The mission of the Leon Research Group is to prevent parasitic and enteric diseases (with a focus on Norovirus and Rotavirus) in vulnerable populations of the Americas.

We aim to:

  • Develop effective interventions through applied research
  • Influence policy
  • Mentor the next generation of public health professionals

We create real world solutions through ethical research that values individual dignity and engages the communities we serve.

  • To be a global leader in applying research data, results, interventions, and evaluations that lead to effective programs and policies that reduce the burden of enteric and parasitic diseases in the Americas.
  • To sustain a supportive and creative environment for our team by promoting high standards of quality, creating a culture of discipline, rewarding creativity, and investing resources in personal development.
  • To be a leader in developing innovative training and mentoring of global students and global public health professionals that propel them to become future leaders in global health.

We are only as strong as each member of our team. To this end, together we work on multiple professional development activities to strengthen the members of our team including:

  • Stipends for presentations at national and international conferences
  • Individual semester evaluations
  • Weekly project team meetings (e.g. Rotavirus, Neglected Tropical Diseases)
    • Rotating facilitation and recording of decisions
    • Joint meetings every two weeks with all project teams where the team’s work is shared and we include: 
      • Individual feedback on presentation style and delivery
      • Recognition of individual team accomplishments
      • Topics may range on specific projects to skills (e.g. effective oral or poster presentations, gender in public health research, etc.)
  • Opportunity to become a project team leader and manage a group of students towards a specific project goal 
    • Management includes hiring, facilitating, supervising, and evaluating students and staff
    • In some cases, budgeting is also required
  • Recommendations and references for future career development

All photos of individuals were deidentified or consents were obtained



Juan Leon, PhD MPH

MPH in Epidemiology, 2003, Northwestern University Medical School
PhD in Immunology, 2003, Northwestern University Medical School
BA, 1996, Dartmouth College

Dr. Leon, native of Peru, grew up in multiple countries in the Americas including Dominican Republic, Haiti, Brazil, and Bolivia. Through his parents' work for UNICEF, he observed first hand the inequities in health, education, and water of vulnerable populations especially in situations of violence, natural and political upheaval and human rights violations. Because of the many joys these countries gave to Dr. Leon, he committed to reciprocate by dedicating his life’s blessings and training to addressing these inequities in vulnerable populations in the Americas. Because of the community of individuals that propelled Dr. Leon in his life’s journey, he pledged to reciprocate by dedicating his work to training others to address global health inequities, inspire others’ potential, and thus become global health leaders.

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Contact Information

Juan Leon, PhD, MPH
Associate Professor
Claudia Nance Rollins Bldg-6049
Hubert Department of Global Health
Departments of Epidemiology and Environmental Health
Rollins School of Public Health
Division of Infectious Diseases – School of Medicine 
Mailstop 1518-002-7BB
1518 Clifton Rd NE
Emory University
Atlanta, GA 30322

Phone: (404) 727-7443