Dr. Carissa F. Etienne, a native of Dominica, began her five-year term as Director of the Pan American Health Organization, Regional Office for the Americas of the World Health Organization (PAHO/WHO) in February 2013. She was elected for a second term as the Director of the Pan American Sanitary Bureau on 27 September 2017, during the 29th Pan American Sanitary Conference.
The Director represents the Organization as the Director of the Pan American Sanitary Bureau (PASB), the world's oldest international public health agency. The Director serves as chair of the Organization's Executive Management (EXM), as secretary to the governing bodies of the Organization, and oversees official relations with all members states of the Americas. In addition to representing the Organization at all levels (political, technical and administrative), the Director has direct oversight for country and sub-regional coordination, internal oversight and evaluation services, and legal counsel.
Ms. Mary Lou Valdez, a U.S. citizen and former official of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), became the Deputy Director of the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) in February of 2020.
The second-highest post at PAHO/WHO, with a portfolio that includes serving as Secretary to the Governing Bodies of the Organization, including the Pan American Sanitary Conference, the Directing Council, and the Executive Committee. She oversees the official relations with the Governments of Canada, Puerto Rico and the United States of America; serves as a member of the Organization’s Executive Management, and has direct oversight of the Departments of Planning and Budget; External Relations, Partnerships and Resource Mobilization; Communications as well as the Offices of Governing Bodies and Equity, Gender and Cultural diversity.
Dr. Marcos Antonio Espinal, a national of the Dominican Republic, was appointed Acting Assistant Director of the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) in June 2022.
The Assistant Director (AD) oversees the strategic technical collaboration required to fight disease and promote the health of the inhabitants of the Region, and therefore contribute to improve the quality and prolong the life of the peoples of the Americas.
Director of Administration
Ms. Kristan Beck, a national of the United States of America, was appointed Director of Administration of the Pan American Health Organization, Regional Office for the Americas of the World Health Organization (PAHO/WHO) in August 2021.
The Director of Administration serves as a member of the Organization's Executive Management (EXM) and is comprised of the areas for financial resources management, general services operations, human resources management, information technology services, and procurement and supply management. In addition, the Office of Administration oversees PAHO's Enterprise Risk Management Program and Compliance functions to strengthen accountability and the protection of PAHO's resources.