About

Linda A. McCauley, PhD, RN, began her appointment as Dean of Nell Hodgson Woodruff School of Nursing (NHWSN) in 2009. She has since developed and executed a comprehensive strategic plan to position NHWSN at the forefront of nursing research, education, and policy. This plan has been successful, in large part, because it emphasizes the potential of nurses and nursing students as leaders in healthcare innovation. The School’s Innovation Initiative has enabled remarkable achievements such as the Emory Nursing Learning Center (ENLC), the Center for Data Science, and Project NeLL. Under Dean McCauley’s leadership, the school has risen from its No. 26 ranking in 2011 to its current position as No. 2 in US News and World Report’s “Best Graduate Nursing Schools” guide. In 2021, NHWSN’s undergraduate program debuted as No. 4 in the first-ever US News undergraduate nursing rankings as well.

Dean McCauley’s own research—for which she has been consistently funded for over two decades—lies at the intersection of nursing and environmental and occupational health sciences. She is an advocate for worker’s rights and environmental justice and frequently contributes to federal reports/proceedings regarding these issues. A core thread across her research history is a dedication to working with communities from the inception of an idea to the widespread sharing of new knowledge created from research findings. For instance, her longstanding partnership with the Farmworkers Association of Florida involves collaborating with farmworkers to study the health impacts of heat stress (such as kidney disease) in agricultural settings.

In 2015, she secured what was then the largest NIH research grant in school history—$5 million to develop the Children’s Environmental Health Research Center at Emory. Today, she and her team are partnering with communities, experts across disciplines, and organizations across sectors to implement and share the Center’s findings. The National Institute of Environmental Health Science (NIEHS), awarded $4 million in 2022 to fund the new phase of this work in a grant titled, the Center for Children’s Health Assessment, Research Translation, and Combating Environmental Racism (CHARTER). CHARTER’s scope includes translating environmental health knowledge with/for communities using novel communication methods such as augmented reality (AR), virtual reality (VR), app-based programming, and interactive web capabilities.

Dean McCauley serves on the National Academy of Medicine’s (NAM’s) Governing Council and the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA’s) Children’s Health Protection Advisory Committee (CHPAC). In 2020, she was named an Honorary Fellow of the Royal College of Nursing and, in 2016, she was inducted into the Sigma Theta Tau International Nursing Hall of Fame. She is a Fellow of both the American Academy of Nursing and the American Academy of Occupational Health Nurses as well. Dean McCauley is thought of as an entrepreneurial leader and is a sought-after expert in nursing business and innovation.

Areas of Expertise

Administration and Leadership
Vulnerable Populations

Publications

McCauley L (2014).  Advancing Professionalism:  Research and Evidence-Based Practice.  In R. V. Moore and R.L. Moore (Eds.), Fundamentals of Occupational and Environmental Health Nursing:  AAOHN Core Curriculum, 4th ed., (pp. 607 – 635).  Pensacola:  AAOHN Academy/Publishers.

McCauley L (2014 ed. in process).  Epidemiology of Chemical Warfare Agents.  In R Gupta and T. Satoh (Eds.), Anticholinesterase pesticides:  Metabolism, Neurotoxicity and Epidemiology.  Philadelphia:  Elsevier Publishers.

Runkle, J.; Flocks, J.; Economos, J.; Tovar-Aguilar, J.A.; McCauley, L. Occupational Risks and Pregnancy and Infant Health Outcomes in Florida Farmworkers. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2014, 11, 7820-7840.

Jianghong, L, Leung P, McCauley L, Pinto-Martin, J., Wang, Y., Li, L., Yan, C., & Rogan, W.J. Blood Lead Levels and Children's Behavioral and Emotional Problems: A Cohort Study. JAMA Pediatrics.  2014 Aug; 168(8):737-45. DOI: 10.1001/jamapediatrics.2014.332. PubMed PMID: 25090293; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4152857.

Jianghong L, Leung P, McCauley L, Yuexian A, Pinto-Martin J (2013). Mother’s environmental tobacco smoke exposure during pregnancy and externalizing behavior problems in children. Neurotoxicology. 34 (2013):167-174.

Runkle, JD, Flocks J, Tover-Aguilar J, Economos J, McCauley L., Williams B, Muniz, JF & Semple, M. (2013).   Pesticide Risk Perception and Biomarkers of Exposure in Florida Female Farmworkers. Journal of Occupational Environmental Medicine. Nov; 5(11):1286-92.  DOI:  10.1097/JOM.0b013e3182973396.

Flocks, J., Vi Thien Mac, V., Runkle, J., Tovar-Aguilar, J., Economos, J., &  McCauley, L. (2013).  Female Farmworkers’ Perceptions of Heat-Related Illness and Pregnancy Health.  Journal of Agromedicine.  18 (4):350-8.  DOI:  10.1080/1059924X.2013.826607.

McCauley, L., Runkle, J., Samples, J., Williams, B., Muniz, J., Semple, M., & Shadbeh, H. (2013).  Oregon Indigenous Farmworkers:  Results of Promotor Intervention on Pesticide Knowledge and Organophosphate Metabolite Levels.  Journal of Occupational Environmental Medicine.  55 (10):  1164-70.  DOI:  10.1097/JOM.0b013e31829b28e4.

Kelley, M.A., Flocks, J., Economos, J., & McCauley, L. (2013).  Female Farmworkers’ Health Druing Pregnancy:  Health Care Providers’ Perspectives.  Workplace Health and Safety.  61(7):  308-13.  DOI:  10.3928/21650799-20130617-07.  Epub2013 Jun 24.

Marin, T., Moore, J., Kosmetaos, N., Roback, J., Weiss, P., Higgins, M., McCauley, L., Strickland, O., & Josephson, C. ( 2013).  Red Blood Cell Transfusion-related Necrotizing Enterocolitis in Very-Low-Birthweight Infants:  A Near-Infrared Spectroscopy Investigation.  Transfusion.  53(11):  2650-8.  DOI:  10.1111/trf.12158.  Epub 2013 Mar 11.

McCauley, L, Runkle, J, Samples, J, Williams, B, Muniz, J, Semple, M, Shadbeh, N, (2013). Oregon Indigenous Farmworkers: Results of Promotor Intervention on Pesticide Knowledge and Organophosphate Metabolite Levels. Journal of Environmental Medicine Oct:55:164-170.

Teaching

Research

Dean McCauley has more than 25 years of experience in conducting interdisciplinary studies focused on occupational and environmental studies of working populations and their children.  She has led a large study funded by the CDC/NIOSH on “Pregnancy Health Among Florida Farmworkers”.  This work was followed by a National Center for Health Disparities and Minority Research funded study of “Prevention and Reduction of Adverse Health Effects of Pesticides on Indigenous Farmworkers”.  She has extensive experience in the area of environmental health and nursing, and a demonstrated record of successful and productive research projects in protecting and improving human health and is frequently asked to serve as a consultant or in an advisory capacity for farmworker health issues.  Most recently and in partnership with the Farmworker Association of Florida (FWAF), Dean McCauley is conducting community-based participatory research among pregnant farmworkers that focuses on the effects of heat exposure on the health of farmworkers.

Awards