July 7, 2021

Michael Thomsen, Ph.D., Named Director of UAMS Center for the Study of Obesity

Michael Thomsen, Ph.D., has been named the director of the Center for the Study of Obesity in the Fay W. Boozman College of Public Health (COPH) at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS).
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The Center for the Study of Obesity will develop not only active research programs related to obesity prevention but also provide technical assistance and leadership in the public health practice community throughout the state to prevent and reduce obesity among Arkansans.

Dr. Thomsen comes to UAMS from the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville (UA) and the University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture, where he has worked for the past 23 years. Most recently, he served as a professor in the Department of Agricultural Economics and Agribusiness.

“I am excited for this opportunity to put my research expertise to use by growing the Center for the Study of Obesity,” said Thomsen. “I look forward to building relationships and collaborating with partners at UAMS and outside UAMS to improve the health of Arkansans.”

Dr. Thomsen’s research emphasizes the interface between the food distribution system and human health. His work has improved understanding of environmental contributors to excess weight gain among Arkansas school children and has helped identify student populations at high risk for childhood obesity. He is also studying the role of nutrition programs in addressing food insecurity and improving diet and health outcomes.

Dr. Thomsen is also a team member of the newly formed area of interest, Community Access to Healthy Foods (CAHF), of the Healthy Active Arkansas initiative. We are very excited about Dr. Thomsen’s new role at UAMS and in the College of Public Health. We look forward to his much needed contributions to not only the Center of the Study of Obesity, but to Healthy Active Arkansas’s new direction focusing on community access to healthy foods and physical activity.

To read the full UAMS news release, please visit here.

Want to learn more about HAA or get involved with one of the three areas of change? Send us your contact information and we’ll be in touch.