Karen A. McDonnell is an associate professor in the Department of Prevention and Community Health at Milken Institute School of Public Health at the George Washington University and director of the Doctor in Public Health Program in Health Behavior.
Professor McDonnell is a public health psychologist whose interest lies in applying innovative and responsive methods to better the health and well-being of women, children and communities. "In public health we are looking beyond risk towards resilience. We are working with people and communities, to build upon our collective strengths to create greater capacity for ensuring health." says Dr. McDonnell, whose areas of expertise include maternal and child health, syndemics research, gender based violence, program planning and evaluation, stress/coping/quality of life, child development, and public health policy: locally and globally. As the director for the Milken Institute SPH's Doctor in Public Health Program, Dr. McDonnell guides Doctoral and Master's degree students pursuing a multi-disciplinary approach to the health and well-being of women, children, families and communities. In addition to her appointments at the school, she is an adjunct at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, where she has also served as a consultant to its Women and Children's Health Policy Center, its Center for the Prevention of Youth Violence and its Center for Injury Research and Policy. Dr McDonnell is the recipient of the 2009 ASPH Early Career in Public Health Teaching Award, ASPH Academy of Distinguished Teachers, and the 2011 Milken Institute SPH Excellence in Teaching Award.