Mendola back at UB as chair of epidemiology and environmental health


BUFFALO, NY – Pauline Mendola received her bachelor’s (’85), master’s (’90) and doctorate (’84) degrees from the University at Buffalo. She began her professional career as a clerk in what is now the Department of Epidemiology and Environmental Health. After earning her doctorate in epidemiology and community health, she was for a time a faculty member of the department.

Now Mendola, a renowned researcher on environmental factors influencing women’s health and reproductive health across the lifespan, returns to the university as department chair.

After extensive national research, she will join the Department of Epidemiology and Environmental Health in the School of Public Health and Health Professions this fall.

Mendola is currently a tenured researcher in the Epidemiology Branch of the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD). She has also been an assistant professor at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill since 2011.

Mendola’s research interests include the impact of chronic disease during pregnancy and, later in life, chronic disease that may be associated with pregnancy complications. She currently manages research projects – including clinical epidemiology, laboratory science and flow cytometry, exposure assessment and gene expression studies – with total budgets approaching $12 million. .

“I am grateful that Dr. Mendola chose our school to pursue her professional career,” said Jean Wactawski-Wende, PhD, Dean of the School of Public Health and Health Professions. “His dedication, hard work and impeccable scholarship have led to remarkable success. All of its work fits perfectly into our mission and adds to the department’s research portfolio in several areas, including maternal and child health.

Mendola says she can’t wait to get started.

“Despite these difficult times for the health of our nation, I take comfort in the strength of our profession to rise to the challenge,” Mendola said.

“Deep roots in Buffalo and a passion for environmental health fuel my excitement to work with our faculty to make UB’s Department of Epidemiology and Environmental Health a major force for leadership in research and practice in population health,” added Mendola.

A prolific scholar with more than 160 peer-reviewed publications, Mendola is associate editor of Fertility and Sterility, the journal of the American Society for Reproductive Medicine.

Previously, she served as a Division Head at the Environmental Protection Agency (2003-07) and the National Center for Health Statistics (2007-11), where she was part of a team of leadership that has led and developed science programs relevant to policy makers, advanced science in areas with critical data gaps, and provided data on the nation’s health.

She is the first researcher from the NICHD Division of Intramural Population Health Research invited to present in the NIH Directors’ Seminar Series.

Mendola will succeed Jo L. Freudenheim, PhD, SUNY Professor Emeritus, who successfully led the department for many years.


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