Melody S. Goodman, Assistant Professor of Preventive Medicine in the Graduate Program in Public Health (GPPH), and Director of the GPPH’s Center for Public Health and Health Policy Research at Stony Brook University Medical Center, has been named to the New York State Minority Health Council by Governor David Paterson.
The New York State Department of Health, Office of Minority Health, formed a Minority Health Council in1992. Fourteen members are appointed by the governor to a six-year term. The minority health council’s mission is to consider any matter relating to the preservation and improvement of minority health, and it may, from time to time, submit to the commissioner any recommendations relating to the preservation and improvement of minority health.
In an April 2010 congratulatory letter, Governor Paterson stated, “I am pleased that you are willing to accept this appointment as a member of the Minority Health Council for a term to expire on August 1, 2015. I am confident that you will serve the people of our state with dedication and distinction.”
“I am honored to be selected for such a position,” said Goodman. “It is my hope that in my role on the council I will be able to speak to the needs and concerns of minority communities across the state so they can obtain the support and resources necessary to create the type of social change that improves public health and well being.”
Goodman, who received her Ph.D. in Biostatistics from Harvard University in 2006, has taught biostatistics at the Harvard School for Public Health, and worked as a statistical consultant at the Center for Community Based Research, Dana Farber Cancer Institute in Boston. She graduated from Stony Brook University with a B.S. in Applied Mathematics and Statistics/Economics (Summa Cum Laude) in 1999.
One of Goodman’s objectives has been to uncover the reasons for the health disparities that exist in area communities. She works with community health centers, churches, and other community-based organizations within African-American and undeserved communities on Long Island. Her main areas of interest are cancer incidence in minorities, obesity, hypertension, diabetes, asthma, and behavioral changes that can reduce the risk of preventable diseases.
“My goal is to bridge the gap between community health needs and public health research by working directly with communities to better understand the health issues, problems, or shortcomings they are experiencing, then develop research based on that,” said Goodman.