Drs. Kozhimannil and Henning-Smith

CTSI announces new Office of Rural Health, welcomes Drs. Kozhimannil and Henning-Smith

Katy Backes Kozhimannil, PhD, will lead a new aligned rural health initiative for CTSI and the Office of Academic Clinical Affairs (OACA) effective July 2020. 

As OACA’s Director of Rural Health Programs, Dr. Kozhimannil will bring together University of Minnesota and community constituents to advance rural health, and develop a program that will improve rural health outcomes in Minnesota.  

As Director of CTSI’s new Office of Rural Health, Dr. Kozhimannil will develop programs to improve rural health through translational research and science, and will contribute to emerging national efforts of the NIH Clinical Translational Science Award Program to improve rural health. Carrie Henning-Smith, PhD, will join CTSI’s Office of Rural Health as Deputy Director and will collaborate with Dr. Kozhimannil. Both will serve on CTSI’s Executive and Hub Leadership Teams. 

About Dr. Kozhimannil

Dr. Kozhimannil is a Professor in the School of Public Health’s Division of Health Policy and Management, and Director of the University of Minnesota Rural Health Research Center.

She conducts research to inform the development, implementation, and evaluation of health policy that impacts health care delivery, quality, and outcomes during critical times in the lifecourse, including pregnancy and childbirth. Through her scholarly work, she aims to contribute to the evidence base for clinical and policy strategies to advance racial, gender, and geographic equity and to collaborate with stakeholders in making policy change to address social determinants and structural injustice in order to facilitate improved health and well-being.

Dr. Kozhimannil received her PhD in Health Policy from Harvard University and her MPA in Policy and Administration from Princeton University.

About Dr. Henning-Smith

Dr. Henning-Smith is an Assistant Professor in the School of Public Health’s Division of Health Policy and Management, and Deputy Director of the Rural Health Research Center.

Her research focuses on historically marginalized populations in order to illuminate structural barriers to health and well-being and practical policy solutions. Under this broad umbrella, her work falls into two distinct, but overlapping themes: 1) illuminating disparities in health and access to care, especially for older adults and rural residents, and 2) investigating the ways in which environment, from immediate living environment to broader geographical context, impacts health.

Dr. Henning-Smith has PhD and MS degrees in Health Services Research, Policy and Administration from the University of Minnesota, an MPH in Health Behavior and Health Education from the University of Michigan, and an MSW in Interpersonal Practice and Mental Health from the University of Michigan.