Boston, Mass. – North­eastern Uni­ver­sity pro­fessor Dr. Hort­ensia Amaro was hon­ored last week by Casa Esper­anza, for her invalu­able con­tri­bu­tions to the Latino com­mu­nity and the field of sub­stance abuse. Dr. Amaro received the award at Casa Esperanza’s 2007 Hope in Action fundraising event.

I am hon­ored to receive this award,” said Dr. Amaro, Director of North­eastern University’s Insti­tute on Urban Health Research. “It is par­tic­u­larly mean­ingful because it comes from a community-​​based orga­ni­za­tion that was the first to develop treat­ment pro­grams for the Latino com­mu­nity and because Rick Quiroga has pro­vided exem­plary lead­er­ship, espe­cially in edu­cating policy makers about the impor­tance of alcohol and drug abuse treatment.”

Dr. Amaro’s research focuses on public health epi­demi­ology, pre­ven­tion and inter­ven­tion in the areas of sub­stance abuse, HIV/​AIDS, mental ill­ness and inter-​​personal vio­lence. Over the last 20 years, her work has focused largely on devel­oping and testing pre­ven­tion and treat­ment approaches for Latina and African Amer­ican women. She has been the prin­cipal inves­ti­gator of dozens of fed­er­ally funded grants and has most recently exam­ined ques­tions related to the effi­cacy of inte­grated sub­stance abuse, mental health and trauma treat­ment; fac­tors asso­ci­ated with alcohol and drug use among col­lege stu­dents, and appli­ca­tion of evi­dence based models in com­mu­nity set­tings. She has pub­lished over 100 arti­cles on these topics.

Hort­ensia is a true pio­neer in the field of sub­stance abuse treat­ment,” said Rick Quiroga, Exec­u­tive Director of Casa Esper­anza, Inc. “She has drawn national atten­tion to this crit­ical public health problem and has worked tire­lessly to develop cul­tur­ally com­pe­tent approaches to treat­ment for the Latino community.”

Dr. Amaro is also the founder of Entre Familia, a res­i­den­tial treat­ment pro­gram for Latino women and chil­dren, and the Mom’s Project, a community-​​based inter­ven­tion pro­gram for drug-​​addicted preg­nant women. She also serves on the Board of the Boston Public Health Com­mis­sion and the MASS Health Policy Forum. At the national level, Dr. Amaro is a founding member and Steering Com­mittee member of the National His­panic Sci­ence Net­work on Drug Abuse.

The work that I am being rec­og­nized for is actu­ally reflec­tive of the con­tri­bu­tions of many people; many of our staff and col­leagues at both the Boston Public Health Com­mis­sion and the research staff at the Insti­tute on Urban Health Research,” said Dr. Amaro. “It is only through this unique col­lab­o­ra­tion between North­eastern Uni­ver­sity and the Boston Public Health Com­mis­sion that we have been able to make the con­tri­bu­tions for which I am being recognized.”

Cre­ated in 1984, Casa Esper­anza, Inc.’s mis­sion is to help men and women to recover from alco­holism and drug addic­tion, gain the skills they need to be self-​​sufficient, con­tributing mem­bers of society and to repair and strengthen fam­i­lies torn apart by sub­stance abuse. Today, Casa, a bilingual/​bicultural grass­roots orga­ni­za­tion is a rec­og­nized leader in devel­oping holistic approaches to sub­stance abuse treat­ment, with a rep­u­ta­tion for having caring, highly skilled sub­stance abuse coun­selors and other ser­vice providers.

About North­eastern

Founded in 1898, North­eastern Uni­ver­sity is a pri­vate research uni­ver­sity located in the heart of Boston. North­eastern is a leader in inter­dis­ci­pli­nary research, urban engage­ment, and the inte­gra­tion of class­room learning with real-​​world expe­ri­ence. The university’s dis­tinc­tive coop­er­a­tive edu­ca­tion pro­gram, where stu­dents alter­nate semes­ters of full-​​time study with semes­ters of paid work in fields rel­e­vant to their pro­fes­sional inter­ests and major, is one of the largest and most inno­v­a­tive in the world. The Uni­ver­sity offers a com­pre­hen­sive range of under­grad­uate and grad­uate pro­grams leading to degrees through the doc­torate in six under­grad­uate col­leges, eight grad­uate schools, and two part-​​time divi­sions. For more infor­ma­tion, please visit www​.north​eastern​.edu.