Public Health & Recreation Faculty | PHR Professions | SIU

Southern Illinois University



College of Education and Human Services


Dr. Robert McDermott

Interim Chair, Public Health and Recreation Professions

Robert J. McDermott commenced his robust public health career as a faculty member in the Department of Health Education at Southern Illinois University Carbondale (SIUC) in 1981. He returns now as the interim department chair of the SIUC Public Health and Recreation Professions Department with 35-years of teaching, research, and writing experience as well as national and international recognition.

During his hiatus from SIUC, he greatly contributed to the public health field at the University of South Florida (USF) College of Public Health, Department of Community and Family Health, University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health, University of Cologne, Prevention Research Center through the CDC, and through multiple professional associations and peer-reviewed journals. Dr. McDermott has written over 280 scientific articles, contributed to more than 60 book chapters, and written three books – each of which has multiple editions.

Professional Interests

  • Smokeless tobacco use among youth
  • Social marketing
  • Community based prevention marketing
  • Adolescent and school health
  • Health behavior
  • Professional writing
  • Evaluation
  • International Health Education


  • PhD (1981 University of Wisconsin-Madison)
  • MS (1977 University of Wisconsin-Madison)
  • BS (1975 University of Wisconsin-Madison)

Tina Colson

Senior Lecturer, 2005

Professional Interests:
Training and development of leisure services employees, factors affecting employee retention, planning and designing of recreational facilities, facilitation of therapeutic and inclusive programs for people with disabilities, and fieldwork placement and supervision.

Educational Background: 
Southern Illinois University Carbondale, M.S., Illinois State University, B.S.

Aaron J Diehr

Assistant Professor

Professional Interests:

  • Racial and ethnic health disparities
  • Social determinants of health
  • Sexual health
Educational Background:
  • PhD, University of Toledo
  • MA, DePaul University
  • BA, The Ohio State University

Heather Goelz

MPH Program Coordinator and Instructor

Heather Goelz

Jun Kim, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor, 2014

Professional Interests:

  • Psychological / Therapeutic effects of scenic beauty combined with musical or natural sounds
  • Leisure philosophy
  • Evaluation in leisure services, Local tourism, International program development

Educational Background:

  • University of Utah, Ph.D.
  • University of Wisconsin-La Crosse, M.S.
  • Université de Limoges, M.A.
  • Hankuk University of Foreign Studies, B.S.

Shintaro Kono

Assistant Professor

Shintaro Kono


CV icon

Professional Interests:
Dr. Shintaro Kono's main research interest has been in the question of how leisure and recreation experiences can enhance people's quality of life. Shintaro has found this question as very worthy yet complex and challenging issue. Thus he has used both quantitative and qualitative research methods to address it. Moreover, Shintaro is interested in how culture intersects the relationship between leisure and quality of life. Another research area Shintaro has focused on is what constraints people face in participating in leisure and recreation activities, and how these barriers exist disproportionately across social groups. He has also studied how people may be able to overcome or negotiate these difficulties. Follow this link for information on Dr. Kono's personal research.

Educational Background:
Ph.D. University of Alberta (Canada)
M.S. University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaigne (USA)
Bachelor Tokai University (Japan)

Justin McDaniel

Assistant Professor of Public Health

Dr. Justin McDaniel, an assistant professor of public health, is interested in leveraging geographic information systems (GIS) to illuminate and solve mental and physical health problems among vulnerable populations using publicly available datasets from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the United States Census Bureau.  His research has been presented at the annual meetings of the Society of Behavioral Medicine, the American Public Health Association, and the Society for Public Health Education, and has been published in journals such as PLoS ONE, Global Health Promotion, and the Journal of Veteran Studies. Dr. McDaniel has taught courses in epidemiology, biostatistics, and public health program evaluation, and has been an active member of the American Public Health Association since 2015.

Educational Background:

  • Ph.D., Southern Illinois University, 2016
  • M.B.A., Eastern Illinois University, 2012
  • B.B.A., University of Illinois, Springfield, 2010

Wendi Middleton

Assistant Professor

Educational Background:
Doctor of Philosophy in health education, Southern Illinois University