Public Health Faculty and Staff

Margaret Brown
Ph.D., Community Health Education
Leon Levine Hall, 429

Dr. Margaret Brown received a B.A. in Comparative Area Studies from Duke University, her MPH in Global Health from Emory University, and finally her doctorate in Community Health Education from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. She has 20 years of teaching experience, ranging from middle school to the collegiate level. She has also been involved with community organizing and public health initiatives in prisons and international communities. A few of her academic and research interests include adolescence, health education, gender, and women's health. Margaret is excited to join the community at App State and is looking forward to exploring the area with her family. Learn More.


Richard Christiana
Associate Professor
Ph.D., Health Promotion and Behavior
Graduate Faculty
Leon Levine Hall, 424

Dr. Christiana obtained a Master of Arts in Anthropology from the University at Albany (Albany, NY), a PhD in Health Promotion and Behavior from the University of Georgia (Athens, GA), and completed 2-years of postdoctoral training at the University of Georgia prior to joining the faculty within the Department of Health & Exercise Science in 2014. His research interests focus on improving children's health through the promotion of physical activity and time spent in the outdoors. Dr. Christiana's current research projects include Examining the effectiveness of promoting children's physical activity through physician-written prescriptions for outdoor physical activity and Investigating the effectiveness of college student ambassadors to promote physical activity among college students. Learn More.


Adam Hege
Associate Professor and Public Health Program Director
Ph.D., Community Health Education
Graduate Faculty
Leon Levine Hall, 430
(828) 262-7102

Dr. Hege holds a Master of Public Administration (2011) degree from Appalachian State University and completed his PhD in Community Health Education (2015) at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. A member of the Public Health and Exercise Science faculty since 2015, Adam is currently an Associate Professor and Director of the Undergraduate Public Health program. He currently teaches Health Policy, Ethics & Law. His research interests are broadly on health disparities and social and environmental determinants of health. Specifically, this has included examining disparities among rural populations in the surrounding Appalachia communities of western NC, on issues such as food insecurity, adverse childhood experiences, access to care, and other factors related to quality of life. In addition, his work examines systems-level and policy-oriented occupational health disparities experienced among U.S. long-haul truck drivers, a highly vulnerable working population. Adam has published more than 40 articles in peer-reviewed journals including Public Health Reports, Frontiers in Public Health, Health Education & Behavior, American Journal of Health Behavior, Accident Analysis & Prevention, Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, PLOS One, Science of the Total Environment, Public Health Nutrition, Family & Community Health, and the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, among others. He has co-authored two textbook chapters and co-edited the text Public Health Nutrition: Rural, Urban, and Global Community-Based Practice. Adam also serves as the Associate Editor of Family & Community Health, on the Editorial Board of Behavioral Medicine, and on the Governing Council of the American Public Health Association. His work is presented annually at national and state-level professional conferences, including the American Public Health Association and North Carolina Public Health Association annual meetings. Learn More.


Christopher Seitz
Assistant Professor
DrPH, Community Health Education
Leon Levine Hall, 431
(828) 262-8907

Chris earned his BS (2006) from Lock Haven University and earned both his MPH (2009) and DrPH (2013) in Community Health Education from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. He has previously taught at two other universities and also completed a 2016-2017 Fulbright Scholarship at University College Cork in Ireland. He is interested in researching tobacco-free policies and also public health advocacy via “photovoice” (the community’s use of photography exhibits to ask decision makers for changes to policy and environment). Chris and his wife, Kalen, love to hike and they are the proud parents of an adorable fur-child (cat) named Bella. Learn More.


Colleen Tarantino
Senior Lecturer
MA, Community Counseling
Public Health Internship Coordinator
Leon Levine Hall, 426
(828) 262-6331

Colleen Tarantino is a Senior Lecturer who has been teaching in the program for 18 years.  She holds a BS in Athletic Training/Health Education from the University of Pittsburgh and a MA in Community Counseling from Appalachian State University. She has clinical experience in both Athletic Training and Counseling, and enjoys sharing these experiences in the classroom. Her expertise areas include substance abuse and health behavior. Learn More.


Martie Thompson
Blue Cross NC Distinguished Endowed Professor
PhD, Community Psychology
Leon Levine Hall, 492

Dr. Martie Thompson is the Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina Distinguished/Endowed Professor in Public Health at Appalachian State University. She also is an Adjunct Professor in Clemson University’s Department of Psychology as well as Emory University’s Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences. She received her Ph.D. in community psychology from Georgia State University. Following that, she completed a postdoctoral fellowship in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Emory University, served as an Epidemic Intelligence Service Officer in the Division of Violence Prevention at CDC, and worked at Clemson University for 20 years, most recently as a Professor in the Department of Psychology and the Institute on Family and Neighborhood Life. Her research focuses on risk factors and consequences of violence, as well as risk factors for suicidal behavior. She has published over 100 articles on these topics and her work has been funded by the National Institutes of Health, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, and the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention. Learn More.


Jennifer Schroeder Tyson
MPH, Maternal and Child Health
Leon Levine Hall, 429
(828) 262-7152

Jennifer received a BS from Appalachian State in Mathematics and International Studies, then pursued an AmeriCorps position with the Western Youth Network. Jennifer continued a career in Occupational Health and Safety for Theater and Opera Companies, then got involved with some Midwives and Doulas and wanted to marry the two fields together. This led Jennifer to complete a Master of Public Health (MPH) with a focus on Maternal and Child Health. During graduate school, Jennifer worked in global, national, and local public health practice. After this Jennifer started to work in local rural public health in public health preparedness and special projects. Jennifer has a practice based background in public health and her current service and research focuses on public health preparedness practice. Learn more.


Shenghui Wu
Assistant Professor
M.D., Ph.D., Master of Medicine, Epidemiology
Leon Levine Hall, 440
(828) 262-7466

Dr. Wu received a MD degree in Preventive Medicine and a Master of Medicine degree in Epidemiology from Southeast University in China and obtained her PhD in Epidemiology at the Chinese University of Hong Kong. She completed a postdoctoral fellowship in the Epidemiology Division at Vanderbilt University. Shenghui joins the Public Health and Exercise Science faculty in 2022 and as an Assistant Professor of the Public Health program. She currently teaches Epidemiology. Her research focuses on lifestyle factors, biomarkers, and cancer as well as other diseases in populations. Shenghui was a principal investigator for multiple epidemiologic projects before joining the ASU. She has published over 68 articles, usually as the first and/or corresponding author. She has been serving as a DoD and NIH grant panel reviewer, a peer reviewer for multiple journals/conferences, and a member of multiple professional associations. Learn more


Jennifer Zwetsloot
Senior Lecturer
Ph.D., Bioenergetics
Graduate Faculty
Leon Levine Hall, 428
(828) 262-6800

Dr. Zwetsloot has a BS and MA in Exercise Physiology/Physical Education from California State University Chico, and a PhD in Bioenergetics from East Carolina University. Her research interests include community-based obesity prevention and metabolic regulation and she is the director of the Metabolic Studies laboratory in the Department of Health and Exercise Science.  She is an advocate for the importance of daily physical activity, and has a particular interest in promoting dance as a healthy activity option for all ages and sizes.  She is married to the “other” Dr. Zwetsloot in Exercise Science and they have two children.  In addition to teaching, she enjoys exploring the mountains with her family and friends. Learn More.