(Professor Fuller passed away on November 18, 2022)
A. Oveta Fuller is an associate professor of microbiology and immunology in the Medical School at the University of Michigan. Professor Fuller served as director of the African Studies Center in a one-year appointment in 2016, after serving as both the ASC associate director and co-coordinator of the STEM-Africa initiative for the past two years. Professor Fuller obtained her Ph.D. from the University of North Carolina and completed postdoctoral training at the University of Chicago. Her virology research team and interdisciplinary collaborators published laboratory research results on early events in replication of herpes simplex and influenza viruses. Current implementation research is with networks of religious leaders in Zambia, South Africa and the USA to enhance effective HIV/AIDS prevention. The "Trusted Messenger Intervention" developed by Professor Fuller provides in-depth biomedical science understanding through partnerships with the highest officials of networks of religious organizations. As a J. William Fulbright Faculty Fellow, Professor Fuller lived in the southern African country of Zambia for most of 2013 to conduct research on validity of the Trusted Messenger Intervention for HIV/AIDS prevention. As a 2015-16 visiting professor in the Department of Sociology at Duke University, she explored the use of networks in disease prevention. Professor Fuller provides for U-M students an experiential learning course, “Global Impact of Microbes: Fieldwork” to increase competencies required for engaging in global immersion studies. As an adjunct professor at Payne Theological Seminary (PTS), she teaches a course for Master of Divinity students, “What Effective Clergy Should Know about HIV/AIDS.” To bridge the gap between science and community, since 2012, Professor Fuller writes a weekly column “Getting to Zero” for The Christian Recorder—the official African Methodist Episcopal (AME) Church global publication. It promotes wellness and provides key insights for HIV/AIDS control and elimination. In 2014-16, Professor Fuller was an inaugural member of the Rudi Ansbacher Women in Academic Medicine Leadership Program at the U-M Medical School. She is the Faculty Liaison for new and alumni Ford Fellows in the State of Michigan and has received research and career awards from the National Institutes of Health, the National Science Foundation, the Ford Foundation and the U.S. Department of State among others. Community service recognitions include the Robert Smith Humanitarian Award (2005, 2014), a Global Humanitarian Award (2014) and an Outstanding Service Award in Microbiology and Ministry (2004) from the AMEC.