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Jennifer Kolker, MPH

Jennifer Kolker

Clinical Professor of Health Management and Policy
Health Management and Policy
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MPH, Public Health Policy and Administration, University of Michigan School of Public Health
BA, English, Rutgers University


Jennifer Kolker, MPH, is a Clinical Professor in the Department of Health Management and Policy at the Drexel University Dornsife School of Public Health. From 2013 until 2023, she served as the School’s first Associate Dean for Public Health Practice and External Relations. She is also the co-lead of the Policy Core of Dornsife’s Urban Health Collaborative.

Prior to joining Drexel in 2004, Professor Kolker worked for the Philadelphia Department of Public Health and has over 25 years of experience working in urban public health in Philadelphia, government, the non-profit sector, and academia. Professor Kolker’s work is focused on building bridges between academic public health and public health practice within the School’s mission of pursuing public health, human rights, and social justice. She works closely with external community, government, and health system partners. Her research and practice portfolio is comprised of numerous projects with local, regional, and national public health organizations and government agencies to assist in assessing need for public health and safety net service and public health workforce development, and translating public health research into practice.

Professor Kolker teaches courses on public policy and public health practice, and she advises and mentors masters and doctoral students. She serves as program director of the school's Executive MPH degree program.

Kolker holds a Master of Public Health degree in public health policy and administration from the University of Michigan School of Public Health.

Research Interests

  • Urban Health
  • Public Health Practice
  • Public Health Policy
  • Public Health Workforce Development and Infrastructure


Schnake-Mahl AS, O'Leary G, Mullachery PH, Skinner A, Kolker J, Diez Roux AV, Raifman JR, Bilal U. Higher COVID-19 Vaccination And Narrower Disparities In US Cities With Paid Sick Leave Compared To Those Without. Health Aff (Millwood). 2022 Nov;41(11):1565-1574. doi: 10.1377/hlthaff.2022.00779. PMID: 36343316; PMCID: PMC9913883.

Mullachery PH, Li R, Melly S, Kolker J, Barber S, Diez Roux AV, Bilal U. Inequities in spatial accessibility to COVID-19 testing in 30 large US cities. Soc Sci Med. 2022 Oct;310:115307. doi: 10.1016/j.socscimed.2022.115307. Epub 2022 Aug 27. PMID: 36049353; PMCID: PMC9420026.

Bilal U, Mullachery PH, Schnake-Mahl A, Rollins H, McCulley E, Kolker J, Barber S, Diez Roux AV. Heterogeneity in Spatial Inequities in COVID-19 Vaccination Across 16 Large US Cities. Am J Epidemiol. 2022 Aug 22;191(9):1546-1556. doi: 10.1093/aje/kwac076. PMID: 35452081; PMCID: PMC9047229.

Bilal U, McCulley E, Li R, Rollins H, Schnake-Mahl A, Mullachery PH, Vaidya V, Koh C, Dureja K, Sharaf A, Furukawa A, Juliano C, Barber S, Kolker J, Diez Roux AV. Tracking COVID-19 Inequities Across Jurisdictions Represented in the Big Cities Health Coalition (BCHC): The COVID-19 Health Inequities in BCHC Cities Dashboard. Am J Public Health. 2022 Jun;112(6):904-912. doi: 10.2105/AJPH.2021.306708. Epub 2022 Apr 14. PMID: 35420892; PMCID: PMC9137009.

Schnake-Mahl AS, O'Leary G, Mullachery PH, Vaidya V, Connor G, Rollins H, Kolker J, Diez Roux AV, Bilal U. The Impact of Keeping Indoor Dining Closed on COVID-19 Rates Among Large US Cities: A Quasi-Experimental Design. Epidemiology. 2022 Mar 1;33(2):200-208. doi: 10.1097/EDE.0000000000001444. PMID: 34799474; PMCID: PMC8810740.

O'Leary G, Schnake-Mahl AS, Vaidya V, Bilal U, Kolker J. Indoor Dining and In-Person Learning: A Comparison of 30 US Cities. Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2021 Oct 19;18(20):10967. doi: 10.3390/ijerph182010967. PMID: 34682712; PMCID: PMC8535569.

Purtle J, Peters R, Kolker J, Diez Roux AV. Uses of Population Health Rankings in Local Policy Contexts: A Multisite Case Study. Med Care Res Rev. 2019 Aug;76(4):478-496. doi: 10.1177/1077558717726115. Epub 2017 Aug 17. PMID: 29148353.

Purtle J, Henson RM, Carroll-Scott A, Kolker J, Joshi R, Diez Roux AV. Understanding Policymakers' Opinions Can Help Foster Policy Change. Am J Public Health. 2018 Sep;108(9):e6. doi: 10.2105/AJPH.2018.304617. PMID: 30089014; PMCID: PMC6085005.

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