Jovonni Spinner

Senior Public Health Advisor

Office of Minority Health and Health Equity, Food and Drug Administration

Jovonni Spinner is a senior public health advisor for the Office of Minority Health and Health Equity at the Food & Drug Administration (FDA). She connects people, builds multi-sector collaborations, and creates innovative public health programming, while putting people first. She spearheads the FDA’s Clinical Trials Diversity Initiative to address the pressing problem of lack of diversity in clinical trials.

Jovonni creates culturally competent and inclusive public health programming, but also shines at telling public health stories, giving voice to those rarely heard, and sharing outcomes with key influencers to provide strategic direction for these programs. Her stellar work is now an example for minority engagement and has received several agency awards for innovation and cross-cutting collaboration.

Jovonni received a bachelor’s degree in biology from Virginia Commonwealth University, and a Master of Public Health from Emory University-Rollins School of Public Health. She is currently pursuing her Doctorate of Public Health from Morgan State University.

BOLD SOLUTION: Jovonni produced videos featuring diverse patients to share positive experiences participating in clinical trials and dispelling myths. She managed this novel project from conception, conducting a needs assessment, writing scripts, coordinating legal clearances, securing talent, overseeing production, developing educational materials, marketing, and creating standard operating procedures for future programming. Additionally, she created educational opportunities for staff to learn about strategies to diversify clinical trials through the Health Equity Lecture Series and developed health educational materials for consumers. The videos have been viewed more than 135,000 times and have reached more than 4 million people through social media. More than 80 stakeholders supported the campaign launch, hundreds of staff viewed the lectures, and thousands have downloaded the materials, which have become a template for federal agencies to improve consumer engagement and empower patients to dialogue with their healthcare providers.
I envision a society where all sectors are at the table -- like housing advocates, transportation departments, and grocery stores -- and they become a driver of healthy living. To have this new reality we need influencers to lead the discussions, conduct the research, and make the connections. We need to build systems where health as a priority is beneficial to all and people can make the best informed health decisions.