A Pre-doctoral Fellow with the Midwest Council for Social Research on Aging, Jim Mitchell joined the faculty of East Carolina University in 1980. A Professor of Sociology, he was Director of the Center on Aging of the Brody School of Medicine of East Carolina University for 25 years and Associate Director of the University of North Carolina System Institute on Aging for 12 years. His research and writing in applied gerontology focuses upon preventive health behavior among community-dwelling older adults. Jim is a Fellow of the Gerontological Society of America, Founding Fellow of the Association for Gerontology in Higher Education, Founding Fellow of the University of North Carolina system Institute on Aging, former Editor of the Journal of Applied Gerontology, and he served as President of the Southern Gerontological Society. His recent publications include, The Aging Farm Population and Rural Aging Research in the Journal of Agromedicine (2009), Topography, Culture Areas, and Integration of Retired Migrants in a Coastal North Carolina County in the Journal of Applied Gerontology (2010), and Continuing Education Modules and the Scholarship of Engagement in Gerontology and Geriatrics Education (2010).
My research focus is the measurement and assessment of the role of behavioral factors that affect the use of health and community-based services among older persons, particularly in rural minority populations. This typically entails multiple-year large scale survey research projects. I have received research support from the American Cancer Society, the Kate B. Reynolds Health Care Trust, and branches of the National Institutes of Health, including the National Cancer Institute, the National Institute on Aging, the Agency for Health Care Research and Quality. I am a Founding Fellow of the UNC Institute on Aging and the Association for Gerontology in Higher Education and a Fellow of the Behavioral and Social Science Section of the Gerontological Society of America. Since 1989, I have been Director of the Center on Aging, now housed administratively in the School of Medicine. I am currently the editor of the Journal of Applied Gerontology.