Carmen R. Valdez, Ph.D., is an associate professor at the Steve Hicks School of Social Work. She has a joint appointment as associate professor in the Department of Population Health, Dell Medical School, where she is chief of the Division of Community Engagement and Health Equity. She is faculty director of the Community-Driven Initiatives Program, which supports local residents to tackle issues affecting health in their community.
She has co-led community and academic coalitions that leverage social capital, community experience, and university research and resources to address health equity for minoritized and marginalized populations. Valdez is also interested in mentoring health equity scholars and junior faculty of color in authentic leadership and in community-based participatory research. She develops community engagement tools to support community-academic partnerships and community engagement and self-determination.
Valdez has a special research interest in understanding family stability and stress in the context of social policy. In her family research, she examines the role of immigration and health policy, neighborhood, and family factors on immigrant personal and family health, as well as developing community-based, family-focused interventions for Latino immigrant families. For this collective work, she was elected as a member of the American Psychological Association’s Committee on Socioeconomic Status, and was granted in 2023 a Mid-Career Award by the Latinx Caucus of the Society for Research in Child Development.
Community-based participatory research, family interventions, immigrant health, mental health.