Erika Westling, Ph.D., is one of ORI’s “home-grown” scientists. Hired at ORI as a research assistant in 1996, Erika got her Ph.D. in Social Psychology in 2007 from UCLA, and in 2012 became an ORI associate scientist. Her research focuses on child development and the factors in health behaviors in children and adolescents, including physical activity, diet, substance use, mood, and timing of pubertal maturation. Her favorite part of working at ORI is the people she gets to work alongside in her teams. Outside of ORI, Erika works with a few non-profit animal rescue agencies in town to address pet overpopulation in Eugene-Springfield. She is the proud mother of one daughter, Emily.