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Kristin Saarlas, ScD, MPH

Director, Health Campaign Effectiveness Coalition

Kristin Saarlas, ScD, MPH, serves as the Director of the Health Campaign Effectiveness Coalition. In this role, she is forming a new coalition of partners from health campaigns to identify and test promising practices and foster opportunities for shared resources and tools. The coalition will also develop evidence-based approaches of where campaigns can improve collaboration with and support country health systems. 

Dr. Saarlas has extensive experience in strategic planning, program design, evaluation and learning. Her work has focused on strengthening health systems, building organizational capacity, and using data for decision making across several health domains and development areas. 

She returned to The Task Force in December 2019 after 9 years with USAID working as a Senior Evaluation Advisor based in Jerusalem, Washington D.C. and Ethiopia. At USAID, she was the Senior Technical Advisor on an agency-wide monitoring and evaluation capacity building contract for the Bureau of Policy, Program and Learning, led the Bureau for Global Health’s evaluation agenda and contracts, and coordinated the Ethiopia mission’s health-related evaluations.

Previously, she was based in Ethiopia as the Regional Advisor for East Africa for the U.S. Peace Corps and supported strategic and program development for eight country offices. From 1994-2007, Dr. Saarlas worked at The Task Force as the Deputy Director of the All Kids Count Program and Public Health Informatics Institute (PHII). During this time, she facilitated the development of state and local immunization and integrated child health information systems as a means to improve immunization coverage and preventive services for children. Dr. Saarlas co-founded PHII in 2001 which supports health practitioners’ ability to use information effectively to improve health outcomes.

Dr. Saarlas began her public health career at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) with the Combating Childhood Communicable Diseases Program and worked on Guinea worm eradication as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Benin. She holds a ScD in health systems management and MPH in international health from Tulane University and a BA in international relations from Michigan State University.

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