Rudd Alumni: Kristen Cooksey-Stowers, PhD

Kristen Cooksey Stowers

Dr. Kristen Cooksey Stowers is currently an Assistant Professor in Health Disparities Research in the Allied Health Department at the University of Connecticut. Previously, Kristen worked as a Postdoctoral Fellow at the Rudd Center, focusing on research to address how public policy influences inequities in obesity prevalence through community food retail environments that are considered “food swamps.”
Dr. Cooksey Stowers earned her B.S. from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and a Master’s in Public Policy from Johns Hopkins University. She earned her Ph.D. in Public Policy in 2016 from Duke University, where she was a Dean’s Graduate Fellow and National Institutes of Health Pre-doctoral Fellow with the Add Health Parent Study. Her dissertation examined zoning restrictions on fast food as an obesity prevention strategy.
Dr. Cooksey Stowers’ research with the UConn Rudd Center will focus on strategies to improve the nutritional quality of foods that flow through the emergency food system, with an emphasis on food banks. She will also work on refining WellSAT-I as a reliable measure of school wellness policy implementation.