Don Hopkins

Vice President, Health Programs,
The Carter Center

Dr. Hopkins’ current position, since 1997, is vice president (Health) of The Carter Presidential Center in Atlanta, Georgia. He currently oversees The Carter Center’s international health programs in 10 African and six Latin American countries, as well as the Center’s Mental Health Program. From 1987 to 1997, he was senior consultant for the Global 2000 project of The Carter Center. He has led the Guinea worm eradication initiative at the Center, which has helped to reduce cases of that disease from an estimated 3.5 million in 1986 to 4,619 reported cases in 2008. Previously he was assistant director for International Health and deputy director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). For most of 1985, he was acting director of CDC. He was assistant professor of Tropical Public Health at Harvard School of Public Health from 1974 to 1977.

From 1967 to 1969, he directed the Smallpox Eradication/Measles Control Program in Sierra Leone, West Africa. He consulted on other smallpox eradication programs in Ethiopia and India, and with yaws control efforts in Colombia and Dominica. He has been a member of seven United States delegations to the World Health Assembly, and served as consultant on several committees of WHO.

Dr. Hopkins has authored numerous articles for scientific journals and textbooks on a wide variety of public health subjects, including smallpox, yaws, onchocerciasis and dracunculiasis (Guinea worm disease). He is the author of Princes and Peasants: Smallpox in History, which was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize in 1983, and was re-issued in 2002 with the title, The Greatest Killer: Smallpox in History.

Dr. Hopkins attended the Institute of European Studies at the University of Vienna. He received his BS degree from Morehouse College, his MD from the University of Chicago, and his MPH from Harvard School of Public Health.