IPPNW 2014-2017 Board of Directors


Daniel Bassey, MD Msc PHHP
IPPNW Co-President
Jos, Nigeria
Dr. Bassey joined IPPNW as a medical student, now a public health physician in the humanitarian aid sector, currently working on maternal and child health issues. He served as regional coordinator for IFMSA, project coordinator of One bullet Stories, regional vice president Africa, Initiator of ICAN Africa and also the recipient of the Ambassador of Peace Award. He is currently a board member of the Society of Welfare for mankind Nigerian affiliate, Aiming for Prevention working committee and also a board member of an NGO primarily dissuading violence against women. He has also collaborated with the World Health Organization’s Global Burden of Disease and Violence and Injury Prevention initiatives which focused on profiling the costs of small arms injuries to the health system in Nigeria. Dr.Bassey also believes that nuclear famine is a plausible threat that could effect the health and livelihood of everyone, including people in nuclear-weapons-free countries making its ban an urgent reality.

Vladimir Garkavenko, MD PhD MBA

IPPNW Co-President
Moscow, Russia
Dr. Vladimir Garkavenko joined IPPNW in the late 80s and took an active part in organizing student projects on both the national and international levels. Since the early 90s, he has been a member of the IPPNW-Russia Board of directors and contributed much in establishing dialogue with the Russian nuclear establishment, provided organizational support to IPPNW-Russia projects, and helped establish cooperative contacts with medical professionals in CIS countries.

Dr. Garkavenko was elected regional Vice President at the 17th IPPNW World Congress in Helsinki in 2006. In this role he hopes to encourage the active participation of individuals and build up and strengthen the network of IPPNW affiliates in the Russia/CIS region. He strongly believes that one of the key issues of IPPNW further development and ability to meet the present-day challenges is to attract and involve younger generation of medical professionals, and to develop and expand medical students' activities.

Ira Helfand, MD
IPPNW Co-President
Massachusetts, USA
Dr. Helfand is a co-founder and past president of Physicians for Social Responsibility (PSR), IPPNW's US affiliate. He has spoken widely on the medical effects of nuclear war in the United States, the former Soviet Union, India, Pakistan, and France, and is a co-author of the study "Accidental Nuclear War -- A Post-Cold War Assessment," which appeared in the New England Journal of Medicine in April, 1998 and of PSR's 2006 report, "The US and Nuclear Terrorism: Still Dangerously Unprepared". Dr. Helfand serves on the committee which oversees PSR's work for nuclear abolition and has a special interest in the danger of accidental war and the need to de-alert nuclear weapons. He is also the author of IPPNW's publication: "Nuclear Famine: Two Billion People at Risk—Global Impacts of Limited Nuclear War on Agriculture, Food Supplies, and Human Nutrition".

Tilman Ruff, MB, BS (Hons), FRACP, AM
IPPNW Co-President
Victoria, Australia
Tilman Ruff is an infectious diseases and public health physician. He is Associate Professor in the Nossal Institute for Global Health, University of Melbourne.

Dr. Ruff contributed to the development of travel medicine; worked on hepatitis B control, immunisation and maternal and child health in Indonesia and Pacific island countries; and documented the link between nuclear testing and outbreaks of ciguatera fish poisoning in the Pacific. He is Australian Red Cross international medical advisor and member of the WHO Western Pacific Expert Resource Panel on Hepatitis B Control through Immunization. In 2012, he was appointed a Member of the Order of Australia “for service to the promotion of peace as an advocate for the abolition of nuclear weapons, and to public health through the promotion of immunisation programs in the South-East Asia – Pacific region”.

Dr. Ruff has been a Co-President of IPPNW since 2012. He has been active in the Medical Association for Prevention of War (Australia) since 1982 and a past national President; and was the South-east Asia Pacific vice-president of IPPNW from 1989-93 and 2010-12. He was founding chair of the governing bodies of the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN) in Australia and internationally, and is a representative of IPPNW on the ICAN International Steering Group.


Regional Vice Presidents

Hellen Barsosio, BS (Hons), MD, DLSHTM, Msc (RSHR)
regional Vice President -- AFRICA
Kilifi, Kenya
Dr. Barsosio is a public health physician based in the Kenyan coast where she works as a researcher in maternal and perinatal health. She is dedicated to the empowerment of vulnerable communities, medical peace work addressing small arms and nuclear disarmament, and the mentorship of medical students to become responsible physicians who will make an impact in their respective communities. Currently Dr. Barsosio is the Deputy Chair of IPPNW's Board of Directors, and is also working on the Climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro for Peace (2015) project. The "K project" advocates for a uranium mining-free Africa continent, and a nuclear weapons-free world.

Angelika Claussen, MD
Regional Vice President -- EUROPE

Oscar Litwin, MD
Regional Vice President -- LATIN AMERICA

Dr. Litwin is a Maxillofacial surgeon who received his degree from the University of Buenos Aires in 1962. He was the co-founder of the Argentine Movement of IPPNW in 1983, and was a member of the organizing committee of the first Latin American Symposium for the Prevention of Nuclear War in 1985.

Mohamed Geneid, MD
Regional Vice President -- MIDDLE EAST


Richard Denton, MD
Regional Co-Vice President -- NORTH AMERICA
Montreal, Canada
Dr. Denton, a family physician, and a graduate of McMaster University in the 3rd class, '74, who joined Canadian Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War in the early '80's and was inspired by Dr. Helen Caldicott, Dr. Mary-Wynne Ashford, and Joanna Santa-Barbara. He attended his first IPPNW conference in Moscow in 1987 after serving on the board and active with the local chapter in Timiskaming in Northern Ontario. "I have been active in my community, becoming Mayor of Kirkland Lake in 1997 to 2000 and helping to prevent Toronto's garbage coming to the Adam's open pit iron ore mine, now a lake. I have been President of the Canadian Assoc. of Physicians for the Environment and Physicians for Global Survival (Canada's IPPNW affiliate). I bicycled with the medical students from Nagasaki to Hiroshima in 2012 (as well as 600 km from Kirkland Lake to Toronto, and from Budapest to Krakow). I live on a small old Finnish farm, 150 acres on a lake, with my lovely wife Elizabeth, a Registered Dietitian where we have raised four children who are all now married or just about, and have three lovely grandchildren. I look forward to working with the board to get to zero nuclear weapons."

Andrew S. Kanter, MD MPH
Regional Co-Vice President -- NORTH AMERICA
New York, NY, USA
Dr. Kanter has been involved with IPPNW since 1985 when he was appointed as the first full-time Medical Student Liaison. He has participated in numerous Congresses and has participated in board meetings both as an At Large Member, and as an observer for nearly a decade. Dr. Kanter is currently the director of Health Information Systems/Medical Informatics for the Millennium Villages Project for the Earth Institute at Columbia University as well as a Asst. Prof. for Clinical Biomedical Informatics and Clinical Epidemiology at Columbia.

He travels globally, and has first hand experience of the effects of militarism on development and the environment: "I believe that IPPNW represents a unique opportunity for a group of like-minded people to focus the world’s attention on the greatest threats to our global survival. Physicians are perfectly suited to provide an alternative, positive vision for our future, and we can provide the crucial movement necessary to help guide the planet away from violence and the threat of nuclear annihilation, to a future based on mutual security, common survival and sustainable development."

Masao Tomonaga, MD, PhD
Regional Vice President -- NORTH ASIA
Dr. Tomonaga is Professor Emeritus Nagasaki University. He was born in 1943 in Nagasaki and encountered the second atomic bomb at 2.7 km on August 9 1945. Graduated from Nagasaki University Medical School and majored internal medicine and hematology. Engaged in research on the late effect of atomic bomb radiation on human health; proving its life-long effect. Now working for hibakushas as Director, Japanese Red Cross Nagasaki Atomic Bomb Hospital. Dr. Tomonaga is also Chairman of Nagasaki Global Citizen's Assembly for the Elimination of Nulcear Weapons. Since 1983 a member of IPPNW and once joined the Board Members. Appointed 2012 as President of North Asia Region of IPPNW and Board Member.

Abay K. Baigenzhin, MD
Regional Vice President -- RUSSIA/CIS
Astana, Kazakhstan
Dr. Baigenzhin is an academician of the European Academy of Natural Sciences, and a thoracic surgeon, and specialist in the filed of respiratory medicine. He joined IPPNW in 1981, and in 2013 was elected President of IPPNW Kazakhstan, and in 2014, President of the 21st World Congress of IPPNW.

Krishna Adhikary, MBBS, MD, MPH
Regional Vice President -- SOUTH ASIA
Dr. Adhikary is a Radiologist and Public Health Expert, and a Senior Health Policy Advisor at Ministry of Health & Population, Government of Nepal. He is also an Associate Professor in KIST Medical College, Lalitpur, Nepal, and was a visiting Professor in China Three Gorges University, Yichang City, Hubei Province in China. Dr. Adhikary was also the former General Secretary of Physicians for Social Responsibility, Nepal (PSRN), and served as Project Pirector of UNHCR funded project operated by CVICT, Nepal to serve rape and state violence victims amongst Bhutanese Refugees in Nepal (1995-96).

Peter Karamoskos, MD
Regional Vice President -- SOUTHEAST ASIA / PACIFIC
Victoria, Australia
Dr. Karamoskos is the treasurer and public officer of the affiliate, Medical Association for the Prevention of War (Australia) and ICAN (Aust). He also serves as the public representative on the Radiation Health Committee (RHC) of the Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Agency (ARPANSA), the federal radiation regulatory body. The RHC’s statutory role is “to advise the CEO of ARPANSA on matters relating to radiation protection.” The Public Representative’s role is to act as a channel between the regulator and the general public and ensure the interests of the public are salient. Previously, he has served on the board of Amnesty International Australia.

He has been a radiologist and nuclear medicine physician since 1995, specializing in nuclear cardiology and board certified by the American Society of Nuclear Cardiology, and is a member of numerous international professional bodies. He has worked in both public and private health sectors. He also lectures at the Nossal Institute for Global Health at the University of Melbourne.
His interests concern radiation health, the nuclear industry and the risks to human health arising thereof and the connections to the nuclear arms industry.

At Large Directors

Ruby Ann Chirino Sprung, MD
Mexico City, Mexico
Dr. Chirino is a specialist in internal medicine and gastroenterology.

Bjørn Hilt, MD
Trondheim, Norway
Dr. Hilt has been a member of the Norwegian affiliate of IPPNW since it was founded in 1982. Since 1998, he has been a board member of that affiliate, and from 1999 to 2004 its leader. From 2004 to 2008, he was the European Regional Vice President of IPPNW, and since September 2006 at the Helsinki World Congress, he was elected chairman of the Board of IPPNW. Dr. Hilt is working as a senior consultant and a professor of occupational medicine at the St. Olav University Hospital in Trondheim, Norway. His main professional interests are in occupational diseases and preventative medicine in general. He is married, has two sons and five grandchildren.

Helmut Lohrer, MD
Dr. Helmut Lohrer, is a member of the international IPPNW Board of Directors and International Councillor of the German affiliate. After working as a teacher in Cameroon he studied medicine at Heidelberg University. He carried out part of his clinical training in Great Britain. Since 1986 he was involved in establishing student membership for IPPNW. He is a founding member of the South-North working group of IPPNW Germany which studies the interface between economic globalization and war since 1992. In the 1990s, Dr. Lohrer was active in building the anti-landmines campaign. Apart from the issue of small arms, the concept of the “Responsibility to Protect” is one of his main topics of interest. Dr. Lohrer works as a GP in Villingen-Schwenningen and is a part-time lecturer at Furtwangen University.

Arun Mitra, MD
Ludhiana, India
Dr. Arun Mitra is an Ear Nose Throat Surgeon by profession working as consultant in the city of Ludhiana in Punjab state in India. Presently he is the member of the Board of the IPPNW. He is National General Secretary of Indian Doctors for Peace and Development (IDPD). Besides this he is an elected member of the Punjab State Medical Council (PMC). He is also member of the Central Working Committee of Indian Medical Association(IMA). He has been Senior Vice President IMA Punjab in 2009 and President IMA Ludhiana in 2007 and 2008. As a medical student he was National President of All India Medicos Federation. Has been actively involved in the peace movement since his student days in the All India Peace and Solidarity Organisation (AIPSO). He was the key person in organizing the 18th world congress of IPPNW at New Delhi. He has also been actively involved in organizing South Asian regional meetings of IPPNW affiliates.

Andreas Nidecker , MD
Basel, Switzerland
Dr. Nidecker completed his postgraduate education in the US and in Switzerland. Experienced as General Practitioner in Colombia, South America and Jamaica. Trained and received the Diploma of the American Board of Radiology at the University of Toronto / Canada. In 1999, he became the associate professor or Radiology at University of Basel.

Dr. Nidecker is a specialist in diagnostic radiology, nuclear medicine and MRIs, and is also the Co-Founder and partner of a larger private group practice in Basel with a teaching position at the University of Basel. Member of the Radiological Society of North America (RSNA), the American College of Radiology (ACR), the Swiss Medical Association, the Swiss Association for Medical Radiology, the International Skeletal Society. Professional interests: bone tumors.

From 2008-2010, Dr. Nidecker served on the IPPNW Board as the head of the organizing committee of the 2010 IPPNW World Congress. He has been active in IPPNW since the mid Eighties and was President of the Swiss affiliate for a number of years. Also president of "Sun21 - energy and resources", a Basel based association to promote energy conservation and the use of renewables, co-founded with Martin Vosseler, the founder of PSR / IPPNW Switzerland.

Sue Wareham, MD
Dr. Wareham has been an active member of IPPNW on and off for over 20 years, having first served on the board as regional Vice-President for South-East Asia Pacific from 1996 to 2000, and again from 2014.  In the intervening periods she has been active, and still is, at the national level with the Medical Association for Prevention of War (Australia).  She was President of MAPW (Australia)from 1997 to 2005, and from 2007 to 2009, and is currently a Vice-President and the ACT Branch Coordinator.  Dr Wareham is also on the Management Committee in Australia for ICAN, the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons.  Dr Wareham has spoken and written on a wide range of issues related to armed violence, including its economic impact, landmines and cluster munitions, the environmental impacts of war and its preparations, the impact of economic sanctions on the Iraqi people, the commemoration of warfare, Agent Orange and many others.

In Dr. Wareham's own words: "As armed violence continues to take a horrific human and environmental toll around the globe, civil society leadership to show that a different way is possible is desperately needed.  IPPNW has a critical role to play in this. Work on our key goal of abolishing nuclear weapons is bearing fruit, as is IPPNW’s small arms campaign.  IPPNW and its many affiliates must continue to act both globally and locally.”

International Medical Student Representatives (ISR)

Bimal Khadka
Dharan, Nepal
Bimal Khadke is a 3rd year MBBS student of B.P. Koirala Institute of Health Sciences, and was a participant of the August 2014, Semey to Astana IPPNW Bike Tour. He believes in a world free of nuclear weapons, and that they should never be used in geopolitics or for deterrence. He's motivated by doing good things for future generations.

Aino Ritva Weyers
"As a future doctor I believe that it is our responsibility to make people aware that regarding radiation the only cure is prevention. Making mistakes is human. Why are we still using a technology which does not allow any mistakes? I wish to fight for a world without this unwarranted risk, a healthier and peaceful world. For me as a medicine student it is crucial to shift the debate from the political strategic focus towards the humanitarian aspects."

Ex Officio Members

Michael Christ
Executive Director
Massachusetts, USA
As a father, Mr. Christ is worried about the future of his children. As IPPNW's Executive Director, he is convinced that physicians and health workers worldwide have a major role to play in ensuring that coming generations are protected from the effects of war and the threat of nuclear destruction. Mr. Christ joined IPPNW in 1988 with a background in environmental economics and political activism. He describes his visits to Hiroshima and Nagasaki in 1989 and to the downwind community of Karaul near the former Soviet nuclear test site in Kazakhstan in 1990, as "life changing." Mr. Christ led IPPNW's World Court Project to persuade the World Health Organization and the United Nations to challenge the legality of nuclear weapons at the International Court of Justice. As Director of Programs from 1996 to 1998, he was responsible for numerous projects and campaigns on nuclear non-proliferation, disarmament, and landmines awareness. Mr. Christ was appointed Executive Director in January 1998.

Kati Juva , MD
Speaker of the International Council
Helsinki, Finland
Dr. Juva has been a member of PSR-Finland since its beginning in 1982, has served as the chairperson for 12 years and is currently the chair of its peace group. Dr. Juva has two adopted children from Ethiopia.

Frank Boulton, MD
Deputy Speaker IC
United Kingdom
Dr. Boulton is a retired physician who specialised in clinical and general haematology, including the diagnosis and treatment of leukaemias. Although principally working in the British NHS – with over 40 years’ experience – Dr. Boulton has also worked for short periods overseas including Nigeria, Singapore, Malaysia, Uganda, Zimbabwe and Grenada WI; and also as a consultant to WHO and the British Armed Forces on blood transfusion. He is an active Quaker.

Dr. Boutlon is an active member of Medact’s Nuclear Interest Group and joined Medact’s Board of Trustees in 2007: from 2008 to 2012 he was its Chair. He is currently honarary Treasurer, but due to demit his position in June 2015, which will allow him to concentrate on the main themes of how to achieve a ‘global zero’ in nuclear weapons. In this regard, Medact is enlarging its programme of work to include health and human rights, especially in violent conflict: He actively supports all aspects of Medact’s work, taking a special interest also in the prevention of torture and of climate change, all of which are relevant to the promotion of peace and demilitarisation in view of the current state of global insecurity and the dangerous persistence of global nuclear arsenals.

Frank is Co-Convenor of IPPNW’s Nuclear Chain Working Group.