Arnita Ford Norwood, PhD, MPH


Phone: 601.815.5783


Dr. Arnita Ford Norwood, a registered dietitian and junior investigator in the Jackson Heart Study, has joined the Medical Center faculty as an assistant professor of medicine.

After receiving her BS in biology cum laude from Jackson State University in 1994, Norwood earned an MPH in international health at the University of Alabama at Birmingham in 1999 and an MPH in nutrition at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 2010. She then earned her PhD in nutrition at UNC-Chapel Hill in 2013.

Norwood has extensive professional experience in Jackson, having served as a policy coordinator for the Mississippi Smokeless States Alliance from 2001-04, as an evaluation consultant for the Mississippi Roadmap to Health Equity from 2008-09, as a researcher at UMMC from 2011-12, as a research support manager at JSU from 2012-13, and as a project manager at UMMC from 2013-15. She is a junior investigator for the Jackson Heart Study, a co-investigator with the “Eat Right, Live Well” program funded by the Bower Foundation, and also is an adjunct professor in the College of Public Services at JSU.

An active member of the American Heart Association, the Mississippi Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, Norwood is the coauthor of two articles in peer-reviewed scientific publications.

Her research interests include planning, implementing and evaluating behavioral interventions for the prevention and management of chronic diseases, including cardiovascular disease and diabetes. She is also interested in examining how psychosocial and environmental determinants of health behaviors influence chronic disease prevention and management.