People Detail

Ruth Etzel MD, PhD

(414) 227-3357
Zilber 445


Clnical Scholar, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
PhD, Epidemiology, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Pediatrics Resident, North Carolina Memorial Hospital
MD, University of Wisconsin, Madison
BA, Biology, University of Minnesota, Twin Cities


Dr. Etzel has a broad background in public health, with specific training and expertise in pediatrics, preventive medicine, and children’s environmental health.  After completing a residency in pediatrics, Dr. Etzel was a Robert Wood Johnson Clinical Scholar at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.  During 20 years as a Commissioned Officer in the US Public Health Service, Dr. Etzel served in a variety of public-sector leadership positions including:  US CDC (Founding Chief of the Air Pollution and Respiratory Health Branch), US Department of Agriculture (Director of the Division of Epidemiology and Risk Assessment) and US Indian Health Service (Research Director at the Alaska Native Medical Center).

Dr. Etzel is the founding editor of Pediatric Environmental Health (a 3rd edition was published by the American Academy of Pediatrics in 2011).  This influential book has helped to train thousands of doctors who care for children about how to recognize, diagnose, treat and prevent illness in children from hazards in the environment.  She has worked extensively with international organizations to educate health professionals about environmental health and to build their capacity to conduct environmental investigations.  From 2009 to 2012 she served as the Senior Officer for Environmental Health Research in the Department of Public Health and Environment at the World Health Organization in Geneva, Switzerland.