Phone: (615) 322-0648
300 Calhoun Hall
PhD, DePaul University
Derek M. Griffith
Associate Professor of American Studies, Health Policy, Medicine and Sociology
Director, Center for Research on Men’s Health
Core Faculty Member, Center for Health Services Research, Vanderbilt Institute for Medicine and Public Health
Member of the Cancer Control and Health Outcomes Research Program
Derek M. Griffith is a leading social scientist focused on social influences on men’s health and racial and ethnic health disparities. He primarily focuses on identifying and addressing psychosocial, cultural and environmental determinants of African American men’s health and well-being. Funded by several institutes within the National Institutes of Health and foundations such as the American Cancer Society and the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, Dr. Griffith specializes in informing, developing and testing interventions to improve African American men’s lifestyle behaviors and chronic disease risk, morbidity and mortality, including reducing obesity and increasing healthy eating, physical activity and screening, often using a community-based participatory research approach. His research has been featured in such news outlets as MSN, NPR, Time Magazine, US News & World Report and USA Today.
- Men’s Health
- Health Disparities/Equity
- Qualitative Research
- Community-Based Participatory Research
Active and Healthy Brotherhood (AHB): A program for chronic disease self-management for black men. This study will test ways to improve health behaviors using an intervention that has been specially designed for African-American men. It will provide information on basic health, and healthy eating, physical activity, stress management, and how to get medical care when needed.
Mighty Men: A Faith-Based Weight Loss Intervention to Reduce Cancer Disparities
ACS Research Updates
Description: Mighty Men is a 6-month faith-based weight-loss intervention for obese African American men 35-74 years old. This project aims to use tailored goals and messages alongside self-monitoring techniques and small group training and community resources to increase perceived efficacy and encourage healthy behavior changes. The main goal of this study is to produce and maintain weight loss by focusing on increasing physical activity level and healthy eating among participating men.
Vanderbilt-Miami-Meharry Center of Excellence in Precision Medicine and Population Health
Obesity Health Disparities PRIDE is an evidence-based, culturally- and environmentally-relevant research training and mentoring program. Early career faculty and transitioning postdoctoral fellows from underrepresented backgrounds who are graduates of, or are currently employed at, Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) are eligible to apply.
Honors and Awards
Chancellor’s Faculty Fellow (2016-2018).
The Vanderbilt University Chancellor Faculty Fellows Program was launched in September 2014 under the Trans-Institutional Programs initiative to support outstanding faculty who have recently received tenure. Candidates are nominated by their deans. Candidates may NOT nominate themselves nor contribute supporting information to the nomination materials. On a competitive basis, the Provost’s Office will award tenured associate professors the title of Chancellor Faculty Fellow. The designation will include an unrestricted allocation of $40K a year for two fiscal years.
Tom Bruce Award (2013).
The Tom Bruce Award is presented by the Community-Based Public Health Caucus (CBPH) at the annual American Public Health Association (APHA) meeting in recognition of an individual’s leadership in community-based public health. The award recognizes “an individual who has made a significant contribution to the CBPH Caucus and the CBPH Movement”. Quoting from the award, Dr. Griffith’s research on “eliminating health disparities that vary by race, ethnicity and gender” earned him his award. The Tom Bruce Award was established in 2006 by the CBPH Caucus of APHA to celebrate the work and the legacy of Dr. Bruce, who many in the CBPH Movement have called the “Father of CBPH.” Past winners of the Tom Bruce Award include Meredith Minkler, Barbara Israel, Geni Eng, Bonnie Duran and Nina Wallerstein.
Associate Editor: Health Education & Behavior
Editorial Board Member: Ethnicity & Disease
Guest Editor, Special Issues/Supplements:
Tailoring Healthy Eating and Physical Activity for African American Men: This NIDDK-funded R21 grant is designed to develop a bank of messages for use in individually-tailored health communications interventions for middle-aged African American men.
Social Determinants of Obesogenic Behaviors of Middle-aged African American Men: This project recently funded by the RWJF Center for Health Policy at Meharry Medical College is designed to conduct a series of focus groups in Nashville, TN and Jackson, MS to examine the social, cultural and environmental factors that influence obesogenic behaviors (i.e., unhealthy eating and physical inactivity) with obese, middle-aged, African American men. This project is a partnership between the Center for Health of Minority Men (Jackson State University and University of Mississippi Medical Center) and the Institute for Research on Men’s Health (Center for Medicine, Health & Society at Vanderbilt University).
Stress, Age, and Cardiovascular Health Promotion among African American Men: The specific aim of this is to conduct a series of focus groups with African-American males who are emerging adults (18-25 years of age) or young adults (26-35 years of age) to identify contextual influences (i.e., culture, gender) and language-specific salient themes regarding stress and cardiovascular health. This project is a partnership between the Center for Health of Minority Men (Jackson State University and University of Mississippi Medical Center) and the Institute for Research on Men’s Health (Center for Medicine, Health & Society at Vanderbilt University).
Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis:
- Interventions to increase physical activity among African American and Latino men (NIMHD – funded, Comparative Effectiveness Research to Reduce Racial Disparities in Cardiovascular Disease)
- Interventions to promote weight loss, physical activity and healthier eating among African American men (African-American Collaborative Obesity Research Network)
Search Google Scholar for publications by Derek Griffith
ORCID ID: orcid.org/0000-0003-0018-9176