Tracy Nelson, PhD, MPH, has a background in biobehavioral health from The Pennsylvania State University as well as cardiovascular epidemiology from The University of North Carolina. Her research has primarily focused on genetic and environmental risk factors (e.g. diet, physical activity and inflammatory factors) and chronic disease outcomes including cardiovascular, diabetes and obesity. She has used both observational and experimental designs to answer questions related to this focus area, collaborating with faculty from Health and Exercise Science, Food Science and Human Nutrition, Environmental and Radiological Health Sciences as well as from the University of Colorado, Anschutz Medical campus/Colorado School of Public Health.
Most recently, Dr. Nelson has been working with the 10th Special Forces Group (Airborne) or Green Berets at Fort Carson, Colorado. The United States Special Operations Command has developed a program called Preservation of the Force and the Family that focuses on the human, psychological, social/family and spiritual performance of these soldiers. She is helping them to evaluate and potentially strengthen the interventions that enhance these domains of performance.
Another project she is working on is in conjunction with La Clínica Tepeyac, a medical clinic in Denver. The goal of this project is to implement an innovative, community-level approach to reduce chronic disease disparities in the low-income Globeville, Elyria and Swansea (GES) neighborhoods in Denver.
Dr. Nelson has been involved with the Colorado School of Public Health since early discussions began in 2006. She became the Associate Director of the Colorado School of Public Health at Colorado State University in the Fall of 2011, she served as the lead faculty member for the Physical Activity and Healthy Lifestyles focus area for 7 years and currently serves as the lead for epidemiology.