Principal Investigator and Director
Lourdes Baezconde-Garbanati, PhD, is a Tenured Professor at the Keck School of Medicine of the University of Southern California and principal investigator and director of the Tobacco Education and Material Lab (TEAM Lab). Her work focuses on community-based research and public health initiatives that explore the role of culture in health behaviors, with an emphasis on the elimination of health disparities. She develops and tests innovative interventions that help better understand the impact of social determinants of health on the health status of Latino Americans, and Latino populations in Latin America. Her research focuses on providing an evidence base for best practices to modify cultural and lifestyle risk factors for cancer and tobacco control at the community level. Her research interests include advancing our cultural knowledge regarding the indigenous cultures of the Americas. She teaches courses on gender and ethnic minority health, culture, and on community organizing and mobilization for health locally and globally.
She co-chairs the Capacity Building and Training committee for the Global Health Institute and is director of community outreach and education at the Institute for Health Promotion and Disease Prevention Research at USC. She also is an internal advisory committee member to the Center for Environmental Health Community Outreach Core.
Dr. Baezconde-Garbanati has been instrumental in developing and testing effective communication strategies, outreach activities and partnerships to enhance community health with a focus on tobacco control. She is a steering committee member of the National Latino Tobacco Control Network and researches the feasibility of developing policies to eliminate exposure to secondhand smoke among Hispanic/Latinos and American Indians. For 17 years, she has helped communicate the latest science for the development of informed policy and community-based decision-making.
She has a strong record of extramural funding from the National Institutes of Health, including the National Cancer Institute (NCI) and the National Institute on Drug Abuse. She recently received a prestigious transformative RO1 from the NCI to look at the role of narrative in the delivery of cancer messages to African-American, Hispanic/Latino and Korean audiences. She has received multiple awards and recognition for her work, and is well published in a variety of relevant topics.
Dr. Baezconde-Garbanati earned her M.A. from the Universite Catholique de Louvain, Belgium, and her master of public health and PhD from the University of California, Los Angeles.