Dr. Whistleblower: An Immigrant’s Story

A Conversation with Dr. Mona Hanna-Attisha

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Dr. Mona Hanna-Attisha is a hero to many in Flint, Michigan and around the world for uncovering the alarming spike in blood lead levels of children in Flint, ultimately exposing the Flint Water Crisis. At first Michigan authorities derided her work as “unfortunate”, but she stood by it and subsequently her research was validated.

Dr. Mona, as she is often called, has written a memoir about the water crisis during which she stood up to state authorities and her immigrant story titled, “What the Eyes Don’t See”. The Iraqi-American talks to Ali about her journey to the United States, her love of medicine, and the importance of engaging in our democracy.

She is an associate professor of pediatrics and human development at Michigan State University. She is also the founder and director of the Michigan State University and Hurley Children’s Hospital Pediatric Public Health Initiative, a model program to mitigate the impact of the Flint Water Crisis.

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