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Provost Announces New Dean For School Of Public Health

Renowned infectious disease expert Shawn Gibbs will head public health programs in College Station and McAllen, Texas.
By Kelli Reynolds, Texas A&M University Office of Provost Communications March 23, 2020

a headshot of Shawn Gibbs
Shawn Gibbs, incoming dean of the School of Public Health

Texas A&M Provost Communications

Texas A&M University Provost and Executive Vice President Carol A. Fierke has announced Shawn Gibbs as the incoming dean of the School of Public Health. His appointment, effective May 1, 2020, is based on the recommendation of the internal search advisory committee and was confirmed by Texas A&M President Michael K. Young and The Texas A&M University System.

Gibbs will oversee the undergraduate, graduate and doctoral programs of the school’s programs in College Station and McAllen, Texas.

“We are fortunate to welcome a scholar with such a stellar record in the health sciences, including vast expertise in infectious diseases,” Fierke said. “Dr. Gibbs will lead our School of Public Health to new levels to train the future health leaders and carry out innovative and impactful research.”

Gibbs currently serves as executive associate dean and professor of environmental and occupational health at the Indiana University School of Public Health-Bloomington. He has more than 100 peer-reviewed articles in industrial hygiene and environmental exposure assessment, focusing on environmental microbiology and disrupting transmission of highly infectious diseases. He is a member of USEPA Board of Scientific Counselors for Homeland Security.

Before joining Indiana University School of Public Health, Gibbs was a professor at the Department of Environmental, Agricultural & Occupational Health at the University of Nebraska Medical Center’s College of Public Health.

A fellow of the Big Ten Academic Alliance Academic Leadership Program, Gibbs was named a 2006 U.S. Faculty Fulbright Scholar to Egypt, and he has been a principal investigator of three Fulbright Junior Faculty Development Programs in Egypt and Libya. His research has helped determine national policies, procedures and best practices for responders and healthcare workers to safely treat patients with Ebola virus disease, COVID-19 and other highly infectious diseases.

Gibbs is principal investigator of the Biosafety and Infectious Disease Training Initiative, a National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences-funded consortium, and has multiple global projects associated with addressing and disrupting the spread of highly infectious diseases.

His previous leadership roles included organizations and centers such as activity lead of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)-funded National Ebola Training and Education Center; co-core director of the Hispanic Health Disparities Research Center at the University of Texas School of Public Health and University of Texas at El Paso; core director for the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health-funded Central States Center for Agricultural Safety and Health; and director of research for the CDC/HHS-funded Nebraska Biocontainment Unit.

Currently, he is heavily involved in national efforts and projects related to worker training programs in Hazardous Materials Disaster Preparedness Training and Hazardous Waste Worker Training. Additionally, he is a national leader in the research, training and policy related to national and international responses to highly infectious disease outbreaks, including developing procedures for aeromedical evacuation isolation.

Gibbs received a bachelor’s degree in biology from The Ohio State University in Columbus. He also received a master of science in environmental engineering from the University of Cincinnati, and a master of business administration (agribusiness) from the University of Nebraska at Lincoln. He received a doctor of philosophy in environmental science from the University of Cincinnati.

Media contact: Kelli Reynolds,

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