Board of Directors ​

Elsie Kiguli-Malwadde MBChB, MMed, MscHPE is the Deputy Director and Director Health Workforce Education and Development at the African Center for Global Health and Social transformation (ACHEST), Kampala, Uganda. Before this, she was the Director of the Medical Education Partnership Initiative (MEPI) Coordinating Center at the African Center for Global Health and Social Transformation (ACHEST). Until December 2010 she was an Associate Professor and Head of the Department of Radiology at the College of Health Sciences, Makerere University. She is an Honorary Associate Professor Of Radiology at the same University. She has served as external examiner at universities in Uganda, and Tanzania. She is a Fellow of the Foundation for the Advancement of Medical Education and Research (FAIMER). She is the Secretary General of the Network TUFH and President, African Forum for Research and Education in Health (AFREhealth). Her main research interest is Health Professions Education and Body and Breast Imaging.

William Burdick, MD, MSEd, is Vice Secretary General of The Network: Towards Unity for Health, an organization of community oriented health professions schools and Professor of Emergency Medicine at Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia. As the former Vice President for Education at FAIMER, he was responsible for creation of global faculty development programs for health professions educators. He has received awards for excellence in teaching, including the Lindbach Award and the Trustees Award in his capacity as Professor of Emergency Medicine at Drexel University College of Medicine. A graduate of Oberlin College, Weill Cornell University College of Medicine, and University of Pennsylvania, he completed residency training in Internal Medicine and is certified by the American Board of Emergency Medicine and American Board of Internal Medicine.

Veronika is the Community and Young Leaders Development Coordinator at The Network: TUFH. She is also currently serving as ​Interim Operations and Programming Manager as Aricia De Kempeneer is on maternity leave. Prior to this, she served as the President of Student Network Organization (SNO) 2021-2022, representing almost 1000 health and allied sciences students passionate about extending the network of health beyond the medical profession. She’s been part of this organization since 2018 and part of its international board since 2019. Veronika has five years of experience in the field of student advocacy and medical education on local and international platforms. She is in her last year of medical degree at Maastricht University, where in 2020 she also obtained a MSc in Global Health. She has special interest in interprofessional health workforce education, mental health of the health workforce, creating accessible and socially accountable medical curriculums, and decolonizing global health. In her free time she loves to travel, read, and spend time with her friends and family.

Nicholas Torres, M.Ed, has over 25 years of experience in executive management, Nicholas works at the cross section between the private sector, government, and not-for-profits to align them toward collective social impact and change public policy. Nicholas has led and founded multiple for-profit and not-for-profit social ventures that are driven both by social impact and financial sustainability measures. Some of his launched social ventures include charter schools, an early literacy technology platform; school-based health centers; and community-based satellite college sites.

Nicholas serves in the capacity of Executive Director of The Network: Towards Unity for Health where he provides governance, strategy, and financial oversight. He also serves as CEO and President (Interim) for The Alliance for Health Equity Foundation. He is Co-Founder and manager of Social Innovations Partners which publishes the Social Innovations Journal. He teaches Nonprofit Leadership, Social Policy, and Social Entrepreneurship at University of Pennsylvania.

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Alejandro is a Physician and general surgeon, specialist in epidemiology and master in public health, university professor and researcher. He has experience in epidemiology and public health with municipalities, departments and districts, as well as in public hospitals and private clinics. He is currently working as a researcher in human longevity and International health care consultant.

Björg Pálsdóttir is co-founder and CEO of the Training for Health Equity Network: THEnet, a global partnership of health workforce education institutions committed to reducing health inequities and increasing social accountability. She is the project lead in the USAID-funded Local Health System Sustainability Project’s work on social determinants of health and human resources for health. Björg is the technical lead of a Working Group on Equity at the Data and Evidence Hub of the World Health Organization and member of the Africa – Europe Foundation’s Strategy Group on Health. She participated in strategy development for WHO’s Global Strategy on HRH2030 and was commissioned to write a policy brief on education for the UN High-Level Commission on Health Employment and Economic Growth. Prior to founding THEnet, she co-founded the Center for Global Health at New York University. Björg serves as a consultant to international organizations and governments and has published numerous articles and book chapters.

Eleanor is a Professor in Nursing and Associate Dean International, and Engagement, Faculty of Health and Environmental Sciences, Co-director of the Centre For Migrant and Refugee Health Research, has a Ph.D. in Medical Anthropology, from HKU, as well as being a nursing alumna of AUT. She has 30 years of experience working in the international university sector, predominantly in Asia (the Chinese University of Hong Kong, National University of Singapore, University of Hong Kong campus Shenzhen) and Australia (Head of Nursing, RMIT, and Edith Cowan University ), as well as more recently in East Africa, (Aga Khan University). Her research and teaching focus on health equity, human rights, and social justice has spanned nursing, public health, and social sciences academic disciplines, A key focus of her work is with international PHD students Her publication platform has focused on marginalized populations, using a human rights perspective. She is currently Co-Director of the AUT Centre for Migrant and Refugee Research, she has contributed to forming a Steering Committee, hosting a re-launch event, building relationships and partnerships with key community organizations, and writing joint publications and proposals.

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She is acknowledged as the pioneer of medical education in Pakistan. Currently in In Leadership position and serves as senior advisor on health professions education. She has immense contribution to the faculty development programs for health professionals, community- based curriculum, best practices in teaching learning and assessment. Active member of TUFH since 1991. In 2011, elected to serve as the TUFH Chair for four years’ term. Presently is TUFH Board member. Founding, and Board member of the Women and Health Together for Future (WHTF). Is Education Coordinator of the National Committee of Maternal and Neonatal Health (NCMNH). Served on the Selection Committee of Charles Boelen International Social Accountability Award, Canada. . Invited speaker for national and international conferences in Pakistan. Authored publications in peer reviewed journals. Contributes as a reviewer to national and international journals, and institutional projects. She has special interest in preparing next generation of health care providers particularly for remote areas, and working with organizations to develop competency-based programs . Has keen interest that Pakistan creates social accountability and inter-professional education models, promote women’s health, and patient-centered care.

Vishnu priya Vijayalekshmi is a medical doctor currently doing Masters in Public Health (Social Epidemiology) at Tata Institute of Medical Sciences, Mumbai. She has been in the leadership team of Student Network Organization since 2016 and was the President of SNO Team 2018-19. She is a passionate and enthusiastic person who is constantly striving to dedicate herself for the empowerment of women ,youth and the marginalized sections of the community.

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Graduated with an MB.BS from the Faculty of Medicine, University of Gezira, Sudan and then got a master’s and PhD degrees in Health Professions Education. He is a fellow of the Academy of Medical Educators, UK. He has work experience in Medical Education in Sudan, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates and Ireland, contributing to Medical Education in other countries. Dr Mohamed Elhassan has memberships and affiliations to regional and international organizations that work in Health Professions Education such as the Network-TUFH, International Reference Group on Social Accountability of Medical Schools, Association of Medical Education in the Eastern Mediterranean Region and the Society of Cost and Value in Health Professions Education. Dr Moahmed Elhassan’s publications and research interests in Medical Education are in the areas of social accountability, Teaching and learning, Accreditation and Cost and Value.

European Regional Board Member, The Network: TUFH Professor in Nursing, VIVES University of Applied Science, Belgium Coordinator VIVES LiveLab: Interprofessional Education Researcher Centre of Expertise for Care Innovation, VIVES

Medical doctor from Nueva Granada Military University, specialist in Psychiatry from National University of Colombia, specialist and master’s degree in Bioethics from University of La Sabana. Management training in PDD – Executive Program from Inalde Business School, of La Sabana University.

Amy Clithero is a faculty member in the Department of Family & Community Medicine (FCM) at the University of New Mexico School of Medicine. Dr. Clithero has a PhD in Family Medicine from the University of Kwazulu-Natal in Durban, South Africa as well as a Masters of Business Administration with a health systems concentration and a Masters level certification in Medical Education from the University of New Mexico. In addition to teaching medical students about social determinants of health, health policy, and health services research, Dr. Clithero participates in numerous educational research initiatives focusing on educational best practices, health services research, and social accountability within medical education. As of December 2022, Dr. Clithero has written two book chapters, has over two dozen peer reviewed papers and has presented at almost 60 conferences worldwide.

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Dr. Michael Glasser is Retired Associate Dean for Rural Health Professions and Research Professor of Medical Sociology at the University of Illinois College of Medicine at Rockford. He is the George T & Mildred A Mitchell Professor in Rural and Family Medicine. His honors include an endowed professorship, the Michael L and Susan M Glasser Professorship in Rural Health Professions Education and Research, made possible by a gift from Dr. Robert and Christine Ayers. Dr. Glasser directed the National Center for Rural Health Professions and was co-director of the campus School of Public Health Program. Dr. Glasser continues to serve as co-editor in chief of the international journal Education for Health, a position he has held since 2005. Dr. Glasser contributed to the establishment of the nationally and internationally recognized Rural Medical Education (RMED) Program on the Rockford campus and the conceptualization and implementation of the interdisciplinary National Center for Rural Health Professions (NCRHP), a designated center of the Illinois Board of Higher Education. He has served as PI on many grants including both the NIH funded Project EXPORT Center for Rural Health, supported by the National Center on Minority Health and Health Disparities, and the Kellogg Foundation Rural People, Rural Policy Initiative. He also partnered with faculty from Maastricht University, The Netherlands, to establish an International Medical Education Externship in rural and primary care research, that resulted in Dutch senior year medical students participating in an 18-week immersive rotation – in collaboration with rural health clinics and hospitals. Additionally, Dr. Glasser co-developed the Rockford-Thailand International Medical Education Program, resulting in the creation of a medical school in south Thailand, and co-developed the Rural Pharmacy (RPHARM) Program on the Rockford campus. Dr. Glasser has extensive experience in research on rural medical and pharmacy students’ career pathways. He was a founder and director of one of four north American Collaborating Centers for Medical Education and Primary Health Care of the WHO and the Pan American Health Organization. He was also Co-Investigator on a Health Resources and Services Administration-funded program to establish a rural mental health social work track at the University of Illinois School of Social Work, Champaign-Urbana. Dr. Glasser was instrumental in creating and implementing a Native American Pathways Program to recruit and prepare Native American students for medical and health professions practice in their home tribal communities, involving Native people in both Wyoming and California. He was an invited delegate to the WHO Rural Health Workforce Attraction, Recruitment and Guidance Development meeting in Dalaman, Turkey, 2022. Finally, Dr. Glasser remains active in the international organization Network: Towards Unity for Health, where he serves on the Board of Directors. Among recognition, Dr. Glasser was recipient of the University of Illinois College of Medicine Distinguished Faculty Service Award acknowledging outstanding contributions to community health as well as the UIC Provost Distinguished Faculty Award for serving as a consultant for the WHO on rural and remote health care policy and guidelines. He is also a member of Delta Omega, National Honorary Public Health Society. Dr. Glasser has published extensively in such journals as Academic Medicine, Journal of Healthcare for the Poor and Underserved, Rural and Remote Health, Education for Health, Journal of Rural Mental Health, Journal of Depression and Anxiety, and Journal of Psychosocial Oncology. He continues to serve as a reviewer for many of these and other medical and healthcare focused journals.

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Previous Secretary Generals

Secretary General​ – 2019 – 2015

Jan De Maeseneer – 2015 – 2007

Arthur Kaufman – 2007 – 1999

Esmat S. Ezzat – 1999 – 1995

Zohair M. Nooman​ – 1995 – 1988

Jacobus M. Greep – 1988 – 1980