Manorama Khare, PhD, recently received the Women of Achievement Professions Award from the YWCA of Northwestern Illinois. Dr. Khare is a research associate professor and interim director of the University of Illinois College of Medicine Rockford’s Division of Health Policy and Social Sciences Research. She is a well-published public health researcher with extensive experience planning, securing funding for, implementing, and evaluating programs related to rural health, women’s health, mobile health and diversity in higher education. In addition to her research and administrative responsibilities, she teaches and mentors medical students and residents, leads an elective rotation to India in which students learn about global health and serves on numerous campus committees including diversity and inclusion initiatives.
From early research on breast cancer risk factors and breast feeding behavior in low-income women to the 13 years she spent at the University of Illinois Chicago’s National Center for Excellence in Women’s Health before joining the Rockford faculty to the work she does today, Dr. Khare’s career has focused primarily on women’s health in a career spanning three decades. Her research focuses on chronic disease and obesity prevention using lifestyle behavior change interventions in rural, underserved populations.
Since joining the Rockford faculty in 2013, Dr. Khare has developed a strong network of collaborations with rural Illinois communities and conducted community-engaged research, currently serving as principal investigator on the Illinois WISEWOMAN Program; Rural Health Outreach Grant in Stephenson and Carroll County’ Health Living Project; Improving the Health of Americans Through Prevention and Management of Diabetes, Heart Disease and Stroke; and the Illinois Comprehensive Cancer Control Program.
She has served as an advisor to Master of Public Health students, dozens of medical students in the James Scholar program, students in the Rural Medical Education Program and College of Pharmacy student researchers.
Dr. Khare’s leadership and participation is valued on many campus committees including the Institutional Review Board, Campus Research Committee, Strategic Planning Research Committee, Campus Executive Committee, and College Committee on Student Promotions.
She is active in promoting diversity and inclusion on the campus, serving as co-chair of the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Committee in the Department of Family and Community Medicine and the College of Medicine Rockford’s Ad-hoc Committee on Diversity and Inclusion and the Anti-racism Urgent Action Committee. She also is a faculty affiliate with the UIC Center for Research on Women and Gender and serves on its Advisory Board and award committee.
Dr. Khare’s educational accomplishments include bachelor’s and master’s degrees in food science and nutrition, a second master’s degree in preventive medicine, a doctorate in public health and a certificate of evaluation practice. She is a fellow of the Society of Teachers of Family Medicine and a member of the National Rural Health Association, American Evaluation Association, Society of Teachers of Family Medicine, and American Public Health Association.
In 2021, Dr. Khare was appointed to a three-year term on the editorial board of the Journal of Rural Health, the pre-eminent national journal for rural health. Other professional awards include a National Science Foundation Presidential Award for Excellence in Science, Mathematics and Engineering Mentoring in 2011, a Career Development Award from the UIC Chancellor’s Committee on the Status of Women, and two Nuveen International Development Awards for Faculty from the UIC Office of International Affairs in 2016 and 2021.
She has had dozens of peer-reviewed journals publish her research and has presented at several conferences and poster sessions. She’s also authored a chapter on preventive care in the text book Blueprints in Family Medicine.
Congratulations on your achievements, Dr. Khare!