Mary A. Steinhardt, Ed.D., L.P.C.
Dr. Mary Steinhardt is a professor of Health Behavior and Health Education in the College of Education at The University of Texas at Austin, and Fellow in the Oscar and Anne Mauzy Regents Professorship in Educational Research and Development. She currently teaches Evaluation and Research Design, Theories of Health Behavior, and Stress Adaptation and Health Resilience. She was the recipient of the First Annual Dean’s Distinguished Teaching Award in the College of Education in 2002, the Texas Excellence Teaching Award given by the Texas Exes Student Association in 2003, selected to the Academy of Distinguished Teachers at The University of Texas in 2004, received the Regents’ Outstanding Teaching Award in 2011, and appointed as a Senior Provost Teaching Fellow in 2013. Dr. Steinhardt also serves as the University Faculty Ombuds and received The Civitatis Award in 2017, the highest distinction made by The University of Texas in recognition of outstanding faculty citizenship.
Dr. Steinhardt’s academic interests focus on the development and implementation of programs that enhance individual and organizational resilience. Her research explores the determinants and methods for building resilience and strength when challenged with change and stressful situations. Current projects focus on promoting resilience-based diabetes self-management programs for African Americans (NIH Grant), reducing teacher burnout among public school teachers, and enhancing the resilience of military soldiers and their families. She has worked with such companies as 3M, Motorola, Dell, Applied Materials, and Home Depot. She has also worked closely with the Department of Aging and Disability Services (DADS), and the US Army’s 4th Infantry Division and Warrior Resiliency Program. To date, Dr. Steinhardt has received over two million dollars in funding to support her work and has published over 50 manuscripts. Findings demonstrate that resilient responses to stress serve a protective function in the stress-illness relationship such that physiological stress responses are attenuated and health outcomes enhanced.
Dr. Steinhardt lives in Cedar Park, Texas with her husband John (an 8th-grade math teacher). They have two daughters, Megan (a graduate of Washington and Lee University and The University of Texas at Austin, and currently a school counselor in Washington, D.C.) and Linda (a graduate of the University of Missouri at Columbia and currently pursuing a Nutritional Sciences degree at The University of Texas at Austin). Dr. Steinhardt also serves as chair on the Women’s Athletic Council, and is proud to be a longhorn! Her favorite place? Estees Park. Favorite movie? Erin Brockovich. Favorite books? Rising Tide, The Help, The Secret Life of Bees, and Rising Strong. Favorite thing to do? Girls’ night out with Megan and Linda.
The Transforming Lives Through Resilience Education website would not have been possible without the help of so many wonderful people at The University of Texas at Austin. I am grateful to Renulfo Ramirez and Mark McFarland for supporting this project and providing the resources to see the project to completion. I was especially honored to work with Tim Kerr, who did the audio, and Arnie Flores, the graphic designer. Finally, a huge thanks to Sa Lisa Liu (PhD candidate) and Dr. Lucas Horton, Director of Instructional Innovation, College of Education, for their design work and for hosting the resilience program free of charge on the College of Education website.
I also want to thank my corporate colleagues for allowing me to teach and learn in their environment. Special thanks to Sandi Aitken of Motorola for her faith in my ability to develop and teach the material. The original project, Transforming Stress Into Resilience, was her idea. Thanks also to Nancy Lesch of Motorola for her creativity, Rebecca Ryan-Swift and Gail Sulak of 3M for their leadership and support, Dr. Tre McCalister of Dell for her contributions to the curriculum and to our research projects, and Bill and Dr. Linda McCarley for their excellent consulting and mentorship throughout the project. Finally, thanks to Olin Clemons of the Texas Health and Human Services Commission for supporting my research and teaching, and for his integrity and commitment to serving the people who serve the people. I value our work together, and I treasure our friendships.
A special thanks to former UT President Larry Faulkner for funding the development of this program. I love working at an academic institution whose core purpose is “to transform lives for the benefit of society.” This project is my humble attempt to contribute to that worthy purpose by helping citizens in the great state of Texas and around the world transform their lives through resilience education.
Mary A. Steinhardt, EdD, LPC
Regents & University Distinguished Teaching Professor
Health Behavior & Health Education
Department of Kinesiology and Health Education
The University of Texas at Austin
2109 San Jacinto D3700
Austin, Texas 78712