Linda Vail is an accomplished public health leader, creative problem solver and strategic thinker. She has extensive experience in opioid use disorder (OUD) and medication assisted treatment (MAT), health equity and social justice, social determinants of health (SDOH), justice-involved healthcare, and maternal health. Her expertise includes policy development, workforce and leadership development, response to emerging threats, risk communication, community engagement project management, and state and national public health accreditation.
Prior to joining HMA, Linda was the health officer at the Ingham County Health Department (ICHD) in Michigan. In this role, she provided leadership for health department functions, a network of community health centers with FQHC status, and healthcare in the Ingham County Jail and Youth Center. Prior to ICHD, Linda served in local government for 12 years in Kalamazoo County where she became the first female health officer. Before her career in local county government, she spent nearly two decades in biomedical research, last working with Pfizer (formerly The Upjohn Company).
Linda was a board member and past president for the Michigan Association for Local Public Health, served for four years on the National Association of County and City Health Officials (NACCHO) Health Equity and Social Justice Committee, served on NACCHO’s Behavioral Health Workgroup, and previously served on the McLaren Greater Lansing Board of Trustees as well as several other local boards and committees. She was appointed by Governor Gretchen Whitmer to the Public Health Advisory Council as well as the Protect Michigan Commission. She holds faculty appointments in the Department of Family Medicine at Michigan State University’s College of Human Medicine as well as the Department of Family and Community Medicine at Western Michigan University’s Homer Stryker M.D. School of Medicine.
Linda’s leadership was a key component in organizing a multi-disciplinary task force to address the ongoing opioid epidemic. She spoke to local, state, and national audiences to raise awareness and discuss approaches for prevention, intervention and harm reduction related to opioid abuse and overdose. She provided leadership during several emergent public health issues including the largest inland oil spill in US history at the Kalamazoo River, West Nile Virus, H1N1, and Ebola. She most recently spearheaded the Ingham County response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Linda is active in the fitness community and has completed four marathons, four triathlons, several half marathons and 25K races. She is also an amateur photographer and enjoys traveling the world.
Linda has a Master of Public Administration with a public health concentration from Western Michigan University and a bachelor’s degree in microbiology from the University of Georgia.