Valerie Silfee, PhD

Senior Manager, Behavior Change Experiences
Published July 26, 2022

What she does at WeightWatchers®

Val is an exercise physiologist and behavioral scientist with expertise in the design, implementation, and evaluation of behavioral weight management interventions. At WW, she collaborates with teams across the organization to ensure that WW’s app and person-to-person experiences are informed by behavior change principles, consider the lived experiences of our members, and drive effective, health-promoting behavior changes. She seeks to identify opportunities, create actionable strategies, and ensure consistent approaches to bring behavior change principles to life across WW experiences.

Her background

Before joining WW, she served as the Director of Digital Behavior Interventions at UPMC Health Plan. She supported the development, implementation, and evaluation of evidence-based, digital health coaching interventions in areas including lifestyle (e.g. weight management and tobacco), chronic disease self-management, and mental health. During her time at UPMC, she authored publications on health coaching interventions, digital health coaching, and digital intervention implementation. She also helped bring the Diabetes Prevention Program (DPP) to UPMC, serving as a co-author of the UPMC adapted intervention and as a DPP lifestyle coach.

Prior to her role at UPMC, she was a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Massachusetts Medical School where she helped design and implement community-based behavior change interventions that leveraged technology to impact physical activity and weight management among socioeconomically disadvantaged populations.

Valerie holds a bachelor’s and master’s degree from the University of Pittsburgh in health and physical activity and earned a PhD in kinesiology from The Ohio State University. She’s also a Certified Exercise Physiologist from the American College of Sports Medicine.

What brought her to WW

Help people live their healthiest lives is what gets her out of bed in the morning. She’s passionate about bringing science and behavior change principles to life and to meet people where they are. So when the opportunity came up to use her behavioral weight management expertise to support WW's four million-plus members, she jumped at the chance.

Get to know Val:

  • In her free time: You can find her spending time outside with her husband, dog, and son. Together they enjoy walking, playing at the local playground, swimming, going to breweries, making homemade pizzas, and hanging out with friends and family. She also enjoys running, riding her Peloton, and cheering on her favorite Pittsburgh sports teams. Go Steelers and Pens!
  • You might be surprised to learn: She loves to travel. So far, she has visited 14 different countries—and tried pizza in every single one of them.
  • Three things you’ll always find in her kitchen: Trader Joe's Sea Salt & Turbinado Sugar Dark Chocolate Almonds, mint chocolate chip ice cream, and at least one box of cereal.