Dream Teams: Bringing boards and staff together for organizational success – October 11-21, 2016


Karen Johnson LassnerKaren Johnson Lassner, MPH, MA is a consultant for the LMG Project and former employee of Management Sciences for Health. With more than 35 years of experience in the area of global health, Ms. Lassner’s technical areas of expertise include planning, implementation and evaluation of primary health care, reproductive health services, prevention of HIV and tuberculosis, and building the leadership, management, and governance capacity of organizations to advocate and deliver health services. Her specific skills include strategic and operational planning, leadership development, management needs assessments, monitoring and evaluation, leading and managing organizational change, governance strengthening of civil society organizations and multi-sector bodies, and management of community health programs. She is also an experienced face-to-face and virtual facilitator and trainer. Fluent in English, Spanish and Portuguese, she has experience working throughout Latin America and the Caribbean and in many countries in Africa and Asia. Ms. Lassner holds MA and MPH degrees from the University of California, Los Angeles. She is based in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, where she is on the board of BrazilFoundation.

Susan PutterSusan (Sue) Putter is a Principal Technical Advisor with the Systems for Improved Access to Pharmaceuticals and Services program of MSH. She joined MSH in 2006 and is based in South Africa where she has been the technical lead on governance, the Pharmaceutical Leadership Development Program and monitoring and evaluation. She works closely with the Directorate: Affordable Medicines in South Africa in strengthening governance within the pharmaceutical sector. Prior to joining MSH, Sue worked for seven years as Senior Manager: Professional Affairs in the office of the South African Pharmacy Council. She has experience in drafting policies and legislation, contractual documents, terms of reference of committees, standards of practice, as well as the development of competency standards for pharmacy personnel. She currently serves on the Medicines Control Council – the body responsible for regulation of medicine in South Africa. Sue has postgraduate qualifications in pharmacy and public administration.

Mahesh ShuklaMahesh Shukla, MD, DrPH, MPA is MSH’s Senior Technical Advisor for the Leadership, Management, and Governance (LMG) Project. He is a public health physician, and health policy and health systems strengthening expert with 25 years of professional experience. He has designed and implemented the LMG Project’s health governance interventions and measured their effectiveness in capacity-constrained and fragile environments. He has worked with the World Bank and UNDP in the past. He did his MD at Nagpur University, MPA at Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs of Syracuse University, and DrPH at the George Washington University.

Sylvia VriesendorpSylvia Vriesendorp, Drs. Psychology has worked at MSH since 1986 and started her international career working at UNECSO’s Regional Africa Bureau on 1979 on a program promoting family life education as a strategy to increase the acceptance of family planning. In the late 80s and 90s she worked on USAID’s Family Planning Management Training program which aimed at strengthening the leadership and management skills of health professionals in charge of sexual and reproductive health programs. This program eventually became the Leadership, Management and Governance Project, which is still managed by MSH out of its Arlington Office. Having completed her studies in Psychology in Holland, she lived in Geneva, Sana’a, Beirut, Dakar and Kabul. Currently, from her base in the Boston area, she provides assistance in developing leadership facilitators and bringing diverse stakeholders together to move the agenda on causes related to improved health and quality of life.

Helena WalkowiakHelena Walkowiak is a Principal Technical Advisor and the technical lead for governance on the USAID-funded Systems for Improved Access to Pharmaceuticals and Services Program, implemented by Management Sciences for Health (MSH). She is a pharmacist with a master’s degree in public health who has over 15 years of experience in providing technical assistance to help countries strengthen pharmaceutical systems, scale up HIV programs, assess and build pharmaceutical management capacities, and improve the provision of medication-related patient care services in Africa, Asia, Eastern Europe, and the Caribbean.

In her role as the governance technical lead, Ms. Walkowiak provides technical guidance in the planning, implementation, and monitoring of SIAPS activities to support countries in strengthening governance and increasing transparency at all levels of the pharmaceutical system. Prior to joining MSH, Ms. Walkowiak worked as the expatriate chief pharmacist for two island countries, the Republic of Palau and the Cayman Islands.