Ms. Thompson is a Program Director at the PIRE-Louisville Center. She has a MA in anthropology from George Washington University and a BS from Michigan State University. She has a diverse background including collections research and quantitative and qualitative research methods.
For the past ten years at PIRE, she has worked in the coordination, implementation, and project management of evaluation and intervention activities on the topics of youth access to harmful legal products, prescription drugs, and substance and alcohol abuse. She has also helped design and implement evaluations on youth mentoring, rural access to healthcare education, rural access to continued education credits, rural access to shelter for homeless teen mothers, prescription drug access, and oral health interventions with intellectually and developmentally disabled individuals. She has managed data collection, analysis, and reporting tasks for quantitative and qualitative data.
Ms. Thompson has also helped to culturally adapt instruments, training content, and intervention programs for areas as diverse as rural Tennessee and Pennsylvania, inner-city Louisville, frontier Alaska, and Afghanistan. She has extensive experience with conducting international trainings, focus groups, key community member and stakeholder interviews, semi-structured interviews, and telephone surveys. She has also been co-author on multiple peer-reviewed publications addressing the topics of obesity in rural and inner-city populations, substance abuse treatment, human rights violations, prescription drug misuse, and related issues such as risk and protective factors, family health behaviors, and health disparities.
Currently, Ms. Thompson is Principal Investigator on a study with the University of Louisville’s Building Resiliency In Campus Community (BRICC) Coalition to develop and pilot test a peer-led training program to reduce risky drinking among college students on Kentucky campuses through individual-level strategies. On this study, she works closely with the colleges’ anti-drug/health advocacy coalitions, campus police, law enforcement, and health departments.
Current and past projects also include Ms. Thompson as Co-PI on a SAMHSA-funded Drug-Free Communities grant for Coffee County Anti-Drug Coalition (CCADC), which included an annual county-wide survey of about 2,000 students in grades 6, 8, 10, and 12 in rural Tennessee and asks questions about a wide variety of substance use behaviors, beliefs, and intentions to determine prevalence and prevention intervention impact. She is also a project lead and evaluator on CCADC’s Count It! Lock It! Drop It!™ Campaign, which is funded by Tennessee’s BlueCross BlueShield Health Foundation and assesses the impact of the implementation of a statewide prescription drug abuse campaign in reducing access and perceptions of harm related to prescription drug misuse.
Ms. Thompson is project manager on a NIDCR U01 RCT evaluating a caregiver intervention to improve the oral health of intellectually and developmentally disabled individuals living in group homes in and around Louisville, KY. For 10 years she has managed two central Pennsylvania TANF to work HPOG grants that have focused on helping rural populations move into and up the healthcare career pathway. A key part of the aforementioned evaluations is to assess the feasibility and success of the training programs, including the identification of barriers and gaps in curriculum and training implementation as they relate to key outcomes.
Finally, Ms. Thompson was recently project manager on a NIDA-funded R03 to assess within-persons and between-persons associations of e-cigarette and dual tobacco/nicotine use among youth (ages 13-17) in Kentucky, a critically important population when considering public health impact of e-cigarette use and needed FDA regulation. Follow-up data collection is underway with this sample (now 16-19 years old), leading to one of the first longitudinal youth EMA tobacco studies.