Darla M. Castelli, Ph.D. is a professor of physical education pedagogy and health behavior health education in the Department of Kinesiology and Health Education at the University of Texas at Austin and an active fellow in the National Academy of Kinesiology, who examines the effects of physical activity and metabolic risk factors on cognitive health. She strives to understand how physical activity can reverse the effects of health risk. She has been working with school-age youth in physical activity settings for more than 25 years, leading several physical activity interventions (e.g., Kinetic Kidz, FITKids1,FITKids2, Active + Healthy = Forever Fit, Fitness4Everyone). Dr. Castelli has received teaching awards in both the public school (i.e. Maine Physical Education Teacher of the Year) and higher education (i.e., University of Illinois Teaching Excellence Award, University of TExas at Austin, Kinesiology and Health Education Graduate Teaching Award). As a fellow in the SHAPE America RC and past Young Scholar award recipient from NAKPEHE and AEISEP, her research has been funded by the National Institutes of Health, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, American Dietetic Foundation, and U.S. Department of Education. She has presented her work at U.S. Congress and Senate Briefings in Washington, DC in support of the FIT Kids Act. Dr. Castelli has been a member of two Institute of Medicine committees on Fitness Measures and Health Outcomes in Youth and Physical Activity and Physical Education in the School Environment. She received a B.S. from Plymouth State University, a M.S. from Northern Illinois University, and a Ph.D. from the University of South Carolina.
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