MPH, Boston University, 2004
My research interests focus on the social and behavioral determinants of maternal and child health, particularly among underserved populations. I joined the Johns Hopkins Center for American Indian Health in 2005 to work from Albuquerque, New Mexico as the Field Coordinator for a large behavioral health study on the Navajo and Apache Indian Reservations of Arizona/New Mexico. This work focuses on implementing a family-based intervention to promote the health of American Indian teen-formed families. We are conducting a 5-year randomized controlled trial to determine the efficacy of a family strengthening home-visiting curriculum with teen mothers and their children. This study, funded by the National Institute of Drug Abuse (NIDA), has evolved from a series of family strengthening service projects began by the Center for American Indian Health in 1995. All programs have involved developing the skills of indigenous outreach workers who coordinate the interventions at the local level with program development and evaluation assistance from Johns Hopkins. The Center is also partnering with Native paraprofessionals to implement other behavioral health projects pertaining to suicide prevention, substance abuse and alcohol prevention, fitness promotion, mental health promotion, nutrition promotion, and skill-building for youth.