College Directory

Marya V. Gwadz,

Senior Research Scientist
433 First Ave Room 748
New York, NY 10010
Areas of Specialization 

HIV/AIDS – prevention and treatment issues, substance use and substance use problems, mental health, racial/ethnic and gender disparities in health, vulnerable adolescent and adult populations, social and behavioral interventions, peer-driven interventions, multi-level interventions

PhD, 1998, NYU Graduate School of Arts and Sciences
Professional Overview 
Dr. Gwadz is a licensed psychologist, a Senior Research Scientist, and the Deputy Director of the Transdisciplinary Research Methods Core in the Center for Drug Use and HIV Research (CDUHR, P30 DA011041; Sherry Deren, PhD, PI). Dr. Gwadz has been conducting intervention research for over two decades, with an emphasis on HIV-related health disparities in urban populations of color and among women. She is the author of over 50 articles on health disparities, HIV, interventions, mental health, drug use, or related topics. Further, Dr. Gwadz is an expert in developing, refining, and evaluating social and behavioral interventions. Dr. Gwadz has expertise in a number of intervention approaches including small group, individual, family, dyadic, patient navigation, and peer-driven intervention. She has led several successful intervention trials. She is also a leading expert in the recruitment and retention of vulnerable populations in research studies.
NY State Psychology
Professional Membership 
American Psychological Association
American Public Health Association
Clinical Practice / Clinical Interests 

Private Psychotherapy Practice (adults)

Current Research Projects
William T. Grant Foundation
PhD, Senior Research Scientist,

Runaway/homeless youth (RHY) are highly vulnerable to adverse outcomes. A diverse network of settings has developed to locate, engage, house, and treat RHY. However, almost no research has been conducted on these settings, and therefore we do not understand which characteristics of settings best promote positive youth development, or what factors impede or promote settings’ effectiveness. The proposed study uses the Youth Program Quality Model and multiple research methods to study settings for RHY and their impact on RHY. The multi-disciplinary team will also convene an Expert Panel to interpret findings, which will be disseminated nationally.  

National Institute on Drug Abuse, National Institutes of Health (NIH)
PhD, Senior Research Scientist,
Infectious Disease and Global Health

This project will evaluate the efficacy of a peer-driven intervention to seek out heterosexuals at high risk for HIV but who do not know they have HIV, test them, and link them to care if found to be HIV-infected.

Gwadz, M.V., Leonard, N.R., Cleland, C.M., Riedel, M., Banfield, A., & Mildvan, D. (2011). The effect of peer-driven intervention on rates of screening for AIDS clinical trials among African Americans and Hispanics. American Journal of Public Health, 101, 1096-1102. 10.2105/AJPH.2010.196048.
Gwadz, M.V., Cylar, K., Leonard, N.R., Riedel, M., Herzog, N., Arredondo, G.N., Cleland, C.M., Aguirre, M., Marshak, A., Mildvan, D. (2010). An exploratory behavioral intervention trial to improve rates of screening for AIDS clinical trials among racial/ethnic minority and female persons living with HIV/AIDS. AIDS and Behavior, 14, 639-648. 10.1007/s10461-009-9539-9.
Gwadz, M.V., Cleland, C.M., Quiles, R., Nish, D., Welch, J., Michaels, L.S., Gonzalez, J.L., Ritchie, A.S., Leonard, N.R. (2010). CDC HIV testing guidelines and the rapid and conventional testing practices of homeless youth. AIDS Education and Prevention, 22, 312-327. 10.1521/aeap.2010.22.4.312.
Gwadz, M.V., Colon, P., Ritchie, A.S., Leonard, N.R., Cleland, C.M., Riedel, M., Bowens, D., Banfield, A.D., Chang, P., Quiles, R., Mildvan, D. (2010). Increasing and supporting the participation of persons of color living with HIV/AIDS in AIDS clinical trials. Current HIV/AIDS Reports, 7, 194-200. 10.1007/s11904-010-0055-3.
Gwadz, M.V., Leonard, N.R., Cleland, C.M., Riedel, M., Arredondo, G.N., Wolfe, H., Hardcastle, E., & Morris, J. (2008). Behavioral interventions for HIV infected and uninfected mothers with problem drinking. Addiction Research and Theory, 16, 47-65. 10.1080/16066350701651214.
Leonard, N.R., Gwadz, M.V., Cleland, C.M., Vekaria, P.C., & Ferns, B. (2008). Maternal substance use and HIV status: Adolescent risk and resilience. Journal of Adolescence, 31, 389-405. 10.1016/j.adolescence.2007.07.001, PMCID: PMC2713070.
Gwadz, M.V., Gostnell, K., Smolenski, C., Willis, B., Nish, D., Nolan, T.C., Tharaken, M., & Ritchie, A.S. (2008). The initiation of homeless youth into the street economy. Journal of Adolescence, 32, 357-377. 10.1016/j.adolescence.2008.01.004.
Leonard, N.R., Gwadz, M.V., Cleland, C.M., Rotko, L., & Gostnell, K. (2007). Physical and mental health functioning of urban HIV-infected and uninfected mothers with problem drinking. American Journal of Drug and Alcohol Abuse, 33, 419-427. 10.1080/00952990701313652.
Leonard, N.R., Gwadz, M.V., Arredondo, G.N., Riedel, M., Rotko, L., Hardcastle, E.J., & Potere, J.C. (2007). Description of a behavioral intervention to reduce substance use and related risk and increase positive parenting among urban mothers with alcohol and other drug problems. Journal of Child and Family Studies, 16, 531-544. 10.1007/s10826-006-9104-3.
Gwadz, M.V., Nish, D., Leonard, N.R., & Strauss, S.M. (2007). Gender differences in traumatic events and rates of post-traumatic stress disorder among homeless youth. Journal of Adolescence, 30, 117-129. 10.1016/j.adolescence.2006.01.004.
Gwadz, M.V., Leonard, N.R., Nakagawa, A., Cylar, K., Finkelstein, M., Herzog, N., Tharaken, M., & Mildvan, D. (2006). Gender differences in attitudes toward AIDS clinical trials among urban HIV-infected individuals from racial and ethnic minority backgrounds. AIDS Care, 18, 786-794. 10.1080/09540120500428952.
Gwadz, M.V., Clatts, M.C., Yi, H., Leonard, N.R., Goldsamt, L., & Lankenau, S. (2006). Resilience among young men who have sex with men in New York City. Sexuality Research and Social Policy,, 3, 13-21. 10.1525/srsp.2006.3.1.13, PMCID: PMC2136414.
Lankenau, S.E., Clatts, M.C., Welle, D., Goldsamt, L.A., & Gwadz, M.V. (2005). Street careers: Homelessness, drug use, and sex work among young men who have sex with men (YMSM). International Journal of Drug Policy, 16, 10-18. 10.1016/j.drugpo.2004.07.006.
Gwadz, M.V., Clatts, M.C., Leonard, N.R., & Goldsamt, L. (2004). Attachment style, childhood adversity, and behavioral risk among young men who have sex with men. Journal of Adolescent Health, 34, 402-413. 10.1016/j.jadohealth.2003.08.006.
Leonard, N.R., Lester, P., Rotheram-Borus, M.J., Mattes, K., Gwadz, M., & Ferns, B. (2003). Successful recruitment and retention of participants in longitudinal behavioral research. AIDS Education and Prevention, 15, 269-281. 10.1521/aeap.