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Anna Goodman Hoover, M.A., Ph.D., is a public health researcher and participatory communication scientist.

Dr. Hoover studies health and risk communication strategies designed to ensure that the best available scientific evidence informs individual, community, policy, and practice decisions. She has been involved professionally in translating environmental health research with UK’s Superfund Research Center for more than seventeen years, including six as co-lead of the Research Translation Core.

She also works directly with local stakeholders on many research projects intended to improve environmental health literacy and strengthen communication. Her research has examined how knowledge gaps and distrust combine to negatively affect capacity to understand health hazards and take protective action.

Dr. Hoover’s recent environmental health literacy research has surfaced stakeholder concerns about the need for more accessible, understandable, and useful health-related information to help people protect themselves from diseases that have been linked to exposures.

She previously served several years as co-director of the National Coordinating Center for Systems for Action and deputy director of the National Health Security Preparedness Index program management office, both programs of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.

A native Appalachian, Dr. Hoover centers both her research and her teaching on ensuring stakeholder-engaged and audience-centered environmental health communication supports community-engaged, evidence-informed health decisions.


  • PhD, Communication Science
    • University of Kentucky
  • MA, Communication Science
    • University of Kentucky
  • BA, History and Theatre
    • Centre College

Research Interests

  • Emergency preparedness and risk communication
  • Environmental health literacy
  • Stakeholder-centered health communication
  • Public engagement related to hazardous waste sites
  • Dissemination and implementation sciences

In the News

UK Colleges and Appalachian communities partner to reduce exposure to chemicals in drinking water

A recent National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences’ (NIEHS)

UK Researchers Study COVID-19 Vaccination Hesitancy in 5-year, $3.7 million K-VAC Project

University of Kentucky (UK) College of Public Health (CPH) researchers, in collaboration with investigators from the College of Medicine and the Co