The Gerontological Society of America (GSA) -- the nation's largest interdisciplinary organization devoted to the field of aging -- has chosen Margie E. Lachman, PhD, of Brandeis University as the 2015 recipient of the Distinguished Career Contribution to Gerontology Award.
This distinguished honor is given annually to an individual whose theoretical contributions have helped bring about a new synthesis and perspective or have yielded original and elegant research designs addressing a significant problem in the literature. Membership in GSA's Behavioral and Social Sciences Section also is required.
The award presentation will take place at GSA's 68th Annual Scientific Meeting, which will be held from November 18 to 22 in Orlando, Florida. This conference is organized to foster interdisciplinary collaboration among researchers, educators, and practitioners who specialize in the study of the aging process. Visit http://www.geron.org/2015 for further details.
Lachman is the Minnie and Harold Fierman Professor of Psychology and director of the Lifespan Developmental Psychology Lab at Brandeis University and of the Brandeis University Lifespan Initiative on Healthy Aging. She also is a co-director of a National Institute on Aging-funded pre and postdoctoral training program, Cognitive Aging in a Social Context. Her expertise is in the area of lifespan development with a focus on personality and cognition in middle and later adulthood.
Lachman's program of research has contributed to understanding how self-regulatory processes and expectancies such as the sense of control are related to health and well-being. Among the noteworthy findings are that socioeconomic disparities in health and cognition can be attenuated with modifiable psychosocial and behavioral factors. Lachman has conducted intervention studies designed to enhance perceived control over memory and physical exercise, and one of the programs designed to increase control over falls won the Archstone Award for Excellence in Program Innovation from the American Public Health Association. She is currently Principal Investigator of the Boston Roybal Center for Active Lifestyle Interventions, a collaboration among five Boston-area institutions supported by the NIA, with the goal of translating basic research findings into programs to improve health and well-being in later life.
Lachman has published more than 100 chapters and journal articles. She was editor of the Journal of Gerontology: Psychological Sciences from 2000 to 2003, and has edited two volumes on midlife development. She was a member of the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation Research Network on Successful Midlife Development and is currently collaborating on the 20-year longitudinal follow-up of the original MacArthur sample, the Midlife in the United States (MIDUS) study. Lachman has served as an advisor to organizations such as the AARP and the Boston Museum of Science for the traveling exhibit on the Secrets of Aging. Her research has been featured in The New York Times and on CBS and NBC news. Lachman is a GSA fellow, which represents the Society's highest class of membership, as well as a fellow of the American Psychological Association, Division 20. In 2003, she received the Distinguished Research Achievement Award from the American Psychological Association, Division on Adult Development and Aging.
The Gerontological Society of America (GSA) is the nation's oldest and largest interdisciplinary organization devoted to research, education, and practice in the field of aging. The principal mission of the Society -- and its 5,500+ members -- is to advance the study of aging and disseminate information among scientists, decision makers, and the general public. GSA's structure also includes a policy institute, the National Academy on an Aging Society, and an educational branch, the Association for Gerontology in Higher Education.