Department Chair

Sameer Vohra, MD, JD, MA, FAAP

Department Chair

Department of Population Science and Policy




Primary Responsibilities

My primary responsibility involves leading the Department of Population Science and Policy to achieve its goal of researching, designing, and implementing innovative solutions to improve the health of central and southern Illinois.  I also see children in my general pediatrics practice as a member of SIU Healthcare. 


Sameer Vohra, MD, JD, MA, FAAP, is the founding chair of Southern Illinois University School of Medicine Department of Population Science and Policy, a social mission-driven research and policy academic department aiming to improve health outcomes in central and southern Illinois. A general pediatrician, Dr. Vohra is also an Associate Professor of Pediatrics, Medical Humanities, and Law. Dr. Vohra completed a residency in pediatrics at the University of Chicago where he also earned a Master of Arts in public policy. He received his medical doctorate at SIU School of Medicine and a juris doctorate at SIU School of Law, where he graduated first in his class. Dr. Vohra earned a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and Science in Human Culture with honors at Northwestern University. 

Dr. Vohra received a United States Fulbright Scholarship in 2009 and a 2014 American Medical Association Foundation Excellence in Medicine Leadership Award. He joined a class of 40 emerging political and policy leaders as an Edgar Fellow in 2016, was named a Friend of Education by the Illinois Education Association in 2018 and was included in the de Beaumont Foundation’s first national 40 under 40 list in public health in 2019. Most recently, Dr. Vohra was chosen by the George W. Bush Presidential Center, the Clinton Presidential Center, the George and Barbara Bush Foundation and the LBJ Foundation as a Presidential Leadership Scholar in 2020.   

Dr. Vohra is a leader in state and national policy formation and has served on national committees for the Association of American Medical Colleges and the American Medical Association as well as on the Board of Trustees for the Illinois State Medical Society and the Chicago Medical Society. Dr. Vohra currently serves the state of Illinois on the Medicaid Advisory Council, the Governor’s Rural Affairs Council, the State Board of Health and the Illinois COVID-19 Response Fund Steering Committee. Dr. Vohra also sits on the Sangamon County Medical Society Board of Directors. 

Dr. Vohra enjoys spending time with his talented wife and two amazing daughters. They enjoy reading, watching movies, traveling and rooting for their beloved Chicago sports teams.