Susannah Baruch has joined the Petrie-Flom Center for Health Law Policy, Biotechnology, and Bioethics at Harvard Law School as executive director. Baruch will manage the Center’s sponsored research portfolio, event programming, fellowships, student engagement, development, and a range of other projects and collaborations.
“We are thrilled that Susannah has joined the Center,” said I. Glenn Cohen ’03, faculty director of the Petrie-Flom Center, James A. Attwood and Leslie Williams Professor of Law, and deputy dean of Harvard Law School. “Susannah has devoted her career to health policy, in roles across academia, government, and non-profits. The depth and breadth of her experience as a leader and scholar in health law policy and ethics will be a great asset to the Center.”
“The Center is in excellent hands under Susannah’s capable leadership,” said Carmel Shachar J.D./M.P.H. ’10, outgoing executive director. “Her expertise in reproductive health law and policy will be of particular benefit to the Center in this post-Dobbs moment.” Shachar is stepping down from the role of executive director to join the Center for Health Law and Policy Innovation at Harvard Law School, where she will serve as assistant clinical professor of law and faculty director of the Health Law and Policy Clinic.
Baruch joins the Petrie-Flom Center as a strategic thought leader and skilled executive director, with expertise in health law policy and ethics and a particular interest in reproduction, genetics, and women’s health. Her work has been published in venues such as STAT News, Slate, Contraception, The American Journal of Human Genetics, and Fertility and Sterility.
She has led many organizations, working groups, and coalitions, including the National Health Law Program’s Reproductive and Sexual Health team, Unite for Reproductive and Gender Equity, the Reproductive Health Technologies Project, and the Coalition for Genetic Fairness. For seven years, she served as Law and Policy Director at Johns Hopkins University’s Genetics and Public Policy Center, convening legal experts, scientists, clinicians, ethicists, and public opinion pollsters to work together in developing policy options informed by science, medicine, and ethics for emerging reproductive technology.
Baruch has worked extensively with federal and state policymakers and regulators and has testified in front of the United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and the United States Senate. She was involved in enactment of both the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act and the first federal contraceptive coverage requirement through the Federal Employee Health Benefits Program.
In her early career, she was a Skadden Fellow at the Women’s Legal Defense Fund (now the National Partnership for Women & Families) and Legislative Counsel for Congresswoman Nita M. Lowey. She is a graduate of the University of Chicago Law School and Yale University.
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