Susan Brooks Becomes Co-Chair of the CSIS Commission on Strengthening America’s Health Security

WASHINGTON, July 13, 2021: CSIS senior vice president J. Stephen Morrison announced today that former senator Kelly Ayotte (R-NH), after serving as co-chair of the CSIS Commission on Strengthening America’s Health Security since April 2018, is stepping down from that role and will remain a close friend and active supporter of the commission. Former representative Susan Brooks (R-IN), who has been a member of the commission since its inception, has generously agreed to become commission co-chair, effective immediately. She will serve in that role with the commission’s other co-chair, Julie Gerberding, executive vice president and chief patient officer at Merck. The commission will continue its work through the end of 2022.

Former representative Brooks remarked: “I am thrilled to have the opportunity to co-chair the CSIS Commission on Strengthening America’s Health Security. The next year and a half will be a critically important period for American choices about its future health security. The commission will be an important voice in those historic deliberations.”

Asked to reflect on her experiences, former senator Ayotte stated: “I am immensely proud of what the commission has accomplished over the past three years. Before Covid-19 struck, it published a powerful, prescient study of the weaknesses in U.S. pandemic preparedness and what is required to be ready. Over the course of the pandemic, the commission has intensified its work, again with high quality and big impact, with the active backing of a diverse, bipartisan group of commissioners and expert advisors. Seldom do we see effective cooperation of this kind in Washington on such pressing, complex, sensitive matters that are so vitally important to all Americans. We are so fortunate that former representative Brooks has agreed to step forward at this moment as co-chair.”

For Dr. Gerberding, it is a moment of thanks and celebration: “I am personally deeply grateful for former senator Ayotte’s enduring commitment and support over the past three years. And I am so pleased to now welcome former representative Susan Brooks as co-chair of the commission.”

CSIS president and CEO John J. Hamre added: “Former representative Susan Brooks is so widely respected for her expertise and insistence upon pragmatic, bipartisan solutions, and a long-term strategic approach to protecting Americans’ health. She is the perfect person to help carry the commission’s work forward.”


The Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) is a bipartisan, nonprofit policy research organization dedicated to advancing practical ideas to address the world’s greatest challenges.