The Dean

Kimberly Jacob Arriola

Kimberly Jacob Arriola first arrived at Emory University in the Fall of 1998 as a student in the Rollins School of Public Health, after earning her doctorate in social psychology from Northeastern University. 

In 2001, she earned her master of public health (MPH) in epidemiology. While still in her MPH program, Arriola was invited to join the faculty in the Department of Behavioral, Social, and Health Education Sciences also at Rollins. In 2010, she was named Director of Graduate Studies for the same department. She was appointed Associate Dean for Academic Affairs at Rollins in 2016 and was named Charles Howard Candler Professor and Executive Associate Dean for Academic Affairs in 2018.  

Arriola was faculty counselor to Emory’s Board of Trustees for three years and received an Emory Williams Distinguished Teaching Award in 2014. In 2016, she was honored with the Thomas F. Sellers Jr. Award, presented to a Rollins faculty member “who exemplifies the ideals of public health and serves as a role model and mentor to colleagues.”

LGS Leadership

Under Arriola's leadership, the Laney Graduate School (LGS), with more than 1,800 students in more than 40 degree programs, is committed to cultivating a student-centered experience of graduate education. 

To that end, LGS fosters a high-quality educational experience that honors the whole person, including student support for mental health, professional development, and diverse career planning. LGS works to provide a strong sense of community among students, postdocs, and faculty while assuming an orientation to our global citizenry.

Diversity and inclusion are foundational to LGS’s mission. Laney is committed to building a culture of inclusive excellence and pursuing strategic partnerships to diversify our applicant pool, enhance selection and recruitment processes, and support the retention and success of diverse students.

National Service

Demonstrating a commitment to service, Arriola chairs the Healthcare and Health Disparities Study Section of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and was recently appointed associate editor of the American Journal of Transplantation, a leading journal in her field. 

Arriola is a 2012 graduate of the American Psychological Association Leadership Institute for Women in Psychology and a 2016 graduate of the Society of Behavioral Medicine Leadership Institute, both in service to developing and refining her leadership skills.

Arriola has also taken on leadership positions in professional organizations as a member of the Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, and Access to Life (IDEAL) Task Force established by the American Society of Transplantation. She also was co-chair of the Association of Schools and Programs of Public Health Academic Affairs Section.


Arriola’s research, leveraging her expertise in public health and social psychology to understand the social determinants of racial health inequities, focuses on the social and behavioral factors impacting the health of marginalized populations and communities of color. She has led the development, implementation, and evaluation of culturally sensitive interventions to improve public commitment to organ and tissue donation among African Americans, as well as interventions that improve access to transplantation among African American end-stage renal disease patients. 

Additionally, Arriola has spearheaded the implementation and evaluation of environmental and policy-change interventions that improve access to cancer screening and treatment services among the underserved and underinsured. 

Most recently, Arriola received a grant from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to spearhead a project that seeks to increase vaccine confidence in Southwest Georgia as part of the Emory Prevention Research Center.