Academic Ceremonies - December Commencement
December Commencement 2012 Speaker
Rachel Johnson, PhD, MPH, RD
Robert L. Bickford Jr. Green and Gold Professor of Nutrition and Professor of Medicine
Rachel Johnson is a well-known expert on national nutrition policy, pediatric nutrition, dietary intake methodology and energy metabolism. Dr. Johnson has been a member of the college’s faculty since 1991. She is the former associate provost of UVM and served as Dean of the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences from 2001 to 2008. In July of 2011, she was appointment as the Robert L. Bickford Green and Gold Professor of Nutrition in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences and is Professor of Medicine in the College of Medicine.
Dr. Johnson is a registered dietitian and holds Ph.D. and bachelor of science degrees in nutrition from the Pennsylvania State University and a master of public health from the University of Hawaii. Her research expertise covers national nutrition policy, pediatric nutrition and obesity, dietary intake methodology and energy metabolism. She has published numerous scholarly papers and book chapters on these and other topics, serves on the U.S. President’s Council on Fitness, Sports and Nutrition Science Board, and is the chair-elect of the American Heart Association’s Nutrition Committee
Rachel Johnson gained national attention for speaking out against Americans' high consumption of added sugars when she was a member of the U.S. Department of Agriculture and Department of Health and Human Services 2000 Dietary Guidelines for Americans advisory committee. She was also vocal about the 2005 updated guidelines and food guide pyramid. Her research on the effects of both flavored milk and soft drinks on children's diets has been published in the academic and popular press, as has her work on caffeine.