I am Debra Furr-Holden, PhD. I wear many hats in the world. 

1) I am a scientist. I conduct cutting-edge, community-engaged public health research at the Michigan State University where I am a C.S. Mott Endowed Professor of Public Health and Director of the Division of Public Health. 

2) I am an advocate, and have successfully worked with local and national policy makers and stakeholders to drive important health policy initiatives to prevent and reduce health inequalities in Baltimore, MD, Flint, MI, and nationally. 

3) I am a mentor with a profound commitment to developing and supporting the next generation of researcher/advocates and a deep passion for the training and development of minority and underrepresented scientists at all levels (children and adolescents, college students, post-baccalaureates, graduate students, Post-docs, and early stage investigators).

 4) I am an author and have published nearly 100 articles in some of the worlds top-tier peer-reviewed journals, several book chapters and I have 3 independent book projects underway. I am affectionately known as 'Dr. Deb', a name given to me by fans of a Radio Show I co-hosted from May, 2011 until August, 2013 on WOLB Baltimore called Beyond the Wire

Please explore the site and feel free to contact me if something piques your interest or you would like to book me for a speaking engagement!



  • Joseph Cochin Award, College for Problems on Drug Dependence - 2014

  • Outstanding Public Health Career Achievement Award, Johns Hopkins University - 2011

  • Inductee, Delta Omega Alpha Chapter, Johns Hopkins University - 2011

  • Presidential Early Career Award for Science and Engineering, Office of the White House (2006 Recipient) - 2007

  • National Institute on Mental Health Fellowship - 1999

  • National Institute on Drug Abuse Drug Epidemiology Training Fellowship - 1996

  • Paul V. Lemkau Teaching Award, Johns Hopkins University - 1998