Dr. Beth Moracco

We are pleased to announce that Beth Moracco, PhD, MPH, has been named interim director for the UNC Injury Prevention Research Center (IPRC) effective March 1. Moracco is an associate professor in the Department of Health Behavior at the UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health and is the chair of faculty at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Moracco has served as associate director of UNC IPRC since 2017 and brings more than 15 years of experience in higher education leadership to her new role.

Steve Marshall, PhD, who has served in this role for 11+ years is stepping down this month but will continue his research and teaching activities. Under his leadership, the Center expanded in size and increased its impact while maintaining continuous funding as a CDC-funded Injury Control Research Center. Marshall and Moracco will be working together over the next 2-3 weeks on the transition starting on February 12, when Moracco will begin taking on Center leadership responsibilities.

“As IPRC’s director, Steve oversaw hundreds of research projects that improved the lives of people in our state and beyond. We are grateful for his years of service, talent, and dedication to the field of injury and violence prevention,” says Vice Chancellor for Research Penny Gordon-Larsen. “Steve and Beth have been an exceptional leadership team. I look forward to working with Beth as IPRC continues to grow and impact the wellbeing of our communities.”

Moracco is stepping into this new role with a focus on expanding and maintaining UNC IPRC’s strong relationships within the UNC campus community and with the Center’s external partners. She has served on numerous advisory boards at the state and national levels that support research and interventions geared toward injury and violence prevention—and she has extensive experience in leveraging her vast connections to advance the Center’s work.

“UNC IPRC is nationally recognized for its contributions to the injury and violence prevention field. I’m excited to continue this legacy of rich engagement with research, our state partners, and the community,” says Moracco.

This year, UNC IPRC is launching new initiatives including new CDC funding for building partnerships and hosting a national research conference focused on community engagement. Moracco’s leadership comes at a perfect time as the Center works to identify new opportunities to improve health outcomes for our communities, while remaining firmly committed to the continuation of its previous work, including groundbreaking advancements in drug overdose prevention.