Debra Sullivan


Debra Sullivan
  • Investigator, Life Span Institute
  • Chair, Department of Dietetics and Nutrition
  • Midwest Dairy Council Professor in Clinical Nutrition, Department of Dietetics and Nutrition

Contact Info

KU Medical Center
3901 Rainbow Blvd/ MS4013
Kansas City, KS 66160-8500

Biography

Academic Background

Debra Sullivan, Ph.D., RD, received both her undergraduate and master’s degrees in nutrition and medical dietetics from the University of Illinois at Chicago. She earned her doctorate in nutritional sciences from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign.

In Fall 2009, Sullivan received the Midwest Dairy Council Endowed Professorship in Clinical Nutrition. 

Professional Background

Sullivan worked clinically as a registered dietitian while completing her doctorate and has more than 10 years experience as a clinical dietitian.

Education

Ph.D. in Nutritional Science, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, 1997
M.S. in Nutrition and Medical Dietetics, University of Illinois at Chicago, 1987
B.S. in Nutrition and Medical Dietetics, University of Illinois at Chicago, 1985

Research

Sullivan is evaluating the impact of dairy intake on the blood pressure and body composition of children in a large, school-based study. In addition, she provides nutrition expertise in collaboration on several studies with researchers from the Energy Balance Laboratory on KU's Lawrence campus. These projects include a YMCA afterschool daycare project to improve nutrient quality of afterschool snacks and increase physical activity of children, and several adult weight loss projects exploring the impact of weight loss on cancer risk. Sullivan is also engaged in studies designed to promote weight loss in adults with serious mental illness as well as those with intellectual and developmental delays.