Emelda Okiro

Emelda Okiro was elected as an AAS Fellow in 2020. As a fellow, Emelda Okiro contributes to the development of the Academy’s strategic direction through participation in AAS activities and governance structures. . This gears the Academys vision of transforming african lives through science.

Year elected
Medical & Health Sciences

Emelda leads the Population Health Unit within the KEMRI-Wellcome Trust Research Programme in Kenya. Emelda has 20 years of Population and Public Health research experience. She has evolved the science of impact evaluation, epidemiology, population health, statistics, data analytics and operations research focusing on research capacity mentorship in the Africa region. Her work has focused on leveraging epidemiological data to improve the understanding of disease mechanisms and strengthen programme implementation of new tools and innovations to achieve a greater impact on health in Africa. Emelda has applied her epidemiological science to many important public health topics that plague the African continent: malaria, HIV, RSV, health access, under-five mortality, emerging infectious pathogens and anaemia. She is focused on embedding herself in the policy process in-country and is passionate about improving routine data in sub-Saharan Africa.  Before her current position, Emelda was a Program Officer/Gates Fellow within the Global Health Team at the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. She has previously worked on projects that have evaluated the public health impact of malaria control and anti-retroviral treatment programs while at the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation-IHME and developing primary health care strategies at Philips Research Africa. Emelda serves on the BMC Medicine Editorial Board, the PLOS Global Public Health Editorial Board, and the TDR Scientific and Technical Advisory Committee (STAC).   She is interested in science mentorship and capacity building within Africa. Emelda has a PhD in Epidemiology, has been awarded several internationally competitive Wellcome Trust (UK) Fellowships and is widely published.