Dr. Resa M. Jones is the chair of the Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics and a member of the Fox Chase Cancer Center. She is a seasoned leader and educator with a strong portfolio in epidemiological research who is leading this new department’s pedagogical mission and its development and research growth. Additionally, she leads the Behavioral and Cancer Epidemiology Research Program.
Dr. Jones earned her PhD from the University of Minnesota’s epidemiology program, which is ranked 8th in the U.S. and is known for its behavioral and social epidemiology and large cohort-based research. Dr. Jones was faculty at Virginia Commonwealth University’s (VCU) School of Medicine in the Department of Family Medicine and Population Health from 2004 to 2017. She held a joint appointment at the VCU Massey Cancer Center, an NCI-designated cancer center and was a member of the VCU Center on Health Disparities.
Dr. Jones’ track record in translational research and community collaboration is important as we develop our portfolio of community-engaged research—a major priority for the department and College of Public Health. She is a behavioral, cancer epidemiologist whose research focuses on colorectal cancer prevention, particularly screening and its barriers and predictors, community-based intervention and group randomized trials, multi-level interventions, and dissemination and implementation science. She translates national policy agendas, particularly related to colorectal cancer screening, into research hypotheses that can be tested and have significant potential to benefit the public’s health. She values interdisciplinary collaborative approaches to problem solving and most recently, she partnered with colleagues and community members locally and nationally as principal investigator (PI) of two large community-based projects to increase colorectal cancer screening. These multi-level interventions include CRCS-WISDM, which combines shared decision-making in rural primary care practice with features targeted to all community residents, and MyCRCS, a NCI-funded study, which developed and is currently evaluating an interactive, web-based decision support tool that is integrated with the electronic medical record. In addition, she is principal investigator of a study funded by the Water Foundation exploring health and psychosocial impacts of PFAS-contaminated drinking water exposure. She is also the site PI of a CDC/ATSDR-funded grant assessing the association of PFAS-contaminated drinking water and health.
Dr. Jones has extensive experience with course development and educational programming. At VCU she served as director of the doctoral program in epidemiology and oversaw the School of Medicine’s MPH program and its re-accreditation by the Council on Education for Public Health. She is a skilled instructor, having received three awards for excellence in teaching within the School of Medicine at VCU.
Dr. Jones is a fellow in the American College of Epidemiology and is well known within the American Public Health Association (APHA) and national organizations related to cancer research. She has held several leadership positions in APHA including chair of the Executive Board and a governing councilor; she is currently on the Science Board. Her strong ties in the profession will be of immense use to the College of Public Health as we build our reputation within the community of accredited Schools of Public Health.