MD's honors

Michele Barry '74, a professor of medicine and public health at Yale University, was elected to the Institute of Medicine (IOM) in October 2002.

The Institute of Medicine was established in 1970 as a unit of the National Academy of Sciences and is concerned with the protection and advancement of the health professions and sciences, the promotion of research and development pertinent to health, and the improvement of healthcare. Current IOM active members elect new members from among candidates chosen for their major contributions to fields such as health and medicine. Barry is director of Yale's Office of International Health and current president of the American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene, the principal organization in the United States representing scientists, clinicians and others with interests in the prevention and control of tropical diseases through research and education.

Barry's eclectic career marries her political passions with medicine. "My main academic pursuit," she says, "has been in the field of clinical tropical diseases, as it gives me a chance to offer skills to underserved populations in developing countries as well as to refugee populations." She also has an interest in the care of the underinsured and disenfranchised in the United States and runs a volunteer mobile healthcare project to soup kitchens in inner city New Haven. Her research has focused on the ethics of doing western-like research overseas and the ethical dilemmas and health impact caused by multinationals, such as the pharmaceutical industry and the tobacco industry, overseas.

Barry majored in biology at Bryn Mawr and received her medical degree from Albert Einstein Medical College. In 1992 she received the Leah Lowenstein Award, selected by Yale medical students as a role model for the teaching of humane, egalitarian care. In 1993 she received the Elm-Ivy Award from the mayor of New Haven, given to a university member who has contributed to the increased understanding and cooperation between the community and Yale. In 2002 she received the Dr. Christopher Krogh Memorial Award from the International Health Medical Education Consortium for outstanding, dedicated leadership in healthcare for the underserved. She also recently received the Hill Development Corporation of New Haven Award, presented for dedicated service to the Hill community, an underserved community in New Haven.

Barry was the founding director of the Southeast Asian Refugee Clinic in New Haven. She co-directs the Yale/Johnson & Johnson Physician Scholars in International Health, which sends more than 70 physicians abroad to underserved areas in order to inspire a more global vision of healthcare ( She has served as a visiting professor at University of Zimbabwe, the University of Capetown in South Africa, Patan Hospital in Nepal, the University of Ghana and various other sites. She has been a health consultant for the Ford Foundation in China, India, Indonesia, Philippines and Vietnam, and currently serves on the SSRC-Cuba working group to fund collaborative projects during the Cuba embargo.

Barry is married to fellow IOM member Mark Cullen (Harvard '71, Yale MD '76), and they have two children, ZoŽ (Yale '06) and Esme, a junior in high school.

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