Anusuya Chatterjee joins Heartland Forward as director of health research

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Focusing on economic implications for heartland businesses and talent; partnership with Whole Health Institute

Heartland Forward (HF) announced today that Anusuya Roy Chatterjee will join the nonprofit think and do tank as its director of health research. Chatterjee assumes the role on the growing research team led by Chief Research Officer Dave Shideler, and she will focus on the economic implications of health and wellness on heartland businesses and talent. As an economist, Chatterjee has led research efforts on chronic disease prevention and management, obesity, the economics of nutrition, investment in medical technologies and aging.

“It is a very competitive landscape to find someone like Anu and what she brings to the table,” said Ross DeVol, president and CEO of HF. “Anu and I had an opportunity to work together during my tenure at the Milken Institute, so I am aware of the caliber of her work. With her joining the team, we look forward to building out our focus on health and wellness and furthering our mission of economic renewal in the heartland.” 

Chatterjee co-authored several influential articles with DeVol on the economic consequences of unhealthy behaviors and making the economic case for investments in prevention. Forbes and the San Diego Union Tribune have published Chatterjee’s opinion articles and cited her as a field expert.

As part of her work with HF, Chatterjee will dedicate time to the Whole Health Institute (WHI), an organization founded by Alice Walton with a commitment to radically redesign the systems impacting our health and well-being. Her research will focus on current healthcare trends facing employers, insurers, governments and communities. This research will then be transferred into recommendations for policy actions at the state, regional and local levels.

“With Heartland Forward having a research and programmatic focus on health and wellness, it seemed like a natural tie for our teams to work together,” said James Marzolf, senior director for health sector finance and policy at WHI. “We look forward to collaborating with Anu and the team on research that will further our goal of creating a health model affordable and accessible to all.”

Chatterjee received a Ph.D. in economics from the State University of New York, Albany, a master’s from the Delhi School of Economics, and a bachelor’s from Jadavpur University in India.

About Heartland Forward

Heartland Forward’s mission is to improve economic performance in the center of the United States by advocating for fact-based solutions to foster job creation, knowledge-based and inclusive growth, and improved health outcomes. We conduct independent, data-driven research, pilot programs and convene thought leaders and policymakers to facilitate action-oriented discussion and impactful policy recommendations. Recently, it launched its inaugural program — an idea accelerator, in Oxford, Mississippi, and Tulsa, Oklahoma, as part of HF’s Community Growth Program and Toolkit. The CGPT is providing communities with the resources needed to help inspire new ideas, build upon existing programs, and connect with resources to achieve success. In addition, HF has launched an initiative called Connecting the Heartland to help spread the word to millions of people in the Heartland about available federal funding available to expand access to high-speed internet. It also hosts a flagship event in Bentonville, Arkansas, called Heartland Summit