Akilah Dulin Keita Awarded RWJF Grant for Childhood Obesity Research

April 8, 2013

The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF), the nation's leading philanthropy on health and health care, has awarded Akilah Dulin Keita, Brown University Assistant Professor in the Department of Behavioral and Social Sciences, a 24-month grant through the New Connections program. Keita is among a select group of Junior Investigators to receive one of the 24-month grants from New Connections. The grant will allow Keita, who studies health disparities at the Brown Institute for Community Health Promotion, to examine the risk and protective factors for childhood obesity among Southeast Asians.

New Connections is a national program designed to introduce new scholars to RWJF and expand the diversity of perspectives that inform the Foundation's programming. New Connections seeks early to mid-career scholars who are historically underrepresented ethnic or racial minorities, first-generation college graduates, or individuals from low-income communities.

"We are thrilled to welcome Professor Keita to a program that reflects the Foundation's commitment to increasing the diversity in our grant making and in the broader fields of health research," says Debra Pérez, PhD, MPA, MA, Assistant Vice-President for Research and Evaluation at RWJF.

"More than a grant opportunity, New Connections serves as a lifelong professional network for diverse researchers and evaluators," says Pérez.

"I am extremely proud to be among the junior investigators/midcareer consultants honored with this prestigious grant," says Keita. "This award will connect me to a network of established experts in research and evaluation related to health and health care, while providing me with an opportunity to evaluate a program that has far-reaching implications for childhood obesity."