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Nadine Burke Harris: How childhood trauma affects health across a lifetime

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Born 1975 (age 39–40)
Vancouver, Canada
Occupation CEO, Center for Youth Wellness, San Francisco
Relatives Arno Harris (spouse)[1]
Website centerforyouthwellness.org
Medical career
Profession Pediatrician
Specialism Adverse childhood experiences

ABOUT NADINE

Jamaican-American pediatrician Nadine Burke Harris innovatively studies adverse childhood experiences as a risk factor for adult diseases such as heart disease and cancer. She is founder and CEO of Center for Youth Wellness, an initiative seeking to create a clinical model that recognizes and effectively treats toxic stress in children, and practices at the California Pacific Medical Center Bayview Child Health Center, where she was the founding physician. Her work pushes the health establishment to reexamine its relationship to social risk factors, and advocates for active medical interventions to counteract the damaging physiologic impact of stress.

Nadine Burke Harris, MD, MPH, FAAP
Chief Executive Officer
Center for Youth Wellness
Dr. Nadine Burke Harris is founder and CEO of the Center for Youth Wellness (CYW).
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Dr. Nadine Burke Harris is founder and CEO of Center for Youth Wellness (CYW). She has earned international attention for her innovative approach to addressing adverse childhood experiences as a risk factor for adult diseases such as heart disease and cancer. Her work has demonstrated that it’s time to reassess the relationship between poverty, child development and health, and how the practical applications of the Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACE) Study can improve health outcomes.

Dr. Burke Harris currently serves as an expert advisor on the Too Small to Fail initiative championed by Hillary Clinton and the Clinton Foundation in association with Next Generation. This initiative aims to help parents and businesses take meaningful actions to improve the health and well-being of children ages zero to five so that more of America’s children are prepared to succeed in the 21st century. Dr. Burke Harris also serves as an advisor on Governor Jerry Brown’s “Let’s Get Healthy California Task Force” and the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) as a committee member for the AAP’s Medical Home for Children Exposed to Violence Committee. Her work has been profiled in Paul Tough’s best-selling book, How Children Succeed: Grit, Curiosity, and the Hidden Power of Character hailed by NY Times columnist David Brooks as “essential.” Dr. Burke Harris’ work has also earned her the Arnold P. Gold Foundation Humanism in Medicine Award presented by the American Academy of Pediatrics.

The goal of the Center for Youth Wellness is ambitious: to create a clinical model that recognizes and effectively treats toxic stress in children and to change the standard of pediatric practice in our nation. CYW works in close partnership with the CPMC Bayview Child Health Center, where Dr. Burke Harris was the founding physician and where she maintains her clinical practice. Her areas of interest are in health disparities, child trauma, nutrition and asthma. Particularly, her focus is serving communities where issues of poverty and race present challenges to conventional health care and education.

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