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Kristine Tollestrup, PhD, MPH

Professor and Director, Graduate Programs

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Contact Information

Phone: (505) 272-9555

Academic Career

Tollestrup received her doctoral degree in behavioral ecology from the University of California, Berkeley, and completed a postdoctoral fellowship in behavioral ecology at the University of Chicago. She then completed her master of public health degree in epidemiology at the University of Washington. She worked with the Washington state and New Mexico departments of health before joining UNM as a founding member of the Master of Public Health program faculty.

Teaching/Research Interests

Tollestrup has more than 30 years of experience as an epidemiologist. Her research interest areas are waterborne disease epidemiology and maternal child health epidemiology. She has overseen the evaluation of several community-based intervention projects on diabetes and teen pregnancy prevention. Her research is on improving educational attainment in teen mothers using peer mentors trained in motivational interviewing, as well as on the effects of policies on encouraging teen parents to remain in school.

Tollestrup’s scholarly educational activities focus on developing approaches to teaching practical epidemiologic skills and quantitative methods for undergraduate and graduate students, public health practitioners and physicians/providers in medical settings. 

Practice and Research Pages

Professional Memberships

  • Association of Schools and Programs in Public Health
  • Association of Prevention Teaching and Research
  • American Public Health Association
  • New Mexico Public Health Association


Family Medicine Announces New Appointments
(HSCNewsBeat; April 04, 2010) ─ Martha McGrew, M.D., chair for the UNM Health Sciences School of Medicine Department of Family and Community Medicine, announces new appointments within the department.