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With 480,000 people dying each year from a tobacco-related illness, and many more suffering from tobacco-related disease, tobacco abuse and nicotine addiction negatively impact our families, friends, and co-workers. As someone who has lost loved ones to tobacco-related illness, my story is all too common. Working in public health and using social science research to understand and impact important public health problems like tobacco addiction is personally relevant and tremendously rewarding. As director for the Tobacco Prevention and Evaluation Program (TPEP) at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, I lead a team of talented public health professionals to pursue critical research questions and evaluate public health programs. Our goal is to conduct research that directly informs public health policy and practice and to provide evaluation services that help public health programs maximize their impact.

TPEP offers unparalleled access to cutting-edge public health research and program evaluation. As part of the UNC Tobacco Intervention Programs in the UNC Department of Family Medicine, our TPEP team collaborates with the UNC Tobacco Treatment Program (TTP). Our research and evaluation projects are informed by working with TTP’s certified tobacco treatment specialists, and our research and evaluation expertise helps TTP inform their clinically focused projects. This unique collaboration strengthens our work and allows us to meet a range of research and evaluation client needs.

TPEP’s high-quality work, positive rapport, and strong working relationships with research colleagues and program stakeholders contribute to a stellar reputation. Our team is motivated and inspired by a common purpose to reduce morbidity and mortality through research, evaluation, and dissemination of information. There is much work to be done to improve health outcomes for all people, and TPEP is at the forefront of this important work. We invite you to explore our website to learn more about our research and clinical programs.


Leah M. Ranney, PhD
Tobacco Prevention and Evaluation Program