Natural disasters and pandemics transcend borders, and the dual threat of climate change and COVID-19 reveal the need for a more collaborative hemispheric response. The Western Hemisphere is particularly vulnerable; Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC) is the second most disaster-prone region in the world, and the Americas experienced 44 percent of worldwide COVID-19 deaths as of January 2022. With the ninth Summit of the Americas fast approaching, how can the region work together to prepare for the next disaster?

As part of a new partnership with the US Department of State, the Adrienne Arsht Latin America Center is bringing together regional organizations to advance an inclusive conversation on health and natural disasters in anticipation of the ninth Summit of the Americas.

Join us to actively participate in a virtual conversation, “Responding to the Next Disaster: Building Health and Climate Resilience in the Americas” on Thursday, January 27, from 2:00 – 3:30 p.m. (ET). Speakers and audience members will share ideas on ways to create a stronger hemispheric response that better prepares the entire region for pandemics and natural disasters, with a focus on vulnerable communities. All participants will have the option to submit questions and comments prior to and during this interactive event.

Learn more about our Road to the Summit campaign here.

Simultaneous interpretation in English, Spanish, and Portuguese will be available for Zoom attendees, as will closed captioning.

Opening remarks

Jason Marczak
Adrienne Arsht Latin America Center

Atlantic Council

Welcoming remarks

Adrienne Arsht
Executive Vice Chair; Founder, Adrienne Arsht Latin America Center and Adrienne Arsht-Rockefeller Foundation Resilience Center
Atlantic Council

Keynote remarks

Dr. Carissa Etienne
Pan American Health Organization


Future of health in the Americas: Supporting near-term recovery and building long-term resilience

Minister Ximena Garzón
Minister of Health
Republic of Ecuador

Patricia Wu
Chair of Health Working Group
Americas Business Dialogue; Vice President and Managing Director,
C&M International

Dr. Miguel Eduardo Marrero-Medina
Mental Health and Psychosocial Support Program Manager

Featuring a live question from the winner of the
Young Americas Business Trust’s #YouthInTheSummit campaign

Preparing for tomorrow: Creating an inclusive hemispheric response to natural disasters

Secretary Rodrigo Rodriguez Tornquist
Former Secretary of Climate Change, Sustainable Development and Innovation
Ministry of Environment and Sustainable Development
Republic of Argentina

Leslee Gutierrez Carrillo
Environmental Justice Organizer
Comunidades Organizando el Poder y la Accion Latina (COPAL)

Peter Natiello
Senior Deputy Assistant Administrator
Latin America and the Caribbean Bureau

US Agency for International Development

Elizabeth Riley
Executive Director
Caribbean Disaster Emergency Management Agency


Shery Ahn

Carolina Millan
Buenos Aires Bureau Chief

Closing remarks

Diego Area
Deputy Director for Strategic Development
Adrienne Arsht Latin America Center
Atlantic Council 

La doble amenaza del cambio climático y de la pandemia del COVID-19 revela la necesidad de una respuesta hemisférica más colaborativa dado que el hemisferio occidental es particularmente vulnerable. América Latina y el Caribe es la segunda región del mundo más propensa a sufrir desastres naturales, mientras que las Américas representa el 44 por ciento de las muertes debido al COVID-19 a nivel global, según las últimas estadísticas de enero 2022.

Únete y participa activamente en nuestra discusión virtual, “Respondiendo al próximo desastre: Construyendo la salud y resiliencia climática en las Américas”, que se realizará el jueves, 27 de enero, de 2:00 a 3:30 p.m. (ET). Este evento es parte de una serie de discusiones en colaboración con el Departamento de Estado de Estados Unidos en preparación a la novena Cumbre de las Américas. Los participantes del evento tendrán la opción de enviar sus preguntas o comentarios antes y durante el evento.

Para más información sobre nuestra campaña #CaminoALaCumbre, visite nuestro sitio de web aquí.

El evento contará con traducción simultánea y subtítulos en inglés, español y portugués.

Summit of the Americas

Amid global uncertainties and new challenges, the ninth Summit of the Americas is a renewed opportunity to bring about hemispheric cooperation and consensus to reach regional prosperity and security.

This event will be held in partnership with:

The Adrienne Arsht Latin America Center broadens understanding of regional transformations and delivers constructive, results-oriented solutions to inform how the public and private sectors can advance hemispheric prosperity.