Alumna Desiree Saab to Speak at 2019 Commencement Ceremony

Desiree Saab, MPH, PhDThe Department of Sociology is delighted to announce that alumna Desiree Saab, MPH, PhD (CAS ’81) will serve as the 2019 Sociology Commencement Ceremony speaker.

Desiree Saab is a health care administrator and educator, who has worked in urban health care and educational systems for over thirty years. A significant part of her professional life has been spent addressing quality of care issues at municipal, private and voluntary health care facilities. She has an established record of professional achievement in the areas of regulatory compliance, risk management, performance improvement, grant management and advocacy.  Currently Dr. Saab is the Director of Newark Beth Israel Medical Center’s School Based Youth Services Program and Student Advancement Center. In this capacity, she provides vision and leadership in shaping and expanding the social network and academic experiences of Newark youth. She has served as an adjunct professor at Essex County College and Seton Hall University as well as guest lecturer at Rutgers University.

Dr. Saab received a Bachelors degree in Sociology from Boston University, Masters of Science in Public Health from Meharry Medical College and Doctoral degree in Urban Systems from the Joint PhD Program at Rutgers University and the New Jersey Institute of Technology. Her doctoral research investigated factors related to the Black-White academic achievement gap in racially diverse suburban school districts.

In addition, she is actively involved in civic and community affairs. She is a co-founder of the West Orange African Heritage Association. She was the first African-American resident to serve on the West Orange Board of Education. She served as a trustee of the West Orange Public Library, where she held the offices of secretary and president. In 2014, Dr. Saab received the New Jersey BIZ Healthcare Educational Hero award.