Dr. Leon D. Caldwell
Dr. Leon D. Caldwell is a Senior Research Associate in the Knowledge Support Unit at the Annie E. Casey Foundation (AECF). Dr. Caldwell joined Casey in February 2011. Currently he provides research and evaluation support to the Juvenile Justice
Strategies Group, the Evidence Based Practice Group, and the Foundation’s work in
Race, Equity and Inclusion in addition to the Expanding Evidence Project. Leon holds a Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology from Penn State, a Master’s in Education (Secondary School Counseling) and a Bachelors (Economics) Degrees from Lehigh University. Prior to joining the staff of AECF he was the founding Director of the Center for the Advancement of Youth Development and an Associate Professor
of Psychology at Rhodes College in Memphis. He has held academic and clinical positions at the University of California, Irvine (Staff Psychologist), University of Nebraska, Lincoln (Associate Professor of Educational Psychology), the University of Memphis (Research Associate Professor of Social Work), and Rhodes College (Research Associate Professor).
Dr. Caldwell has served as the Lead Evaluator of the Shelby County, TN System of Care implementation, JustCare Family Network, the Youth Violence Alternative Project in Lincoln NE, the Youth Violence Prevention Project in San Jose County, CA and has facilitated several community and school based intervention research and evaluation efforts throughout the country. As a scholar-activist he specializes
in empowerment evaluation and participatory research methods. Leon’s primary research and publication areas are intervention research with underserved and underrepresented ethnic populations.
In particular, his body of work covers such topics as African American adolescent males, mental health service utilization, Black family strengths interventions, fatherhood and parenting, violence prevention and peace promotion and culturally congruent community based health interventions. He developed a study abroad experience in Ghana with a faculty appointment at the University of Winneba in Ghana, West Africa. He is currently involved in a community based participatory research project at the University of South Africa.
Dr. Caldwell is recognized as a national voice for Scholar Activism. In 2011, he was awarded the Excellence in Community Based Research Award by the Center for Health Equity and Economic Research at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center.