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Robert M. Weiler, PhD, MPH

Department of Global and Community Health

Robert Weiler

Dr. Robert M. Weiler holds a Bachelor’s of Arts degree in health and safety education from Marshall University (1983), a Master of Public Health, in community health education from the University of Tennessee (1984), and a Doctor of Philosophy in education with a specialization in school health education from Southern Illinois University at Carbondale (1991). From 1984-1987, he served as the school health coordinator for Cumberland County Schools, the third largest school district in North Carolina (Fayetteville), and from 1991-1993 he was appointed visiting assistant professor of Human Services at George Mason University. In 1993, Dr. Weiler joined the faculty in the Department of Health Education & Behavior at the University of Florida. He was promoted to associate professor with tenure in 1998 and promoted to full professor in 2005. From 2003 to 2007 he served as the chair of the department and from 2012 – 2014 served as director of graduate programs. In 2014, Dr. Weiler was appointed professor with tenure and chair of the Department of Global and Community Health at George Mason University.

Dr. Weiler’s research interests include program evaluation, school health policies and programs, adolescent health risk behaviors, problem drinking behaviors and injuries among college students, and substance abuse prevention with emphasis on the nonmedical use of prescription drugs among adolescents and young adults. Dr. Weiler’s research has explored Florida’s school violence policies and programs and the role of school health instruction in preventing violence. He served as co-investigator for the first published study that confirmed the feasibility of collecting health risk behavior data using a web-delivered survey. A specialist in applied evaluation, he his regularly asked to conduct youth health behavior assessments for local school districts, providing them with a comprehensive overview of adolescent behaviors with recommendations for planning school health policies and health promotion programs. For three years Dr. Weiler served as the co-principal investigator for the Florida Coordinated School Health Program Pilot Project, funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. In January 2002, he was invited to join the Scientific Advisory Board of Purdue Pharma (Stamford, CT), where served as a technical advisor on the development and evaluation of Painfully Obvious, a middle and high school prescription drug abuse awareness curriculum. He subsequently received funding from Purdue Pharma to conduct a content/context analysis of prescription drug information conveyed in health textbooks, state health education curriculum frameworks, and model drug abuse prevention programs. Dr. Weiler just completed a two-year externally funded investigation that evaluated the test-retest reliability of prescription drug use items designed for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Youth Risk Behavior Survey, a project that involved collecting data from 9th-12th grade students from five high schools across the United States. Currently, he is a co-investigator on a project funded by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration that is soliciting information from a national panel of teenagers to inform the development of electronic games for preventing tobacco use.

Dr. Weiler has authored or co-authored 55 refereed articles in professional journals including Addiction Biology, Addictive Behaviors, Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research, Annals of Behavior Medicine, Health Education & Behavior, Journal of Adolescent Health, Journal of School Health, Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs, Public Health Reports, and Preventive Medicine. Moreover, he has presented more than 100 papers at national and international scientific meetings and conferences. He has served has co-investigator/evaluator on four NIH grants, and principal investigator on 13 state and private contracts, totaling more than $5.9 million. Dr. Weiler is a founding member of the American Academy of Health Behavior, a member of the American Public Health Association, a member of the Society for Public Health Education, and is a Fellow of the American School Health Association. In 2002, Dr. Weiler received the prestigious University of Florida Research Foundation Professorship and in 2010 was a member of the inaugural class of University of Florida Sustainability Fellows. In August 2011, Dr. Weiler was awarded the Elizabeth Wood Dunlevie Honors Professorship to teach introductory epidemiology to students in the honors program at the University of Florida.

Born and reared in Huntington, West Virginia, Dr. Weiler and his wife, Dr. Lisa Pealer, live with their daughter Emerson in Springfield, VA. Lisa, an epidemiologist, is a senior associate with Hassett Willis (Washington, DC / www.hassettwillis.com), a management consulting firm. She is also an adjunct associate professor in the School of Public Health at the University of North Texas.

Education

  • PhD, Health Education, Southern Illinois University, 1991
  • MPH, Community Health Education, The University of Tennessee, 1984
  • BA, Health and Safety Education, Marshall University, 1983