Penn State researcher selected for Kaiser minority leadership program

November 23, 2010

Shedra Amy Snipes, assistant professor of biobehavioral health in Penn State's College of Health and Human Development, is one of six researchers across the country selected to participate in the newly established Kaiser Permanente Burch Minority Leadership Development Awards program. The program supports junior minority researchers with two-year leadership development awards.

Snipes’ research focuses on the safety and well-being of migrant farmworkers and the intersections between biology, culture, folk beliefs and health disparities research. Her field work has taken her to many worksites where she tests farmworker exposure to pesticides and toxins.

 “Dr. Snipes’ research is already having an impact in creating research and policy awareness for the need to protect immigrant workers and their families from environmental hazards and exposures like pesticides while working in the field,” said Collins Airhihenbuwa, professor and head of the Department of Biobehavioral Health. “She is most deserving of this award.”

The leadership program was launched by the Center for Advancing Health (CFAH) after it received a $98,000 grant from Kaiser Permanente. The six scholars participating in the program were selected from among a diverse group of 100 minority scholars who have recently completed postdoctoral training in health disparities research under programs funded by the W.K. Kellogg Foundation for which CFAH serves as the National Program Office (including the Kellogg Scholars in Health Disparities Research and the Kellogg Fellows in Health Policy Research Program).

The program aims to enhance the voices and leadership development of minority researchers committed to improving service to the underserved and reducing health and health care inequalities by strengthening support for public hospitals and other safety net providers. It also is designed to develop and sustain a more diverse pool of leaders and experts with access to the federal, state, and local health policy community. The program honors Chris Burch’s service to the cause of public hospitals and social justice. Burch recently retired as the executive director of the National Association of Public Hospitals and Health System.

For more information on the Kaiser Permanente Burch Minority Leadership Program, visit

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Last Updated January 09, 2015