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National Cancer Institute

Lisa M. Klesges, PhD

Lisa Klesges, PhD


Senior Advisor

Email Address

Dr. Lisa M. Klesges, PhD is a Senior Advisor in Implementation Science and Public Health in the Office of the Director in the Division of Cancer Control and Population Sciences (DCCPS) at the National Cancer Institute (NCI) as part of an IPA assignment. Her responsibilities include special projects in overlapping areas of implementation science, precision medicine, and public health, in particular support of ongoing advancements in implementation science research related to precision cancer control and population health.  In addition to her work at NCI, Dr. Klesges holds an appointment as Professor of Epidemiology at the University of Memphis (2008-current), where she is the former Founding Dean of the School of Public Health. Previously, she held academic positions at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital (2006-2008), the Mayo Clinic College of Medicine (2004-2006), and the University of Tennessee Health Science Center, Department of Preventive Medicine (1995-2004).

Dr. Klesges received her B.A. in Psychology from Concordia College in Moorhead, MN; M.S. in Psychology from University of Memphis with a concentration in quantitative methods, and her Ph.D. in epidemiology from University of Minnesota with a concentration in behavioral epidemiology. She has been a principal investigator or co-investigator on over 50 funded projects supported by NIH, national foundations, and local agencies. Her research interests include obesity prevention, cancer prevention and control, sickle cell disease transitions in care, and translational research methods with her work published widely in journals of public health, behavioral science, epidemiology, and medicine.

Dr. Klesges is a Fellow in the Society of Behavioral Medicine and the American College of Epidemiology; and is a Past-President of the Society of Behavioral Medicine. She served as associate editor for the Annals of Behavioral Medicine, and currently as consulting editor for Translational Behavioral Medicine: Practice, Policy, Research and Health Behavior and Policy Review. In addition to past local, national, and international service as a consultant and advisor, Dr. Klesges currently serves on the Health Care Industry Council of the Eighth District Federal Reserve Bank, the Board of Directors of the Church Health Center in Memphis, TN; and the Tennessee Governor’s Foundation for Health & Wellness.

Select Publications

  • Alcántara C, Klesges LM, Resnicow K, Stone A, Davidson KW. Enhancing the evidence base for excellent, feasible, and referable primary care behavioral counseling interventions in an age of health care transformation: A perspective from the Society of Behavioral Medicine. American Journal of Preventive Medicine, 49 (3 Suppl 2): S184-93, 2015.
  • Yu X, Klesges LM, Smeltzer MP, Osarogiagbon RU. Measuring improvement in populations: implementing and evaluating successful change in lung cancer care. Translational Lung Cancer Research, 4(4): 373-84, 2015.               
  • Levy M, Gentry JD, Klesges LM.  Innovations in public health education: Promoting professional development and a Culture of Health. American Journal of Public Health, 105: S44-S45, 2015.
  • Peek CJ, Glasgow RE, Stange K, Klesges LM, Purcell P, Kessler R.  The five R’s: An emerging Bold Standard for conducting relevant research in a changing world. Annals of Family Medicine, 12:447-455, 2014.
  • Kessler RS, Purcell EP, Glasgow RE, Klesges LM, Benkeser RM, Peek CJ. What does it mean to ‘employ’ the RE-AIM model?  Evaluation & the Health Professions, 36:44-66, 2012.
  • Klesges LM, Williams NA, Davis KS, Buscemi J, Kitzmann KM. External validity reporting in behavioral treatment of childhood obesity: a systematic review. American Journal of Preventive Medicine, 42(2):185–192, 2012.
  • Van Acker R, De Bourdeaudjuij I, De Cocker K, Klesges LM, Willem A, Cardon G.  Sustainability of the whole-community project ’10,000 Steps’: a longitudinal study.  BMC Public Health, 12:155-174, 2012.