Amita N. Vyas, PhD, MHS, is a tenured Professor at the George Washington University (GW) School of Public Health and Co-Founder of the Global India Fund. In 2014, Dr. Vyas joined Girl Rising and Co-Produced the Girl Rising India film and campaign alongside Priyanka Chopra and Freida Pinto, releasing a film on national television and launching media campaigns and grassroots-level interventions.
At the age of 20, Amita journeyed to Calcutta, India to work alongside Mother Teresa in the Missionaries of Charity. In one eye-opening summer, she was immersed in the relationship between health, education, and social inequities affecting vulnerable populations. From that extraordinary experience, inspired by a simple desire to serve those in need, she decided to pursue a career in public health. This early experience working alongside suffering and devastation continues to play a role in her teaching, scholarship, practice, and service to communities, and it is through this lens of empathy that she has led efforts to address the health, education, and well-being of women, children, and families locally, nationally, and globally.
Dr. Vyas earned her Masters in Demography at the Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health and then continued her studies at Johns Hopkins earning her doctorate in Population and Family Health Sciences, receiving awards for outstanding academic achievement. She is the Director for the GW Center of Excellence in Maternal & Child Health Masters, and mentors and teaches dozens of MPH students each year. Dr. Vyas’ research has primarily focused on the health and well-being of adolescent girls and women, and she has led countless large scale intervention and research studies in the globally. Dr. Vyas is the recipient of several awards including the George Washington University Bender Teaching Award; the 2013 National Delta-Omega Honor Society Award for Innovative Curriculum; and the 2019 Student Supervisor of the Year Award for universities in the Northeast; and was the Editor-in-Chief of the top ranked journal Women’s Health Issues,
In 2007, Dr. Vyas founded the Global India Fund, a non-profit organization committed to giving people around the world an opportunity to make a difference in India. The mission of Global India Fund is to inspire global philanthropy and service by supporting innovative game-changing non-profit organizations and programs. Dr. Vyas resides in Mclean Virginia with her husband and three teenage children (Saira 19, Shaan 17, and Neera 15). She is a champion for women, children, and families in the United States and globally.