Researchers - LEA-CST

Dr. Kimberly Mitchell

Dr. Mitchell is a Research Associate Professor of Psychology at the Crimes against Children Research Center located at the University of New Hampshire. Her areas of research focus on childhood violence exposure, peer victimization, technology-involved victimization, violence prevention, and childhood adversity, including childhood exposure to opioid overdose. She is well-versed in several different research methodologies including those involving telephone-based interviews, online surveys, and in-person interviews. She has conducted research with caregivers, adolescents, school staff, law enforcement, and service providers.

She has been studying childhood violence exposure for 18 years. With over 110 articles published in peer-referred journals, Dr. Mitchell’s research is both visible and salient. In total, her work has been cited over 7,000 times. Relatedly, Dr. Mitchell has an established history of successful grants and grantsmanship, including being PI on a current NIH grant (R21HD086464) in which she is developing a national youth firearm risk and safety assessment tool and Co-I on a recent NIJ grant to study the law enforcement response to hate crimes nationally.

Dr. Lisa Jones

Dr. Jones is a Research Associate Professor of Psychology at the Crimes against Children Research Center (CCRC) at the University of New Hampshire. Dr. Jones received a Ph.D. in clinical psychology in 1999 from the University of Rhode Island. She has 20 years of experience conducting research on child victimization and evaluating national, state, and community-level prevention and intervention responses to youth victims. Recent research has focused on youth bias and hate crime victimization, youth firearm violence exposure, child sexual abuse and sex trafficking victimization, and child online risks and victimization experiences. Dr. Jones is currently completing a study as Principal Investigator (PI) funded by the National Institute of Justice (NIJ) developing the Youth Bias Victimization Questionnaire (YBVQ), a multi-site study with pilot data collected from over 800 youth.  She was recently awarded a new 3-year grant by NIJ entitled “Hate Crime Investigations and Offender Profiles: A National Survey of U.S. Law Enforcement Agencies,” scheduled to begin January 2019. Dr. Jones has published several papers from research on bullying and technology-based harassment victimization and is currently leading a cluster randomized control trial evaluation of Google’s Internet safety program: Be Internet Awesome. She is serving as a Co-Investigator with Dr. Kimberly Mitchell on a study funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to develop a Youth Firearm Risk and Safety Tool (Youth-FIRST) and on an NIJ-funded study on resilience measurement for youth. In past work, Dr. Jones helped to direct the Multi-Site Evaluation of Child Advocacy Centers (CACs) and has conducted research examining national declines in child sexual and physical abuse. Dr. Jones has published over 75 papers on child victimization and regularly presents across the country and internationally on these topics.

Dr. Jennifer O'Brien

Dr. O'Brien is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Social Work and research associate at the Crimes against Children Research Center (CCRC) at the University of New Hampshire. Her areas of research include childhood sexual abuse, the commercialized sexual exploitation of children (CSEC), and Internet victimization. Dr. O’Brien received her Ph.D. in Social Work in 2017 from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and her MSW from Smith College School of Social Work in 2010.  A licensed clinician, Dr. O’Brien’s research interests stem from her practice experiences both domestically and abroad with survivors of sexual abuse and trauma. Currently, Dr. O’Brien is working on several projects including: the role of technology in the lives of youth who trade sex, law enforcement’s response to victims (and survivors) of CSEC, and CSEC survivor’s treatment needs and preferences. Her work is published in a variety of peer-reviewed journals, and has been presented at numerous conferences world-wide.

Dr. David Finkelhor

Dr. Finkelhor is the Director of the Crimes against Children Research Center, Co-Director of the Family Research Laboratory and Professor of Sociology at the University of New Hampshire. He has been studying the problems of child victimization, child maltreatment and family violence since 1977. He is well known for his conceptual and empirical work on the problem of child sexual abuse, reflected in publications such as Sourcebook on Child Sexual Abuse (Sage, 1986) and Nursery Crimes (Sage, 1988). He has also written about child homicide, missing and abducted children, children exposed to domestic and peer violence and other forms of family violence. In his recent work, he has tried to unify and integrate knowledge about all the diverse forms of child victimization in a field he has termed Developmental Victimology. He is editor and author of 11 books and over 150 journal articles and book chapters. He has received grants from the National Institute of Mental Health, the National Center on Child Abuse and Neglect, and the US Department of Justice, and a variety of other sources. In 1994, he was given the Distinguished Child Abuse Professional Award by the American Professional Society on the Abuse of Children and in 2004 he was given the Significant Achievement Award from the Association for the Treatment of Sexual Abusers.