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Faculty & Staff Honors

Faculty & Staff Honors

UMass Amherst Faculty Member to Lead Society for Pediatric and Perinatal Epidemiologic Research

University of Massachusetts-Amherst School of Public Health and Health Sciences associate professor of epidemiology Dr. Brian Whitcomb has been elected to the position of president-elect of the Society for Pediatric and Perinatal Epidemiologic Research (SPER). He will serve a three-year term on the SPER Executive Committee as President-Elect (2018-2019), President (2019-2020) and Past-President (2020-2021). He assumed the office at the 2018 Annual Meeting, which was held in Baltimore, Maryland, on June 18-19.

Formed in 1988, the Society for Pediatric and Perinatal Epidemiologic Research is an organization of individuals from a wide variety of disciplines who share a common interest: the epidemiology of pregnancy, infancy and childhood. The objective of the Society is to foster pediatric and perinatal epidemiologic research. This research includes the study of any factors that influence maternal health and the health and development of children, from their conception through their adolescence. The work presented at SPER’s annual meeting represents the cutting edge of research in pediatric and perinatal epidemiology.

[Photo: Dr. Whitcomb]

“Given my longstanding involvement with SPER, I have an appreciation for the core values of the Society – a welcoming organization that encourages development of students and newcomers to the field and provides a collegial atmosphere to promote research,” Dr. Whitcomb writes in his candidacy statement. “I hope to be able to contribute to the Society’s efforts to support the members and the field at large, while not losing sight of the importance of what has made SPER an organization that has been so enriching to, and well loved by, its members.”

Dr. Whitcomb’s research focuses on the epidemiology of adverse pregnancy outcomes and reproductive health, evaluating risk factors for miscarriage and preterm birth, menstrual cycle function, determinants of fertility and infertility, and novel epidemiologic methods. As an epidemiologist with expertise in molecular biology and inflammation as well as epidemiologic methods, he serves as a collaborator on a number of research studies.