Public/Private Legal Preparedness Initiative
Public/Private Legal Preparedness Initiative
A program of the North Carolina Institute for Public Health
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Gene W. Matthews, JD, Director

Senior Fellow, North Carolina Institute for Public Health
Gillings School of Global Public Health
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Gene W. Matthews serves as Senior Fellow at the North Carolina Institute for Public Health, the outreach and service unit of the University of North Carolina Gillings School of Global Public Health. He also holds faculty appointments at the University of North Carolina School of Public Health and the Georgia State University College of Law.

Prior to taking these positions Mr. Matthews served as the chief legal advisor to the CDC in Atlanta from 1979 to 2004, directing a legal staff that grew to 30 persons.  During that 25 year span, he handled a wide range of precedent-setting public health law issues and litigated key public health lawsuits and civil discovery cases.  Mr. Matthews is widely published and is frequently called upon to lecture on cutting-edge legal issues facing public health, such as emergency preparedness, federalism, and future trends in public health leadership.   

Since 1999, Mr. Matthews has also provided leadership in the development of CDC's internal Public Health Law Program, and he has guided this exciting effort to reach out to the legal community and to public health practitioners. 

Since leaving federal service, Mr. Matthews has worked closely with both CDC’s internal public health law program and the CDC Foundation in developing partnership opportunities with the private sector and in building new alliances focused on common legal preparedness topics.  In this regard, he is currently leading an innovative national private / public partnership initiative, based at UNC and funded by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, which is designed to develop common legal preparedness agendas regarding liability laws and sick leave policies during emergencies

In June 2004, Mr. Matthews received the Distinguished Career Award of the Public Health Law Association "...in recognition of a career devoted to using law to improve the public’s health."  Mr. Matthews is a graduate of the University of North Carolina School of Law, is a member of the North Carolina Bar.