Deanna Wathington, MD, MPH, FAAFP
Executive Dean, Petrock College of Health Sciences
Dean, School of Graduate Studies at Bethune-Cookman University (B-CU)

Deanna Wathington, MD, MPH, FAAFP, is the Executive Dean of the Petrock College of Health Sciences and the Dean of the School of Graduate Studies at Bethune-Cookman University (B-CU).  In this role, she has shepherded the launch of the first MPH in Health Equity on the eastern seaboard and provided oversight of the launch of the new Master of Athletic Training program (making B-CU the only HBCU to currently offer this graduate degree) while leading the process of growth and community building within both colleges.  She previously served as the Associate Dean for Academic and Student Affairs and the Director of the Public Health Practice Program at the University of South Florida College of Public Health (USF COPH).  Dr. Wathington is a member of the Florida Public Health Association and has served as Director of Minority Health for the Florida Department of Health.  Dr. Wathington has also served as the Associate Dean for Academic Enrichment at the USF College of Medicine where she provided instruction across all four years of the curriculum and maintained a busy family medicine practice.  She maintains an affiliate professor appointment with USF COPH.     

Dr. Wathington earned her Doctor of Medicine degree from the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey – New Jersey Medical School (now known as Rutgers University – New Jersey Medical School), Master of Public Health from Temple University, and baccalaureate in Zoology from Rutgers University.  She completed residency training in Family Medicine at JFK Medical Center, NJ and Bayfront Medical Center, FL.   Dr. Wathington is a Fellow of the American Academy of Family Physicians. 

Dr. Wathington currently serves on the Executive Board of the American Public Health Association.  She is also a member of the APHA Community Health Planning and Policy Development section, the Aging and Public Health section, the Society for Analysis of African-American Public Health Issues, and the Board of the Black Caucus of Health Workers. She previously served on the Academic Public Health Caucus and the Medical Care Section.  Dr. Wathington was previously active with the Association of Schools and Programs in Public Health, serving on the Education Committee, Public Health Practice Committee, Associate Deans for Academic Affairs, DrPH Community and Cultural Competency Workgroup, and the Framing the Future initiative.

As an educator, Dr. Wathington has taught undergraduate, graduate, and professional students in Public Health, Medicine, and Pharmacy.  She has been voted Outstanding Instructor and received an award of excellence from the Association of American Medical Colleges.  In addition to the development and launch of multiple graduate programs in public health, she has engaged in numerous interprofessional health initiatives including the creation of international and domestic joint degree programs, joint certificate programs, dual degree offerings, multidisciplinary courses, competency assessment modules, and a student portfolio system. She also served as co-project leader of the revision of medical school curriculum and development of a Master in Interdisciplinary Biomedical Sciences.  Dr. Wathington served on the Interprofessional Education Collaborative Expert Panel, an entity comprised of representatives from six national education associations of schools in the health professions (including ASPPH, AAMC, and AACN).  The panel released a report addressing core competencies for interprofessional collaborative practice and education that are patient, family, and population centered. 

Dr. Wathington brings over 30 years of practice and academic experience in the field with emphasis on collaboration across multiple sectors to address community health, women’s health, health equity, and advocacy.  She is one of the founding members of the coalition formed to bring the first Federally Qualified Health Center to east Volusia County and led the effort to bring a free clinic for the working uninsured to B-CU in partnership with Volusia Volunteers in Medicine.  She has served as Principal Investigator and Co-investigator on federal, state, county, and foundation grants.  In addition to supporting research, this grant funding also addressed public health workforce and diversity issues through support of student tuition expenses. Her scholarly work includes peer-reviewed articles, abstracts, book chapters and panel reports.  Dr. Wathington is a member of the founding editorial board of the Journal of Healthcare Transformation.