NEWTON, MA | September 22, 2011
Education Development Center, Inc. (EDC), has appointed Lydia O’Donnell to the position of Director of Health and Human Development, one of the organization’s three program divisions.
As leader of the Health and Human Development Division, O’Donnell will be responsible for a $35 million portfolio of programs that focus on prevention, intervention, and care, especially among people in vulnerable conditions. She will also serve on EDC’s Management Council.
“Lydia’s advanced research and managerial skills and experience are exactly what EDC needs to create an even stronger future for our health work,” says Luther S. Luedtke, EDC’s president and CEO. “She has held numerous leadership roles at EDC and has been superb in all cases.”
O’Donnell’s work has addressed health disparities in economically disadvantaged communities, both in the United States and globally, and structural, gender, and cultural barriers to healthy development. Her research has focused primarily on adolescent and young adult risk behaviors, the development of innovative prevention programs, and community health promotion. The interventions she has developed for parents, youth, and health providers have been widely disseminated through schools, clinics, and other health services.
O’Donnell joined EDC in 1987 as an evaluator and is currently vice president and director of the Center for Research on High Risk Behaviors. She has led numerous major studies for the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, and has worked on multiple private foundation initiatives. She is widely published on topics related to HIV prevention and sexual health, violence prevention, stigma, and mental health, and has served on multiple NIH review committees and advisory boards.
Before coming to EDC, O’Donnell worked at Wellesley College’s Center for Research on Women. She has an Ed.M. in human development and an Ed.D. in social policy from the Harvard Graduate School of Education. She earned her B.A. in sociology at the University of Pennsylvania.
Education Development Center, Inc. (EDC) is a global nonprofit organization that develops, delivers, and evaluates innovative programs to solve some of the world’s most urgent challenges in education, health, and economic development. EDC conducts more than 350 projects in 35 countries. Visit www.edc.org.