The University’s newest Regents Professor is OIBR’s past Director, Steven R.H. Beach, Distinguished Research Professor in the department of psychology in the Franklin College of Arts and Sciences. This honor is bestowed by the Board of Regents of the University System of Georgia for faculty whose scholarship or creative activity is recognized both nationally and internationally as innovative and pace-setting.
Beach’s scholarship focuses on the way that community, family and marital process affect mental and physical health. His pioneering work and collaborations have shown that strengthening close relationships, including marriage and parenting relationships, can play a critical role in reducing depression and physical health problems, and can buffer the impact of stress from economic and social factors. Beach also serves as co-director of the Center for Family Research Clinical Program in the Owens Institute for Behavioral Research at UGA.
He has over 250 peer-reviewed articles in leading journals, as well as multiple books and book chapters. He has received over $60 million in grant funding from organizations including the National Cancer Institute and numerous other divisions within the National Institutes of Health. Among other notable work, Beach recently initiated a program of research with African American families living in rural communities in Georgia, implementing the Promoting Strong African American Families. This program focuses on strengthening marital, co-parenting and parent-child relationships to help foster resilience to economic hardship and experiences of discrimination.
Beach has received numerous awards, including the Family Psychologist of the Year Award from Division 43 of the American Psychological Association, the President’s Award of Distinction for Team Science by the Georgia Clinical and Translational Science Alliance, and the Best Family Economics Paper of the Year by the National Council on Family Relations.
Beach is the former director of the Owens Institute for Behavioral Research, serving from 2003 to 2013. He is currently a Fellow of the institute and a member of the OIBR Executive committee.
The Regents Professor appointment was recently approved by the board of regents and is effective July 1, 2021.