Rebecca S. Reeves completed her M.P.H. and Dr.P.H. degrees from the University of Texas School of Public Health in Houston, Texas and her undergraduate degree from Baldwin-Wallace College in Berea, Ohio. For the past 35 years she has conducted clinical trials in nutrition and obesity at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, Texas.
She was formerly managing director of the Behavioral Medicine Research Center and assistant professor of medicine at Baylor. She has focused on heart disease and the behavioral treatment of obesity, which has included weight-management programs for African-American and Mexican-American women. Reeves has also conducted studies on binge eating and alternative treatments for obesity, including pharmacotherapy, dietary supplements, and nutrients. She was project director for the landmark National Institutes of Health Look AHEAD study at Baylor from its inception in 1999. The 13-year study, which includes an intensive lifestyle component, is examining the role of sustained weight loss in the reduction of cardiovascular events in overweight people with type 2 diabetes.
Currently she consults on a number of nutrition-related projects, is a member of various committees associated with the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (formerly the American Dietetic Association), the Obesity Society, and the National Lipid Association. She conducts media interviews on television and radio on topics ranging from plant sterols to lifestyle management for weight control. Reeves has authored 50 peer-reviewed publications and has addressed many audiences on the topic of weight management.
In 1994, Reeves was named Distinguished Dietitian of the Texas Dietetic Association, and in March of 2000 her state dietetic association honored her with title of Distinguished Scientist. Reeves was named a Fellow of the American Dietetic Association (ADA) in 1995 and served as speaker of the House of Delegates from 1999 to 2000. In October 2001, the ADA selected her to receive the prestigious Medallion Award, which it bestows on its members for significant contributions to their professions. Reeves was ADA president from 2005 to 2006.