Meet Our Team: Brent

Brent Nagel is the new Communications Officer for the Shot@Life campaign. Learn more about him in this Q&A!

What brought you to Shot@Life?

I’ve spent my career working in international development, where I’ve had the opportunity to learn about the critical importance of global health as a foundation for prosperity and social progress. All the investment and smart policy in the world means little if children don’t survive to lead healthy lives. I jumped at the chance to join a great team working on such a fundamental issue.

What excites you most about your work on the campaign?

I was fortunate enough to join just in time for our in-person Summit and Hill Day. It was inspiring to see the energy, enthusiasm, and commitment of our advocates and the whole team, and I’m excited to keep working with and getting to know everyone.

I’m also interested in learning more about public health communication generally. The pandemic has shown the importance of clearly and accurately communicating scientific information, especially about vaccines, as well as the challenges of misinformation. For me as a communications professional, it’s a new challenge but one I’m excited to take on.

Can you briefly describe your previous work, intern, or volunteer experiences?

Before coming to the UN Foundation, I worked at the Social Progress Imperative, a research nonprofit that measures different aspects of wellbeing and works with institutions who use the data to inform their policy and investment decisions. I had a few roles there, first as a communications intern and later as a writer/editor and communications officer. Before that, I had a TV production internship at Voice of America and volunteered on campus with UNICEF at UVA.

What do you think the biggest challenge is for vaccine advocacy?

Misinformation is clearly a major challenge. On any issue, the sheer volume of information out there makes it difficult to for people to know what to trust, to say nothing of the deliberate falsehoods that circulate around vaccines specifically. It’s up to global health institutions, science communicators, and advocates to not just share accurate information, but to reach as many people as we can.

What do you wish more people knew about advocacy in general?

It’s not nearly as intimidating as people think. Congresspeople and their staff are busy people, but they really are there to serve their constituents. Once you’ve interacted with your representatives, you realize how open and willing to listen they are.

Do you have any fun facts that our champions may not know about you?

Talk to me about soccer, travel, or cooking (or really anything food related)!

  • Brent is the Communications Officer for the Shot@Life campaign. Previously, he served as communications officer at the Social Progress Imperative, a global development nonprofit that publishes the Social Progress Index, a leading measure of wellbeing. Brent holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Virginia, where he studied philosophy and Spanish literature, and a master’s...