Current title/affiliation/professional role(s):

photo_Primack_100x100I am an Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Human Behavior at Brown University Medical School and a Research Psychologist at the Providence Veterans Affairs Medical Center. My role in both places is primarily in research although I do some clinical work in the context of treatment development and clinical trials research. I also supervise students for the clinical assessment of study patients and am responsible for conducting risk assessments for some of our clinical trials. I am currently funded under a VISN1 (Veterans Integrated Service Network) Career Development Award to develop a depression treatment for male OEF/OIF returning veterans and am the project coordinator for a study of the longitudinal assessment of Anxiety disorders in Latinos.

When did you join Division 51? What made you interested in joining?

I joined the division in 2002 as a graduate student. In 2003 I had the opportunity to become one of the first student representatives to the board of the division under the leadership of John Robertson and after graduating, I became the Early Career Psychologist Representative to the Board. I joined the division because Michael Addis (my graduate school advisor) encouraged me to do. I’ve stayed involved with the division for many reasons: because I truly like the people and because it’s one of the few places where I can talk to people about my research and collaborate with others doing similar work.

What do you find most valuable about being a member of the division?

Division 51 provides me with a great venue for my research whether it’s at the APA Convention, the Psychology of Men & Masculinity journal, the list-serve or the psychotherapy with men conference. As a woman who specializes in men’s mental health it has been a challenge to find people who understand my research, or even why I decided to focus on men’s health – I was once asked by another psychologist if I studied men’s health so I could “meet men.”  The Division is one of those rare places where I can discuss research ideas with people who understand the importance of working with men. On a personal level, I really like the other members of the division and I enjoy going to conferences not only because I can talk about my research but because I get to see people who are genuinely nice, intelligent, and supportive of men’s health research.

What are your clinical, teaching, research, or other applied interests relating to the psychology of men and masculinity?

My main area of research is men’s depression and suicide. I developed a “non-traditional” treatment for men with depression (recently published in Cognitive and Behavioral Practice) and am now working on adapting that treatment for returning veterans with depression. I’m interested in depression and suicide because: 1) they are significant health problems and 2) men are particularly reluctant to seek treatment for depression since it is often conceptualized as a “feminine” disorder. So, I’m interested in tackling the problem of depression in a population that may be reluctant to acknowledge it as a problem and even less likely to seek treatment. I’m also interested in culture and the impact of cultural factors on treatment of depression and suicide, so my research often examines the impact of cultural and gender norms in the treatment of depression. I work with a wonderful group of people at Brown who focus on mood disorders have been great collaborators over the years.