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Personal profile

Research interests

As a community psychologist and program evaluator, I study decision-making that influences health and well-being at the community, regional, and national levels. Throughout my career, I have supported community and policymaker efforts to institute higher-order changes that improve the lives of children and families. In doing so, my main approach has been to develop partnerships with decisionmakers around their use of research evidence to improve population health and well-being. My work in both community-based settings and on state and federal policy has enabled me to translate research evidence for non-academic, decision-making audiences. This includes local efforts to impact in a range of social service settings, such as early childhood development, children’s mental health, child protective services, and family-focused wraparound care. At the federal level, I have been involved in efforts that translate science for advancing health equity, addressing systemic biases in health care processes, improving maternal and infant health, and combatting the opioid epidemic. This has prepared me to co-develop and lead the implementation of the Research-to-Policy Collaboration, a replicable model for bridging research and policy. The Collaboration and related units are partners of the Edna Bennett Pierce Prevention Research Center at Penn State, where I am a research associate as well as an assistant research professor of health and human development.


I also serve as co-investigator of the evaluation of the Research-to-Policy Collaboration, funded by the W.T. Grant Foundation. This evaluation employs mixed-methods, including a dual randomized controlled trial. Additionally, I support work designed to improve the reach of electronic research dissemination efforts among legislators, as well as other efforts to investigate how research is reflected in legislative language. This line of research was developed to strengthen the social impact of research translation strategies. 

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 1 - No Poverty
  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being
  • SDG 11 - Sustainable Cities and Communities

Researcher Defined Keywords

  • Use of Research Evidence
  • Evidence-based Policy


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Collaborations and top research areas from the last five years

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