Russ Butler, PhD

Faculty & Staff

Russ Butler, PhD

Professor of Biology

headshot Office phone: (407)303-7499 Email:


Dr. Russ Butler is Professor of biology and Director of the Center for Population Health Research in the Department of Health and Biomedical Sciences at Adventist University of Health Sciences. His teaching specialties are in general biology, Issues in Science and Religion, human anatomy and physiology, human/urban ecology and senior seminar courses. His research focuses on three main areas: 1) spatially analyzing distributions of contaminants in drinking water in a central Florida community, 2) spatial analysis of granuloma formation and spatial assessment of computational biology results of effects of human TB infection on granuloma development, and 3) enhancing water- and view-shed quality and assessing the relationship between life-expectancy and public-health relevant variables. The last two research interests are both within the discipline of Medical Geography. Additionally, he researches educational methods for science teaching in higher education and has scholarly interest in the discussion between science and religion. He earned is B.A. in geography at the University of New Orleans and followed that with a Ph.D. in biology from Vanderbilt University. From there he accepted a post-doctoral fellowship with the School of Natural Resources at the University of Michigan as well as later became a lecturer in the Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at the University of Michigan prior to accepting the position at ADU. Since his tenure at ADU, Dr. Butler has acquired over $20,000 of extramural funding for the Center, was awarded the ADU Merit Award for Scholarship (2011), published research findings, re-designed and developed new courses and has mentored many students: he has written over 100 letters of recommendation, of ten students who have worked in the Center, seven are now in the graduate-health sciences (e.g., Physician Assistant, MD/DO., Public Health programs), one has been named the 2018 ADU Newman Civic Fellow awardee, and he is the faculty advisor for the Pre-medical school club. Dr. Butler has presented multiple publications as well as presented research findings at large number professional meetings, from local and regional conferences to national and international symposia.