WASHINGTON, D.C. (July 30, 2019) – Milken Institute School of Public Health (Milken Institute SPH) at the George Washington University (GW) and the GW Cancer Center today announced that Carla J. Berg, PhD, MBA, has been named the associate center director for population sciences and policy for the GW Cancer Center. Berg, who starts August 1, will also be a professor of prevention and community health at Milken Institute SPH.
Berg most recently served as an associate professor in the Department of Behavioral Sciences and Health Education at the Rollins School of Public Health at Emory University and the associate director for population sciences at Emory University's Winship Cancer Institute.
A clinical psychologist, Berg's research expertise is on multilevel determinants of health, with an emphasis on high-risk populations like young adults, racial minorities and the LGBTQ population. She is a recognized expert on implementation of tobacco control policies and health disparities, and has published nearly 200 peer-reviewed scientific reports and papers.
Berg has significantly contributed to research focused on reducing the global toll of tobacco, which is among the world's leading preventable causes of death, killing more than seven million people worldwide every year. Her research has also informed regulatory efforts in the United States regarding tobacco products, including e-cigarettes, hookah and small cigars.
"I am thrilled to welcome Dr. Berg to the Milken Institute School of Public Health," said Lynn R. Goldman, MD, MPH, the Michael and Lori Milken Dean of Milken Institute SPH. "Her extraordinary expertise in understanding how public health initiatives impact and influence people's behaviors will help us further our school's research, especially related to an issue as consequential as tobacco use."
Berg's work as a U.S. Fulbright Scholar in the Republic of Georgia in 2013 led to research currently funded by the U.S. National Institutes of Health's Fogarty International Center involving research in Georgia and Armenia, where more than 50 percent of the male population smokes. This work, conducted with Georgia's National Center for Disease Control and Public Health, Armenia's National Institute of Health, and the American University of Armenia, involves community-level strategies to promote smoke-free air policies and reduce secondhand smoke exposure. Berg has also worked internationally in China, India and other countries.
Berg has also conducted extensive research on how psychological and behavioral treatments can improve quality of life among cancer survivors.
"Cancer prevention through population level approaches is a critical pillar of our work here at the GW Cancer Center," said Eduardo M. Sotomayor, MD, Dr. Cyrus Katzen Family Director of the GW Cancer Center and professor of medicine at the GW School of Medicine and Health Sciences. "Dr. Berg's impressive experience and track record of community-engaged research make her an incredible addition to our team as we continue to invest in cancer prevention and strengthen our partnerships in public health. Furthermore, her expertise will help us to speed up our ultimate goal of achieving National Cancer Institute designation in the near future."
Berg received her PhD in clinical health psychology from the University of Kansas. She completed residency training at Massachusetts General Hospital/Harvard Medical School in behavioral medicine and completed postdoctoral training at the University of Minnesota. She received her MBA from the Goizueta Business School at Emory University.
"I am eager to join such an excellent community of engaged scholars," Berg said. "I look forward to working alongside my colleagues at GW to truly make a difference in cancer prevention and control, and in public health more broadly, globally and in our immediate community."
About the GW Cancer Center
The George Washington University (GW) Cancer Center is a collaboration of the George Washington University, the GW Hospital and the GW Medical Faculty Associates to expand GW's efforts in the fight against cancer. The GW Cancer Center also incorporates all existing cancer-related activities at GW, with a vision to create a cancer-free world through groundbreaking research, innovative education and equitable care for all. Learn more about the GW Cancer Center at gwcancercenter.org.