Dr. Friend is a Senior Scientist and Associate Center Director at PIRE and an Adjunct Professor at Brown University Dept of Psychiatry and Human Behavior. She obtained a postdoctoral fellowship in addictions research from Brown University, a Ph.D. in clinical psychology from the University of Maryland, and B.A. in psychology (honors) from Yale University. She previously worked in various state mental and medical hospitals, serving clients with persistent mental illnesses and a variety of behavioral health needs.
More recently, she has worked for nearly 2 decades in behavioral health prevention, policy, enforcement, and media, for a diverse array of populations, both as a practitioner and researcher. As the director of PIRE-Rhode Island’s Training, Technical Assistance, and Evaluation Resources Center, she provided oversight for numerous TTA and Evaluation projects. In addition, she has conducted research on tobacco, alcohol, drug, obesity, and Alzheimer’s policies to help inform federal, state and local efforts to prevent and reduce associated harms. She also works in health care quality, having conducted research on treatment quality and client outcomes in substance abuse settings and formerly serving on the Thundermist Quality Committee.
She has decades of experience as a grant writer and reviewer for Federal (particularly HRSA), state, community and foundations. She serves on the International Editorial Board for the journal Drugs: Education, Policy and Prevention and an Associate Editor for Journal of Primary Prevention. Finally, she is a lecturer and mentor for undergraduate and graduate students and postdoctoral fellows.