SPR Community

Newsletter of the Society for Prevention Research
Spring 2013 , Volume 3, Issue 1
In This Issue:

President's Message By Deborah Gorman-Smith

Deborah Gorman-Smith

It has been a privilege to serve as President of the Society for Prevention Research and to work with the SPR Board of Directors, each of whom are dedicated to addressing the increasing challenges that face the Society and the field of prevention science. The Board, SPR standing committees and special task forces have been very busy over the past year working on advancing the field of prevention science and increasing SPR’s presence as the leading scientific organization in the field. I’m pleased to have the opportunity to share with you some highlights of the contributions of many outstanding SPR members who volunteer with great commitment, time and energy for SPR. View Full Message »


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Editor's Welcome By Hanno Petras

Hanno Petras

Welcome to the third issue of the SPR Community. I am very pleased with this issue since it builds on the themes and success of the past issues. While we have not been able to adhere to a stable submission schedule, which I hope we will be able to iron out in the future, I am sure that you will find the content of interest. As we have done in the past, I have invited two of the founding members of SPR, namely Gene Oetting and Ralph Tarter to reminisce on the past and future of Prevention Science. In addition, many discussions in 2013 were centered on the Affordable Care Act and what it will mean for Prevention. I feel fortunate that Larry Cohen and Rob Waters from the Prevention Institute were able to submit their perspective on this. View Full Message »

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Health Reform Helps Prevention Flower but Threats Endanger Progress By Larry Cohen and Rob Waters

Larry Cohen
Rob Waters

Many of us have been working for years to demonstrate the power of prevention to improve people’s health and wellbeing while reducing healthcare costs. For prevention researchers and advocates, passage of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) was an affirmation of our work and an opportunity to demonstrate the value of prevention. The Act puts prevention at the center of efforts to reshape the most expensive health system in the world. The words prevent or prevention appear more than 400 times in the bill, and with good reason: Chronic, often preventable conditions such as heart disease, cancer, stroke, diabetes and injuries account for seven of ten deaths among Americans and roughly three-fourths of our $2.7 trillion-a-year healthcare bill. About 40 percent of premature deaths are linked to smoking, poor diet, lack of physical activity and other unhealthy behavior, according to the Institute of Medicine. Preventable injuries are a major contributor to hospital visits, death and costs, with an estimated annual price tag of $406 billion in medical costs and lost productivity.
View Full Article »

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Reflections on SPR and Prevention Science: The Phoenix Principle By Gene Oetting

Gene Oetting

It was dusk in the Colorado foothills and, after the trail ride, the horses were back in the stable. We were sitting, cold beer in hand, on the cleared picnic tables; listening to the cowboy poet tell tales of the old west while warming his hands at the campfire. Behind him, heat lightning was flickering far on the horizon, reflected in the lake. On this final night of the first meeting of the Society for Prevention Research, about three dozen of us were gathered at Lory State Park, above Ft. Collins, Colorado. It was a dream-like evening, but our finest fantasies for the future could not have matched what we have become today, a vital, thriving society of hundreds of scientists from a wide range of disciplines, all committed to preventing harm of one form or another. View Full Article »

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The Future of the Scientific Practice of Prevention By Ralph Tarter

Ralph Tarter

Many summer afternoons were spent with my father in the cheap seats rooting for the Montreal Royals, then the triple A farm club of the Brooklyn Dodgers. My dad, like thousands of men, wore a white shirt, tie and fedora. Fast forward six decades, men today at the ballpark typically wear a tee shirt (if any), never a tie, and baseball cap (often pointed backwards). Changing norms pertaining to dress mirror relaxation of behavioral norms. Ubiquitous examples of currently normative behavior that were only recently beyond societal boundaries include “body art” (previously confined to criminals and sailors), babies born outside of marriage (currently the majority for women under 30), and ornamental jewelry skewered to many body parts apart from traditional earlobes. Attributions of these changes to “secular trends”, “birth cohort” or “historical period effect” do not account for the causes. Because prevention is modification of processes predisposing to a disorder, it is essential to understand the causes of the disorder for the intervention to be effective. This approach to prevention is consistent with the NIH Roadmap. Indeed, it is a cardinal principle medicine. View Full Article »

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An Interview with 2012 SPR Cup Winners

Caption: left to right: Shu (Violet) Xu, Kathleen Zadzora, Alexis Harris, Jacqueline Cox, Charles Beekman

In recognition of the importance of the collaborative process to the field, the Society for Prevention Research (SPR) annually sponsors a friendly competition amongst teams of researchers for the honor of bringing home the Sloboda and Bukoski SPR Cup. The Cup is named for two of the founders and long-time active members of SPR, Dr. Zili Sloboda and Dr. William Bukoski. The Cup competition is an opportunity for an unique experience: several independent teams of scientists, each working with the same data set, problem solve together for a brief period of time and then jointly present their ideas to each other and a larger group of experienced prevention scientists. At the 20th SPR Annual Meeting, five teams competed for the 7th Annual SPR Sloboda and Bukoski Cup. The teams all worked with the same data set the Second Injury Control and Risk Survey (ICARIS-2). Collection of this dataset was sponsored by the National Center for Injury Prevention and Control (NCIPC), Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). View Full Article »

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International Task Force By Brenda A. Miller

Brenda Miller

The International Task Force (ITF) is currently comprised of the following members: John Toumbourou (Australia), Moshe Israelashvili (Israel), Josipa Basic (Croatia), Jeff Lee (England), Hanno Petras (USA), Zili Sloboda (USA), and Brenda A Miller (Chair-USA). The ITF meets on a (nearly) monthly basis via teleconference calls. We have established a number of ongoing efforts for the later part of 2012 and for 2013. First, we are providing networking opportunities for international colleagues to meet during the yearly pre-conference networking forum at the annual meetings. We will continue to provide this International Networking Forum at the 2013 conference in San Francisco (click here for agenda http://www.preventionresearch.org/2013-annual-meeting/international-focused-events/). The ITF has been engaged in facilitating and supporting the exchange of prevention science scientific knowledge and ideas worldwide. Members of the ITF have actively supported the Drug Prevention and Health Branch of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) in their efforts to develop international prevention standards that emphasize science based prevention strategies. Towards this end, the SPR Board has written a letter of support to the UNODC effort. The ITF has been actively engaged in the yearly SPR conference planning, supporting development of roundtable, plenary, paper, and poster sessions. View Full Article »

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National Preventionist Network By Craig L PoVey

The National Association of State Alcohol and Drug Abuse Directors, Inc. (NASADAD) is a private, not-for-profit educational, scientific, and informational organization. The system that NASADAD represents is primarily funded by the Substance Abuse Prevention and Treatment (SAPT) Block Grant. NASADAD’s basic purpose is to foster and support the development of effective alcohol and other drug abuse prevention and treatment programs throughout every State. NASADAD serves as a focal point for the examination of alcohol and other drug related issues of common interest to both other national organizations and federal agencies. View Full Article »

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Member News


Jessica Duncan Cance, MPH, PhD, received her first grant: R03 DA033413 “Examining the relations of cigarette and alcohol across emerging adulthood” from the National Institute on Drug Abuse.


Patrick Malone, PhD, a quantitative and social psychologist, has been awarded tenure as an Associate Professor of Psychology at the University of South Carolina. He specializes in methods for latent variable modeling and longitudinal analysis for adolescent health risk behaviors.

Weiwei Liu, PhD, finished her post-doctoral fellowship in Prevention at Johns Hopkins School of Public Health in June 2012 and transitioned to NORC at the University of Chicago as a Research Scientist in the Substance Abuse, Mental Health, and Criminal Justice Studies (SAMHCJ) department in July 2012.


Bettencourt, A. F., Farrell, A. D., Liu, W., and Sullivan, T, N, “Stability and change in patterns of peer victimization and aggression during adolescence”, Journal of Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology. Doi: 10.1080/15374416.2012.738455 (Online first).

Coffman, D.L., & Kugler, K.C. (2012). Causal mediation of a human immunodeficiency virus preventive Intervention. Nursing Research, 61(3), 224-230. PMCID (https://ucs.psu.edu/zimbra/CID), PMC3377683.

Lanza, S.T., Tan, X., & Bray, B.C. (in press). Latent class analysis with distal outcomes: A flexible model-based approach. Structural Equation Modeling.

Liu, W., Lee, G., Goldweber, A., Ialongo, N., Petras, H., Storr, C. and Martins, S. (2012) “Impulsivity trajectories and gambling in adolescence among urban male youth”, Addiction doi: 10.1111/add.12049 (Online first).

Liu, W., Kuramoto, J., and Stuart, E. (In press) “An Introduction to Sensitivity Analysis for Unobserved Confounding in Non-Experimental Prevention Research”, Prevention Science

Martins, S., Liu, W., Hedden, S., Goldweber, A, Storr, C., Derevensky, J. Stinchfield, R., Ialongo, N. and Petras, H. (In press) “Youth aggressive/disruptive behavior trajectories and subsequent gambling among urban male youth”, Journal of Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology

Masyn, K., Petras, H., and Liu, W. (2013) “Latent Growth Models and the Study of Change with Binary and Ordinal Outcomes” in Gerben Bruinsma and David Weisburd (Ed.) Encyclopedia of Criminology and Criminal Justice

Two years ago, SPR members were invited to share their experiences with and views on the topic of mentorship via an online survey. Preliminary results were presented during the Early Career Preventionist Network (ECPN) luncheon at the 2010 SPR annual meeting. Complete results of the survey are now available in an article recently published in Prevention Science, along with reflections and advice for the advancement of mentoring within the SPR community. Reference:

Véronneau, M.-H., Cance, J. D., & Ridenour, T. A. (2012). Mentoring early-career
preventionists: Current views from mentors and protégés. Prevention Science, 13 (5), 493-503.

The American Psychological Association has recently published a volume titled: Methodological Approaches to Community-Based Research. This book offers innovative research tools that are most effective for understanding social problems in general and change in complex person-environment systems at the community level. Methodological pluralism and mixed-methods research are the overarching themes in this groundbreaking edited volume, as contributors explain cutting-edge research methodologies that analyze data in special groupings, over time, or within various contexts. Allison Dymnicki and SPR Member David Henry wrote a chapter for this volume on the uses of clustering methods in community research. Reference

Leonard, J.A., Glenwick, D.S. (2012). Methodological Approaches to Community-Based
Research. American Psychological Association. Washington, D.C.

SPR Community welcomes contributions to Member News a regular feature of the newsletter. If you would like to have your recent honor, award, professional appointment, and publication featured in the next issue please forward the details of your achievement to Hanno Petras, PhD, SPR Community Editor at hpetras@jbsinternational.com.

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Prevention Puzzle

Click here to download the Prevention Puzzle (PDF)

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»Visit the SPR Website Home Page

SPR 21st Annual Meeting
The Science of Prevention: Building a Comprehensive National Strategy for Well-Being

May 28-31, 2013, Hyatt Regency San Francisco, San Francisco, CA



Deborah Gorman-Smith, Ph.D.
The University of Chicago

Felipe Gonzalez Castro, Ph.D.
University of Texas at El Paso

George W. Howe, Ph.D.
George Washington University

Karen Bierman, Ph.D.
The Pennsylvania State University

Board Members
Brian Bumbarger, MEd
The Pennsylvania State University

Kenneth Dodge, Ph.D.
Duke University

Margaret Ensminger, Ph.D.
Johns Hopkins University

Abigail Fagan, Ph.D.
Florida State University

Nancy Gonzales, Ph.D.
Arizona State University

Phillip Graham, Ph.D., Diversity Network Committee Chair
RTI International, Inc.

Mark Greenberg, Ph.D.
The Pennsylvania State University

Kevin Haggerty, Ph.D.
University of Washington

Karl Hill, Ph.D.
University of Washington

Keryn Pasch, M.P.H., Ph.D., ECPN Chair
The University of Texas at Austin

Hanno Petras, Ph.D.
JBS International, Inc.

Guillermo (Willy) Prado, Ph.D.
University of Miami

Daniel Shaw, Ph.D.
University of Pittsburgh

Emeritus Board Members

William Bukoski, Ph.D.
Jeanne Brooks-Gunn, Ph.D.
Richard Clayton, Ph.D.
Nancy Grant Harrington, Ph.D.
Karol L. Kumpfer, Ph.D.
John B. Reid, Ph.D.
Zili Sloboda, Sc.D.
Ralph E. Tarter, Ph.D.

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Mailing Address:

Society for Prevention Research, 11240 Waples Mill Road, Suite 200, Fairfax, VA, 22030, USA

Phone: 703-934-4850
Fax: 703-359-7562
Email: info@preventionresearch.org


Jennifer Lewis, CAE, Executive Director
703-934-4850, ext. 213, jenniferlewis@preventionresearch.org

DeeJay Garringo, Membership Director
703-934-4850, ext. 218, dj@preventionresearch.org

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Please send your contribution to Hanno Petras, PhD, SPR Community Editor at
hpetras@jbsinternational.com. Please note that due to space limitations, the Newsletter editor reserves the right to edit copy that is received and to omit submissions that are not directly concerned with SPR annual meeting and activities.

SPR Community
Society for Prevention Research National Office
11240 Waples Mill Road, Suite 200, Fairfax, VA 22030 USA
Phone: (703) 934-4850 • Fax: (703) 359-7562 • E-mail: info@preventionresearch.org • www.preventionresearch.org

Editor: Hanno Petras, PhD
Executive Director: Jennifer Lewis, CAE
Membership Director: DeeJay Garringo

You have received this message because you have had previous contact with the Society for Prevention Research. If you do not wish to be included in our mailing list, please forward this message to info@preventionresearch.org.