Our Staff

Ken Shatzkes, PhD
Program Director

Dr. Ken Shatzkes is Program Director for the Foundation for Opioid Response Efforts (FORE). Ken leads FORE’s grantmaking, programmatic, and communications activities and helps to identify new funding opportunities with a focus on patient-centered, evidence-based solutions addressing the nation’s opioid crisis.

Ken has over 15 years of experience performing biomedical research in academic, government, and non-profit settings. In 2017, Ken served as the Science Policy Advisor in the Office of the New Jersey Governor, providing evidence-based recommendations on state opioid initiatives and leading the Governor’s efforts as Chair of the President’s Commission on Combating Drug Addiction and the Opioid Crisis. Working closely with stakeholders and political leadership, he helped author the Commission’s report containing 65 federal policy recommendations aimed at curtailing the opioid crisis. Previously, he was a Rutgers-Eagleton Institute of Politics Fellow, placed in the Office of Intergovernmental and External Affairs at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, where he researched, tracked, and informed senior leadership of innovative state-led opioid crisis-related initiatives. Prior to joining FORE, Ken was an Associate Program Officer at the Helmsley Charitable Trust, a global health philanthropy focused on improving patients’ lives, where he supported the development of innovative diagnostics for individuals living with Crohn’s disease. His other previous roles include laboratory research positions at New York University Langone Medical Center, the J. Craig Venter Institute, and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

Ken earned his Ph.D. in Biomedical Sciences (Immunology and Infectious Disease) from Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey and his B.Sc. in Biology (Molecular Genetics and Development) from McGill University.

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