Last updated June 16, 2015
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Disability, Intimacy, and Sexual Health

A Social Work Perspective

Kristen Faye Linton, PhD, is an assistant professor of health science at California State University, Channel Islands, in Camarillo. Prior to her research career, she spent over a decade as a social worker, supporting people with disabilities and their families to live independent, fulfilled lives in the community. Her research focuses on disability and health dis­parities with particular attention to sexual health, brain injury, race, and ethnicity. Her education and experience as a social worker and qualita­tive and quantitative methods researcher has prompted her to conduct community-based intervention research and evaluation that responds to community needs.

Heidi Adams Rueda, PhD, is an assistant professor at the Department of Social Work, University of Texas at San Antonio. Her research focuses on adolescent dating and sexual relationships within ecodevelopmental contexts, particularly among understudied youth populations including Mexican American youths, pregnant and parenting youths in foster care, and adolescents with disabilities. Within a holistic approach to dating health, her work aims to prevent teenage dating violence and to foster strong foundations for healthy adolescent and lifelong partnering. She uses mixed methods to inform the design and evaluation of effective pre­ventative interventions and social work practice with adolescents.

Lela Rankin Williams, PhD, is an associate professor and coordinator at the School of Social Work, Arizona State University, in Tucson. Her inter­disciplinary training in psychology and human development and family studies is informed by an ecological perspective, including the importance of regarding cultural and familial relationships as meaningful contexts within adolescent romantic relationships. She is committed to the devel­opment, evaluation, and implementation of culturally meaningful youth-driven prevention and intervention programs. As an active leader in both academic and community settings, she places a high priority on conduct­ing rigorous and culturally relevant research in collaboration with com­munity partners that is both meaningful and accessible.