Dr. Courtney Welton-Mitchell is trained as a social psychologist and a mental health clinician. She is a clinical assistant professor in the Department of Environmental & Occupational Health at the Colorado School of Public Health, where she directs the Certificate in Public Health Preparedness and Disaster Response. She is also a research associate with the Natural Hazards Center, Institute for Behavioral Science, University of Colorado, Boulder where she supports NSF, FEMA and CDC funded research initiatives. She is a current Fulbright Scholar Ambassador and former Fulbright Scholar. She co-founded the Humanitarian Assistance Applied Research Group at the University of Denver and was the Director from 2014-2018.
Her research focuses on health/public health interventions in disasters and complex humanitarian crises using mixed methods. She has conducted studies on group-based mental health, gender-based violence, and disaster preparedness interventions, including public health messaging campaigns and social norms approaches to attitude and behavioral change. Increasingly, she has turned her attention to understanding psychological and other factors influencing risk communication, perception, and behaviors during disasters, including in relation to COVID-19. She is a member of the COVID-19 Risk and Social Policy Working Group, and the Earthquake Engineering Research Institute's Public Health Working Group.