Derek Chapman, Ph.D.

Derek Chapman, Ph.D.Associate Professor Interim Director for Research, VCU Center on Society and Health

Department: Division of Epidemiology

Phone: (804) 628-4055


One Capitol Square, 5th Floor, Room 5014
830 E. Main Street
Richmond, VA 23219


PhD - University of Miami, 1999

MS - University of Miami, 1998

BA - University of Cincinnati, 1993

Academic Training and Positions

Dec 2013-present Associate Director for Research, VCU Center on Society and Health School of Medicine, Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, VA

Oct 2004-present Assistant Professor, Division of Epidemiology, Department of Family Medicine and Population Health (formerly Epidemiology and Community Health) School of Medicine, Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, VA

Oct 2004-Dec 2013 State Maternal & Child Health Epidemiologist Virginia Department of Health, Richmond, VA

Dec 2003–Jul 2004 Director of Research Tennessee Department of Health, Nashville, TN

Aug 2002–Dec 2003 Director of Epidemiology & GIS Tennessee Department of Health, Nashville, TN

Jun 2000–Aug 2002 Epidemiologist Tennessee Department of Health, Nashville, TN

Jul 1999–Jun 2000 National Institutes of Health (NIH) Post-doctoral Fellow University of Miami, Coral Gables, FL

Research Expertise

Maternal and child health epidemiology; the intersection of biologic (e.g., preterm/low birthweight) and social (e.g., mother-infant interactions) factors on children's school readiness; social determinants of children's health and development.

Teaching Expertise

Maternal & Child Health Epidemiology: EPID 622. Fall Semester course; 3 lecture hours. 3 credits. Prerequisite: EPID 571. Exposes students to current issues in maternal and child health (MCH). Introduces students to current issues in maternal and child health (MCH). Particular emphasis will be placed on social determinants of health and how policy and neighborhood factors influence health. Students will learn how to use ArcView GIS software to map place based factors and learn how to incorporate place based data (e.g., Census data) into their research. Students will also learn about key MCH topics including family planning, preterm/low birth weight, infant mortality, birth defects and developmental disabilities, injury prevention, and oral health.

Applied Data Analysis Lab I & II (Small Group Leader): EPID 547-L01/EPID 547-L01.Lab sessions will focus on hands-on data analysis and presentation techniques using SAS statistical software. The labs will also provide exercises to help students more fully understand the statistical principles presented in the corequisite lecture course (BIOS 547/ BIOS 548).


  • 2009 & 2012 - Virginia Commonwealth University School of Medicine Outstanding Teacher Award in the Department of Epidemiology and Community Health
  • Dec 2012, Best Poster Award, Data and Scientific Research Track, 18th Annual Maternal and Child Health Epidemiology (MCH EPI) Conference, San Antonio, TX.
  • VCU Public Health Student Association Award for Best Elective Course (EPID 622, Fall 2016 and Fall 2017)
  • 2017-18 VCU Public Health Student Association Award for “Extraordinary effort in teaching and mentoring”
  • 2018-19 VCU Public Health Student Association Award for "Extraordinary effort in teaching and mentoring for MPH students"
  • Member, Virginia Commonwealth University Delta Eta chapter of The Delta Omega Honorary Society in Public Health

Professional Affiliations

  • American Public Health Association (APHA)
  • Virginia Public Health Association (VPHA)
  • Council of State and Territorial Epidemiologists (CSTE)

Selected Publications

  • Chapman, D. A., Hill, L., Zimmerman, E. B., Haley, A., Phillips, R. L. & Woolf, S. H. (2016). Social Determinants of Health: Their Influence on Personal Choice, Environmental Exposures, and Health Care. In: Erwin PC and Brownson RC, eds. Scutchfield and Keck’s Principles of Public Health Practice, 4th edition (pp. 22-49). Boston, MA: Cengage Learning
  • Woolf, S. H., Chapman, D. A., Scutchfield, F. D. (2016). Geographic health disparities in Kentucky: starting a conversation about loc olutions. Frontiers in Public Health Services & Systems Research, 5(3),1–7. DOI: 10.13023/ s
  • Chapman, D. A., & Gray, G. (2013). Developing a Maternally Linked Birth Dataset to Study the Intergenerational Transmission of Low Birthweight in Virginia. Maternal and Child Health Journal. Advance online publication. doi:10.1007/s10995-013-1277-y.
  • Chapman, D. A., Stampfel, C., Bodurtha, J., Dodson, K., Pandya, A., Lynch, K. B., & Kirby, R. S. (2011). The impact of co-occurring birth defects on the timeliness of newborn hearing screening and diagnosis. American Journal of Audiology, 20, 132-139.
  • Chapman, D. A., Ford, N., Tlusty, S., & Bodurtha, J. (2011). Evolution of an Integrated Public Health Surveillance System. Journal of Registry Management, 38(1), 15-23.TEST
  • Chapman, D. A., Scott, K. G., & Stanton-Chapman, T. L. (2008). A public health approach to the study of mental retardation. American Journal on Mental Retardation, 113, 102-116.
  • Chapman, D. A., Scott, K. G., & Mason, C. A. (2002). Early risk factors for mental retardation: The role of maternal age and maternal education. American Journal on Mental Retardation, 107, 46-59.
  • Chapman, D. A. & Scott, K. G. (2001). Intergenerational Risk Factors and Child Development. Developmental Review, 21, 305-325.

Non-Peer Reviewed (Reports)

Woolf, S.H, Aron, L., Chapman, D. A., Dubay, L., Zimmerman, E., Kelley, L. C., et al. (October 2016). The Health of the States: How U.S. states compare in health status and the factors that shape health.

Virginia Early Childhood Foundation (Chapman, D. A., Jonas, D.). (2016). Virginia’s School Readiness Report Card 2016.

Zimmerman, E., Haley, A., Walker, A., Woolf, S., Nguyen, K., Shue, W., Kelley, L., Hellman, J., Chapman, D. A., & The Engaging Richmond Team. (Spring 2016). Health Equity in Richmond, Virginia.

Woolf, S. W., Chapman, D. A., Cohen, S. A., Johnson, R., Sabo, R., Wheeler, D., & Kelley, L. (October 2015). Calculating Life Expectancy By U.S. Census Tracts.

Aron, L., Dubay, L., Zimmerman, E., Simon, S., Chapman, D. A., & Woolf, S. H. (April 2015). Can Income-Related Policies Improve Population Health?

Virginia Early Childhood Foundation (Blank, S., Chapman, D. A., Fuller, S., Jonas, D., Koonce, P., Pianta, R., Ramey, C., Ramey, S., & Sullivan, A.). (2013). Virginia’s Biennial School Readiness Report Card 2013.

Lay Press Interviews or Publications

9/29/16 Senator Bernie Sanders (Twitter) - The struggle over income and wealth inequality is the struggle over whether all people have the opportunity to live long and healthy lives

9/26/16 The Washington Post - Here’s how life spans in the Washington region vary by jurisdiction

6/7/16 The Washington PostBeing a few miles apart in Northern Virginia can mean very different life expectancies

5/7/16 WURD - Same city, but very different life spans

4/18/15 New York Times - Same city, but very different life spans

4/29/15 WTVR - Why neighbors in one part of Richmond live 20 years longer than those just 5 miles away

11/11/15 WRIC - Richmond’s great divide

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