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Northeastern University Professor Appointed to Key Position by the State Secretary of Health and Human Services

Northeastern University Senior Clinical Professor Dr. Jean Flatley McGuire was appointed Assistant Secretary for Disability Policies and Programs by Massachusetts Secretary of Health and Human Services, JudyAnn Bigby. Dr. McGuire will take a leave of absence from Bouvé College of Health Sciences at Northeastern as she takes on her new role in May.

“Dr. McGuire brings a 30-year history of work in disability across public and private sectors,” says JudyAnn Bigby, Secretary of Health and Human Services of Massachusetts. “She will be responsible for developing a comprehensive plan to address health, housing, education and employment for persons with disabilities. Her experience in the field of public health will inform our work as we examine primary and secondary prevention so important to managing disability-related risk.”

In her new position, Dr. McGuire will directly oversee almost $2 billion of services and programs within the Executive Office of Health and Human Services’ Disability and Community Services Cluster.

“Dr. McGuire’s leadership exemplifies excellence and distinctiveness in research that serves urban communities and influences public policy on the national, state and city level,” says Stephen Zoloth, Dean of Bouvé College of Health Sciences at Northeastern University. “We look forward to continuing to collaborate with the Commonwealth in the effort to improve the health of our citizens.”

During her tenure with Northeastern University, Dr. McGuire developed extensive collaborations with the City of Boston which have supported faculty and graduate student projects and resulted most recently in the review of the first year of the Boston Racial and Ethnic Disparities Project. Dr. McGuire also conducted policy research for the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation under a three-year grant focused on workplace flexibility. She co-led a number of urban strategic planning efforts within Bouve, oversaw the Academic Workgroup collaboration on the health professions pipeline in Boston, and completed the pending Massachusetts Department of Public Health (MPH) program proposal. Additionally, she launched a new course called “Public Health in Crisis” and taught classes on race, ethnicity and health in the U.S., as well as on community and public health. She lectured frequently throughout the university and was pivotal in bringing several local and national speakers and outside collaborators to discussions on campus.

Prior to joining Northeastern three years ago, Dr. McGuire was an Assistant Commissioner of the Department of Public Health. During her three-decade history of work, she has had extensive experience in the disability and public health arenas specific to the fields of mental retardation, developmental disabilities, mental health and substance abuse service delivery, HIV, STD, and other infectious disease management. In the late 1980s, she led significant parts of the national disability policy development of the Civil Rights Restoration Act, the Fair Housing Act Amendments, the Americans with Disabilities Act, and the Ryan White CARE Act.

For more information on Dr. Jean Flatley McGuire and her appointment, please contact Renata Nyul at 617-373-7424 or at

About Northeastern

Founded in 1898, Northeastern University is a private research university located in the heart of Boston. Northeastern is a leader in interdisciplinary research, urban engagement, and the integration of classroom learning with real-world experience. The university’s distinctive cooperative education program, where students alternate semesters of full-time study with semesters of paid work in fields relevant to their professional interests and major, is one of the largest and most innovative in the world. The University offers a comprehensive range of undergraduate and graduate programs leading to degrees through the doctorate in six undergraduate colleges, eight graduate schools, and two part-time divisions. For more information, please visit

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