Public Release: 

Locher earns GSA's 2016 M. Powell Lawton Award

The Gerontological Society of America

The Gerontological Society of America (GSA) -- the nation's largest interdisciplinary organization devoted to the field of aging -- has chosen Julie Locher, PhD, of the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) as the 2016 recipient of the M. Powell Lawton Award.

This distinguished honor recognizes a significant contribution in gerontology that has led to an innovation in gerontological treatment, practice or service, prevention, amelioration of symptoms or barriers, or a public policy change that has led to some practical application that improves the lives of older persons. It is sponsored by the Madlyn and Leonard Abramson Center for Jewish Life's Polisher Research Institute and is named in memory of M. Powell Lawton, PhD, for his outstanding contributions to applied gerontological research.

The award presentation will take place at GSA's 2016 Annual Scientific Meeting, which will be held from November 16 to 20 in New Orleans, Louisiana. This conference is organized to foster interdisciplinary collaboration among researchers, educators, and practitioners who specialize in the study of the aging process. Visit for further details.

At UAB, Locher holds the title of professor and is the director of the Translational Nutrition and Aging Program; the associate director for enrichment at the UAB Nutrition Obesity Research Center; and the associate director for public policy, nutrition, and energetics at the UAB Comprehensive Center for Healthy Aging.

Locher's primary area of research focuses on social and environmental factors -- including especially the roles of social support and community and health care practices and policies -- that affect eating behaviors and nutrition-related health outcomes in older adults and in cancer patients and survivors. This work also includes interventional research and health services research utilizing large databases. Additionally, she examines practices and policies that affect the overall well-being of older adults and cancer patients and survivors, particularly those diagnosed with head and neck cancer, and identifying ways to best deliver quality care and services within the community, especially those related to nutritional well-being. She has published or has in press more than 90 peer-reviewed data-based manuscripts on translational nutrition and aging and related topics.

Locher is a GSA fellow, which represents the Society's highest class of membership, and serves as co-convener of GSA's Nutrition Interest Group.


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.

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