Since its founding in 1960, ORI has attracted top-notch researchers from around the world. The scientists enjoy ORI’s dynamic and collegial work environment, share in ORI’s commitment to scientific excellence and scientific freedom, and uphold ORI’s high ethical and scientific standards.

The scientists and their interests drive ORI’s research program. They study human behavior to learn why people behave the way they do and to develop programs to help people lead healthier lives. In 2018, there are 49 scientists working on 54 research grants.

Scientists at ORI

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Laura Akers, Ph.D.

Laura Akers’ research interests focus primarily on the relationship between cognitive framing and behavior, especially the roles of narrative, metaphor, and cognitive style in motivation and behavior change. She is the principal investigator of a five-year study to help teach women to better support their husbands/domestic partners in quitting smokeless tobacco. She is also collaborating with ORI’s Gerard Saucier in studying the ...

Judy A. Andrews, Ph. D.

Judy Andrews' areas of interest include the etiology and prevention of substance use in childhood through emerging adulthood, and the evaluation of tobacco cessation interventions. She is principal investigator on an ongoing fourteen-year longitudinal study, the Oregon Youth Substance Use Project (OYSUP), investigating the risk and protective factors associated with development of substance use, beginning when the participants were in elementary ...

Manuel Barrera Jr., Ph.D.

Dr. Barrera's research interests include prevention and behavioral treatment for type 2 diabetes, social support interventions, and behavioral health interventions for Latino families.

Andrew Bergen, Ph.D.

Dr. Bergen is a Senior Scientist at Oregon Research Institute. His research interests are the genetic and molecular epidemiology of eating and substance use disorders. He has served in research, program, and translational roles at the NIH, in non-profit Research Institutes, and in the biotechnology sector. He is a member of several consortia and societies focused on the study of behavioral disorders and genetics.

Anthony Biglan, Ph.D.

Anthony Biglan, Ph.D. is a Senior Scientist at Oregon Research Institute and the Co-Director of the Promise Neighborhood Research Consortium. He has been conducting research on the development and prevention of child and adolescent problem behavior for the past 30 years. His work has included studies of the risk and protective factors associated with tobacco, alcohol, and other drug use; high-risk sexual behavior; and antisocial behavior. He has ...

Shawn M. Boles, Ph.D.

Shawn Boles is a Senior Research Associate at the Oregon Research Institute and Emeritus Senior Research Associate in the Center on Human Development at the University of Oregon. He received his A.B. degree in Psychology from Oglethorpe University in 1965, followed by two years teaching general science as a Peace Corps volunteer in the Philippines. He returned from that endeavor to attend Georgia State University, receiving his Ph.D. (1971) in ...

Janet Brigham, Ph.D.

Dr. Brigham merges two skill sets: scientific research and writing/editing. She brings a previous career as a journalist, writer, and editor to her research interests, as author and co-author of two books about nicotine and tobacco, an editor of a scientific journal (managing editor, 2006 to 2009), and more recently as editor-in-chief of an award-winning newsletter. Her research work has explored the factors that lead to and sustain tobacco use, ...

Janet L. Brody, Ph.D.

Janet Brody is an ORI Research Scientist, a licensed clinical psychologist in New Mexico and Co-investigator of three NIDA funded clinical trials evaluating behavioral treatments for adolescent substance-use and depressive disorders. Dr. Brody recently completed as Principal Investigator for two NIH-funded grants (original and competing continuation) investigating ethical issues and family decision-making related to the participation of children ...

Erin Chaparro, Ph.D.

Erin Chaparro’s research interests include the development and implementation of multi-tiered systems of support in the K-12 education system. She has been the primary and co-investigator on grants that aim to evaluate or scale up best-practices in literacy, positive behavior supports, and instruction for English language learners.  Dr. Chaparro has worked with state and local education agencies across the country (e.g. New Mexico, ...

Jeanne Dalen, Ph.D.

Specializing in behavioral medicine, Dr. Dalen has over 12 years’ experience conducting both research and clinical work with chronic illness populations including obesity, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease. She has over nine years’ experience working in both a clinical and research capacity with family-based adolescent treatment programs for depression and substance and over ten years’ experience investigating ethical issues ...

Brian G. Danaher, Ph.D.

Brian G. Danaher, Ph.D. is a Senior Research Scientist at Oregon Research Institute and Research Professor at the University of Oregon. A research clinical psychologist by training, Dr. Danaher’s early academic research focused on behavioral approaches to encourage self-management across a broad array of topics. Since he joined ORI in 2004, Dr. Danaher has helped to lead more than a dozen NIH grant-funded research projects that have ...

Betsy Davis, Ph.D.

Betsy Davis is an Associate Research Scientist at Oregon Research Institute. She received her Ph.D. in Educational Psychology/Research Methodology and Statistics from the University of Oregon in 1992. She has been at ORI since 1991. Her primary research interest focuses on how to establish successful community-research relationships and build respectful cross-cultural bridges between non-majority cultures and mainstream evidence-based programs. ...

Thomas J. Dishion, Ph.D.

Tom Dishion's research interests include developmental psychopathology, theoretical models of child and adolescent socialization, family and peer interaction methodology, child and adolescent substance use and problem behavior, adolescent depression, family-based intervention, behavior-change theory, prevention science, dynamic systems, social neuroscience, and translational research.

Susan C. Duncan, Ph.D.

Since joining ORI in 1991, Dr. Duncan’s research has focused on substantive, statistical, and methodological issues related to youth social and health risk behaviors (e.g., substance use) and health promoting behaviors (predominantly physical activity). She has been the Principal Investigator on 5 NIH grants (NICHD and NIAAA) and a Co-Investigator on 14 NIH grants (NIDA, NCI, NIA, NHLBI), successfully collaborating with numerous ...

Grant W. Edmonds, Ph.D.

Dr. Edmonds' research interests are focused on understanding the mechanisms linking personality to physical health across the lifespan. His work is predicated by two ideas: (1) personality is an established predictor of mortality and, (2) personality changes in developmentally important ways across the lifespan. Within this framework, he is committed to developing and testing models relating consequential change in personality to trajectories of ...

Richard Farmer, Ph.D.

Dr. Farmer's research and clinical interests have been primarily centered on persons who display impulsive or disinhibited tendencies or who express difficulties in self-regulation. In experimental research, he has evaluated various theoretical models of impulsivity and reward sensitivity with diverse clinical groups, including inmates and those with eating disorders and personality disorders. Since 1990, Dr. Farmer's research has also emphasized ...

Edward G. Feil, Ph.D.

Dr. Feil, an educational psychologist and ORI Senior Research Scientist, has been a member of the ORI research community since 1993. He has authored papers on early intervention assessment methodology, interactive Internet interventions, and early child psychopathology. His research has focused on early childhood and incorporating Internet technology into the delivery of evidence-based interventions to hard to reach populations.

Erica Finstad, Ph.D.

Dr. Finstad's primary research focus is on engaging and retaining youth in substance abuse treatment who are resistant to change. The majority of her training and experience has involved the implementation and evaluation of therapy methods for serving these youth, including interventions that start with the parents alone and ones that help to increase motivation for change in these treatment-elusive youth (e.g., Motivational Interviewing).

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