Vicki Freimuth, former director of the Office of Communication at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, has joined the health communication faculty at UGA. She holds joint professorships in the speech communication department and in the Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication.
Freimuth founded the CDC’s Office of Communication and served in the Office of the Director through the tenure of three successive CDC chiefs. Her expertise in the field of communication spans 25 years and has resulted in significant contributions to the study and practice of disease prevention and health promotion.
Prior to her appointment at the CDC, Freimuth was the director of health communication and a professor at the University of Maryland in College Park. It was here that she developed the first graduate program in the nation with a health communications focus, an approach many universities have since emulated.
Freimuth currently serves on the advisory board for the National Cancer Institute’s Extraordinary Opportunity initiative in cancer communications and has been a consultant for numerous health organizations such as the World Bank, the World Health Organization and USAID.
She earned a bachelor of science degree in education from Eastern Illinois University, a master’s degree in rhetoric and public address from the University of Iowa and a Ph.D. in communication theory and research from Florida State University.