicine graduate, Dr. Burkle holds post-graduate degrees from Yale, Harvard, Dartmouth, the University of California at Berkeley, University of Geneva, and the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland. He is qualified in Emergency Medicine, Pediatrics, Pediatric Emergency Medicine, Psychiatry, and holds a Master's Degree in Public Health and Diploma in Tropical Medicine. He is a combat decorated and now retired Naval Reserve Captain, who served with the Marines in Viet Nam, Somalia, the Persian Gulf War, and Iraq. He is a current member of the Board of Directors and Overseer of the International Rescue Committee, the Science Advisory Board of the American Red Cross, the Advisory Board of ELRHA (Enhancing Learning & Research for Humanitarian Assistance) and served as the elected Chair of the National Disaster Life Support Consortium of the American Medical Association for 4 years.
His research focuses on professionalization in humanitarian health, humanitarian crises, public health emergencies, and triage management.


  • –present
    Senior Fellow & Scientist; Retired professor; Harvard Humanitarian Initiative;Global Health, Harvard University


  • 1965 
    University of Vermont College of Medicine, MD