Dr. Rafferty is an associate teaching professor at Iowa State University and previously worked as a health communication specialist for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in Atlanta, Georgia. She conducts research that lies at the intersection of interpersonal and health communication, with a focus on how patients and families manage and cope with chronic illness and end-of- life care. She is primarily a qualitative scholar but has also used quantitative methods to examine research questions about family health communication. Dr. Rafferty earned her Ph.D. in communication at University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. More information about her current research can be found at http://www.familyhealthcomm.com.