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Dr. Jessica Gipson named director of UCLA Fielding Bixby Center on Population and Reproductive Health

Dr. Jessica Gipson will also serve as the Fred H. Bixby Chair in Population and Reproductive Health Science

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Date: 
Friday, July 1, 2022
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Dr. Jessica Gipson, UCLA Fielding School of Public Health professor in the Department of Community Health Sciences, has been appointed director of the Bixby Center on Population and Reproductive Health (Bixby Center) and the Fred H. Bixby Chair in Population and Reproductive Health Science (Bixby Chair), effective July 1.

“The Bixby Center on Population and Reproductive Health at UCLA Fielding plays an important role in advancing research and providing learning opportunities for our students,” said Dr. Ron Brookmeyer, dean of the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health. “I’m confident that Dr. Jessica Gipson — who steps into the roles of director and chair at a pivotal moment — will utilize her expertise and insight to continue the Bixby Center’s legacy of excellence and bring it to new heights.”

Addressing the effects of sociocultural and political contexts on sexual and reproductive behavior and health outcomes in the United States and globally is the primary focus of Gipson’s research.

“It is a privilege to serve as director of the Bixby Center and as Bixby Chair, especially at this critical time,” said Gipson, who employs mixed-methods research techniques to assess the ways in which individuals’ and couples’ access to sexual and reproductive health information and services may be inhibited. “My goals are to facilitate cross-campus, interdisciplinary collaborations in the area of sexual and reproductive health, to enhance and uplift the work of our faculty, staff, and students as they engage in research, practice, and advocacy efforts, and to support the critical work of on-the-ground reproductive justice organizations in providing reproductive health care and ensuring reproductive rights.”

The Bixby Chair was established in 1975 through an endowment from the Fred H. Bixby Foundation. Dr. Anne Pebley, professor of community health sciences at the UCLA Fielding School, stepped down as director of the Bixby Center and as Bixby Chair after 23 years of service in both roles.

“Dr. Gipson is an outstanding researcher and advocate in the area of sexual and reproductive health,” Pebley said. “She will bring new ideas and a fresh approach, which are especially important given contemporary threats to reproductive health.”

Pebley and Gipson have collaborated on reproductive health research since Gipson joined UCLA Fielding in 2008, after completing both her doctoral degree and postdoctoral fellowship in reproductive health and abortion at the Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health. Gipson earned a Master of Public Health degree from the Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine, and a Bachelor of Science degree from UCLA.


The UCLA Fielding School of Public Health, founded in 1961, is dedicated to enhancing the public's health by conducting innovative research, training future leaders and health professionals from diverse backgrounds, translating research into policy and practice, and serving our local communities and the communities of the nation and the world. The school has 761 students from 26 nations engaged in carrying out the vision of building healthy futures in greater Los Angeles, California, the nation and the world.