Annual Nornes Lecture Explores How Racism and Inequities Affect Sleep and Health

2023 Nornes Lectureship in Neuroscience

The neuroscience program announces the 2023 Nornes Lectureship in Neuroscience featuring Dr. Chandra Jackson who will present “Understanding and Addressing Structural Racism and Health Inequities: The ‘Sleep Exposome Across the Life Course’ Example.” The free, public lecture will be streamed at 7 p.m. Monday, March 27, in the Centrum, Knutson Campus Center.

Dr. Margaret “Peg” Semrud-Clikeman, a Concordia graduate and professor emeritus at the University of Minnesota Medical School, is the neuroscience program’s special guest for the day and will attend the lecture and an hors d’oeuvres reception at 6 p.m.


Jackson leads the Social and Environmental Determinants of Health Equity Research group in the Epidemiology Branch of the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences with a joint affiliation in the National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities. Jackson investigates physical and social environmental factors that impact disparities in sleep health and subsequent risk of cardiometabolic dysfunction. Her research has been presented at national as well as international scientific conferences and published in both academic journals like JAMA Internal Medicine and SLEEP as well as major media outlets such as U.S. News & World Report and The New York Times.

She has earned merit-based awards, including the Charlotte Silverman Award at Johns Hopkins, an Outstanding Fellows Award at Harvard, and the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers. She earned a master’s degree in epidemiology from the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, a doctorate in epidemiology from The Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, and was an Alonzo Smythe Yerby Postdoctoral Fellow at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health before becoming a research associate in the Harvard Catalyst Clinical and Translational Science Center.

Semrud-Clikeman received her doctorate from the University of Georgia, completed an internship and postdoctoral fellowship at the Massachusetts General Hospital/Harvard Medical school (MGH), and received a postdoctoral neuroscience fellowship at MGH from NIH to study neuropsychological and brain morphology in children with ADHD. Her areas of research interests were in ADHD, 18q- syndrome, and autistic spectrum disorders and educational neuroscience.

The Lectureship was created through generous alumni gifts from the Howard ’53 and Sonia (Nelsen) ’58 Nornes, and the LaVern ’54 and Lois (Austin) ’56 Nornes families.