Jackie Cornell (she/her) joined 1906 as the Chief of Policy and Health Innovations in the next step in her influential career in public health and social justice advocacy. In her previous position of Principal Deputy Commissioner for New Jersey’s Department of Health, she pushed forward policies and programs to serve New Jersey’s most vulnerable citizens. She lead on issues ranging from tackling the alarming rate of black infant mortality, to ending the HIV epidemic by 2025, and expanding access and affordability of medical marijuana.

To all her work, Cornell brings her commitment to anchoring public health and policy in harm reduction and destigmatization of often controversial topics. She is a fierce advocate for health equity for populations that have been underserved by mainstream health services including young women, the LGBTQ community, and those who turn to nontraditional treatments such as cannabis to improve their wellness and quality of life.

Under President Barack Obama, she was regional director of the US Department of Health and Human Services, covering NY, NJ, Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands. Cornell also worked for New Jersey Policy Perspective, the New Jersey Hospital Association and a series of electoral campaigns. Passionate about building a robust and diverse bench across sectors, Cornell founded the New Jersey chapter of the New Leaders Council, the country’s largest leadership training program for young progressive professionals. She began her career as a peer-to-peer health educator at Planned Parenthood.

Cornell is a New Jersey native and a proud alumna of Rutgers University and The College of New Jersey, where she is an adjunct professor teaching courses on gender, public policy and advocacy.

The single mom of a first grade son, Cornell collects books, passport stamps and tattoos.