Featured Grantees

The researchers highlighted below have been awarded at least one Behavioral Research Program-funded NIH grant. Read on to learn about their experiences as grantees.

Note: The views expressed here are those of the grantees only and do not represent any official position of the National Cancer Institute.

Tobacco Control Research Branch

Jonathan Bricker, Ph.D.

Behavioral Scientist and Health Behavior Change Researcher
  • Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center

The rise of mobile technologies and third wave behavioral therapies are powerful inspirations for my work.”

Patrick Calhoun

Clinical Psychologist and Health Services Researcher
  • Duke University

We often spend too much of our time developing the next best possible treatment without spending enough time thinking about how we are going to reach the people who need it most. Mobile health technologies are exciting because they provide a platform to increase the reach of intensive behavioral interventions, and have great potential to increase the impact of smoking cessation treatment.”

Nancy Fleischer

Social Epidemiologist
  • University of Michigan - Ann Arbor

As a Peace Corps Volunteer many years ago, I served in two vastly different countries: the Solomon Islands and Kazakhstan. By living in these two disparate places I became keenly aware of how place affects health - through culture, environmental conditions, and policies. I have carried these concepts with me into my research career, trying to understand ways that the social and policy environments affect health and health disparities.”

Marie Helweg-Larsen, Ph.D.

Social Psychologist
  • Dickinson College

Since my undergraduate days I have been fascinated by how smokers negotiate their identity as smokers. How do people simultaneously see themselves as sensible, rational people yet continue to engage in a risky behavior such as smoking?”

Brian Hitsman, Ph.D.

Behavioral Scientist
  • Northwestern University

Although adults with mental health disorders have the most to gain from quitting smoking, they still are the least likely to have their nicotine dependence treated. In order to achieve a major reduction in smoking rates and health disparities, much more work needs to be done to help individuals with mental illness to stop smoking.”

Caryn Lerman, Ph.D.

  • University of Southern California

I am passionate about transdisciplinary research to enhance our understanding about how the brain supports or constrains changes in habitual behaviors that contribute to cancer risk.”

Ritesh Mistry, Ph.D.

Behavioral Scientist and Cancer Prevention Researcher
  • University of Michigan

Being an immigrant, early on it seemed apparent to me that the country a person lives in and who they live with have profound impacts on their life. The mission of my career is to study how these contexts impact cancer risk behaviors.”

Cheryl Perry, Ph.D.

Behavioral Scientist
  • University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston

When I was working as the Senior Scientific Editor of the first Surgeon General's Report on "Preventing Tobacco Use Among Young People (1994)," the ongoing and pervasive inter-relationships between health behaviors, their epidemiology and health effects; their social, political and economic determinants; and the predominance of powerful companies that directly support unhealthy behaviors, became evident and have guided the projects and science that I've done since that time. ”

Irina Stepanov, Ph.D.

Analytical Biochemist and Cancer Researcher
  • University of Minnesota

I have been very fortunate to be mentored by and collaborate with the prominent leaders in tobacco carcinogenesis research. Their example and guidance, along with my personal motivation to contribute to the prevention of suffering caused by cancer, shaped my research interests and direction.”

View sample grant application

Kathryn Taylor, Ph.D.

Behavioral Scientist
  • Georgetown University Medical Center - Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center

As a behavioral scientist in the field of cancer prevention and control, it is very exciting to have the opportunity to test cessation interventions in a setting with the potential to reach thousands of older adults who have struggled with smoking their entire lives.”