Lesley Steinman is a Research Scientist in the UW School of Public Health’s (SPH) Department of Health Systems and Population Health, based at a community-academic CDC-funded Prevention Research Center. For the past 20 years, she has partnered with diverse stakeholders (community members, practitioners, organizations, policymakers) to conduct community-engaged research and practice to improve health promotion and disease prevention and management for populations facing inequities in access to quality care and health outcomes. Much of this collaborative work has focused on disseminating, adapting, implementing, scaling, and sustaining the PEARLS program, a home/community-based collaborative care model that builds capacity among front-line social service providers to improve depression care access and outcomes among historically marginalized older adults, including low-income older communities of color, linguistically diverse communities, and rural communities.
She recently led and conducted several studies that align well with our proposed 2024-2029 Core Center activities and ALMA Core Research Project – the PEARLS Connect Study to evaluate the effectiveness, moderators, and mechanisms for action of PEARLS as a social connectedness intervention, and a case study of PEARLS delivered via promotoras to understand adaptations, implementation determinants, and effectiveness for older Spanish-speaking Mexican-American adults. Both of these studies were done in partnership with community-based social service organizations reaching older adults often underserved by care. In addition, the current Core Research Project (PEARLS Equity) is a dissemination and implementation (D&I) study partnering with funders and community-based organizations to create and test new dissemination and implementation strategies and tools that align with organizations and practitioners’ values, beliefs and needs. For the proposed project, she will draw on these experiences to lead the dissemination and translation arm of Core Center and the dissemination aim of the Core Research Project, partnering with HPRC students, staff and faculty and community partners to co-design and carry out project activities. Lesley brings a range of community-engaged D&I research and practice methods; health equity, mental health, social connectedness subject matter expertise; and is an experienced trainer, partner, and practice coach translating research into practice.