Interim Associate Dean, Community Engagement and Professor, Public Health
Community, Environment & Policy Department
Professor, BIO5 Institute
Paloma I. Beamer, Ph.D., is interim Associate Dean for Community Engagement and Professor in the College of Public Health at the University of Arizona. She holds joint appointments as an professor of Chemical & Environmental Engineering and as a research scientist in the Asthma and Airway Disease Research Center. She is the Director of the WEST Environmental Justice Center, a Thriving Communities Technical Assistance Center funded by EPA and DOE. She is the Community Engagement Core Director for the Southwest Environmental Health Sciences Center (NIEHS P30). She is an environmental engineer by training and earned her BS from the University of California Berkeley and her MS and PhD from Stanford University. Her research focuses on understanding how individuals are exposed to environmental contaminants and the health risks of these exposures with a special focus on vulnerable populations, including children, low-wage immigrant workers, Native Americans and those in the US-Mexico Border Region. The ultimate goal of her work is to develop more effective interventions and policies for prevention of avoidable cases of certain diseases such as asthma.
Dr. Beamer has received a Mentored Quantitative Research Award from NIH, a Scientific Technological Achievement Award (Level I) from the US EPA. She has served on the Board of Scientific Counselors for both US EPA and ATSDR. Dr. Beamer is the Past President for the International Society of Exposure Science. She is currently an Associate Editor for Environmental Health Perspectives. She is a lifetime member of the Society for Hispanic Professional Engineers (SHPE) and the Society for the Advancement of Chicanos and Native Americans in Science (SACNAS).
EHS 426/526 (Fall Semesters): Topics in Environmental Justice
EHS 653 (Spring Semesters): Applied Exposure Assessment
EHS 696R (Spring Semesters): Environmental and Occupational Health Seminar
Dr. Beamer uses field sampling, GIS, computer modeling and laboratory techniques in her research. She has led multiple studies to collect of multi-media exposure samples for metals, pesticides and VOCs with minority and rural populations. She has also developed an exposure and dose simulation model for children’s exposures to pesticides, a model that quantifies the transport of outdoor contaminants to the home environment, and a model focused on transfer of viruses via hand contacts.
Dr. Beamer is also an expert in the collection and quantification of key exposure factors aimed at improving risk assessment. She is currently funded by NIH for a to conduct a clinical trial to assess the effectiveness of a promotoras intervention at reducing exposures in small businesses like auto repair shops or beauty salons. During the COVID-19 pandemic that project has been expanded to include a “tele-promotora” program and to understand how work practices and risk perceptions have changed during the pandemic.