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Public Health Law Association
Promoting healthy people and healthy communities through dialogue, partnerships, education and research in public health law.
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The Public Health Law Association (PHLA) is a non-profit, membership organization for everyone who shapes, uses, teaches, studies or conducts research in the highly dynamic field of public health law. Read more About PHLA.

Job Bank for Public Health Law Positions

The Public Health Law Association is providing a job bank for employers who have positions related to public health law and policy. If you have positions to be advertised, please email: Martha Brocato, Interim Executive Director, at

>> Click here to view positions.

The Public Health Law Year in Review (presented at The Public's Health and the Law in the 21st Century--5th Annual Partnership Conference in Atlanta, Georgia, on June 13, 2006)

>> Download 2006 Year In Review Presentation
>> Download 2006 Year In Review Presentation Outline

2nd Annual Student Poster Session

PHLA hosted its second annual poster session for graduate students to present their research on findings at the intersection of law and public health at the 2006 CDC-sponsored conference, The Public’s Health and the Law in the 21st Century.

Eleven abstracts were selected through a competitive abstract review conducted by PHLA. Presenters were students in programs in law, medicine, public health, ethics, sociology, health policy, and nursing. They represented Taiwan, Canada, and the United States. Major universities were represented including Boston University, Emory University, Georgia State University, University of Toronto , Harvard University, Northwestern University, Northeastern University, University of South Carolina, University of Washington, and State University of New York at Buffalo.

At two designated times during the Conference, students presented their posters in the main exhibit area to approximately 400 attendees from across the country and the world. CDC donated the location and waived conference registration fees for the student authors. And, the American Bar Association Health Law Section generously contributed travel scholarships to participating students.

The posters presented reflected the excellence and diversity of interests in law and public health of the authors. The award for best poster went to Dr. Mia Zaharna, a recent M.P.H. graduate. Dr. Zaharna’s poster discussed obesity, results from the 1999-2002 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES), and snack, or “fat” taxes, as a public health law intervention. In her poster she compared snack taxes to the tax on tobacco and alternative solutions. She also discussed methods for implementation of snack taxes. Other posters addressed a range of current and emerging issues in public health such as maternal-fetal health, Medicaid, SARS, HIV prevention, emergency preparedness, and HIPAA.

Individuals interested in volunteering to assist with the planning of the 2007 poster session should contact Board Member Jean O’Connor at

2006 Award Winners Announced

The “Awards for Excellence in Public Health Law” were presented by PHLA during the Public Health Law Conference in Atlanta, Georgia, June 12-14, 2006.

Professor Lawrence O. Gostin, Director, Center for Law & the Public’s Health at Georgetown and Johns Hopkins Universities, is the recipient of the 2006 PHLA Distinguished Career Award in Public Health Law.  Professor Gostin is a prominent, acclaimed, and celebrated international scholar in law and public health.  He has been a proliferate scholar on dozens of major topics in the field of public health law, and has defined it as a field in the modern era. His capacity to wield the lenses of ethics, human rights, economics, and the public health sciences distinguishes his work.  More information about his extensive accomplishments is available online at:   

On behalf of a city that has overcome extensive hurdles in the hopes of achieving this goal, Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Dr. Thomas Frieden, Commissioner of Health and Mental Hygiene, City of New York, are co-recipients of the 2006 Achievement in Public Health Law Award.  Combining their strengths, they have long been vanguards in promoting innovative and effective public health policies.  The collective efforts of Mayor Bloomberg and Dr. Frieden have borne witness to the effects of utilizing legal, legislative, and policy interventions as a tool to improve the public’s health.  These dedicated and tireless ambassadors of public health have a unified vision of a healthy New York City.

Membership Category for Recent Graduates

PHLA is offering a Transitional Membership for individuals who have graduated from an undergraduate or graduate program in the last three years.  This membership level is now available at a cost of $45 per year.  To join PHLA as a Transitional Member, please download our application and submit your dues via fax to (770)-491-9359  or via US mail to PHLA, PO Box 133122, Atlanta, Georgia 30333. 


2007 - 2008 Board of Directors:
Martin P. Wasserman, JD, MD
Jean O’Connor, JD, MPH

Wendy E. Parmet, JD

Daniel J. O’Brien, JD
Past President
Rene S. Cabral-Daniels,

Linda L. Chezem, JD

Patricia I. Elliott, JD, MPH

Gene Matthews, JD

Anne Murphy, JD

Charity Scott, JD

Lori H. Spencer, JD

Jane Speakman, BScN, LLB

© Copyright 2004-2008 Public Health Law Association. All rights reserved.
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