In both academic and policymaking settings, Professor Gray has long been committed to the effective use of science to inform public health choices, and emphasizes the importance of communicating those choices effectively to citizens, journalists, and lawmakers. Risk analysis, including the tradeoffs that must be made when risks exist on both sides of a decision, has been a core component of that work.
Prior to joining the Milken Institute School of Public Health in 2010, Professor Gray served as assistant administrator for the EPA's Office of Research and Development and as the agency science advisor, promoting scientific excellence in EPA research, advocating for the continuing evolution of the agency's approach to analysis, and encouraging programs that provide academic research to support EPA's mission. His areas of focus included nanotechnology, ecosystem research, the influence of toxicology advances on testing and risk assessment, and sustainability.
From 2001 to 2005, Professor Gray was executive director of the Harvard Center for Risk Analysis, and a member of the faculty at the Harvard School of Public Health. In addition to teaching, he applied the tools of risk analysis to public health problems ranging from mad cow disease to pesticides in food to the risks and benefits of fish consumption.