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April 25, 2023

Healthier Generation Names Dr. Kyle R. MacDonald as Organization’s First Chief Science & Program Officer

Experienced public health practitioner to lead program innovation and evaluative strategy to advance whole child health equity

April 25, 2023 – Alliance for a Healthier Generation (Healthier Generation), one of the nation’s preeminent children’s health organizations, today announced the appointment of its first Chief Science & Program Officer, Kyle R. MacDonald, MD, MPH, CPH. Dr. MacDonald, a licensed physician with training in pediatrics and public health, has held positions at the NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene and KPMG, where he advised government clients on proven strategies for treating opioid addiction and other population health crises. Previously, Dr. MacDonald served as a member of Healthier Generation’s Board of Directors and currently serves as Alumni Board President of the Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health. Dr. MacDonald brings deep experience as a clinician, educator, researcher, and child health expert – all culminating in the newly created leadership role of Healthier Generation’s vision to ensure that every mind, every body, every young person is healthy and ready to succeed. 

Healthier Generation is renowned for being among the first national non-profits to formally broaden its mission in 2015 to address whole child health equity - most notably viewing its original focus on childhood obesity as an indicator, not an outcome, of various interrelated factors that influence health. Latest research shows that children continue to experience a variety of health challenges that require an integrated approach to overall health and well-being; and systemic inequities exacerbate health challenges within marginalized and underserved communities.  

Healthier Generation is the recipient of a recent one-time $15M gift from MacKenzie Scott, enabling it to make unprecedented investments in its whole child health equity leadership. Dr. MacDonald’s hire enables the organization to accelerate several strategic priorities including: 

  • Prioritize evidence-based and evidence-informed methodologies to advance school, family, and community health.  

  • Translate research into practice to create measurable impacts in whole child health equity. 

  • Design innovative programmatic approaches to grow and scale impact for focus populations, especially within communities of color and underserved communities. 

“The data around children’s health today show that our nation must make bigger, bolder investments to support the total wellness of our schools, families and communities,” said Kathy Higgins, chief executive officer of Healthier Generation. “Welcoming Dr. MacDonald as our first ever Chief Science & Program Officer demonstrates Healthier Generation’s commitment to do our part. We must focus on the future today and act with purpose as we adapt to the immediate needs of young people and advance a proven, impactful program approach so that our children can thrive.” 

“As a public health physician, I’m keenly aware of the importance of building health programming on a strong foundation of scientific evidence,” said Dr. MacDonald. “As a former member of Healthier Generation’s Board of Directors, I’ve witnessed up close the organization’s ability to launch and sustain whole child health solutions with a data-driven approach. I can’t wait to get started!”  

Learn more about Dr. MacDonald at HealthierGeneration.org


About Alliance for a Healthier Generation  

Alliance for a Healthier Generation is a leading children's health organization that advances equitable whole child health. Driven by our passion to ensure that every mind, every body, and every young person is healthy and ready to succeed, our work has reached over 31 million young people across the country. To learn more and help make a difference, visit HealthierGeneration.org and join us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram

Media Contact

Krista Washington

Vice President, Brand & Communications | Alliance for a Healthier Generation