Dr. Bridget Freisthler, Principal Investigator UCLA Department of Social Welfare and California Center for Population Research firstname.lastname@example.org http://publicaffairs.ucla.edu/bridget-freisthler
Dr. Freisthler is an expert in the application of population-based geospatial research methods to the exploration of relationships between drug distribution systems, alcohol and drug abuse, and child abuse and neglect. She has extensive experience studying how changes in alcohol outlet densities affect various social problems, including child maltreatment, violence, and juvenile delinquency. The MMD project extends her expertise in understanding the effects of the substance use environment to the distribution of marijuana through dispensaries. Her expertise includes the development of geographic information systems (GIS), and applications of spatial statistics and spatial econometrics to (1) understanding how social problems vary across geographic areas, such as neighborhoods, (2) identifying those areas in a community which are at risk for developing or already experiencing high levels of social problems related to specific social and environmental exposures, and (3) examining how locations of social service facilities may ameliorate the growth of problems in neighborhood areas. She is applying her expertise in these areas in the current project to aid in the assessments of the impacts of marijuana dispensaries upon neighborhood conditions.
Dr. Paul J. Gruenewald, Co-Investigator Prevention Research Center email@example.com http://www.prev.org/aboutprc_staffandfellows1.asp?curid=239
Dr. Gruenewald has more than two decades of experience (1) conducting population studies of drinking, drug use, and problems associated with alcohol outlets and related policies, (2) fielding surveys and analyzing survey data from studies of risks associated with multiple contexts, (3) formulating theoretical models of community systems and their relationships to alcohol and drug problems, (4) advancing methods for spatial and multilevel statistical analyses of ecological and survey data, and (5) directing, as PI, an NIAAA P60 Research Center grant examining ecological correlates of drinking risks across 50 communities in California. On the MMD project, Dr. Gruenewald assists in the management of all survey activities with Dr. Freisthler, guides development of project geographic information systems and spatial descriptive analyses, and assists in the production of presentations, manuscripts and reports from the project.
Elizabeth Schaper, MSW, Project Coordinator, UCLA California Center for Population Research firstname.lastname@example.org
Elizabeth earned a master’s degree in social welfare from the UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs in June 2013. After earning her bachelor’s degree from UCLA in 2004, Elizabeth worked as a full-time research associate with the UCLA Integrated Substance Abuse Programs where she specialized in evaluating and providing technical assistance to integrated physical health, mental health, and substance abuse treatment programs across California. Elizabeth is the Project Coordinator for the study entitled “Evaluating the Geography of Medical Cannabis Facilities on Crime, Price, and Use” and is the lead author on a manuscript highlighting Dr. Freisthler's prior study of patient demographic and purchasing characteristics at Los Angeles area medical cannabis outlets. Elizabeth’s primary interest is in co-occurring substance misuse and mental health disorders. Her long term research interests are in the improvement of quality, access, and utilization of mental health and substance misuse treatment in community-based treatment facilities, the development of integrated healthcare settings, and whether integrated healthcare facilitates early intervention for individuals with undiagnosed mental health conditions and their families.
Heather Agnew, Graduate Student Researcher UCLA Center for Population Research
Heather earned her BA and MA from Cal State Fullerton, in History and American Studies, respectively. She is a doctoral student in UCLA’s Department of Geography. Her broader research interests are the multiscalar effects of transnational drug trafficking operations, and the consequences of bilateral and multilateral international counternarcotics agreements on global drug distribution networks, specifically in Mexico and Central America. As a member of this research team she is working toward understanding the spatial effects and social outcomes of drug use and distribution at the community level, as well as the development of policies and informal networks that advocate harm-reduction strategies and situate drug use within the discourse of public health.