Julius Ybañez Towers L’03
Julius Ybañez Towers is a Masters in Public Health candidate of the Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health, where his studies and research projects focus on the intersection of healthcare policy, epidemiology, and environmental health sciences. At Columbia, Julius is a member of the Martinez Lab, which focuses on epidemiology and infectious disease ecology. His projects include (i) examining how urban green spaces can be leveraged as resiliency measures to combat the health effects of global climate change, especially with respect to mental health, (ii) identifying legal and legislative pathways to address disparities in healthcare access and services based on race, class, and gender for individuals diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder, and (iii) governance, regulation, and mergers in the U.S. healthcare industry. Through the Keiretsu Forum, the world’s largest angel investment network, Julius is completing a fellowship as a Keiretsu Due Diligence fellow, assessing, and preparing risk assessments of early-stage growth companies in the Healthcare, Lifesciences, Biotech, and Greentech industries to evaluate potential return on investment for individual and institutional investors. Julius is also active in advocacy, leading Mailman’s Legislative Advocacy Initiative, where a team of Columbia Mailman students met with the legislative staff of Senators and Members of Congress and discussed various public health issues, was part of the Columbia University Irving Medical Center Delegation at the annual Rally for Medical Research and participated in the American Public Health Association’s Speak For Health Advocacy Health Initiative. As the father of two sons diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder, Julius is committed to health equity and de stigmatization of individuals with developmental and cognitive disorders, and lobbies at the municipal, state, and federal level to advance these goals. Prior to Mailman, Julius practiced corporate and intellectual property law for 15 years, most recently as a senior marketing and trademark counsel at Colgate-Palmolive Company (Colgate), where he managed several global IP portfolios, and was the principal IP attorney supporting transactions (M&A), commercial & supply chain, and global licensing. Julius was the global chair of the Colgate Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Allies (LGBT&A) Employee Resource group, where he oversaw the Company’s annual PRIDE month, World AIDS Day, and National Coming Out Day activities. As a member of the Colgate North American Diversity Council, Julius was part of the team that executed Colgate’s first marketing campaign specifically to the LGBT community. In addition, Julius volunteers extensively; he was a pro bono attorney for the NY Family Court’s Volunteer Attorney Program, mentor for the Bright Horizons program, and continues to volunteer with the Asian American Legal Defense Fund’s Voting Rights Project as an election polling site observer. Prior to Colgate, he was a senior counsel at Bristol-Myers Squibb (BMS), where as chair of the BMS Law Department’s Diversity Committee, he oversaw the Department’s Diversity Summer Internship Program (multiple Penn Law students are alumni of the Program) and led the Department’s Diversity Initiatives when BMS was recognized by the Minority Corporate Counsel Association as an Employer of Choice. Julius began his legal career as an associate in the NYC headquarters of Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP, an international law firm. The first in his family to attend and graduate college, Julius earned a J.D. from the University of Pennsylvania Law School, where he was a member of the Inn of Court legal honor society, a senior editor for the Penn Law Journal of Constitutional Law, co-president of Penn Law Lambda Legal, and a research assistant for Professor Geoffrey Hazard. During law school, Julius volunteered at the Center for Lesbian and Gay Civil Rights of Pennsylvania and the AIDS Law Project. He is a founder of two Penn Law alumni clubs (Penn Law Asian American Network & Penn Law New York Alumni Society) and previously served on the Penn Law alumni Board of Managers. He received his B.A. from Florida State University, double majoring in History and Classics with minors in Geography and Biology, graduating Phi Beta Kappa, summa cum laude with departmental honors, and completed and defended his honors thesis at the London School of Economics (LSE) through a joint program between FSU and LSE.