Laurie Garrett

Award-winning Science Writer

Laurie Garrett is an award-winning science writer and author. She is the only writer to have been awarded all of the “Three P’s” of journalism: The Peabody, Polk (twice), and Pulitzer, for which she was three times a finalist and once a recipient. Garrett wrote her first bestselling book, The Coming Plague: Newly Emerging Diseases in a World Out of Balance while splitting her time between the Harvard School of Public Health and the New York newspaper, Newsday. She subsequently authored Betrayal of Trust: The Collapse of Global Public Health and  I Heard the Sirens Scream: How Americans Responded to the 9/11 and Anthrax Attacks

With decades of experience as a science writer, Garrett speaks with extensive knowledge of emerging diseases and epidemics, and their impact on governments and societies. With the advent of the Coronavirus, she has been dubbed the woman who predicted the Coronavirus pandemic.

 In the 1992-93 academic years, Garrett was a Fellow at Harvard, where she worked closely with the emerging diseases group, a collection of faculty concerned about the surge in epidemics of previously unknown or rare viruses and bacteria. During the 1990s, Garrett continued tracking outbreaks and epidemics worldwide, noting the insufficient responses from global public health institutions in Zaire, India, Russia, and most of the former USSR, Eastern Europe, and the United States. This resulted in the publication in 2000 of Betrayal of Trust: The Collapse of Global Public Health.

 In 2011, Garrett’s long-awaited third book was published: I Heard the Sirens Scream: How Americans Responded to the 9/11 and Anthrax Attacks. The book describes the events that unfolded primarily in Washington DC and New York City over 120 days in the fall and winter of 2001 and 2002. It also details the repercussions of the response to 9/11 and the Anthrax events, transformations of critical government institutions, public health disasters, and what, in particular, the specter of terrorism meant for the American people. 

 For thirteen years Garrett was a Senior Fellow for Global Health at the Council on Foreign Relations, focused on the national security aspects of emerging diseases and climate change. Currently, she is a member of the World Economic Forum Global Health Security Advisory Board, the Council on Foreign Relations, and the National Association for Science Writers.