Dr. David Abrams is a Professor of Health Behavior and Society, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Professor of Oncology, Georgetown University Lombardi Cancer Center and Executive Director, The Schroeder Institute for Tobacco Research and Policy Studies at Legacy. A former Director of the Office of Behavioral and Social Sciences Research (OBSSR) at NIH, he spearheaded an NIH-wide strategic plan for the systems integration of bio-behavioral and societal disciplines to improve the nation’s health. He was President of the Society for Behavioral Medicine and a recipient of their Distinguished Scientist and Research Mentorship awards. He has published over 250 scholarly articles. Dr. Abrams current interests in tobacco control include exploring new technologies for efficient ways to put what we know into widespread practice and policy to make an impact on population health and on examining the strategic role research plays in informing the regulatory policies of the new FDA Center for Tobacco Products.
Dr. Jay Maddock is Professor and Director of the Office of Public Health Studies at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa. Professor Maddock has extensive experience in system, environmental and policy research to improve population level risk factors for chronic disease including physical inactivity, tobacco use and poor nutrition in multiethnic, disparate communities. Dr. Maddock has been named the Bank of Hawai‘i Community Leader of the Year. He has chaired the state board of health, co-authored the state physical activity and nutrition plan and was a charter member of the NIH study section on Community-Level Health Promotion. He has served as an investigator on several NIH and Robert Wood Johnson funded studies. He is an author of over 75 scientific articles, and 150 chapters and abstracts on community level health promotion. He is the Honorary Secretary for the Asia-Pacific Academic Consortium for Public Health. His research has been featured in several national magazines including Eating Well, Prevention and Good Housekeeping. Dr. Maddock has given invited lectures in numerous countries including Australia, Japan, China, Taiwan, Indonesia, El Salvador and Brazil.Manoj Sharma, PhD
Dr. Manoj Sharma is a Professor in the Health Promotion and Education program and Department of Environmental Health at the University of Cincinnati. He is a physician by initial training and has also completed his doctorate in Preventive Medicine/Public Health from The Ohio State University. He has worked in Community Health designing and evaluating health education programs for more than 25 years at all levels: local (Columbus Health Department, Omaha Healthy Start Program, Lead Safe Omaha Coalition); state (Nebraska Health & Human Services, Ohio Commission on Minority Health); national (American School Health Association, National Commission for Health Education Credentialing); and international (India, Italy, Mongolia, Nepal, United Arab Emirates, Vietnam). His research interests are in designing and evaluating theory-based health education and health promotion programs, childhood obesity, alternative and complementary systems of health, and community-based participatory research.
Dr. Cheryl L. Holt is an Associate Professor in the Department of Behavioral and Community Health and Co-Director of the Center for Health Behavior Research, in the University of Maryland School of Public Health. Her health disparities research involves community-based health communication studies, and the role of culture in health cognitions and behaviors. Dr. Holt’s research program has generated over $11.5 million in extramural support as Principal Investigator, from sources such as the NIH, CDC, and ACS. The program has resulted in over 50 peer-reviewed publications, most including student co-authors. Specifically, Dr. Holt’s research examines religious involvement and health among African Americans, and using religion/spirituality to frame breast, prostate, and colon cancer early detection messages for this population. More recently her intervention work has added a behavioral translational research focus.
Dr. Scott D. Rhodes is a Professor in the Department of Social Sciences and Health Policy in the Division of Public Health Sciences at Wake Forest School of Medicine. Dr. Rhodes’ research focuses on the integration of community development and health promotion and disease prevention interventions in both rural and urban communities. Specifically, his research explores health disparities among vulnerable communities, including access to services, sexual health, substance use, and obesity. He has extensive experience in community-based participatory research (CBPR); qualitative data collection and analysis techniques; the design, implementation, and evaluation of prevention interventions; community capacity development; the application of behavioral theory; evidence-based lay health advisor (LHA) and social network approaches; the exploration of socio-cultural determinants of health; and Internet intervention development, implementation, and evaluation. He served as PI during the development, implementation, and evaluation of the HoMBReS intervention, an intervention recognized by the US CDC as the first best-evidence community-level intervention to increase condom use and HIV testing among Spanish-speaking men.
Dr. Tracey Wilson is an Associate Professor in the Department of Community Health Sciences at SUNY Downstate Medical Center’s School of Public Health in Brooklyn NY. Her research interests are in interventions that seek to promote the sexual and reproductive health of women and eliminate racial and ethnic health disparities in HIV and other sexually transmitted infections. She has published over eighty manuscripts on these topics, and been the lead investigator on several trials designed to reduce HIV/STI transmission risks, improve engagement in HIV care, and promote treatment adherence. Dr. Wilson is the principal investigator on several federally funded studies, including a formative research study designed to integrate HIV prevention into barbershops serving urban minority communities and a randomized controlled trial to promote engagement in HIV care. She is a co-principal investigator of the Brooklyn Health Disparities Center, which utilizes a community-government-academic partnership in the service of reducing disparities in areas such as obesity, sleep disorders, and HIV/AIDS.