Dr. Amy Nunn is a Professor of Behavioral and Social Sciences at the Brown University School of Public Health. She holds a secondary appointment in the Division of Infectious Diseases at Brown University Medical School. She is also the Executive Director of the Rhode Island Public Health Institute (RIPHI). See www.RIPHI.org.
Dr. Nunn conducts applied research and leads public health programs focused on enhancing health equity and reducing racial disparities. In 2020, RIPHI launched Open Door Health, Rhode Island's first LGBTQ clinic: See www.odhpvd.org. Open Door Health provides primary and sexual health care to Rhode Island's diverse population. Open Door Health launched a new COVID-19 screening center and vaccine program in spring 2021 that continues today. Open Door Health also recently launched a monkeypox hotline, and a monkeypox testing and vaccination program.
In 2021, in partnership with over 40 other institutions, Dr. Nunn launched NOURISH RI. NourishRI is a statewide advocacy campaign promoting a SNAP incentive program. This program proposed doubling the value of SNAP for Rhode Islanders when they use SNAP to purchase fruits and vegetables. See www.nourishrhodeisland.org to learn more about this advocacy initiative. This advocacy intiative continued in 2022, and in June 2022, the RI legislature appropriated $11.5 million to fund the nation's first statewide SNAP incentive program.
NOURISH RI draws on the scientific evidence base from Food on the Move, RIPHI's mobile produce market that serves over 5,000 low-income Rhode Islanders every year. With support from the US Department of Agriculture and the AARP Foundation, Food on the Move offers SNAP incentives that double the value of the dollar when customers buy produce with their SNAP benefits. Food on the Move has been associated with dramatic improvements in healthy eating behaviors among SNAP recipients, and is one of the largest mobile produce markets in the United States.
Dr. Nunn is also Principal Investigator of an NIH grant focused on training African Americans and Latinx scholars in community and clinical research related to HIV/AIDS, with a focus on training the next generation of scientific investigators in the Deep South.
Dr. Nunn is best known for her innovative community partnerships to address promote health equity and social justice. In recent years, she oversaw a comprehensive, neighborhood-based HIV and HCV prevention and treatment program called Do One Thing that screened over 10,000 individuals for HIV and HCV. Do One Thing responded to unmet needs for testing and treatment in a Philadelphia neighborhood with high rates of HIV and HCV infection. She's also led several health promotion programs with black pastors to promote HIV and COVID testing in the Deep South; this program is entitled Faith in Action. See https://riphi.org/faith-in-action/.
A social scientist by training, Dr. Nunn has worked in several countries and conducted domestic and international research on a variety of health topics, including HIV/AIDS, access to reproductive health services, and family planning. Dr. Nunn has also conducted global health policy research that explores how politics, economics and intellectual property rights affect AIDS policy and access to medicines in developing countries. She is the author of the book The Politics and History of AIDS Treatment in Brazil, whose foreword was written by Brazilian President Fernando Cardoso, and which was published in 2009 by Springer. She has also written numerous peer-reviewed articles about Brazil's AIDS treatment program.
Dr. Nunn has received research and service grants from the National Institutes of Health, the US Departments of Defense, Agriculture and Education, the Rhode Island Foundation, the MAC AIDS Fund, AARP Foundation, the American Heart Association, and the Center for Science and Public Interest, among many other institutions. She received the "Outstanding New Researcher Award" at the 2009 CDC HIV Prevention Conference and an NIH Career Development Award in 2010. She received an award from Brown University School of Public Health for her community service related to public health. In 2021, she received the Program Innovation Award from the RI Public Health Association, and in 2022, she received the Cheryl Snead Servant Leader Award from the American Heart Association.
Dr. Nunn holds masters and doctoral degrees from the Harvard School of Public Health and is a former Fulbright Scholar. She speaks fluent Spanish and Portuguese. She is the proud mother of Agustin Velasco (13) and Valentina Velasco (11).
Dr. Nunn is a proud alumna of Little Rock Central High School in Little Rock, Arkansas and also loves working on racial justice issues.