Welcome

I am currently the Mary Tefft and John Hazen White, Sr. Assistant Professor of Sociology and International and Public Affairs at Brown University and a recipient of the William T. Grant Foundation's Scholar Award (2020-2025) for my work to reduce racial inequality in school discipline and disrupt the school-to-prison pipeline. 

At Brown, I am a member of the Department of Sociology and Watson Institute for International and Public Affairs and an affiliate of the Center for the Study of Race and Ethnicity in America, the Population Studies and Training Center, and the Annenberg Institute for Education and Social Policy. 

From 2013 to 2015 I was a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Health and Society Scholar at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. I completed a joint Ph.D. in Sociology and Demography at Princeton University. I have worked at organizations such as the Urban Institute, Mathematica Policy Research, and the U.S. House of Representatives.

My research interests lie at the intersections of race and social stratification, education, social psychology, social demography, and population health. I study how the social contexts of schools, families, and workplaces as well as the race and gender of individuals and their evaluators shape evaluations and, ultimately, lead to racial/ethnic and gender disparities in educational and economic outcomes. I am interested in how the features of one’s social context influence the psychological processes through which individuals – those in positions of power and decision-making as well as those not in positions of power – make sense of diversity and difference within organizations broadly defined, and how this carries implications for racial/ethnic and gender inequality at the organizational and population levels.

On the one hand, I consider how people in positions of power, like teachers, parents, and workplace managers evaluate behaviors and competencies and make decisions about conferring punishments and rewards. I am particularly interested in how the same behaviors and competencies are differentially punished and/or rewarded based on factors such as individuals’ race and gender and organizational context. On the other hand, I examine how social context influences the ways in which people not typically in positions of power, like students and job applicants who are the targets of racial and gender stereotypes, manage stereotyping by modulating their behaviors, self-presentation, expectations, and achievement.

My research has been funded by the William T. Grant Foundation, the Spencer Foundation, the National Academy of Education, the Foundation for Child Development, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the National Science Foundation, the National Institutes of Health, the Social Science Research Council, the Andrew Mellon Foundation, and the Institute for Clinical and Translational Research at the University of Wisconsin. Resulting work has been published in Social Forces, Sociology of Education, Journal of Health and Social Behavior, Social Science & Medicine, Ethnic and Racial Studies, Social Science Research, Sociology of Religion, and the Peabody Journal of Education.