Gary R. Hunter, PhD

Gary R. Hunter, PhD, received his doctorate in exercise science from Michigan State University. He joined UAB in 1984 and is a Distinguished Professor in the Department of Human Studies. Hunter also holds a secondary appointment in the Department of Nutrition Sciences and is a member of multiple centers including: UAB Center for Exercise Medicine, Comprehensive Center for Healthy Aging, Comprehensive Diabetes Center, and the Nutrition and Obesity Research Center. He was named the National Strength and Conditioning Association’s Sports Scientist of the Year in 1994 and had visiting professorships at the University of Lausanne in Switzerland in 2000 and at Queensland University of Technology in Australia in 2005.

A standout athlete in his youth, Hunter played football in college as well as football and basketball in the Air Force. He was a weight lifting world record holder, a champion in power lifting and Olympic lifting, and coached the weight lifting team at Michigan State University. Shortly after graduating he became the head strength coach for the country of Bahrain and spent two years running its strength and conditioning program as part of a joint appointment with the University of South Alabama and the U.S. Sports Academy. While there Hunter directed the country’s sports medicine and strength training programs and coached its Olympic weight lifting team. After returning to the United States Hunter was on faculty at the University of Wisconsin before coming to UAB. Hunter has conducted a number of studies on obesity, particularly in women, and on the aging population. He is an international leader in exercise adaptation, energy metabolism and body composition research with more than 250 peer-reviewed publications and NIH funding throughout his career.