Skip to Main Content
Institute of Environmental Research and Education

Professional Staff


Erin Largo-Wight, Ph.D. — Director and Professor

Erin Largo-Wight, Ph.D.Dr. Erin Largo-Wight is a professor in the Department of Public Health and the Director of the Institute of Environmental Research and Education. Dr. Largo-Wight earned a B.S. from University of South Florida, M.S. from University of Delaware, and a Ph.D. from the University of Florida in Health and Human Performance with a minor in Psychology and graduate certificate in Environmental Education and Communication.

Dr. Largo-Wight brings years of leadership experience as the former director of a large academic program; over a decade of experience facilitating student and community partnerships to solve environmental and health issues in Jacksonville; interdisciplinary research, teaching, and world view; and the Health by Design: Nature and Health Laboratory and research. Dr. Largo-Wight studies the impact of nature on stress, health, and well-being. Past studies explored the impact of outdoor classrooms on children, nature in the workplace, clinical settings, and home, and outdoor exposure and health, for example. She also studies environmental health behaviors such as recycling, active commuting, gardening, and others. Erin is passionate about the health of the environment and connecting faculty, students, and community partners to find solutions.

James W. Taylor — Assistant Director

James W. TaylorJames W. Taylor serves as the coordinator for academic programs and research development. Taylor has received a B.A. in sociology and a Master of Public Administration from UNF.

Growing up in Florida, Taylor is an outdoor enthusiast and spends most of his time exploring nature. His favorite activities include camping, biking, kayaking, and has recently become an avid birder. Taylor also enjoys teaching others about the natural environment and recently became a Florida Master Naturalist. In addition to spending his time outdoors, Taylor is an active volunteer with the St. Johns Riverkeeper, and was recognized as its volunteer of the year in 2015.

Kelly Rhoden — Coordinator

Kelly A. RhodenKelly Rhoden serves as the coordinator for the Institute of Environmental Research and Education's Student Engagement and Retention Programs, including the Leadership Program. Rhoden earned a Bachelor of Science in Health from the University of North Florida and is currently pursuing a Master of Public Health with a concentration in Epidemiology.

Rhoden previously served as the Alumni Event Coordinator in the University Development and Alumni Engagement office at the University of North Florida. She was a past participant in the Environmental Leadership Program, completing a project focused on environmentalism and health. In her spare time she enjoys camping, hiking, gardening and learning more about natural environment.