Movers, Shakers and T1D Changemakers: Dr. Shereef Elnahal

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As we close out National Diabetes Awareness Month (NDAM), we would like to recognize Dr. Shereef Elnahal, President and Chief Executive Officer of University Hospital in Newark, for his countless contributions to the type 1 community through both his personal and professional endeavors.

A familiar face to many who have attended the TypeOneNation Summit or the One Dream Gala, Dr. Elnahal has been living with T1D since he was diagnosed at age 12. “Being a Type 1 diabetic has truly shaped who I am as a person and a professional,” Dr. Elnahal says. “I know first-hand that T1D affects everything in one’s daily life – diet, recreational activities, sports, and even professional and academic life.”

This past August, Dr. Elnahal was appointed to the JDRF International Research Committee. In this volunteer role, Dr. Elnahal serves as a member of the 10-person Research Committee which reviews and approves JDRF’s research strategy, proposed funding allocations and opportunities aligned to the strategy, and importantly provides the perspective of people with diabetes. In addition to their strategic oversight, the committee governs program allocations and approval of any grants over $1 million.

Dr. Elnahal says of this opportunity, “I am confident that my role in leading New Jersey’s only public hospital, serving the most vulnerable in Newark and the surrounding region, will lend weight in prioritizing the health and well-being of similar communities around the world with folks struggling with T1D.”

Prior to joining University Hospital in 2019, Dr. Elnahal served as New Jersey’s 21st Health Commissioner, appointed to the Cabinet post by Governor Murphy and confirmed by the New Jersey Senate. He also served as Assistant Deputy Under Secretary for Health for Quality, Safety, and Value in the US Department of Veterans Affairs in the Obama Administration.

The son of doctors who immigrated to New Jersey from Egypt, Dr. Elnahal grew up in Atlantic City and received a dual-degree M.D. and M.B.A. with Distinction from Harvard University, and graduated summa cum laude with a B.A. in biophysics from Johns Hopkins University.