David Wallinga, MD

Senior Health Officer, Food, Agriculture and Health, Healthy People & Thriving Communities Program

Dr. David Wallinga is a physician with more than 20 years of experience in writing, policy, and advocacy at the intersection of food, communities, and health. His work on food and farming as an ecologically-based system has laid the groundwork for understanding them as important social and environmental determinants of health. He has worked to address the impact of federal pesticide policies and practices on child brain health; to change Farm Bill policies that promote overproduction and overconsumption of junk food calories and have helped fuel a rise in obesity; and to reverse the enormous overuse of antibiotics in industrial-style U.S. livestock production, its contribution to a “slow-moving” pandemic of superbug bacteria, and the federal policies that incentivize these practices. Dr. Wallinga advocates for policies that promote production of good food for communities that is more accessible, safe, and nutritious; more resilient, climate-friendly livestock production that is also safer for downstream communities; and investments in food systems and rural communities based on equity and fairness. He completed his medical school education at the University of Minnesota. He also holds a bachelor’s degree in political science from Dartmouth College and a master’s degree in public affairs from Princeton University. He lives in St. Paul, Minnesota, but is descended from Iowans.