Getting to Know You: Jeannette David

The College of Public Health has welcomed ten new faculty this fall who we want to introduce to the wider CPH community. Up this week is Jeannette David, who has joined the Institute for Disaster Management as a clinical assistant professor.

What brought you to the field of public health? 

​I worked for the American Red Cross in disaster response on the local level for 11 years when I was offered an opportunity to work on the state level with the Georgia Department of Public Health where I managed the state’s disaster mental health program for 17 years. Disaster mental health is a public health approach that provides practical and emotional support to disaster survivors through psychoeducation and outreach.

What excites you or motivates you about your research? ​

My field is disaster mental health, and people are often reluctant to embrace anything related to mental health due to the stigma. Data enables me to help others see the value in devoting resources to improve mental health for the public health and healthcare workforces and the general population.

How have you partnered with communities to improve health? Is there service or outreach work you’d like to do in Athens or Georgia? ​

At the American Red Cross, I worked with emergency management agencies, houses of worship, public health, fire departments and other community partners ​in three Metro Atlanta counties to create a unified network for disaster response. In my previous position at the State, I built partnerships on the local, state, national and international levels. Now I’m leveraging many of those partnerships to create a program, which is part of the Georgia CNA Career Pathway Initiative, to support nursing home staff in dealing with stress and distress.

What are you looking forward to this Fall semester? 

​I’m not teaching this semester and that allows me to focus on my work with the Georgia CNA Career Pathway Initiative. It’s exciting for me to be part of this amazing team, especially working with some of my former students who are interning at IDM. I’m looking forward to getting some training sessions with nursing home staff and others scheduled for the coming year.

Last one – what do you do for fun? 

​I’m an avid sports fan, especially baseball and basketball. I practice yoga daily, I’m sort of a foodie but not a snob and I enjoy traveling to visit family and life-long friends.

Posted on November 15, 2022.