Monica Ponder, Chair

Monica Ponder is a passionate health communications professional with more than 10 years experience serving the community-at-large. Trained professionally as a chemist and epidemiologist, Monica specializes in translating scientific information and advocating for sound healthcare policy and programs. Monica has worked for the Centers for Disease Control supporting internal and external communications for emerging public health issues for nearly a decade. Prior to joining CDC, Monica trained clinicians on flu epidemics for the Fulton County Department of Health and Wellness and in radio/television production developing health stories for Atlanta’s WAGA/FOX-5 TV station.

As a leading community advocate, Monica has had several successes such as establishing lactation rooms at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, the worlds busiest airport, leading a million dollar advancement effort and campaign to reduce hypertension among African American men in the southeast U.S. (via CDC), and supporting state legislation improving health outcomes for women and children, including domestic minor sexual trafficking, Medicaid expansion, Fibroid and Lupus education, and fair Family and Medical Leave policies.  Monica also serves on the board of Georgians for a Healthy Future, a lead advocate for Georgia consumers and communities on the healthcare issues and decisions that impact their lives and a former participant of Georgia Women’s Policy Institute and Georgia WIN’s List Leadership Academy. To advance this work, Monica founded the Center for Healthcare and Policy Communications.

Monica obtained her B.S. and M.S. degrees in Chemistry from Clark Atlanta University and her MSPH in Epidemiology from Emory University. Most importantly, Monica enjoys uncovering new adventures with her spunky daughter, Lindsey.