APA Public Interest Directorate welcomes new leadership in the Office of Ethnic Minority Affairs (OEMA)
Dr. Townsend comes to APA from the Georgetown University Medical School, where she has served as Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Chair of Community Liaison/Outreach, Center of Trauma in the Community. She has a doctorate in Child Clinical/Community Psychology from George Washington University. Before joining the Georgetown University Medical School faculty, she served as Assistant Professor of Psychology at Pennsylvania State University.
Dr. Townsend’s research and interests have involved the implementation of community-based research and prevention programs to decrease health and mental health disparities among ethnic minority families. She is on the executive committee of the Society for Community Research and Action: Division of Community Psychology (Division 27), and serves as the Associate Editor of the Journal of Black Psychology and on the Editorial Board for the Psychology of Women Quarterly. In addition, she has served as an ad hoc reviewer for over 12 other academic journals and authored or co-authored numerous peer reviewed journal articles and book chapters. She was principal investigator on three federally funded grants and co-investigator on two others, for a combined total of over $5,000,000. Her recent National Institute of Nursing Research funded project entitled Aza Sisters: An HIV Prevention Program for African American Girls that focused on developing an HIV prevention intervention that can empower African American girls who may have experienced some form of child sexual abuse or interpersonal trauma.
Dr. Townsend’s focus on understanding the influence of race/ethnicity on behavior, with the goal of ensuring that all individuals, regardless of ethnicity, socioeconomic status, or gender, have access to the knowledge and resources to live healthy lives, and her dedication to identifying and supporting strategies to retain ethnic minority students in graduate programs will serve the mission of the Office of Ethnic Minority Affairs well. I look forward to working with Dr. Townsend and hope you will join me in welcoming her to APA’s Public Interest Directorate.
Gwendolyn P. Keita, PhD
Public Interest Directorate