Hesitancy, Equity, and Transparency: In Conversation with Pastor and Lawmaker James D. Gailliard on the COVID-19 Vaccine Roll Out

June 17, 2021


About the Web Forum

In this web forum, Dr. Mary Pittman, president and CEO of the Public Health Institute, and Pastor James D. Gailliard, a state representative in the North Carolina Assembly, reflect upon efforts to achieve equitable distribution of COVID-19 vaccines and explore how faith-based organizations and state policy interventions work toward this goal in North Carolina.

They will address:

  • Issues related to building trust and trustworthiness between communities and those bringing vaccinations to the communities;
  • Successful strategies for reaching vaccine-hesitant communities;
  • How data can be used to ensure an equitable vaccine response;
  • How vaccine distribution strategies have evolved as supply increases; and
  • What we have learned about how to build stronger and lasting relationships between communities and public health in preparation for the next pandemic or natural disaster.

This one-hour discussion is a follow up to the May 6th web forum, Hesitancy, Equity, and Transparency: Rolling out the COVID-19 Vaccine, and is the fourth web forum in the series Equity in COVID-19: Bridging the Gap Between Public Health and Policy, brought to you by the Public Health Institute and IMPAQ, an affiliate of the American Institutes for Research. The series explores “in-the-news" topics, such as mental health, housing and health outcomes, and environmental health and climate change, and provides actionable insights to address equity issues by translating research into policy and practice.



Mary Pittman, DrPH
President and CEO, Public Health Institute

Mary A. Pittman, DrPH, is president and CEO of the Public Health Institute (PHI). A nationally recognized leader in improving community health, addressing health inequities among vulnerable people and promoting quality of care, Pittman assumed the reins at PHI in 2008, becoming the organization's second president and CEO since its founding in 1964. Her primary focus has been guiding the development of a strategic plan that builds on existing PHI program strengths to achieve greater impact on public policy and practice in public health.



Pastor. James D. Gailliard
Senior Pastor, Word Tabernacle Church; Representative, North Carolina General Assembly

James David Gailliard is the senior pastor of Word Tabernacle Church, a mega-church serving thousands of families in North Carolina and Virginia. The church is housed in a 110,000 square foot former Home Depot building now called The Impact Center, providing a place for programs, partnerships, and paradigms that enable people to progress. He is the founder of The Reach Center, Inc, which exists to equip individuals to secure gainful employment, prevent homelessness, and break the cycle of violence through education, skills development, and connections to community resources. In 2016, he was named the Distinguished Citizen by the Rocky Mount Chamber of Commerce and was re-elected in 2020 as representative for House District 25 (Nash County/Rocky Mount) in the North Carolina General Assembly. He is the first African American to hold this seat.  




View the recordings of IMPAQ’s recent webinars:

This webinar is brought to you by IMPAQ, in partnership with the Public Health Institute and Dialogue4Health.