Samuel D. Towne, Ph.D., MPH, CPH
Health Management and Informatics
Dr. Towne’s major research focus includes: 1) Social and Structural Determinants of Health Disparities (e.g., rural and minority health, the intersection of health and place); 2) Aging; and 3) Global Health.
His work spans studies focused on public health (e.g., policy-relevant issues) in the US and abroad (e.g., China) related to health disparities. He is a central member of several cross-disciplinary teams involving public health (e.g., health policy), public affairs, urban planning, medicine, geography, and nursing seeking to tackle problems from multiple social ecological levels.
Dr. Towne’s primary faculty appointment is in the Department of Health Management and Informatics with a joint appointment with the Disability, Aging, and Technology Cluster at the University of Central Florida. He is also a faculty associate with the Center for Population Health and Aging and the Southwest Rural Health Research Center both at Texas A&M University. He also holds an adjunct faculty position in the Department of Environmental and Occupational Health at Texas A&M University.
He is the recipient of multiple national awards including the Judy K. Black Early Career Research Award from AAHB and has led or co-authored more than 60 peer-reviewed scientific articles published in national and international journals.
Postdoctoral Training, Health Disparities and Aging Research, School of Public Health, Texas A&M University Health Science Center
Doctor of Philosophy (PhD), Health Services Policy and Management, Arnold School of Public Health, University of South Carolina
Master of Public Health (MPH), Health Promotion and Health Education, Brooks College of Health, University of North Florida
Bachelor of Science (BS), Psychology, College of Arts and Sciences, University of North Florida
Areas of Expertise
- Health Services Research
- Health Policy
- Medical Geography
- Social and Structural Determinants of Health Disparities
- Global Health
Recent Honors and Awards
- Butler-Williams Scholars Program (formerly: Summer Institute on Aging Research).
U.S. Department of Health & Human Services. National Institutes of Health. National Institute on Aging. NIH Campus, Bethesda, MD. (2018 Class; July 30 – August 3, 2018)
- Recipient. National Institutes of Health (NIH) Loan Repayment Program: Health Disparities Research Award 2018 – 2019. Research Project: Rural and Minority Aging Research
Funding Awarded: $35,000
- Recipient. National Institutes of Health (NIH) Loan Repayment Program: Health Disparities Research Award 2015 – 2017. Research Project: Rural and Minority Aging Research
Funding Awarded: $66,187.99
Non-Federal Awards & Fellowships
- Recipient. 2017 Judy K. Black Early Career Research Award. American Academy of Health Behavior.
- Recipient. 2016 Texas A&M Health Science Center, School of Public Health, Faculty Best Paper Award. Study: Geographic variations in access and utilization of cancer screening services: Examining disparities among American Indian and Alaska Native Elders.
Zhou Z, Mao F, Zhang W, Towne SD Jr, Wang P, Fang Y. (2019). The association between loneliness and cognitive impairment among older men and women in China: A nationwide longitudinal study. International Journal of Environmental Research & Public Health. 2019 Aug 12;16(16). pii: E2877. DOI PubMed PMID: 31408955. [2017 Journal Ranking: Q2; 2018 Impact Factor: 2.468; SSCI, SCIE]. +international collaboration
Zhou Z, Lin C, Ma J, Towne SD Jr, Han Y, Fang Y. (2019). The Association of Social Isolation on the Risk of Stroke among Middle-aged and Older Adults in China. American Journal of Epidemiology. 2019 May 31. pii: kwz099. DOI [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 31150041. [2017 Journal Ranking: Q1; 2018 Impact Factor: 4.473; SCI, SCIE] +international collaboration Note: 2018 journal ranking: 17th in “Epidemiology” by Scimago Journal & Country Rank
Smith ML, Towne SD Jr, Herrera-Venson A, Cameron K, Horel S, Ory MG, Gilchrist C, Schneider E, DiCocco C, Skowronski S. (2018). Delivery of Fall Prevention Interventions for At-Risk Older Adults in Rural Areas: Findings from a National Dissemination. International Journal of Environmental Research & Public Health. 2018, 15(12), 2798; DOI
Towne SD Jr, Smith ML, Xu M, Lee S, Sharma S, Smith D, Li Y, Fucci Y, Ory MG. (2019). Trends in Geospatial Drivers of Fall-related Hospitalizations and Asset Mapping of Fall Prevention Interventions for Vulnerable Older Adults. Journal of Aging and Health. 2019 Jan 7:898264318822381. DOI
Callaghan T, Ferdinand AO, Akinlotan M, Towne SD Jr, Bolin JN. (2019). The Changing Landscape of Diabetes Mortality in the United States across Region and Rurality, 1999-2016. Journal of Rural Health. 2019 Feb 25. DOI
Ferdinand AO, Akinlotan MA, Callaghan T, Towne SD Jr, Bolin JN. (2019). Diabetes-Related Hospital Mortality in the U.S.: A Pooled Cross-sectional Study of the National Inpatient Sample. Journal of Diabetes and its Complications. May;33(5):350-355. DOI
Funded Projects (selected)
Co-Investigator. National Institutes of Health (NIH)-R01. Fighting Obesity by Reinventing Public Transportation: A Natural Experiment.
Co-Investigator. National Cancer Institute of NIH—R01. Physical Activity Impacts of a Planned Activity-Friendly Community: The What, Where, When and Why of Environmental Approaches to Obesity Prevention.
Co-Investigator. National Institutes of Health (NIH)-Administrative Supplement: Dementia-Friendly Communities to Promote Active Living in Persons with AD/ADRD. (Parent Grant: Physical Activity Impacts of a Planned Activity-Friendly Community: The What, Where, When and Why of Environmental Approaches to Obesity Prevention).
- American Public Health Association
- American Academy of Health Behavior
- Cancer Alliance of Texas
- Gerontological Society of America
- Institute for Healthcare Improvement
- Health Disparities, Education, Awareness, Research & Training Consortium (HDEART) Health Equity Scholars & Alumni Network