James E.K. Hildreth, Ph.D., M.D.

A photo of James Hildreth

Dr. Hildreth began his research on HIV and AIDS in 1986 and received NIH funding for almost two decades. He established the Center for AIDS Health Disparities Research Center at Meharry Medical College then went on to become president and CEO in 2015.

From 1989 to 2005, Dr. Hildreth served in several positions at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and was the first African American in the 125-year history of JHU’s School of Medicine to obtain full professorship with tenure in the basic sciences.

In 2020, Dr. Hildreth became a key government advisor. His background in virulent diseases and care for the underserved combined with his ability to break down the science of COVID-19 led Mayor John Cooper to tap him in March 2020 for the newly formed COVID-19 Task Force. In February, Dr. Hildreth was named to President Biden’s Health Equity Task Force to develop a national, organized effort to fight COVID-19 and bring balance and well-being to minority communities.

Dr. Hildreth has become a leading voice on efforts to alleviate minority health disparities and improve access to quality care. He has catapulted Meharry Medical College to the national stage as a prominent expert on COVID-19, the pandemic’s impact on minority communities and systemic oppression and established Meharry and its graduates as leaders in the fight for health equity.

Dr. Hildreth’s efforts over the last year have secured multiple partnerships for Meharry and attracted more than $87 million in gifts and partnerships, furthering the College’s mission to provide essential health care to those who would otherwise not have access.