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Participant Resource Pool


Robert J. Taylor

Robert J. TaylorPI & Co-Director

Faculty Associate, Research Center for Group Dynamics, University of Michigan
Harold R Johnson and Sheila Feld Collegiate Professor of Social Work, School of Social Work, University of Michigan

B.A., Sociology, 1974, Northwestern University
M.S.W., 1976, University of Michigan
Ph.D., Social Work and Sociology, 1983, University of Michigan

More about Robert J. Taylor
Robert Joseph Taylor is the Harold R. Johnson Endowed Professor of Social Work and the Sheila Feld Collegiate Professor of Social Work. He is also the Director of the Program for Research on Black Americans at the Institute for Social Research. Professor Taylor has published extensively on the informal social support networks (i.e., family, friends, and church members) of adult and elderly Black Americans. An article by Thyer in Journal of Social Service Research finds that Robert Joseph Taylor is the #15 most influential social work faculty (out of 2204 faculty) based on H-index. An article by Kimberly Y. Huggins-Hoyt in the journal, Research on Social Work Practice, found that he was the #1 cited African American faculty member in the field of Social Work. Robert Joseph Taylor has been principal investigator of several grants from the National Institute on Aging that examine the role of religion in the lives of Black and White elderly adults. He has been co-principal investigator with James Jackson on several grants from the National Institute of Mental Health on the correlates of mental health and mental illness among Black Americans, including the only major national study of the prevalence of mental illness among Black Americans (The National Survey of American Life). He has edited two books, Family Life in Black America (1997) and Aging in Black America (1993) with James S. Jackson and Linda M. Chatters. He is also the lead author of the book, Religion in the Lives of African Americans: Social, Psychological, and Health Perspectives (2004) with Linda Chatters and Jeff Levin. He is the founding editor of African American Research Perspectives and has reviewed manuscripts for over 60 different journals. To date he has published over 175 peer review journal articles.

Peter A. Lichtenberg


Director, Institute of Gerontology and Merrill Palmer Skillman Institute, Wayne State University
Distinguished Service Professor, Wayne State University
Professor of Psychology, Wayne State University

B.A., Washington University in St. Louis,
M.S. in Clinical Psychology, Purdue University

PhD in Clinical Psychology, Purdue University

More about Peter A. Lichtenberg
Peter A. Lichtenberg, Ph.D., ABPP is the Director of The Institute of Gerontology and
the Merrill Palmer Skillman Institute. He is also a Professor of Psychology at Wayne
State University. He received his bachelor’s degree from Washington University in St.
Louis, and his Master’s and doctorate in Clinical Psychology from Purdue University.
After his internship he completed a post doctoral fellowship in geriatric neuropsychology at the University of Virginia Medical School where he also became a faculty member. A clinician and researcher throughout his career Dr. Lichtenberg, one of the first board certified Clinical Geropsychologists in the nation, has made contributions to the practice of psychology across a variety of areas including in Alzheimer’s disease, medical rehabilitation and with those suffering from late life depression. He is particularly interested in the area of intersection between financial capacity and financial exploitation; finding ways to balance autonomy and protection for older adults. His work in this area led him to be a contributor to the 2008 Assessment of Diminished Capacity of Older Adults: A Handbook for Psychologists published jointly by the American Bar and American Psychological Associations. In 2013 he published the first nationally representative study on predictors of older adult scam victims. In 2015 he published the Lichtenberg Financial Decision Making Rating Scale, and the Lichtenberg Financial Decision Screening Scale, and has contributed several empirical studies on the scales since then. These tools can be used to assess major financial decisions and/or transactions of older adults. He has authored 7 books and over 180 scientific articles in
Geropsychology including being the senior editor for the American Psychological
Association’s Handbook of Clinical Geropsychology.

Joan Ilardo


Director of Research Initiatives, Michigan State University College of Human Medicine

B.A., Finance, 1978, University of Illinois
M.S.W., 1993, Michigan State University
Ph.D., Social Work, 2009, Michigan State University

More about Joan Ilardo

Dr. Ilardo is the Director of Research Initiatives for the Michigan State University (MSU) College of Human Medicine where she facilitates faculty collaborations in health services research. Her research includes systems of care, especially the intersection of healthcare systems and community-based resources; aging network services; patient-provider partnerships in chronic disease management; and caregiver services and supports. She is active with several statewide and local coalitions that address health disparities and access to services, patient self-management of chronic conditions, and service coordination. 

Dr. Ilardo earned a Bachelor’s in Finance from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, a Master’s of Social Work and PhD in Social Work from Michigan State University.

Former Leadership

James S. Jackson (1944 – 2020)

James JacksonPI & Co-Director

Research Professor, Research Center for Group Dynamics, University of Michigan
Daniel Katz Distinguished University Professor of Psychology, University of Michigan

M.A., Psychology, 1970, University of Toledo
Ph.D., Social Psychology, 1972, Wayne State University

More about James Jackson

Research efforts include conducting national and international surveys of black populations focusing on racial and ethnic influences on life course development, attitude change, reciprocity, social support, physical and mental health and coping. Jackson is currently principal investigator of one of the most extensive social, political, economic, and mental and physical health studies of the African American and Caribbean populations ever conducted, “The National Survey of American Life” and the “The Family Survey across Generations and Nations,” and the “National Study of Ethnic Pluralism and Politics.” Teaching centers on social factors in health, race and racism, and social exchange and social influences.