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Staff and Board: Health Advocacy in Action

GREATER BOSTON PSR: 1,800 HEALTH PROFESSIONALS AND COMMUNITY MEMBERS, SPEAKING UP FOR THE PUBLIC’S HEALTH SINCE 1961

Greater Boston Physicians for Social Responsibility (GBPSR) is a physician-led group of health professionals and community members working to address  two of the existential threats to human health: nuclear war and climate change.

Our members include nationally-recognized experts in public health, cancer epidemiology, occupational medicine, environmental health, emergency medicine, disaster preparedness, and the health effects of climate change.

Ours is a trusted voice offering state-of-the-science and up-to-date medical and public health information about the effects of fossil fuel driven climate change and nuclear weapons on human health.

 

Our Staff

Anna Linakis Baker, MPH — Executive Director
Anna came to GBPSR in 2017 after years of community organizing around efforts to protect the Boston region from the threats of Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station. She became involved in this local advocacy after the Fukushima disaster and co-founded the Pilgrim Coalition, developed as a coordinating body of 30+ organizations and hundreds of individuals who came together in concern of the Pilgrim reactor. Prior to her community organizing, Anna served as a Program Officer for The John Merck Fund, where her grant-making was focused primarily on climate and environmental health initiatives and she developed a bird’s eye view of the nonprofit landscape in the Boston area and beyond. She has also worked as a researcher and editor for Environmental Health News, ecoAmerica, and Healthy Babies Bright Futures. Anna received her undergraduate degree from Georgetown University and her Master of Public Health from Boston University. As a part-time Executive Director, Anna is currently the only staffer at GBPSR and could not achieve all she does without the support of her strong and engaged volunteer board.

Andee Krasner, MPH — Program Manager, Climate and Health
Andee is a public health consultant for GBPSR; her work focuses on the intersection of the built environment, climate change, and public health. She recently co-authored the Health Effects of Gas Stove Pollution report, a collaboration between PSR, Rocky Mountain Institute, Sierra Club, and Mothers Out Front. The report was featured in Vox, Scientific American, Slate and other national media outlets. Prior to her work with GBPSR, Andee served as a Senior Consultant at JSI Research and Training Institute where she provided training and technical assistance to community-based organizations, local and state government agencies, and clinical providers. She is a longtime volunteer for Mothers Out Front and a founding member of the Mothers Out Front Health Impacts Team. Andee earned her undergraduate degree in molecular biology from the University of Washington, Seattle and her Master of Public Health from Yale University.

Our Board of Directors

Brita E. Lundberg, MD, Chair
Dr. Brita Lundberg is CEO and founder of Lundberg Health Advocates, LLC, a patient advocacy group. Trained in infectious diseases, she is active in the medical community as a member of the Massachusetts Medical Society (MMS)’s Occupational and Environmental Health Committee; as a Delegate to MMS for the Charles River District; as a member of Climate Code Blue, a physician advocacy group on climate issues; and as a Board member of the COVID-19 Action Coalition. Her primary area of interest is the human health effect of fossil fuels and their role as a driver of climate change. With Greater Boston PSR, MMS and many other groups, she helped organize a large forum on the Health Impacts of Natural Gas Infrastructure at the Boston University School of Public Health in January 2018. She has successfully won passage of policies around climate change, fossil fuel pollution and human health at the MMS; and has co-authored several reports with other Greater Boston PSR members on the flawed health impact assessment of the Weymouth compressor station. Dr. Lundberg completed her undergraduate education at Harvard University, medical school and residency at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and Fellowship in Infectious Diseases at University of Colorado. She was formerly on faculty at the Emory School of medicine as an Assistant Professor in the Division of Infectious Diseases.

John Belge, BSEE — Vice-Chair/Secretary
John Belge is a dedicated action oriented community organizer skilled at facilitation and organizational dynamics. He is interested in working to abolish nuclear weapons and reverse the trends in global warming.

Matt Bivens, MD
Dr. Bivens is an emergency physician who works at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston, where he holds an academic appointment at Harvard Medical School as Instructor in Clinical Medicine, and at St. Luke’s Hospital in New Bedford, MA. He is the EMS Medical Director for several ambulance services in southern Massachusetts, and is Director of EMS for the Southcoast Hospitals Group. Prior to medical school in Washington D.C., he worked as a journalist. Among other things, he covered the war in Chechnya for the Los Angeles Times, was the editor of The Moscow Times, a daily English-language paper, and helped manage Russia’s largest publishing house, Independent Media. His journalism has been published in The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, Harper’s, The Nation, and other media.

Sydney Engel, FNP
Sydney Engel is a family nurse practitioner at Edward M Kennedy Community Health Center in central Massachusetts. She is passionate about preventative medicine, community health, and the intersections of human health and the environment. Prior to entering the field of nursing, she spent two years advocating for extended producer responsibility and waste reduction legislation at the Product Stewardship Institute in Boston. As a healthcare provider entering the field in the era of Covid-19, she has become even more aware of human fragility and driven to push back against climate change and other existential threats.

Mirret El-Hagrassy, MD
Dr. El-Hagrassy is a licensed neurologist, board-certified in Neurology and Epilepsy. She is currently a post-doctoral research fellow at the Spaulding Neuromodulation Center, Harvard Medical School. Dr. El-Hagrassy has a special interest in epilepsy, EEG and neuromodulation, and is concerned about the devastating health impact of nuclear weapons and climate change.

Ira Helfand, MD
Dr. Helfand is a co-founder and Past President of Physicians for Social Responsibility (PSR), a co-President of International Physicians for Social Responsibility (IPPNW), and a member of the International Steering Group of the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN). He is the author of the PSR/IPPNW report, “Nuclear Famine: Two Billion at Risk?” and has published on the dangers of nuclear war in the New England Journal of Medicine, the BMJ, and the World Medical Journal. He has lectured on the medical consequences of nuclear war around the world and spoken for IPPNW and ICAN at the UN General Assembly, the Oslo and Nayarit Conferences on the Humanitarian Impact of Nuclear Weapons, before the US Senate Homeland Security Committee and at the French Senate, the Turkish Parliament and the Israeli Knesset. He chairs the PSR-CAN committee which oversees PSR’s national work for the abolition of nuclear weapons.

Amy Hendrickson
Amy Hendrickson is a software consultant that programs language used for scientific typesetting. She is a peace activist and started the local peace group, Brookline PeaceWorks. She was a campaign manager for Randall Forsberg in her write-in campaign for Senator. Randy is well known as one of the originators of the nuclear freeze movement, and her campaign was a way of getting more attention for the need to abolish nuclear weapons while also protesting Senator John Kerry’s capitulation in supporting the Iraq war. Amy believes that perhaps her most satisfying action was organizing an international demonstration that included activists in 17 countries who demonstrated against the impending Iraq war in front of their local US embassy.

Joseph Hodgkin, MD
Dr. Hodgkin is a resident in internal medicine at Brigham and Women’s Hospital. He is involved in advocacy and peer education on nuclear weapons.

Martha Ellen Katz, MD
Dr. Katz practices general medicine at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and is a clinical instructor of medicine at Harvard Medical School where she teaches an intensive introductory “Human Body” anatomy course. Also at Harvard Medical School, Dr. Katz works with the Office of Diversity and the Arts and Humanities Initiative, which aims to foster creativity and scholarship in the arts and medical humanities and its affiliated hospitals, to support a community of faculty and students engaged and interested in the arts and humanities, and to enhance patient care through reflection and compassion.

Mark Mahoney, MD
Dr. Mahoney worked as a Family Practitioner and an Emergency Room physician for 5 years before transitioning over to strictly Emergency Medicine for over 32 years. In his semi-retirement he is working with Greater Boston PSR to try to ensure there is a future for his children and grandchildren.

Peter Moyer, MD, MPH
Dr. Moyer is Professor and Chair Emeritus at Boston University’s School of Medicine, and Emergency Medicine Medical Director of Boston EMS, Fire and Police (retired). Dr. Moyer believes that GBPSR is the most effective historic and current organization for him to be part of in confronting the threat of nuclear war and eventually ridding the world of nuclear weapons. He likes the GBPSR leadership and staff and its collaborative, talented board members.

Krupa Patel, MD
Dr. Patel is an internal medicine physician at Boston Medical Center. She’s engaged in climate change advocacy and various sustainability initiatives in her community.

Susan Racine, MD
Susan Racine, MD, practices general internal medicine as a primary care physician at Atrius Health. She is a part time lecturer at Harvard Medical School. She strongly believes that a healthy environment is vital to the health of us all and is particularly concerned about climate change. Before joining GBPSR in 2018 she was a member of Mass Health Professionals for Clean Energy, a grassroots organization of health care providers working to advance the transition from fossil fuels to renewable sources of energy in Massachusetts. She also took part in her Boston neighborhood’s campaign to prevent the construction of a high-pressure gas pipeline across the street from an actively blasting quarry. She is a leader in the ecological ministry at Bethel AME Church in Jamaica Plain. She is delighted to be joining GBPSR.

Cornelia (Kea) van der Ziel, MD — treasurer
Dr. van der Ziel is retired OBGYN. She has been active in the peace and justice movement for decades. She is a Town Meeting member in Brookline, Massachusetts and a member of the Commission for Diversity, Inclusion and Community Relations in Brookline. She is also a member of the Board of Brookline Quezalquague Sister City Project, helping to initiate and staff public health projects in that community. Recently, she became a volunteer contact tracer for COVID-19 for the Town of Brookline. Dr. van der Ziel has been working mainly on the issue of nuclear weapons abolition, one of the 2 existential threats to humanity, in effort to ensure a viable future for not only her family but all of humanity.


The founding chapter of the national group, Physicians for Social Responsibility, GBPSR  has worked to increase national awareness around the grave health risks of nuclear war since 1961. PSR’s international federation, the International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War, was awarded the 1985 Nobel Peace Prize. GBPSR played an active role in the international campaign to abolish nuclear weapons (ICAN); this campaign was recognized with a Nobel prize in 2017.