John Lumpkin is senior vice president – Program. He is responsible for the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s efforts aimed at transforming health and health care systems, ensuring that everyone has access to stable and affordable health care coverage, building leadership, and engaging business toward building a Culture of Health in the United States. These efforts help to catalyze fundamental changes in health and health care systems so that health care, public health, and social services work together to better meet the interrelated physical, mental health, and social goals and needs of the people they serve. Before joining the Foundation in April 2003, Lumpkin served as director of the Illinois Department of Public Health for 12 years. During his more than 17 years with the department, he served as acting director and prior to that as associate director.
Lumpkin has participated directly in the health and health care system, first practicing emergency medicine and teaching medical students and residents at the University of Chicago and Northwestern University. He is the past chairman of the board of directors of the Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital, the major teaching hospital of Rutgers University in New Brunswick. After earning his MPH in 1985, he began caring for the more than 12 million people of Illinois as the first African-American director of the state public health agency with more than 1,300 employees in seven regional offices, three laboratories, and locations in Springfield and Chicago. He led improvements to programs dealing with women's and men's health, information and technology, emergency and bioterrorism preparedness, infectious disease prevention and control, immunization, local health department coverage, and the state's laboratory services.
Lumpkin is a member of the National Academy of Medicine and a fellow of the American Academy of Nursing, American College of Emergency Physicians, and American College of Medical Informatics. He has been chairman of the National Committee on Vital and Health Statistics, and served on the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Council on Maternal, Infant and Fetal Nutrition, the advisory committee to the director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the National Institute of Medicine's Committee on Assuring the Health of the Public in the 21st Century. He has served on the boards of directors for the Public Health Foundation and National Quality Forum, as president of the Illinois College of Emergency Physicians and the Society of Teachers of Emergency Medicine, and as speaker and board of directors’ member of the American College of Emergency Physicians. He has received the Arthur McCormack Excellence and Dedication in Public Health Award from the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials (ASTHO), the Jonas Salk Health Leadership Award, and the Leadership in Public Health Award from the Illinois Public Health Association. Lumpkin also has been the recipient of the Bill B. Smiley Award, Alan Donaldson Award, African American History Maker, and Public Health Worker of the Year of the Illinois Public Health Association. He is the author of numerous journal articles and book chapters.
Lumpkin earned his MD and BMS degrees from Northwestern University Medical School and his MPH from the University of Illinois School of Public Health. He was the first African-American trained in emergency medicine in the country after completing his residency at the University of Chicago. He has served on the faculty of the University of Chicago, Northwestern University, and University of Illinois at Chicago.
Lumpkin and his wife Mary S. Blanks, MD, a health care mediator, reside in the Princeton area. They have two adult children.