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Larson to Direct Programs at FSFW

Elsa Larson (Photo: FSFW)

Elsa Larson has assumed the role of director of programs at the Foundation for a Smoke-Free World.

In this new role, Larson will assist with strategic planning, review, analysis and implementation of grants. She will help develop requests for proposals, review applications, recommend funding and evaluate the progress of grant projects. Larson will also collaborate closely with the organization’s communications team to disseminate research findings and empower people who smoke to find cessation solutions that work for them.

“I’m excited to start the next chapter of my public health career, helping people live their longest and healthiest lives through empowered behavior change,” said Larson in a statement.

Larson brings two decades of experience in public health, behavior change and risk reduction. She began by working in HIV prevention through needle exchange programs and other community-based interventions. She led the HIV prevention program for the Rhode Island Department of Health before transitioning to the state’s tobacco control program. She later served as a senior regulatory scientist in evaluating the potential impact of reduced-risk nicotine products on adult smoking behavior and cessation.

She will report to Erik Augustson, vice president of programs.

“It’s a pleasure to bring Elsa on board. She will enhance our ability to accelerate rigorous science in support of ending the global smoking epidemic,” said Augustson.

Larson earned her M.A. and Ph.D. in behavioral science (health psychology) and an M.S. in pharmacoepidemiology from the University of Rhode Island.