Lisa  Baker
Professor and Chair
School of Public Health
Department of Social Work
Office: 1605 CHS Building 1
Phone: 205-726-4882

Lisa Baker, Ph.D., LCSW is professor and chair of the Department of Social Work at Samford University. She is co-author of the book Disasters and Vulnerable Populations: Evidence-based Practice for the Helping Professions (Springer, 2015), which reviews and synthesizes current evidence on disaster preparedness and response within a variety of vulnerable populations.

Baker has conducted research, published and presented in the areas of disaster preparedness with vulnerable populations and evidence-based practice.  She has led intervention research with vulnerable populations to increase personal and family preparedness, including children with special healthcare needs. She provided expert commentary after Hurricanes Harvey and Irma on the impact of disasters on vulnerable populations for the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation’s syndicated radio, 24 hour news station and Associate Press.

In 2009, she worked on a project for the U.S. Department of Homeland Security evaluating public education resources for radiation disasters and is an evaluator on grants from the National Science Foundation. Baker has a clinical background in perinatal and pediatric health care social work and field experience in disaster response. She is an associate editor for the journal Disaster Medicine and Public Health Preparedness. She has a M.S.W. from Florida International University and a Ph.D. in social welfare from the University of Georgia.


  • Ph.D., social welfare, University of Georgia
  • Master of Social Work, Florida International University
  • Bachelor of Social Work, University of Georgia


  • National Association of Perinatal Social Work, past-president
  • Vestavia Hills Board of Education, board member
  • Disaster Medicine and Public Health Preparedness, associate editor
  • Society for Social Work Research, member

Expertise and Research Areas

  • Maternal and child health
  • Evidence-based education and clinical practice
  • Disaster preparedness and response
  • Online education

Recent Publications

  • Baker, L.R., Cormier, L.A., & Vogtle, L. (in press). Using an Education Intervention to Increase Preparedness Among Pet Owners: Results of a Pilot Study. Disaster Medicine and Public Health Preparedness.      
  • Baker. L.R. & Hitchcock, L.I. (2017). Using Pinterest in Undergraduate Social Work Education: Assignment Development and Pilot Survey Results. Journal of Social Work Education. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1080/10437797.2016.1272515
  • Hynan, M.T., Steinberg, Z., Baker, L., Cicco, R., Geller, P.A., Lassen, S., Milford, C., Mounts, K.O., Patterson, C., Saxton, S., Segre, A., & Stuebe, A. (2015). Recommendations for Mental Health Professionals in the NICU. Journal of Perinatology. 35 (s1), s14-s19.
  • Baker, L.R. (2014). Stress Management and Healthcare Workers. In The Wiley-Blackwell Encyclopedia of Health, Illness, Behavior and Society. San Francisco, CA: Wiley-Blackwell.
  • Baker, L.R. & Cormier, L.A. (2013). Disaster preparedness and families of children with  special needs: A geographic comparison. Journal of Community Health. 38 (1),106-12

Recent Presentations

  • Baker, L.R. & Cormier, L.A. (April, 2017). Preparing Households with Pets for Disasters: A Community Collaboration. 2017 Preparedness Summit, Atlanta, Georgia.
  • Baker, L.R. (January, 2017). When Weather Emergencies Hit: A Campus Survey of University Employees. Presentation at the Society for Social Work and Research conference, New Orleans, LA.
  • Hitchcock, L. I. (presenter) and Baker, L.R. (March, 2016) Using Pinterest in Undergraduate Social Work Education: Assignment Development and Evaluation. Presentation at the Association of Baccalaureate Program Directors Meeting. Dallas, TX.
  • Baker, L.R. (January, 2015). Evaluation of a Community-based Approach to Disaster Preparedness: The Ready Scouts Project. Presentation at the Society for Social Work and  Research, New Orleans, LA.
  • Baker, L.R. (April, 2014). Maternal and Child Health Issues in Disaster Preparedness and Response. Invited presentation for the Alabama Public Health Association conference. Birmingham, AL