President of Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina Foundation John R. Lumpkin Joins FFAR Board of Directors

WASHINGTON (September 30, 2019) – The Foundation for Food and Agriculture Research (FFAR) is excited to announce that John R. Lumpkin, President of Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina Foundation, is joining the Board of Directors.

“We are privileged to welcome Dr. Lumpkin to FFAR’s Board of Directors. His public health background is critical to connecting our work to consumers and the broader public health community,” noted FFAR Chairman of the Board and President of Mississippi State University Dr. Mark Keenum. “We look forward to incorporating Dr. Lumpkin’s unique insights on the nexus of agriculture, nutrition and health to ensure that our research benefits not just producers, but consumers as well.”

Before being appointed President of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina Foundation earlier this year, Lumpkin served as Senior Vice President of Programs for the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. Lumpkin also served in various capacities at the Illinois Department of Public Health for 17 years, including serving as Director under three different governors.

Lumpkin began his career in emergency medicine. He earned his MD and BMS degrees from Northwestern University Medical School and his MPH from the University of Illinois School of Public Health. He was the first African-American doctor trained in emergency medicine in the country after completing his residency at the University of Chicago. He then went on to serve on the faculty of the University of Chicago, Northwestern University, and University of Illinois at Chicago.

“I am both excited, and honored, by this appointment,” said Dr. Lumpkin.  “Access to healthy food is one of the most significant factors in health, and I welcome this opportunity to be engaged with an organization helping to shape our country’s approach to food and nutritional insecurity and that is identifying opportunities within the nation’s food system to measurably improve health.”

Lumpkin has had an impressive career in the health care system and his expertise encompasses emergency and bioterrorism preparedness, infectious disease prevention and control, immunization, supporting local health departments, reducing childhood obesity and more. Lumpkin’s impressive breadth of knowledge can help FFAR catalyze research that drives positive nutrition and health outcomes.

“We are honored to have Dr. Lumpkin, a nationally renowned leader in public health, join our Board of Directors,” said FFAR Executive Director Dr. Sally Rockey. “John’s extensive experience as a health practitioner, academic and government and foundation leader will be invaluable as we grow our portfolio with research at intersection of agriculture and health.”


About the Foundation for Food and Agriculture Research

The Foundation for Food and Agriculture Research, a 501 (c) (3) nonprofit organization established by bipartisan Congressional support in the 2014 Farm Bill, builds unique partnerships to support innovative and actionable science addressing today's food and agriculture challenges. FFAR leverages public and private resources to increase the scientific and technological research, innovation, and partnerships critical to enhancing sustainable production of nutritious food for a growing global population. The FFAR Board of Directors is chaired by Mississippi State University President Mark Keenum, Ph.D., and includes ex officio representation from the U.S. Department of Agriculture and National Science Foundation.

Connect: @FoundationFAR | @RockTalking
Contact: Sarah Goldberg, 202.624.0704,