Internal Board

Anne Maydan Nicotera, PhD

Anne Nicotera, Faculty Chair, CHSS. Photo by Creative Services/George Mason University

Conference Manager
Department Chair

Health communication, nursing communication, communicative/interactive constitution of organization, race and gender, diversity, and culture and organizations

Anne Maydan Nicotera (PhD, Ohio University) is a Professor and Chair in the Department of Communication at George Mason University, where she teaches courses in organizational and interpersonal communication.

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Kevin Wright, PhD


Program Manager 

Health communication, social media and interpersonal relationships, life span communication, and interpersonal issues in health communication

Dr. Wright received his Ph.D. from the University of Oklahoma. He has focused much of his research on social support processes and health outcomes in both face-to-face and computer-mediated contexts.

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Gary Kreps, PhD 


Atkin Award Planner
Director, Center for Health and Risk Communication 

Health communication/promotion, multicultural relations, social organizations, applied research methods, health informatics, communication campaigns, social change

Gary L. Kreps is a University Distinguished Professor of the Department of Communication at George Mason University. He teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in Communication Research, Health Communication, Organizational Communication, Consumer-Provider Health Communication, Health Communication Campaigns, and E-Health Communication.

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Xiaoquan Zhao, PhD 

xz_head_shot Professor

Health communication, persuasion, media effects, information seeking, tobacco prevention, and climate change communication

Xiaoquan Zhao received his Ph.D. (2005) from the Annenberg School for Communication, the University of Pennsylvania. His research focuses on health message design and effects, evaluation of public communication campaigns, health information seeking, information disparities affecting vulnerable populations, news effects on health and risk perceptions, and the role of the self in health behavior and persuasive communication.

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Iccha Basnyat 

Iccha BasnyatAssociate Professor
Culture, gender and health, health inequalities, global health communication, South and South East Asia

Iccha Basnyat is an Associate Professor in the Global Affairs Program, and holds a joint appointment in the Department of Communication. Dr. Basnyat received her B.A. in Communication from the University of Utah, MPH from the University of Massachusetts-Amherst, and Ph.D. in Communication from Purdue University with emphasis on health communication. Dr. Basnyat taught in the Department of Communication & New Media at the National University of Singapore for a decade as well as in the School of Communication at James Madison University before joining Mason. Read more. 

Akila-Ka Ma’at (Jennifer Warren) 

Akila-Ka Ma'at (Jennifer R Warren)

Assistant Professor
Critical Health Communication, Black Health, Community Participatory Engagement, Chronic Disease, Clinical Outcomes, Health Disparities & Inequities, Social Determinants, Structural Racism, Psychosocial Factors, Digital Health, Health Information Seeking, Intervention Development and Dissemination, Message and Survey Development and Evaluation

Dr. Akila Ka Ma’at ( holds joint positions in the Department of Communication, and Women and Gender Studies, and Africnand African American Studies Program. Jennifer R. Warren is Dr. Ma’at’s given name and the one she publishes under. Dr. Ma’at is also the Principal Consultant at the Center for African American Health Disparities Education & Research, Inc. 501(c)(3). Read more