Alphonse Poklis, Ph.D.


Affiliate professor
(804) 828-0272

Alphonse Poklis received his Bachelor of Science in Pharmacy from the University of Maryland. As an U.S. Public Health Service Fellow, he studied forensic toxicology under Dr. Henry Freimuth at the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner (OCME) in Baltimore, Maryland, receiving his doctoral degree from the University of Maryland.

Professional experience
Poklis is an affiliate professor for forensic science, chemistry, and pharmacology and toxicology. He is also established as a professor for pathology and is the director of the toxicology laboratories at VCU’s Medical Center.

Prior to arriving at VCU, he was a toxicologist at the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner in Wilmington, Delaware; the Assistant State Toxicologist for North Dakota and director of the Forensic and Environmental Toxicology laboratory of the Department of Pathology at St. Louis University School of Medicine and the Office of the Medical Examiner for the City of St. Louis, Missouri.

Professional accompolishments
He regularly consults and lectures on toxicology issues for many organizations including the FBI Academy, Naval Criminal Investigative Service, the U.S. Department of Justice and the College of American Pathologist. Poklis has offered expert testimony in courts throughout the United States and contributed to over 200 peer-reviewed publications and books. He is a diplomat of the American Board of Forensic Toxicology. Poklis is a member and past president of the Society of Forensic Toxicologist and past chairman of the Toxicology Section of the American Academy of Forensic Sciences (AAFS). In 1998, he received the Rolla Harger Award from AAFS “in recognition of outstanding contributions to the field and profession of forensic toxicology.”

For more information on Toxicology education and research, visit VCU's Department of Pathology webpage.