Photo: Dale Robbins

Gerald Markowitz


Gerald Markowitz is a distinguished professor of history at John Jay College of Criminal Justice and at the Graduate Center, City University of New York. A public health historian, he is the author and editor of thirteen books. Markowitz’s most recent book, Lead Wars: The Politics of Science and the Fate of America’s Children, was co-authored with David Rosner. Lead Wars is an in-depth exploration of lead poisoning during the last half-century that examines how a number of ubiquitous, toxic chemicals continue to threaten our health and challenge the public health professionals who are trying to protect the public from harm.

Over the years, Professor Markowitz’ books and testimony have been used by law firms, cities, and states seeking damages from companies that perpetuate harmful occupational environments or manufacture hazardous consumer products without adequate disclosure. In his earlier books, Deadly Dust: Silicosis and the On-Going Struggle to Protect Workers’ Health, and Deceit and Denial: The Deadly Politics of Industrial Pollution, Markowitz and co-author, David Rosner, sifted through enormous volumes of primary source material to uncover industrial misuse of vinyl chloride, lead, and silica. In 2001, Professor Markowitz was featured in Bill Moyers’ investigative report, Trade Secrets.

Professor Markowitz has received numerous honors, including the Viseltear Prize from the American Public Health Association’s Medical Care Section in 2000; the “Outstanding Health, Safety, and Environmental Investigative Journalism” award from the American Industrial Hygiene Association, Social Concerns Committee in 2005; and the New York Committee on Occupational Safety and Health Award in 2006.

Gerald Markowitz holds a Ph.D. from the University of Wisconsin and a BA from Earlham College in Indiana.