Ithar Hassaballa, Ph.D., M.P.H.
Senior Analyst & Strategy Team Leader
Ithar Hassaballa, Ph.D., M.P.H., Senior Analyst & Strategy Team Leader, directs the work of the population health team. She leads a team that assists policymakers, stakeholders and communities with advancing evidence-based and equitable policies and programs that aim to improve the health of all Kansans.
Prior to joining KHI, Ithar was at the University of Kansas Medical Center where she served as Evaluation Project Manager as part of a project focused on health equity and COVID-19 testing, vaccinations, and infrastructure building among historically excluded populations in 20 Kansas counties. In that role, she supported 60 community health workers across Kansas in documentation of their efforts. Ithar served as Assistant Director & Research Project Director at the University of Kansas Center for Public Partnerships and Research, and Research Project Manager at the University of Kansas Center for Community Health & Development (CCHD). As part of CCHD, she led the evaluation of the Ebola response effort in partnership with the World Health Organization Regional Office for Africa. Further, as part of CCHD, Ithar led the Together Helping Reduce Youth Violence for Equity (ThrYve) Youth Violence Prevention Program in Kansas City. Ithar served as an Assistant Professor of Community Psychology at the American University in Cairo, New Cairo, Egypt, where she taught community psychology and worked with local organizations to evaluate their efforts and address poverty.
Ithar currently serves as the president of the Mid America Alliance for African Studies, a group for researchers and practitioners within nine midwestern states that works to improve the conditions of communities within the African region and globally. Born in Sudan, Ithar is a Kansan with a global heart.
Ithar earned a bachelor’s degree in community health, a master’s degree in applied behavioral science, and a doctorate in behavioral psychology with an emphasis in community health and development from the University of Kansas. She also earned her master’s degree in public health from the University of Kansas Medical Center.