Katie A. McLaughlin

Katie Mclaughlin

Katie A. McLaughlin, PhD

Executive Director
Knight Chair and Professor of Psychology
Practice Areas: Child and adolescent mental health

Dr. Katie McLaughlin is a clinical psychologist with expertise in child and adolescent mental health and the Executive Director of the Ballmer Institute. She has a joint Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology and Epidemiology from Yale University. Before joining the Ballmer Institute, Dr. McLaughlin was a tenured professor of psychology at the University of Washington and Harvard University. She has dedicated her career to developing better strategies for the early identification and prevention of mental health problems in children and adolescents and training the next generation of behavioral health professionals. As the Executive Director of the Ballmer Institute, Dr. McLaughlin will be leading the development and evaluation of the nation’s first undergraduate training program in children’s behavioral health. This transformative initiative provides an unprecedented opportunity to stimulate innovation in youth behavioral health at a moment when new approaches to intervention and service delivery are sorely needed. 

Dr. McLaughlin’s research investigates the role of environmental experiences in shaping children’s development and mental health. Her research has been at the forefront of a rapidly evolving field demonstrating that childhood adversity is a common societal problem that has a powerful influence on youth mental health. Dr. McLaughlin’s research program examines how experiences of stress, trauma, and social disadvantage in childhood alter development in ways that increase risk for mental health problems and translates knowledge of these mechanisms into early interventions to prevent the onset of behavioral health concerns in children who have experienced adversity. She has published more than 300 journal articles on these topics in leading journals in clinical and developmental psychology, psychiatry, neuroscience, epidemiology, and public health. 

Dr. McLaughlin's research has been funded by the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), the National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities, the National Institute on Aging, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the Jacobs Foundation, the Brain and Behavior Foundation, the One Mind Institute, AIM Youth Mental Health, the Charles H. Hood Foundation, and the Raikes Foundation. She has received awards for her research from the Society for a Science of Clinical Psychology, the International Society for Traumatic Stress Studies, the Brain and Behavior Research Foundation, and the Jacobs Foundation, as well as the Distinguished Scientific Award for Early Career Contribution to Psychology from the American Psychological Association and a MERIT Award from NIMH. Dr. McLaughlin has received the Highly Cited Researcher in Psychology and Psychiatry designation from Web of Science every year since 2016, which is awarded to scientists with the top 1% of citations in their discipline. 

 Dr. McLaughlin’s Google Scholar profile can be found here.