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Polio Working Group

Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

Apoorva Mallya, MBA, CFA

Apoorva Mallya, MBA, CFAMr. Mallya is a Program Officer in Immunization Programs in the Vaccine Delivery Department at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. He brings a passion for global health issues as well as strong strategic, financial, and management skills to bear in grant making and grant managing for the vaccine preventable diseases portfolio within the Global Health Program. Recently, he has focused his efforts on developing strategic plans for Foundation investments in polio and measles and developing grants for purchasing vaccines in developing countries utilizing novel finance mechanisms.

Mr. Mallya earned a BA in Economics at the University of Pennsylvania and a MBA in Strategy and Health at Washington University in St. Louis and is a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) Charterholder. He previously worked as a Senior Consultant with ECG Management Consultants providing strategic and business consulting services for non-profit hospitals throughout the US. Within this role, he specialized in developing financial and organizational structures to allow hospitals to serve uninsured and underinsured patients. In addition, he has served as a community health care worker in the rural areas of Maharashtra, India, focusing on populations suffering from tuberculosis and leprosy.

Linda V. Venczel, PhD, MPH

Linda V. Venczel, PhD, MPH

Dr. Venczel joined the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF) in 2008 as Senior Program Officer, Global Health Program. In this role, she is currently focusing her efforts on expanding the Global Health Program's approach in global health and engagement in polio eradication. Dr. Venczel came to the BMGF from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), where she served as the deputy branch chief of the polio eradication branch. She also worked as the regional advisor for the immunization activities in the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO), focusing on measles elimination and the outbreaks of vaccine-derived poliovirus in Haiti and the Dominican Republic. She was a Peace Corps volunteer in Senegal, West Africa, from 1997-1999. She received her PhD and MPH from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, and is an epidemiologist and microbiologist.

Jay Wenger, MD

Jay Wenger, MDDr. Wenger is Director for the Polio Program in the Global Development Program at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and leads the foundation's Polio Eradication Program. Dr. Wenger directly manages a high performing team within Global Development, and indirectly manages a number of individuals across the foundation who are instrumental to the foundation's polio enterprise (eg, advocacy, resource mobilization, communications, fundamental and applied research and product development). Dr. Wenger represents the foundation both internally and externally on the foundation polio strategy and helps to shape and execute the global program.

Dr. Wenger had been serving as the Associate Director for Science in the Division of Preparedness and Emerging Infections at the US Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and was based at the Arctic Investigations Program in Anchorage, Alaska which is focused on surveillance and prevention and control programs for invasive bacterial disease (most prominently disease caused by H. influenzae type b (Hib) and S. pneumoniae (pneumococcus)), respiratory syncytial virus, evaluation of environmental risk factors for infectious diseases and international circumpolar health issues. Prior to his posting in Alaska, he was detailed to the World Health Organization (WHO) for five years as the Project Manager for the National Polio Surveillance Project in collaboration with the Government of India. In this capacity, Dr. Wenger was responsible for the technical and administrative management of the 250 offices throughout India, staffed by 300 medical officers and 600 support staff, to provide national coverage for polio surveillance and immunization activities. Prior to his position in India, he was detailed to WHO for six years as the Medical Officer and Coordinator for the Accelerated Vaccine Introduction Priority Project with the Expanded Programme on Immunization (EPI). This project included activities for introduction of Hib into developing countries such as development of introduction guidelines, disease burden estimation, direct consultation with countries considering introduction, cost benefit analyses, and evaluation of the introduction process for dissemination to countries considering introduction. Eventually, the work expanded to all new vaccines where he coordinated the Accelerated Vaccine Introduction Priority Project within the EPI, and developed a regional network of WHO medical officers for new vaccines introduction supported with outside funding. Dr. Wenger received his medical degree from Temple University in Philadelphia and training in epidemiology at the CDC.

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