Tripti Joshi (Editor)

Deborah Prothrow Stith

Updated on
Share on FacebookTweet on TwitterShare on LinkedInShare on Reddit
Name  Deborah Prothrow-Stith

Education  Spelman College

Spouse  Charles Richard Stith (m. 1975)
People also search for  B. Pruitt, Kathy Crumpler, Charles Richard Stith, Jon Oliver, Joseph M. Chery
Books  Deadly consequences, Sugar and Spice and No Longe, Murder Is No Accident, Health Skills for Wellness, Violence Prevention Curriculu

Deborah Prothrow-Stith, M.D. is Dean and Professor at Charles R. Drew University College of Medicine. She advised top-tier healthcare institutions on leadership as a principal at Spencer Stuart and she served as the Henry Pickering Walcott Professor of Public Health Practice and Associate Dean for Diversity at Harvard School of Public Health where she created the Division of Public Health Practice and secured over $14 million in grant funding for health programs. While working in inner-city Boston, she broke new ground with efforts to define youth violence as a health problem. She developed The Violence Prevention Curriculum for Adolescents, a forerunner of violence prevention curricula for schools and authored or co-authored Deadly Consequences (HarperCollins 1991); Murder Is No Accident (Jossey Bass Publishers, 2004); Sugar and Spice and No Longer Nice, (Jossey Bass Publishers, 2005); a high school textbook, Health (Pearson 2014); and, over 100 articles. In 1987, Governor Michael Dukakis appointed her Commissioner of Public Health for Massachusetts where she led a department with 3,500 employees, 8 hospitals and a budget of $350 million. She and her family lived in Tanzania during her husband’s tenure as U.S. Ambassador. Dr. Prothrow-Stith is a graduate of Spelman College and Harvard Medical School and a diplomate of the American Board of Internal Medicine. In 2003, she was elected to the prestigious National Academy of Medicine. She has received ten honorary doctorates and in 2017, she was named Woman of the Year for the 2nd District by the LA County Board of Supervisors.


Peace in the 21st century dr deborah prothrow stith

Early life

Deborah Prothrow-Stith ProthrowStith Deborah 1954 The Black Past Remembered and

Prothrow-Stith was born On February 6, 1954 in Marshall, Texas to Percy and Mildred Prothrow but was primary raised in middle-class Atlanta, GA. Her father, Percy, worked for Atlanta Life, then one of two black-owned insurance companies in the South. She finished high school in Houston, Texas attending Jack Yates Sr. High. Though actively recruited by several ivy-league universities, she chose Spelman College in Atlanta, Georgia, for her undergraduate education and earned a degree in mathematics. Following her graduation from Spelman in 1975, she obtained an M.D. from Harvard University Medical School in 1979.


Deborah Prothrow-Stith Peace in the 21st Century Dr Deborah ProthrowStith YouTube

Dr. Prothrow-Stith is a nationally recognized public health leader. As a physician working in inner-city Boston, she broke new ground with her efforts to have youth violence defined as a public health problem; not just a criminal justice issue. Her passion for prevention was not satisfied with the emergency room work of "stitching people up and sending them out." She turned to public health and, with others, created a social movement to prevent violence that has affected Boston and the nation.

After completing her residency in 1982, Dr. Prothrow-Stith began to analyze violence as a health problem and determined that the best way to address the issue was by applying a public educational strategy, as has been done to reduce cigarette smoking and drunk driving. She has appeared on numerous nationally broadcast TV and radio programs and in print, explaining how families, schools, and communities can rein in the problem. Today, her Violence Prevention Curriculum for Adolescents is used in schools in all fifty states and abroad. Shortly after her residency, she took a teaching position at Boston University School of Medicine and became a staff physician at Boston City Hospital. She began to devote clinical hours in the Adolescent Clinic of the Harvard Street Neighborhood Health Center in Dorchester, a low-income section of Boston. From 1982 to 1996 (taking a sabbatical from 1987 to 1990), she treated teenagers for everything from sore throats to pregnancies, drug abuse and suicide attempts.

In 1987, Governor Michael Dukakis appointed her as the first woman Commissioner of Public Health for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts (the Massachusetts Department of Public Health). During her tern as Commissioner, she established the first Office of Violence Prevention in a state department of public health, expanded prevention programs for HIV/AIDS and increased drug treatment and rehabilitation programs.

In 1991, she published Deadly Consequences: How Violence Is Destroying Our Teenage Population and a Plan to Begin Solving the Problem, which was the first literary work to present violence from a public health perspective to a mass audience. In 1995, President Bill Clinton appointed her to the National Commission on Crime Control and Prevention.

Personal life

Dr. Prothrow-Stith is married to Boston University professor and U.S. Ambassador, Charles Richard Stith


  • Secretary of Health and Human Services Exceptional Achievement in Public Service Award (1989, Louis W. Sullivan)
  • American Psychiatric Association's Solomon Carter Fuller Award (1998)
  • World Health Day Award (1993)
  • 10 honorary doctorates
  • References

    Deborah Prothrow-Stith Wikipedia

    Similar Topics
    Charles Richard Stith
    Secret People (film)
    William Boland