Dr. Donald A. Henderson of the United States (1928 - ) directed the global smallpox eradication campaign for the World Health Organization (WHO) from 1966 to 1977. In 1974, Dr. Henderson was instrumental in initiating WHO's global immunization program, which has vaccinated 80 percent of the world's children against six major diseases and has set the global eradication of poliomyelitis as one of its goals. Dr. Henderson is the founding director of the Center for Civilian Biodefense Studies at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. Following the events of Sept. 11, 2001 and concerns surrounding bioterrorism, Dr. Henderson was named director of the office of Public Health Preparedness by the U.S. Health and Human Services.
He is a senior advisor to various departments of the U.S. government on civilian biodefense matters. During his outstanding professional career Dr. Henderson has received several important distinctions, such as the National Medal of Science in Biology in 1986 and the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2002. As of 2010, Dr. Anderson is a Johns Hopkins University Distinguished Service Professor and Dean Emeritus of the School of Public Health, and a Distinguished Scholar at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center's Center for Biosecurity and a professor of public health and medicine at the University of Pittsburgh.