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John R. Knight, MD, is an Associate Professor of Pediatrics at Harvard Medical School (HMS) and the Associate Director for Medical Education at the HMS Division on Addictions. He is the founder and director of the Center for Adolescent Substance Abuse Research at Boston Children’s Hospital. Dr. Knight’s research aims to develop and test a complete set of medical practice guidelines for adolescent substance use screening, brief intervention, and referral to treatment. He has served as Principal Investigator of studies on primary care office management of adolescent substance abuse funded by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA), the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), the National Institute on Dental and Craniofacial Research (NIDCR), the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMSHA), the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, and the Fetzer Institute. He was one of eleven recipients nationwide of research support under the Alcohol and Spirituality RFA from NIAAA and Fetzer. His study assessed the relationship of religiousness, spirituality, and adolescents decisions to drink. Dr. Knight has served three terms on the AAP’s national Committee on Substance Abuse. He has published more than one hundred original scientific articles, clinical reviews, book chapters, and curricula. He is a chapter author in the Harvard Medical school textbook Soul of Medicine. Dr. Knight has served on national expert panels for NIAAA, NIDA, NIDCR, SAMSHA, the President’s Office of National Drug Control Policy, the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, and the office of the U.S. Surgeon General. Dr. Knight received his MD degree from University of Vermont College of Medicine. He served as an intern and resident at Albany Medical Center and completed a postgraduate fellowship in General Pediatrics at Boston Children’s Hospital in 1992 . In 2004 he received a K07 Academic Career Award from NIAAA. In 2008 he was named as the first incumbent of the Boston Children’s Hospital Endowed Chair in Developmental Medicine. In 2011 he received the Distinguished Academic Achievement Award from the University of Vermont College of Medicine and the John P. McGovern Award from the Association for Medical Education and Research in Substance Abuse. In 2013 he received the James H. Tharp Award from the American Society for Addiction Medicine.
Sion Kim Harris, PhD CPH, is an Associate Professor of Pediatrics at Harvard Medical School, and current Director of the Boston Children’s Hospital Center for Adolescent Substance Use and Addiction Research (CeASAR). Drs. Harris and Knight have worked together since CeASAR’s inception in 1999, conducting pioneering research in adolescent substance use screening and brief intervention strategies for use in medical offices, including the development and validation of the CRAFFT screen which has become the most widely studied and recommended screening tool for problematic adolescent substance use. They published the first large, multi-site international trial of computer-facilitated screening and clinician brief advice for adolescent alcohol and drug use in primary care. This study was conducted in two countries and involved 20 pediatric and family practices, demonstrating CeASAR’s ability to successfully complete multi-site studies in real-world medical office settings. Drs. Harris and Knight have recently completed two NIAAA-funded studies conducted in primary care, one testing the validity of the new NIAAA brief alcohol screen for children and adolescents, and the other a pilot study of a new computerized brief motivational enhancement intervention for adolescents screening positive for substance use problems. CeASAR has conducted research in partnership with investigators worldwide including the Czech Republic, Spain, Brazil, and Colombia. Dr. Harris has published over 70 original scientific publications, and has received numerous awards, including the Young Professional Award from the Maternal and Child Health Section of the American Public Health Association, the John Nelson Chappel Best Research Award from the Association for Medical Education and Research in Substance Abuse, and the Estherann Grace Teaching Award and T. Berry Brazelton Innovation Award from the Boston Children’s Hospital Division of Adolescent/Young Adult Medicine, and Division of Developmental Medicine, respectively. She received her doctorate from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.
Lon Sherritt, MPH, has been the Director of Research Technology for the Center for Adolescent Substance Abuse Research (CeASAR) at Boston Children’s Hospital for over 19 years. He is also Chief Data Scientist for Sober Grid, a company providing mobile app social recovery support. He has analyzed final datasets for more than two dozen research projects, including the studies developing and validating the CRAFFT screen, and many multi-site trials of adolescent SBIRT in primary care population. Mr. Sherritt has been a contributing author to over two dozen peer reviewed manuscripts published in scientific journals and is a review editor for Pediatrics and Academic Pediatrics. Mr. Sherritt has a strong quantitative, computer programming and research design background, having worked for several years as an electrical engineer before completing a Masters of Public Health at Boston University.
Himani Byregowda is a Dental Surgeon from Rajiv Gandhi University of Health Sciences. She recently earned her Master of Public Health with a focus in Epidemiology and Biostatistics at the Boston University School of Public Health. She has experience working as a clinician as well as a clinical researcher in the area of tobacco addiction among adolescents in India. Substance use and adolescent health are her areas of research interest, and she has worked with research teams at the World Health Organization, Boston Medical Center, and Boston University School of Public Health.
Maddie O’Connell has a BA in Sociology and Gender, Sexuality, and Women’s Studies from the University of Pittsburgh. She recently earned her Master of Public Health degree at Boston University’s School of Public Health (BUSPH), where she completed a functional certificate in Epidemiology & Biostatistics and a context certificate in Maternal & Child Health. Having previously worked on research teams at the Harvard Graduate School of Education, the University of Michigan School of Public Health, and the Massachusetts Department of Public Health, her area of research interest is focused primarily on adolescent health.