Vanessa Kerry

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Vanessa Kerry
Vanessa Bradford Kerry.jpg
Vanessa Kerry, May 28, 2009
Born Vanessa Bradford Kerry
(1976-12-31) December 31, 1976 (age 37)
Boston, Massachusetts
Education B.Sc. (summa cum laude honors), M.Sc., M.D. (cum laude honors)
Alma mater
Occupation Chief Executive Officer at Seed Global Health, Staff at Massachusetts General Hospital, Affiliated Faculty at Harvard Medical School
Spouse(s) Brian Vala Nahed
(m. 2009–present)
Parents John Forbes Kerry
Julia Stimson Throne

Vanessa Bradford Kerry (born December 31, 1976) is an American doctor. She founded of the non-profit Seed Global Health.

Early life and family[edit]

Dr. Kerry was born in Boston, Massachusetts. She is the younger daughter of politician John Forbes Kerry (born 1943) and writer Julia Stimson Thorne (1944–2006). Her sister Alexandra (born 1973) is a film director and producer. After her parents divorced, she moved with her mother to Bozeman, Montana. She attended Phillips Academy in Andover, Massachusetts for high school.

On October 10, 2009 in Boston, Kerry married Massachusetts General Hospital neurosurgeon Brian Vala Nahed. Nahed conducts research in brain cancer and is a brain tumor and spine surgeon. His family resides in Los Angeles.

Education and career[edit]

Kerry graduated from Phillips Academy, Andover and summa cum laude from Yale University with a major in biology. While a student at Yale, she played for the varsity lacrosse team. After graduating with her bachelor's degree, she went to the London School of Economics and the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, where she received a master’s of science in health policy, planning and financing. While in London, she was a Fulbright Scholar.[1] Afterwards, she attended the Harvard Medical School from where she graduated with Honors. There, she interned with the Vaccine Fund of the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunization, founded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, where she conducted a study on immunization in Ghana. She later studied and advised on government relations for health and development in Rwanda. She completed her internal medicine residency and critical care fellowship at the Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston. She is now a physician in critical care.

She has continued work in international health and has collaborated on projects in Haiti and Rwanda through the Harvard Medical School Department of Global Health and Social Medicine. She is also actively working on public sector partnerships in Uganda through Massachusetts General Hospital. With Seed, she works in Tanzania, Malawi and Uganda.

Seed Global Health[edit]

Kerry has been active in global health for over a decade. In 2011, she started the non-profit Seed Global Health (formerly called Global Health Service Corps) which has partnered with the Peace Corps to develop the Global Health Service Partnership. The Partnership sends health professionals abroad to work as medical and nursing educators and to help build capacity. The medical and nursing educators serve as force multipliers to create new generations of skilled professionals who can help strengthen health systems. Seed Global Health also provides loan repayment and other stipends to help support the program's mission. In 2010 she wrote an op-ed on this idea for the New York Times.[2] The program also partners with academic medical centers such as the Massachusetts General Hospital Center for Global Health.

Political activity[edit]

Kerry took a leave from her medical studies in order to campaign for her father's presidential bid in 2004, even introducing him at the 2004 Democratic National Convention. She campaigned by herself and with her sister, mostly focusing on campaign stops at university campuses. She made speeches in support of her father and focused on health care issues and tuition costs for students, two Democratic campaign issues she felt personally attached to.[3] She also appeared on the MTV Music Video Awards show in Miami where she joined George W. Bush's daughters Barbara and Jenna to encourage voting. Through her work with her father and her public health policy education, she has not ruled out running for political office in the future.[4]

She is a former member of the Board of Directors of Young Democrats of America. She is a term member to the Council on Foreign Relations.


  1. ^
  2. ^ Kerry, Vanessa Bradford (February 13, 2010). [ "And One for Doctors, Too". New York Times. Retrieved 11 December 2012.
  3. ^ McDonald, Riley. The Cavalier Daily News. Vanessa Kerry makes U.Va. campaign stop. 3 September 2004. (Accessed 13 May 2007).
  4. ^ Ms. Magazine editors. Ms. "Daughterhood Is Powerful: An Interview with Vanessa Kerry". Fall 2004. (Accessed 13 May 2007)

External links[edit]

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