LOUIS – Enbal Shacham, Ph.D., a professor of behavioral science and health education at Saint Louis University’s College for Public Health and Social Justice and acting director of strategic initiatives for the Taylor Geospatial Institute, was named to the Board of Directors for the United States Geospatial Intelligence Foundation (USGIF).
USGIF announced the election of six new board members on July 7.
Other new board members include Jackie Barbieri, founder and CEO of Whitespace; Deborah Davis, vice president and general manager with General Dynamics Information Technology; Jeff Dawley, director of Intelligence Programs at Esri; Stephen Gillotte, CEO of Reinventing Geospatial; and Ellen E. McCarthy, chairwoman and CEO of the Truth in Media Cooperative.
USGIF is the non-profit educational foundation dedicated to promoting the geospatial intelligence tradecraft and developing a stronger GEOINT Community with government, industry, academia, professional organizations, and individuals who develop and apply geospatial intelligence to address national security challenges.
USGIF was formed in 2003 after a group of leading geospatial authorities realized a need for a unified vision and approach to promoting geospatial intelligence.
“I am honored to serve on the board of USGIF, an organization that values academic partners, such as Saint Louis University, to further geospatial intelligence education,” Shacham said. “I look forward to representing SLU, Taylor Geospatial Institute, and the emerging geospatial ecosystem centered on St. Louis, as a USGIF board member.”
Shacham, who also serves as associate dean for research in CPHSJ, has worked at the intersection of health and geospatial research throughout her career. Her research has explored social and physical environmental factors and their impact on infectious and chronic diseases with the goal of leveraging technological advancements and data to improve health equity.
Earlier this year, Shacham and a TGI-led team of international investigators published research on how increasing populations and shifting climate regions impact food security and farming conditions in Kenya.
The research she conducts is committed to growing insightful methods to better know and provide real-time data, analyses, and interventions for improving health equity across communities both domestically and internationally.
In 2021, Shacham and co-investigator Flavio Esposito, Ph.D., an assistant professor of computer science at SLU, developed a COVID-19 app to monitor real-time symptoms and the location of those symptomatic individuals using geospatial technology.
Her 2017 research predicted U.S. Zika hotspots as the disease spread.
In addition to using geospatial technology to advance healthcare, Shacham has also looked at the impact of the technology. She served on SLU’s Geospatial Ethics Research and Practice Group as part of a multi-disciplinary team scrutinizing geospatial technologies and practices for their ethical quality, in a manner consistent with SLU’s commitment to justice and the common good.
Shacham earned a doctorate in health behavior from Indiana University, an M.P.E. from Washington University in St. Louis, and an M.Ed. in health promotion and behavior from the University of Georgia. She earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Rutgers University.
She also serves on the St. Louis City Board of Health and Hospitals.
About Taylor Geospatial Institute
The TGI consortium includes Saint Louis University, the Donald Danforth Plant Science Center, Harris-Stowe State University, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, Missouri University of Science & Technology, University of Missouri-Columbia, University of Missouri-St. Louis, and Washington University in St. Louis. Collectively, these institutions encompass more than 5,000 faculty and 100,000 students.
TGI aims to advance geospatial science through multi-institutional, interdisciplinary collaborations to create innovative, real-world solutions to grand societal challenges. It supports a collaborative research and training environment and while shaping the future of geospatial science in the U.S. For more information, visit taylorgeospatial.org.
About Saint Louis University
Founded in 1818, Saint Louis University is one of the nation’s oldest and most prestigious Catholic institutions. Rooted in Jesuit values and its pioneering history as the first university west of the Mississippi River, SLU offers more than 13,500 students a rigorous, transformative education of the whole person. At the core of the University’s diverse community of scholars is SLU’s service-focused mission, which challenges and prepares students to make the world a better, more just place. For more information, visit slu.edu.