CEO, World Obesity Federation
Johanna Ralston has worked in global NCDs and their risk factors for over two decades. She has served as CEO of World Obesity Federation since 2017, focusing on changing the narrative and elevating obesity on the global agenda. From 2011-2016 Johanna served as CEO of World Heart Federation, the main CVD organization in official relations with WHO and a founder of NCD Alliance. Johanna’s work included mobilizing the CVD community around the NCD agenda and WHO initiatives including the Global Action Plan on NCDs 2013-2020 and Global HEARTS, as well as a shared strategy to address rheumatic heart disease. Johanna also served as Vice Chair, steering group member and Interim Director of NCD Alliance during that period, and led the communications strategy for the 2011 UN HLM and strategic planning for the second business plan. From 1999 until 2011 Johanna was Vice President of Global Strategies at American Cancer Society, overseeing global advocacy and building the global capacity building program to strengthen community based cancer and tobacco control in LMICs. She is also a fellow at Geneva Centre for Security Policy, leading the course on global health security.
A dual citizen of Sweden and the US, Johanna is an alumna of Harvard Business School and studied public health at Johns Hopkins, after a first degree in literature. She serves on various committees and boards including Lung Cancer Alliance, the WEF Global Future of Health and Healthcare Council, and the WHO NCD Civil Society Working Group, the WHO Expert Advisory Panel on Surgical Care, and the WHO Bloomberg NCD Business Case Expert Group.
Innovation & Insights: Policy update and analysis: unpicking the new obesity strategy