LaTasha H. Lee, PhD, MPH is Senior Manager of Sickle Cell Disease Policy and Programs at the American Society of Hematology (ASH) where she is responsible for the day-to-day management and implementation of activities related ASH’s Call to Action on Sickle Cell Disease (SCD), as well as the Sickle Cell Disease Coalition (scdcoalition.org). Furthermore, she also provides input into the overall strategy of ASH’s SCD Initiative, legislative or regulatory issues related to SCD, and provides oversight for the global and research aspects of the initiative. Currently LaTasha is exploring the development of a clinical trials network for sickle cell disease, preparing a business proposal related to the effort, and engaging the sickle cell disease patient community about clinical trial participation. Her hopes are that this network will change the culture and conduct of clinical hematologic research for this devastating disease. Understanding the need to engage patients early in the process, Tasha has convened patient focus group meetings which helped identify areas of opportunity for patient engagement in clinical trial research, conducted outreach to patients and their caregivers to help inform the patient engagement strategy on clinical trial participation, and hosted informational calls to understand patient needs and incorporating them within the clinical trial network strategic plan. As a global public health professional, she is involved in the establishment of a Newborn Screening and Early Interventions Consortia in Sub-Saharan Africa related to SCD.
Dr. Lee is also an Adjunct Assistant Professor in the Medical Laboratory Sciences (MLS) and Health Sciences (HSCI) Programs at the George Washington University School of Medicine and Health Sciences. She has over a decade of experience in teaching and research, ranging from cancer biology and neuroscience to public health and assay development. Within the MLS program, Dr. Lee teaches a graduate level course in Genetics and Molecular Biology. She also teaches graduate and undergraduate courses in Epidemiology for the Health Sciences Program. Prior to her arrival at George Washington University (GWU), she worked in the Charles E. Schmidt College of Sciences Biological Sciences Department at Florida Atlantic University where she taught lecture and laboratory courses in Anatomy and Physiology. Dr. Lee has worked in industry at Eli Lilly & H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center. Her research has been published in several in peer-reviewed journals, such as Molecular and Cellular Neuroscience, Neurobiology of Disease, Journal of Physical Chemistry, and Sensor Letters.
A knowledgeable, skilled and energetic scientist and public policy advisor with experience on Capitol Hill, Dr. Lee works very closely with Congress and federal agencies to monitor biomedical research and access to care policy related to SCD. Dr. Lee previously worked as a health policy advisor for U.S. Members of Congress, including Representative Alcee Hastings (D-FL) and Senator Sherrod Brown (D-OH).
LaTasha earned a Ph.D. in Integrative Biology with an emphasis in Developmental Neuroscience from Florida Atlantic University, a master’s degree in public health from The George Washington University, and a bachelor’s degree in biology from Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University. She has been the recipient of numerous awards, including the Congressional Black Caucus Health Braintrust Staff Leadership Award in recognition of efforts to end health disparities and the Distinguished Alumni Award from Florida Atlantic University.