Jerry Franz

Jerry Franz

Jerry Franz


Associate Program Director, Center of Excellence in Maternal and Child Health

School: Milken Institute School of Public Health

Department: Prevention and Community Health


Email: Jerry Franz
Office Phone: 202-994-3617

Jerry Franz is a former Instructor and current guest lecturer in the Department of Prevention and Community Health. Additionally, he serves as Associate Program Director for the GW Center of Excellence in Maternal and Child Health, and an Academic Adviser for students in the Maternal and Child Health (MCH) Program. Jerry also serves as academic adviser for all students in the Public Health Communication & Marketing (PHCM) Program. Jerry has been affiliated with the Department of Prevention and Community Health in the Milken Institute School of Public Health since 2007.

Jerry is a career practitioner in health communications and social marketing. He has 40+ years of experience in the private and non-profit sectors, working for companies and organizations such as the American Diabetes Association (ADA), where for 11 years he was National Vice President of Communications, and Porter Novelli, one of the pioneering firms in the area of social marketing, where he directed a variety of programs for clients, including communication to support the rollout of the 2005 Dietary Guidelines for Americans.

While with the ADA, Jerry was the organization's representative for collaborations with the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), helping to build strong partnerships and alliances, such as with the 2001 rollout of the results of the landmark Diabetes Prevention Program, a large NIH randomized controlled clinical trial that proved prevention or delay of type 2 diabetes is possible. He was a member of ADA’s senior staff team that created a unique collaboration with the American Cancer Society and the American Heart Association, focused on primary prevention of cancer, diabetes, heart disease and stroke. Early in his career with Porter Novelli, Jerry worked on teams that developed and implemented the first social marketing/public health awareness campaigns for high blood pressure, high blood cholesterol, and breast cancer.

At the beginning of his career, Jerry was trained in focus group moderation and survey development and analysis for audience segmentation and program planning and implementation, and he has directed a variety of public awareness campaigns in a number of health-related areas. He is an expert in diabetes-related health and advocacy communications. Additionally, as a volunteer, Jerry has served as the host of an online video podcast series called "Health Matters at Work," which was offered by Community Health Charities. Previously, he also served as a member of the Operations Committee of the National Diabetes Education Program (NDEP), a joint program of the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases of the National Institutes of Health, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. In 2019, Jerry presented at the Ameircan Public Health Association's national conference on a partnership program that supports the federal Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion's Healthy People program.

In 2010, Jerry received an Excellence in Teaching Award in graduate education from the School of Public Health, for his Introduction to Public Health Communication and Marketing course (PubH 6503).

Health Communication

Health Policy


Social Marketing

Strategic planning

B.A., Communications, University of Maryland, College Park, 1977 

6503:  Introduction to Public Health Communication and Marketing, Department of Prevention and Community Health

Dall TM, Yang W, Halder P, Pang B, Massoudi M, Wintfeld N, Semilla AP, Franz J, Hogan PF. The economic burden of elevated blood glucose levels in 2012: diagnosed and undiagnosed diabetes, gestational diabetes mellitus, and prediabetes. Diabetes Care. 2014 Dec;37(12):3172-9. doi: 10.2337/dc14-1036.


Dall TM, Yang W, Halder P, Franz J, Byrne E, Semilla AP, Chakrabarti R, Stuart B. Type 2 diabetes detection and management among insured adults. Popul Health Metr. 2016 Nov 21;14:43. eCollection 2016.