President’s Corner

Since 2013, Dr. Umair A. Shah has served as Executive Director and Local Health Authority for Harris County Public Health (HCPH) – the county public health agency for the nation’s 3rd largest county with 4.5 million people.   

Dr. Shah earned his BA (philosophy) from Vanderbilt University; his MD from the University of Toledo Health Science Center; and completed an Internal Medicine Residency, Primary Care/General Medicine Fellowship, and MPH (management), at the University of Texas Health Science Center. He also completed an international health policy internship at World Health Organization headquarters in Switzerland.

Upon completing training, Dr. Shah began a distinguished career as an emergency department physician at Houston’s Michael E. DeBakey VA Medical Center. He started his public health work as Chief Medical Officer at Galveston County’s Health District before joining HCPH to oversee its clinical health system and infectious disease portfolio. Under his leadership, HCPH has won numerous national awards including as a recipient of the Local Health Department of the Year award from the National Association of County and City Health Officials (NACCHO) in 2016.

Dr. Shah currently holds numerous leadership positions with respected entities like the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine; U.S. Centers for Disease Control & Prevention; Trust for America’s Health; Network for Public Health Law; and Texas Medical Association. He is currently President of NACCHO (and is TACCHO Immediate Past President) representing the nation’s 3,000 health departments.

Over his career, Dr. Shah has been a clinician, an innovator, an educator, and a leader in public health. 

Dr. Shah is interviewed in this Houston Fox TV affiliate story about the flu rate in Harris County, TX.

Dr. Shah is featured in this segment on the continued dangers for Houston area residents one month after Hurricane Harvey.

Dr. Shah and staff are featured in this September 15 news story.

Listen to Dr. Shah's National Public Radio interview on the effects of Hurricane Harvey in Harris County and read the attached article.

Listen to Dr. Shah's podcast with NACCHO's Ian Goldstein.

Dr. Shah is featured in this WABC-TV news story.

Dr. Shah is featured in this Faces of Public Health video.

Dr. Shah is quoted in this Modern Healthcare story about the resignation of CDC Director Dr. Brenda Fitzgerald.

Dr. Shah is quoted in this Huffington Post story about about Nancy Reed, 77, the 36th Harvey-related death in Harris County, TX.

Dr. Shah is featured in this Huffington Post article.

Read Dr. Shah's August 28, 2017, New York Times interview on Hurricane Harvey.

Read Dr. Shah's Q&A titled "New NACCHO President on Zika, equity & the ACA: 'We can't do this alone.  We have to do it together.'

Read Houston Style Magazine's article, "Harris County Public Health Executive Elected to Lead National Health Organization Priorities Include Health Equity and Disease Prevention."

Dr. Shah was interview by the New York Times for this story on year two of Zika.

Dr. Shah was interviewed for this Houston article.

Dr. Shah was interviewed in this NACo Country News story.

Dr. Shah is quoted in this Vox article.

Dr. Shah is interviewed by the Community Impact Newspaper

Dr. Shah is quoted in this Houston Press article.

Dr. Shah is quoted in this Newsmax article on Zika.