About Region 2 Training

We are pleased to offer a comprehensive collection of competency-based public health trainings. Our training programs are free, high-quality, and interactive — designed to fully engage learners and impart needed knowledge and skills for the public health workforce. All trainings correspond with competencies from the 2014 Council on Linkages 8 Domains of Core Competencies for Public Health Professionals.

Subject Matter Experts
To identify existing and develop new trainings, the Center partners with professionals of diverse backgrounds to provide content for online training programs.

Systems Thinking Subject Matter Expert, Helen de Pinho, MBBCh, FCCH, MBA
Helen de Pinho is an Assistant Professor at Columbia University, Mailman School of Public Health, and Associate Director of the Averting Maternal Death and Disability Program (AMDD) at Columbia University. Helen has a deep interest in systems thinking and the application of soft systems thinking to addressing complex public health problems.  She has spearheaded the introduction of an innovative approach to teaching systems thinking into the Columbia University Masters in Public Health (MPH) curriculum, and developed training modules on systems thinking for WHO.

In the field, she has collaborated with ICAP, to develop a health systems strengthening training program for senior US government officials, nationally and globally. Her research work focuses on health systems with particular emphasis on strengthening human resources for maternal survival in sub-Saharan Africa.  Helen has also applied systems thinking group model building techniques to research health systems resilience in post-conflict and conflict settings, and to explore implementation practices in both domestic and global health programs.  Prior to joining Columbia University, Helen was a policy advisor to the United Nations Development Programme on the UN Millennium Project, and a consultant on issues related to gender and health sector reform. In South Africa, she was on the faculty at the University of Cape Town, directed the Oliver Tambo Fellowship Programme focused on capacity building for senior public health managers. She has worked as a health service manager and clinician in both rural and urban areas of South Africa.

MBA, University of Cape Town, South Africa
FCCH, Faculty of Public Health, Colleges of Medicine, South Africa
MBBCH, University of the Witwatersrand, South Africa
BS, University of KwaZulu -Natal, Durban, South Africa

Policy Engagement and Public Health Practice Subject Matter Expert, Sylvia Pirani, MPH, MS
Sylvia Pirani is a public health consultant focusing on public health practice at the state and local level.   She provides public health practice support to the Region 2 Public Health Training Center and has been an adjunct lecturer at the CUNY School of Public Health.  She is a co-author of the 4th edition of Essentials of Public Health, and the 7th edition of Public Health: What It Is and How It Works.  Prior to establishing her consulting business, Ms. Pirani worked for 24 years at the NYS Department of Health where she led the Office of Public Health Practice.  In this role she provided technical, administrative, fiscal and data support to New York’s 58 local health departments, oversaw efforts to make public health information useful and accessible to public health providers and consumers and led public health workforce initiatives. Ms. Pirani directed the development of the Prevention Agenda, New York’s state health improvement plan and the Department of Health’s successful application for public health accreditation in 2014. She has a Master in Public Health and a Master of Science in Urban Planning from Columbia University.  Prior to joining the NYS Department of Health in 1994, she spent eight years at the NYC Department of Health working on child health policy issues.

MPH, Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health
MS, Columbia University Graduate School of Architecture, Planning & Preservation
BS, Barnard College

Change Management Subject Matter Expert, Emil J Sadloch
Emil Sadloch has worked for over 25 years in learning, leadership development, and human resource development. Sadloch earlier served as account executive and training performance consultant for AchieveGlobal (ZengerMiller and Learning International). He was also director of personnel/training and vice president, human resources for Thomas Cook Financial Services (New York and Princeton). Sadloch has taught both credit and continuing education courses for Rutgers, Pennsylvania State, Rowan University, and Bucks County Community College. He is a past chairperson of the business advisory council for the Association for Advancement of Mental Health (AAMH) of Princeton, NJ. In his role with the Region 2 PHTC, Emil develops course content related to “managing change” and works with their instructional designer to create learning modules for front line and managerial and/or supervisory level public health workers.

MA, Montclair State University
BA, Washington and Lee University

Nicholas FreudenbergHealth Equity and Food Policy Subject Matter Expert, Nicholas Freudenberg
Nick Freudenbger is a Distinguished Professor of Public Health at the City University of New York School of Public Health and Director of the CUNY Urban Food Policy Institute. His research examines the impact of food and social policies on urban food environments and health inequalities. Freudenberg is also founder and director of Healthy CUNY, a university-wide initiative to improve the health of CUNY’s 274,000 students in order to support their academic success. His most recent book Lethal but Legal Corporations, Consumption and Protecting Public Health (Oxford, 2014 and 2016) examines how the business and political practices of the food, alcohol, tobacco, pharmaceutical, automobile and firearms industries contribute to the global rise of non-communicable diseases and injuries. For the past 35 years, he has worked to plan, implement and evaluate health policies and programs to improve living conditions and reduce health inequalities in low income communities in New York City and elsewhere. He has worked with the Region 2 PHTC for 4 years providing subject matter expertise for self-guided modules on strategies that public health professionals can use to advance health equity in the communities they serve.

DrPH, Columbia University
MPH, Columbia University

Effective Communication, Health Equity, and Community Engagement Subject Matter Expert, Renata Schiavo
A passionate advocate for health equity and a committed voice on the importance of addressing and removing barriers that prevent people from leading healthy and productive lives, Renata Schiavo is a senior lecturer at Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health, Department of Sociomedical Sciences, the founder and board president of Health Equity Initiative, a nonprofit membership organization, and a principal at Strategies for Equity and Communication Impact (SECI), a global consultancy. She is the Editor-in-Chief of the peer-reviewed Journal of Communication in Healthcare; Strategies, Media, and Engagement in Global Health (Taylor & Francis) and serves on the editorial board of Health Equity. For the past 25+ years, Renata has worked at the interface of health equity, global health, social and behavior change communication, health communication, community health and development, population health, health policy/advocacy, multisectoral partnerships, and community and patient engagement. Across projects, Renata has dedicated her efforts to improve health and social outcomes among populations that experience marginalization or other kinds of vulnerability and disadvantage, including communities of color, Indigenous and immigrant communities in the United States, and low-income groups, refugees, and patients from underserved areas in global settings.  She has worked in the United States and several countries in Europe, Latin America, Africa, and Central Asia. As an advocate, researcher, and practitioner, Renata is interested in community- and system-driven multisectoral models, partnerships, and interventions to address health, equity, and social issues, and to build social support for improved health and social outcomes. She has experience in 20+ health, medical, and human rights areas and has designed and led numerous consensus-driven processes and cross-sectoral interventions.  Her capacity building and training experience include participants from 450+ organizations. She is the author of Health Communication: From Theory to Practice (San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, an imprint of Wiley), now in its second edition. She is currently working on a contributed volume on Health Equity: Strategies for Action (Wiley, 2023). Renata’s diverse background include past positions at other academic institutions, and in the corporate and nonprofit sectors. She has been serving as a subject matter expert at the Region 2 Public Health Training Center (PHTC) since late 2018.

PhD, University of Naples
MA, New York University
CCL, University of California Santa Barbara

Content Areas
From 2014 to 2018, the Region 2 PHTC was funded to provide trainings in the content area of Health Disparities, Health Equity, and Social Determinants of Health. Currently, the Region 2 PHTC is funded to provide trainings in eleven categories, including:

  • Systems Thinking
  • Change Management
  • Persuasive Communication
  • Data Analytics
  • Problem Solving
  • Diversity and Inclusion
  • Resource Management
  • Policy Engagement
  • Opioid Epidemic
  • Childhood Obesity
  • Mental Health

**Any component of a training developed by the Region 2 Public Health Training Center may be reproduced or adapted without prior permission from the Region 2 Public Health Training Center, provided that 1) the Region 2 Public Health Training Center is acknowledged and 2) the material is made available free of charge. Acknowledgement language: “This has been adapted from a training developed by the Region 2 Public Health Training Center (UB6HP31685), through funding from the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), an operating division of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Its contents are solely the responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official views of the  Health Resources and Services Administration or the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services”

Region 2 Public Health Training Center