Dr. Paloma I. Beamer, associate professor of environmental health sciences at the University of Arizona Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health, was recently named president-elect of the International Society of Exposure Science.
[Photo: Dr. Paloma I. Beamer]
The society promotes and advances exposure science as it relates to the complex inter-relationships among human populations, communities, ecosystems, wildlife, and chemical, biological, and physical agents, and non-chemical stressors. Society members have diverse expertise and training in biological, physical, environmental, social sciences and various engineering disciplines.
As president, Dr. Beamer hopes to increase the visibility and prominence of exposure science as an essential discipline within environmental health, diversify the society’s membership and perspectives in addition to enhancing student and new researcher programs to help develop the future exposure science leaders of tomorrow for this growing field.
Dr. Beamer holds joint appointments as an associate professor of chemical and environmental engineering at the UA College of Engineering and the UA BIO5 Institute. She is a research scientist at the UA Health Sciences Asthma and Airway Disease Research Center, the UA Southwest Environmental Health Sciences Center, the UA Institute of the Environment and the UA Center for Indigenous Environmental Health Research.
Dr. Beamer’s 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 individuals living in the U.S.-Mexico border region. Dr. Beamer also is an expert in the collection and quantification of key exposure factors aimed at improving risk assessment. 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’s current research involves assessing exposures and risk perceptions of the Diné (Navajo) following the Gold King Mine Spill. She also is conducting the Tucson Air Pollution Study and working with the California Environmental Protection Agency to conduct a risk assessment for children playing soccer on artificial turf. Dr. Beamer recently was awarded a grant from National Institutes of Health (NIH) to conduct a clinical trial with promotoras (community health workers) to reduce workplace exposures in small businesses.
Dr. Beamer is the recipient of an NIH Mentored Quantitative Research Development Award, a Scientific Technological Achievement Award (Level I) from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and a Young Investigator Award from Yuma Friends of the University of Arizona Health Sciences. She was selected as one of Tucson’s “40 under 40” and as an Emerging Investigator for the international journal, Environmental Science: Processes & Impact. Dr. Beamer serves on the U.S. EPA Board of Scientific Counselors Subcommittee for Chemical Sustainability. She is a lifetime member of the Society for Hispanic Professional Engineers and the Society for the Advancement of Chicanos and Native Americans in Science.
Dr. Beamer is an environmental engineer by training and earned her Bachelor of Science from the University of California Berkeley and her master’s degree and doctorate from Stanford University.