Casanave Named to “40 Under 40 in Public Health”

Leah Casanave

Leah Casanave

Leah Casanave, the dynamic supervisor of the Douglas County Health Department’s STD Control Program, has been recognized as one of the inaugural 40 Under 40 in Public Health by the de Beaumont Foundation.

Casanave holds a bachelor’s degree from Creighton University and an MPH and DrPH from the University of Kentucky, in addition to a Global Health Certificate from the University of Kentucky. She joined the Douglas County Health Department three years ago.

She expanded the existing outreach testing beyond the original template and secured a NACCHO grant that allows local health departments to work with a local Federally Qualified Health Center to create an advisory group to provide information on PrEP in Omaha’s minority community. Casanave developed a take-home test pilot project with Metro Community College and worked to educate teachers and counselors on STD tests and prepared them to distribute take-home kits to students.

“Among the most exciting things we are doing is our team of disease investigators who locate the partners of people who test positive for STDs to get them treatment. Through the diligence of our staff we are able to have 98 percent of our cases treated,” she said. “The work is demanding and rewarding, but it is wonderful to see the difference my team is making. I am extremely honored to be named one of the 40 Under 40 by the de Beaumont Foundation.”

The 40 rising stars of public health were chosen for their fresh perspectives, creative problem-solving, and innovative health solutions in communities across the country. This new initiative is aimed at putting a face on public health and demonstrating the professional diversity in the discipline.

“Leah is a great young leader and the Douglas County Health Department is fortunate to have such an energetic and innovative program supervisor,” Douglas County Health Director Adi Pour said.

The de Beaumont Foundation creates and invests in bold solutions to build healthier communities. The Foundation advances policy, builds partnerships, and strengthens public health to create communities where people can achieve their best possible health.