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Dr. Paula Johnson          

President of Wellesley College; Innovator Known for Advancing the Education, Health & Well-Being of Women

As the 14th president of Wellesley College, Paula A. Johnson brings decades of experience in academic medicine, public health, and higher education to her role. Since assuming her position, she has advanced women’s higher education, championing cross-campus efforts to integrate the ideals of inclusive excellence into every aspect of academic and residential life. Her belief that health and wellness are crucial to academic and personal success has led the college to reimagine how it promotes resilience, resolve, and balance in its students. Under her leadership, President Johnson has also placed Wellesley at the forefront of STEM education by drawing on the synergies found at the intersection of science, the humanities, and social sciences.

President Johnson has dedicated her scientific and medical career to furthering our knowledge of the biological differences between women and men, leading the way in ensuring that research findings are effectively translated in order to improve health care for women. By uncovering gender biases in these arenas and advancing science, she has helped transform how medicine is practiced and how research is conducted.

Before coming to Wellesley, President Johnson served as Grayce A. Young Family Professor of Medicine in Women’s Health at Harvard Medical School and as a professor of epidemiology at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. She also founded the Connors Center for Women’s Health and Gender Biology at Brigham and Women’s Hospital.

President Johnson is a member of the National Academy of Medicine and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. She has received several honorary degrees and numerous awards for her contributions to science, medicine, and public health.

President Johnson attended Harvard and Radcliffe colleges, received her A.B., M.D., and M.P.H. degrees from Harvard, and trained in internal medicine and cardiovascular medicine at Brigham and Women’s Hospital.

Speech Topics

Healthcare Reform and Affordable Care Act and Women's Health

Leadership to Improve Women's Health

Global Women's Health/Leadership

Every Cell has a Sex

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