Kasia Malinowska-Sempruch directs the Open Society Global Drug Policy Program, which provides grants to initiatives advocating an evidence-based approach to drug policy worldwide and encourages greater scrutiny of current international drug policy. A major contributor to the debate about the interplay of drug use and HIV, she previously headed the Open Society International Harm Reduction Development program, introducing and significantly scaling up access to needle exchange and substitution treatment across Eastern Europe and Central Asia.
Before joining Open Society, Malinowska-Sempruch worked for the United Nations Development Program in New York and then Warsaw, developing training programs for medical, prison and police workers and managing outreach programs on harm reduction, women’s health, HIV, medical ethics, and drug use. She began her HIV work in 1991 as an HIV educator at Mt. Sinai Hospital and at the American Red Cross in Philadelphia.
Malinowska-Sempruch co-authored Poland’s first National AIDS program and has helped formulate policy at the Global Fund, the WHO, the Millennium Challenge, and other bodies through her membership of various expert boards and committees. She has authored or co-authored dozens of policy and scientific papers for scientific journals and book chapters including “Global HIV/AIDS Medicine” and “Public Health and Human Rights, Evidence-Based Approaches,” as well as articles for the international press, appearing in the European Voice and the International Herald Tribune. She also speaks regularly at international events.
She received the Norman E. Zinberg Award for Achievement in the Field of Medicine in 2007 and the Gold Order Medal from the Polish Ministry of Justice in 2000 for work on HIV in prisons.
Malinowska-Sempruch holds a master’s degree in social work from the University of Pennsylvania and is now a doctoral candidate at Columbia University’s School of Public Health in New York.