Norma Olvera

Professor, Department of Psychological, Health, and Learning Sciences, University of Houston. She is also a Fellow of The Obesity Society, director of the Latino Health Disparities Lab.  Throughout her career, Dr. Olvera has sustained a strong and active interdisciplinary research agenda. Her research has focused on identifying specific maternal, cultural, and environmental influences on pediatric obesity, body image, disordered eating behaviors, and physical activity in Latino and African American early adolescents. Additionally, Dr. Olvera has received recognition for her research within the local, national, and international arena. Results derived from these studies have led to the development of innovative family-based obesity interventions designed to promote healthy eating, exercise and positive body image in Latina and African American girls. Dr. Olvera has published in the highest impact factor journals in the health field (e.g., American Journal of Preventive Medicine, Journal of Pediatric Psychology, Health and Place, and Obesity, and Journal of Research on Adolescence). Her publications are widely cited. I have successfully and consistently secured external and internal funding throughout her career due to the integration of research and development of innovative and comprehensive obesity interventions involving minority populations. As a principal investigator, co-investigator or consultant, Dr. Olvera has secured funding from such sources as federal (e.g., National Institutes of Health) and foundations (e.g., Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, Harris County Hospital District Foundation, St. Luke Episcopal Health Charities, and Safeway) and UH internal funding (e.g., Interdisciplinary Stimulus Grant). In the spirit of interdisciplinary research, Dr. Olvera has often collaborated with colleagues with expertise in psychology, health education, methodology, landscape architecture, exercise physiology, nutrition, and biomechanics from national and international academic institutions.