The University of Massachusetts Amherst
University of Massachusetts Amherst

Search Google Appliance


Presenter Bios

Amanda L. BadenAmanda L. Baden, Ph.D. is a Professor at Montclair State University (NJ) and a licensed psychologist with a practice in New York City. She was the recipient of the John D. Black Award in 2014 for the Outstanding Practice of Counseling Psychology and was named the Outstanding Graduate Advisor for Montclair State University in 2017. She is a member of State the Board of Psychology for New York State, was a Senior Fellow for the Donaldson Adoption Institute, and is a member of the Advisory Board for the Rudd Adoption Research Program at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst. She co-chaired the Biennial Adoption Initiative Conferences in New York City since 2000. She has published numerous articles and book chapters focusing on transracial and international adoption identity, counseling for adoptees and birth parents, and racial and cultural issues in adoption. She is one of the editors of the book entitled, The Handbook of Adoption: Implications for Researchers, Practitioners, and Families (Sage Publications). She is an adult adoptee from Hong Kong and an adoptive parent.  


Amanda L. BadenMargaret R. Burchinal, Ph.D. is a Senior Scientist at the Frank Porter Graham Child Development Institute and an Adjunct Professor in the Department of Education at the University of California, Irvine. She has been a leading researcher and statistician in child care research and a widely recognized applied statistician. She has authored or co-authored over 150 papers published in peer-reviewed journals, including Child Development, Developmental Psychology, and Science. As a researcher, she has demonstrated that quality child care may be especially important in reducing racial and economic gaps at entry to school. As an applied methodologist, she has helped to demonstrate that sophisticated methods such as meta-analysis, fixed-effect modeling, hierarchical linear modeling, piecewise regression, and generalized estimating equations provide educational researchers with advanced techniques to address important educational issues.


Kirby Deater-DeckardKirby Deater-Deckard, Ph.D., is a developmental psychologist who studies child and adolescent cognitive and social-emotional development, and the role of parenting and peer environments on developmental outcomes. As part of this research, he and his colleagues study adoptive and foster families. He conducted the Northeast-Northwest Collaborative Adoption Projects--at the time, the largest psychological survey of parents of internationally adopted youth in the United States. More recently, his work on adoption and fostering is focusing on international variations in family structures and youth outcomes in lower- and middle-income countries. Dr. Deater-Deckard is the director of the Healthy Development Initiative, a program in Springfield, MA focused on studying the development of individual differences in human cognition, emotion, behavior, physiology, neural activity and genetics from childhood to adulthood.

Abbie E. GoldbergAbbie E. Goldberg, Ph.D., is a Professor in the Department of Psychology and Director of Women's & Gender Studies at Clark University in Worcester, Massachusetts. She received her Ph.D. in clinical psychology from the University of Massachusetts Amherst. Her research examines diverse families, including lesbian-parent families and adoptive-parent families. She is the author of over 70 peer-reviewed articles and two books: Gay Dads (NYU Press) and Lesbian- and Gay-Parent Families (APA). She is the co-editor of LGBT-Parent Families: Innovations in Research and Implications for Practice (Springer) and the editor of the forthcoming Encyclopedia of LGBTQ Studies (Sage). She has received research funding from the American Psychological Association, the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, the Williams Institute, the Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues, the National Institutes of Health, and the Spencer Foundation.

Hal GrotevantHal Grotevant, Ph.D., holds the Rudd Family Foundation Chair in psychology at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. His research focuses on relationships in adoptive families across time, openness in adoption, and on identity development and adjustment in adolescents and young adults. More broadly, his interests include child and adolescent development and family dynamics. The activities of the Rudd Chair a) advance knowledge about the psychology of adoption through original research, b) involve mentoring the next generation of adoption-competent researchers, c) engage with community partners to incubate and evaluate innovative programs, and d) provide evidence-based information to influence practice and policy. For further information, please visit the Rudd Chair and the Minnesota Texas Adoption Research Project. In 2016, he was awarded the Chancellor's Medal at UMass Amherst, the highest honor given by the campus in recognition of service to the University.

Holly LawsHolly Laws received her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from the University of Massachusetts Amherst. Her research focuses on how close relationships impact mental health outcomes over time using novel multilevel modeling techniques for dyadic (two-person) and longitudinal data. Her peer-reviewed publications apply multilevel and structural equation modeling techniques to analyze dyadic, longitudinal, and intensive longitudinal data. She completed her postdoctoral training at Yale University School of Medicine, which included advanced methodological training. She returned to UMass Amherst as a Research Methodologist, directing the methodology program for its Center for Research on Families.  She has conducted multiple workshops on dyadic and multilevel modeling across a range of disciplines, including Yale’s Center for Research on Inequalities and the Life Course, the North American Chapter of the Society for Psychotherapy Research, and the Inter-University Consortium for Political and Social Research (ICPSR).

Jesús Palacios​Jesús Palacios, Ph.D., is a professor of developmental psychology at the University of Seville, Spain. He has conducted research on both domestic and international adoptions in Spain, especially focusing on issues of recovery after early adversity and parent-child relationships. He has published numerous books and articles on foster care and adoption, including Psychological Issues in Adoption: Research and Practice, coedited with David Brodzinsky (Praeger, 2005). He has developed protocols for the assessment of adoption suitability and has coauthored a pre-adoption training program for prospective adopters, as well as books for both prospective and adoptive parents. In Spain and other countries, he consults regularly with governmental agencies about how to improve systems of foster care and adoption on behalf of children, and he has played a leadership role in connecting adoption researchers around the world. He hosted the successful Fourth International Conference on Adoption Research in Bilbao, Spain in 2013.

Ellen Pinderhughes, Ph.D. is Professor in the Eliot-Pearson Department of Child Study and Human Development, Tufts University, and a Senior Fellow with the National Center for Adoption and Permanency. A developmental and clinical psychologist, she studies contextual influences on and cultural processes in parenting among families facing different challenges. These circumstances include adoption, living in high-risk, low resource communities, and raising children as a sexual minority parent. She has thirty-plus years of experience in the adoption field as a researcher and clinician, focusing first on readjustment processes among families adopting children from foster care. Her recent adoption-related studies have addressed adoption professionals’ practices and adoptive parents’ experiences concerning intercountry adoption (with the Donaldson Adoption Institute); and adoption socialization, cultural socialization and preparation-for-bias among adoptive parents.


Aline Sayer​Aline Sayer, Ph.D., is a developmental psychologist with an extensive background in both child and adolescent development and in quantitative methodology. She specializes in new statistical strategies for studying individual development over time. These include hierarchical linear models and structural equation models. Her current focus is on embedding measurement indicators in growth curve models using both multilevel and covariance structure analysis. She is also interested in models that capture the interdependencies in data obtained from couples and other dyads. Dr. Sayer is the director of the methodology program at the Center for Research on Families.