SOE News

Claire Baker wins Robert Wood Johnson Foundation grant

Claire Baker

Claire Baker, assistant professor of applied developmental science, has won a $100,000 grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.

The 24-month-long grant will support Baker’s longitudinal study of fathers’ mental health and child wellbeing in a national sample of families. The primary aim of her project is to understand associations among fathers’ mental health, father involvement and child wellbeing from infancy to preschool.

“I am extremely honored to receive such a prestigious award," Baker said. "This award will connect me to some of the leading experts in research on paternal mental health, while providing me with an opportunity to conduct an innovative research study that has far-reaching implications for the health and wellbeing of African American children and families."

Baker is among a select group of researchers to be awarded a grant through the foundation’s New Connections program, which is designed to introduce new scholars to the foundation and expand the diversity of perspectives that inform the foundation’s programming. New Connections seeks early-to mid-career scholars who are historically underrepresented ethnic or racial minorities, first-generation college graduates, or individuals from low-income communities.

“We are so excited to welcome Claire Baker into the ninth cohort of New Connections grantees,” said Catherine Malone, program officer at the foundation. “The program connects first-time grantees to the Foundation, and the new perspectives they bring are essential to solving the critical, complex issues affecting our nation’s health,”

“This cohort joins the larger New Connections network of more than 1,200 scholars – a network that provides opportunities for scholarly support and collaboration for academics from underrepresented groups,” Malone said.

More information about New Connections is available at