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Assistant Professor

Department of Prevention and Community Health

Milken Institute School of Public Health

The George Washington University

I specialize in strategic communication research and practice. My aim is to conduct rigorous, theory based research that reduces health disparities, particularly HIV transmission among people of color. Through my research program, I examine the processes through which mediated messages influence attitudes, beliefs and behaviors using qualitative (focus groups) and quantitative (experiments, surveys, content analysis) methods.

I use theories of message effects, information processing and behavior change to design, implement and evaluate persuasive communication. My work includes the construction and evaluation of messaging for a social marketing campaign called Acceptance Journeys, which is designed to address homophobia due to its impact on the HIV related risk experienced by young gay men of color. My work also includes raising knowledge and awareness of pre-exposure prophylaxis for HIV (PrEP) among women of color in Washington, DC.

Research areas: health communication, mass communication, message design, public communication programs, health disparities, media effects, social marketing