Who Are We
The Metropolitan Washington Public Health Association (MWPHA) is dedicated to protecting personal, public, and environmental health in the Metropolitan Washington area. The Association is committed to:
- Protect and promote personal, public and environmental health.
- Study and attempt to resolve health problems.
- Meet and share knowledge and experience in order to achieve the organization’s goal.
- Provide leadership in public health by initiating and supporting voluntary and governmental action to meet health needs or to remedy health problems.
- Promote continuing educational opportunities for public health and allied workers to help them acquire new or broader knowledge and develop skills to provide more effective health services.
Vision, Mission, Goals
MWPHA is the leading public health membership association in the Metropolitan Washington region that brings together diverse sectors and constituencies to create equitable opportunities for the health of the region.
MWPHA is an American Public Health Association (APHA) affiliate and a regional association of individuals and organizations working to improve the health of the Metropolitan Washington region. We educate members, other professionals and the public in our region about scientific and professional public health standards, practices and policies to enable them to advocate for social justice and enhance their own public health practice, addressing the conditions necessary for healthy communities.
The core values of MWPHA are social justice, collaboration, social and cultural competence, empowerment, health care as a right, member satisfaction, responsiveness, flexibility to capitalize on opportunities and respect for diversity of opinion.
Erin Buchanan - President
Erin Buchanan works at the American Academy of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery as a Senior Manager of quality and performance measurement. She obtained her MPH from GWU in 2014 and her BS in health science in 2012 from Towson University. Erin has always had a passion for health and has pursued that not only in her career but in her free time as well. When she was younger, she committed time to volunteering with the health department and health related health organizations in Harford County, Maryland.
Antoinette Silva - Vice President
Antoinette Silva, MSA is a technical assistance project management expert with over six years’ experience in information resource management. A native from Saginaw, Michigan, Antoinette has education in Nutrition and Journalism however, focused and graduated from Central Michigan University (CMU) and has two degrees, i.e. Bachelor of Science in Community Health Education and Master of Science Administration in Information Resource Management from CMU. Antoinette has integrative skills primarily in operations, market research, and technical writing services. She currently works at the Society for Public Health Education as a Project Manager and has worked for the National Association for Community Health Centers, Pulmonary Hypertension Association, Central Michigan University, WIC/SNAP programs in Michigan and Michigan Area Health Education Centers. She also is certified in product management through General Assembly and is certified in 200-HR Anusara Yoga. Antoinette is a keynote speaker on topics such as leadership and motivation geared towards nonprofit organizational culture. She has been committed to working with health centers, non-profit associations, and federal agencies linked with missions and objectives which want to improve health conditions for underserved populations. Antoinette also serves in the development of continuing education programs as large as 1,000+ attended conferences, webinars, summits, and self-paced online courses.
Nana Tiwaa - Secretary
Nana Tiwaa is a health professional who focuses on Quality Improvement. She currently is a Program Manager at Children’s National Hospital providing program analysis for the Division of Emergency Medicine. As a problem solver, she has been able to institute innovative ways to enhance the workflow of staff in their usage of clinical decision support. Nana Tiwaa’s public health interests are Health Policy/Management and Maternal and Child Heath. She obtained her undergraduate degree in Health Administration with a concentration in Health Systems Management at George Mason University, and is currently pursuing her Masters in Patient Safety and Healthcare Quality, with a certificate in Clinical Informatics at Johns Hopkins University. As a member of the governing council for the MWPHA, she hopes to bring more collaboration and partnerships in the DC metro area to improve policies that impact the community and provide strategic solutions for the overall goal of improving health.
Jateya C. Jones - Immediate Past President
Jateya C. Jones is an Immunization Healthcare Specialist with the Defense Health Agency Immunization Healthcare Branch (DHA-IHB) Education Division. She is responsible for developing educational programs and materials; providing evidence based solutions that improve immunization healthcare through policy implementation guidance, strategic communication, education, and training worldwide. In support of Force Health Protection and Readiness, and the Military Health System (MHS), Jateya has educated thousands of service members, beneficiaries, federal and contract employees via live and virtual mediums on vaccine preventable diseases. She is passionate about developing and promoting programs and services that enhance immunization effectiveness, safety, and acceptability. Prior to her work with DHA-IHB, Jateya was an integral part in the establishment of the Army Human Research Protection Office (AHRPO). Here, she gained extensive experience in regulatory oversight and ethical and regulatory issues in biomedical, behavioral, and social research. With the desire to effectively educate and improve the health of vulnerable populations, it was at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences Center for Health Disparities (USUHSCHD) Community Outreach division, where she began her military health career.
Jateya, a native of Athens, Georgia attended Mercer University School of Engineering in Macon, Georgia where she obtained a Bachelor of Science in Technical Communication with a minor in Business Administration. Jateya continued her educational pursuit at Armstrong State University in Savannah, Georgia where she attained a Master of Public Health with an emphasis in Community Health Education. Jateya is a Certified Health Education Specialist (CHES); a member of The American Public Health Association, The Society For Public Health Education, Project Management Institute, and an active member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. In her spare time, Jateya enjoys event planning, traveling, motivational speaking, participating in intramural flag football, and spending time with family and friends.
Derica Smith - Governing Council Member
Derica Smith currently works as a Health Care Management Consultant with The Lewin Group. She has more than 8 years of public health experience that primarily focuses on state and federal health policy, programs, and laws/regulations. She previously worked in policy and program/project management roles for a nonprofit, a state Medicaid agency, and a health insurance organization. Derica’s professional areas of interest include women’s/maternal health, infant/child health, and state and federally funded programs such as Medicaid. She is specifically interested in addressing the increase rates of maternal mortality among African American women in the U.S.
Derica received a Bachelor of Science in Health Science and a Master of Public Health in Health Policy and Management from Florida A&M University. In her free time, she enjoys cooking, traveling, working out, and interior design.
Ans Irfan – Governing Council Member
Ans Irfan, MD, MPH is a public health practitioner with over a decade of experience and a faculty member at the Milken Institute School of Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health Department, George Washington University. He is also a Health Policy Research Scholar, a prestigious national public health policy leadership program with the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. Some of the projects he is currently directing or collaborating with include worker fatalities prevention, traffic wardens and climate adaptation in Pakistan, evaluating the effectiveness of physicians’ training on climate change and health, and occupational health equity within the Sustainable Development Goals framework. His previous interdisciplinary scholarly contributions have focused on a broad range of topics including climate change and science policy, climate change and air pollution, climate change and mental health, climate adaptation, national and international environmental policy, sociocultural aspects of global health and sanitation, gentrification, occupational health equity, and uranium miners’ health – to name a few.
Jasmine Berry – Governing Council Member
Jasmine Berry currently serves as communications director for the Association of Immunization Managers. She has 8+ years of experience in promoting health through strategic communications and community outreach. In past roles, she has supported communication projects for nonprofits as well as federal health agencies, including the National Institute on Minority Health Disparities, the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, and the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.
Jasmine received a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism from Hampton University and a Master of Public Health in Health Education and Communication from the Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine. She is a Certified Health Education Specialist and a birth doula. In her free time, she enjoys volunteering, practicing yoga, playing tennis, traveling, and spending time outdoors. She is passionate about addressing maternal health disparities and improving provider-patient communication.
Tanchica West – Governing Council Member
Tanchica L. West, MPH, MA is a Senior Advisor the Health Resources and Services Administration HIV/AIDS Bureau (HAB) in the Division of Policy and Data (HRSA). She has over 15 years of experience in national and international public health and health policy. In 2015, she was selected to lead HRSA HAB coordination of the national plan to end the HIV epidemic. Currently, Ms. West is heading the development of review criteria and a scoring rubric to identify, catalogue, and disseminate best practice strategies and interventions implemented by grant recipients. Ms. West’s expertise spans medical anthropology, policy development, and global health systems strengthening. She holds a Master of Arts in Applied Anthropology (cultural anthropology) and Master of Public Health (health management and policy) from The University of Memphis and Saint Louis University, respectively. She is the awardee of three prestigious fellowships: Winston Health Policy Fellow (2008); Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services Leadership Fellow (2014); and Health Resources and Services Administration Senior Leadership Fellow (2018). She received HRSA 2017 and 2019 Honor Awards respectively in Outstanding Performance for Group, and serves on Saint Louis University College of Public Health Practice External Advisory Group.
Ms. West further has a proven track record developing and analyzing complex legislative matters in state and federal environments to maximize the benefit of health care reform. Ms. West earned an honorable mention in the United States Congressional Record for helping to reauthorize challenging bi-partisan legislation to improve healthcare for Native Americans, and leading bi-partisan efforts to reauthorize the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief as a legislative fellow with the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee led by Chairman Edward Kennedy. She is the first staffer to develop and implement a citywide strategic plan for youth sexual health in the District of Columbia legislature. Tanchica has a passion for developing and implementing critical policy and public health initiatives so that every individual, family, and community can enjoy and benefit from good or improved health.