Prior to his recruitment to Stanford as chief of the division of general medical disciplines in May, 2009, Dr. Cullen was a professor of medicine and public health and director of the Occupational and Environmental Medicine Program (OEM) at Yale University School of Medicine.
In 1997 Dr. Cullen forged a unique academic/private partnership with Alcoa Inc., the world's largest aluminum company. In his role as Alcoa's senior medical officer, he has extended his research into the psychosocial causes of disease in the work force. Much of this work has been in collaboration with colleagues at the MacArthur Research Network on Socioeconomic Status and Health. In 2006 Dr. Cullen was awarded an NIA grant to develop a model of population determinants of chronic disease, disability and death, followed by additional funding in 2009 to study how employees and their families use various social and health benefit options. Using the Alcoa "laboratory", his major research ambition is sorting out the relative contributions of and interactions among the social, environmental, behavioral and bio-medical determinants of morbidity and mortality in adults, with special emphasis on the contributions of workplace social and physical environment.
Dr. Cullen has published extensively in numerous medical/scientific journals and co-edited the Textbook of Clinical Occupational and Environmental Medicine, 1st and 2nd editions. He has served in numerous federal and corporate advisory positions, and been a member of the MacArthur Network on SES and Health since 1996. Prizes include the Westinghouse (Intel) National Science Talent Search (5th place, 1967). He was elected a Henry J. Kaiser Family Faculty Scholar in General Internal Medicine in 1983. In 1997 he was elected to the Institute of Medicine.