Office of Research on Women's Health (ORWH)
Paula Johnson, M.D., M.P.H.
Dr. Paula A. Johnson is the Executive Director of the Connors Center for Women's Health and Gender Biology and Chief of the Division of Women's Health at Brigham and Women's Hospital, and Associate Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School. The Connors Center seeks to transform the health of women through discovering how disease is expressed differently in women and men as well as integrating leading-edge research about women's health into the delivery of care. The Center is unique in its innovative and interdisciplinary approach to women’s health which influences health policy, addresses the health of women globally, and trains the next generation of leadership in women’s health.
Dr. Johnson founded the Gretchen S. and Edward A. Fish Center for Women’s Health, an interdisciplinary practice with 12 specialties that also serves as a base of research to improve both the health and health care for women. Dr. Johnson, an internationally recognized cardiologist, founded the Center for Cardiovascular Disease in Women at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in 2000. The center develops new sex- and gender-specific strategies for prevention, treatment and rehabilitation of coronary heart disease in women.
A graduate of Harvard and Radcliffe Colleges, Dr. Johnson received her MD and MPH degrees from Harvard. She completed her residency in Internal Medicine at Brigham and Women's Hospital as well as a fellowship in cardiovascular disease. She was the first African American to serve as Chief Medical Resident at Brigham and Women's Hospital. Dr. Johnson is the recipient of many awards recognizing her contributions in women's health and is featured as a national leader in medicine by the National Library of Medicine. Dr. Johnson was featured in the Boston Business Journal’s 2008 Champions in Healthcare issue as one of fourteen pioneering leaders in healthcare in Massachusetts.
In 2007, Dr. Johnson was appointed by Mayor Thomas M. Menino to become a Commissioner of the Board of the Boston Public Health Commission, and later became its chairman. Dr. Johnson serves on the boards of several non-profit organizations including the Center for Reproductive Rights, the Greater Boston Division of the American Heart Association, and the Park School in Brookline, MA.
Dr. Johnson serves on the Board of Overseers at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, the Museum of Science in Boston, and WGBH, the largest public television station in the United States. She lives with her husband and two children in Brookline, MA.