Seaver College, School of Public Policy | 1998, MPP 2000
Contracts Management Unit Chief, World Trade Center Health Program, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Andrew Weathers is a leading public health advisor working on COVID-19.
What does being an honoree of the Outstanding Alumni in Healthcare campaign mean to you?
While I am honored and humbled by this individual recognition, I cannot say I am accepting
it only for myself. This honor goes to all of the individuals in healthcare who work
tirelessly to assure frontline healthcare workers have what they need to provide the
best care to every individual. It is for the people I work with in the World Trade
Center Health Program who serve the 100,000 individuals who live with the physical
and mental health effects of 9/11 every day. It is for my fellow Pepperdine graduates
who are instrumental in creating innovative ways of doing healthcare in a COVID-19
Describe your road to success.
Three tenets guide the path to where I am now personally and professionally. First,
the best path is not always the obvious one. God is subtle sometimes. Perhaps an opportunity
that may pay really well is dangled in front of you, but it isn't the opportunity
that would truly make you happy. Second, the best work and personal relationships
are the ones that bring out the best in each person. Lastly, it is amazing what you
can accomplish personally and in organizations if you aren't worried about who gets
Who has helped you achieve success in your career?
The support of my wife, family and friends are critical to my success. While professional
mentors have come and gone, it is my personal relationships that provide the greatest
support to my professional success.
Describe a lesson you've learned from a challenging time in your career or life.
In 2011, I travelled several times to different regions of Africa as well as Central
and South America. My wife, Helen, spent most of that year in Afghanistan as a Forensic
Science Officer for the US Military. We were blessed to have family and friends help
with our children while we were both away, but a looming health problem and the logistics
of arranging care became more burdensome than I could bear. I needed to change the
direction I was going and leave something I truly loved or risk my long-term health
and ability to support my family. It was only through the grace of God that I found
an email sitting in front of me one morning about a position with the World Trade
Center Health Program. It was a chance for me to join a small group of people to serve
a population very near to my heart. I had to learn that sometimes you have to step
away from things you really love for your own wellbeing. If you place your trust in
God, those next steps for you can be even more rewarding.
How do you prepare for a busy day?
I value early morning quiet and a good cup of coffee when faced with a busy day.
"First the best path is not always the obvious one. God is subtle sometimes. Second, the best work and personal relationships are the ones that bring out the best in each person. Lastly, it is amazing what you can accomplish personally and in organizations if you aren't worried about who gets credit."
Andrew Weathers ('98, MPP '00)
What's next for you?
I have 10 more years to dedicate to Federal Service and will remain open for opportunities
to make an impact through public service. After that, I will look for ways to serve
outside of government where I can also combine my loves of travel, writing, and photography.
What is your mantra or favorite quote?
If you come to a fork in the road, take it.