Steven Kelder, PhD, MPH

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Beth Toby Grossman Distinguished Professor in Spirituality and Healing
Coordinator of External Affairs, Michael & Susan Dell Center for Healthy Living
steven.h.kelder@uth.tmc.edu

Dr. Kelder has more than 25 years of experience in design and evaluation of child and adolescent research, particularly interventions directed towards youth, schools, and parents. Recently, his emphasis is on interventions designed for promotion of physical activity and healthy eating, obesity prevention, and use-cigarette prevention. Dr. Kelder is one of the lead investigators for CATCH, a research-based program that guides schools, families and children in the process of being healthy, reaching more than a million Texas children.

Dr. Kelder served with Center faculty member Dr. Bill Kohl on the IOM committee on Accelerating Progress in Obesity Prevention: Solving the Weight of the Nation. The committee published its report in 2012 in conjunction with the Emmy-nominated HBO documentary special on obesity in America, Weight of the Nation

In 2014, Dr. Kelder, with Center Director Dr. Deanna Hoelscher and MPH graduate Duncan Van Dusen, initiated the CATCH Global Foundation, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit entity devoted to training and disseminating the CATCH portfolio of child health programs. To date, the CGF has raised over ten million dollars, with more than 85% of it going to direct service provision to preschools, K-8 schools, YMCA, Jewish community centers, and public Headstart centers.

Dr. Kelder also served with Center faculty members Dr. Cheryl Perry, Dr. MeLisa Creamer, and Dr. Melissa Harrell all of whom were senior scientific editors of the 2016 Surgeon General’s report on e-cigarettes. The report declares e-cigarette use among U.S. youth and young adults a major public health concern. 

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Current Projects

Texas Tobacco Center of Regulatory Science on Youth & Young Adults

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The overall goal of the Tobacco Center of Regulatory Science (TCORS) on Youth and Young Adults is to develop an integrated program of research and training to provide scientific evidence, and a career path for regulatory scientists, to support U.S. tobacco regulation.

CATCH Middle School

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The Central Texas CATCH Middle School Project (CATCH MS) was a school-based health promotion initiative aimed at promoting physical activity, healthy eating and obesity prevention among middle school students living in central Texas.

CATCH (Coordinated Approach To Child Health)

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CATCH is a research-based program designed to guide schools, families and children in healthy eating and physical activity.

Recent Publications

Effect of media use on adolescent body weight.

(Cha EM*, Hoelscher DM, Ranjit N, Chen B, Gabriel KP, Kelder SH, Saxton DL. Preventing Chronic Disease. 2018, 15:E141. Doi: 10.5888/pcd15.180206)

E-cigarette use is associated with intentions to lose weight among high school students.

(Mantey D, Omega-Njemnobi O, Kelder SH. Nicotine & Tobacco Research.)

Impact of the Coordinated Approach to Child Health Early Childhood Program for Obesity Prevention among Preschool Children: The Texas Childhood Obesity Research Demonstration Study

(Sharma SV, Vandewater E, Chuang RJ, Byrd-Williams C, Kelder S, Butte N, Hoelscher DM; Child Obes.; 2018)

E- cigarette specific symptoms of nicotine dependence among Texas adolescents

(Case, K, Mantey, D, Creamer, M, Harrell, MB, Kelder, S, & Perry, CL; Addictive Behaviors; 2018)

School socioeconomic disparities in e-cigarette susceptibility and use among central Texas middle school students

(Springer AE, Davis C, Van Dusen D, Grayless M, Case KR, Craft M, Kelder SH; Preventive Medicine Reports; 2018)

Recent News

Disease expert discusses ongoing pandemic and nearing school year

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Dr. Steven H. Kelder recently answered several questions for Community Impact Newspaper regarding COVID-19; trends in cases statewide; and important considerations for parents, students and educators as the 2020-21 school year approaches.

New FDA flavor ban has vape shops, manufacturers breathing sigh of relief

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Ty Marceaux took a puff from his electronic cigarette and pointed to a small corner of his Heights vape shop once teeming with vape cartridges offering sweet flavors such as mango, grape and pineapple. Earlier this month, the manager of the shop, Rock Nā€™ Roll It, was forced to stop selling fruit- and candy-flavored nicotine cartridges under new Food and Drug Administration regulations aimed at curbing the rise of underaged vaping.

Study finds vaping prevention program significantly reduces use in middle school students

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In response to the youth vaping crisis, experts at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth) developed CATCH My Breath, a program to prevent electronic cigarette use among fifth ā€“ 12th grade students.

Lung Injuries from Vaping Top 2,600, But Fewer Cases Being Reported

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The death of a 15-year-old in Texas marks the youngest fatality linked to the current outbreak of vaping-related lung injuries in the United States. This comes as new cases of e-cigarette, or vaping, product use-associated lung injury (EVALI) are on the decline.

Researchers awarded $3.1 million to address vaping epidemic among youth

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As e-cigarette use by young people reaches epidemic proportions, researchers at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth) have received a $3.1 million grant from the National Institutes of Health to conduct the first-ever assessment on the long-term results of a nationwide nicotine vaping prevention program for youth called CATCH My Breath.