2023 Outstanding Mentors

Dr. Sarah Bloom received her Ph.D. in Psychology at the University of Florida in 2008 under the mentorship of Dr. Brian Iwata. She was an Assistant Professor in the Applied Behavior Analysis area of the Department of Special Education and Rehabilitation at Utah State University until 2013.

She is currently an Associate Professor in the Department of Child and Family Studies at the University of South Florida. Dr. Bloom is a former President of the Utah Association for Behavior Analysis.  She has served on the editorial board of the Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis and has been a guest reviewer for many other journals.

Dr. Bloom’s research interests include the assessment and treatment of problem behavior, translational behavior analysis, and delivery of behavior analytic services to culturally and linguistically diverse populations. Dr. Bloom has been involved in the modification of functional analysis methodology into a trial-based format in order to facilitate its use in educational and other settings.

Dr. Yanerys León is a Research Associate Professor in the Department of Psychology of the University of Miami and Director of Applied Research and Behavioral Training at UM-NSU CARD. Dr. León was named the 2021 recipient of the BF Skinner Foundation Applied New Researcher award presented by Division 25 of the American Psychological Association and currently serves on the Board of Editors of the Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis and the Board of Directors of the Florida Association for Behavior Analysis. In her role as faculty in the Department of Psychology, Dr. León directs the Learning and Behavior, Research and Training Lab. The overarching aims of the lab are to a) advance research in behavioral interventions promoting foundational skills and preventing the development of severe behavior disorders, b) provide early scholars and professionals with behavior-analytic clinical practice and research experience, and c) disseminate contemporary methodology and findings. Dr. León’s current research interests can be broadly categorized into the following: a) refinements and extensions of functional analysis and function-based treatment, b) conditioned social and token reinforcement in application for individuals with ASD and IDD, and c) technological extensions of behavioral measurement and intervention. Throughout her career, Dr. León has mentored undergraduate and graduate students, post-baccalaureate and post-doctoral researchers, and research and teaching assistants, across research, clinical, and service roles.

Dr. Rocío Rosales is an Associate Professor of Psychology and Coordinator of the Applied Behavior Analysis and Autism Studies graduate program at the University of Massachusetts Lowell. She received a bachelor’s degree from the University of Nevada Reno, and master’s and doctoral degrees from Southern Illinois University, Carbondale. Her research, clinical, and theoretical interests span a range of topics including applications of verbal behavior, derived stimulus relations, student and caregiver training, instructional design in higher education, and the philosophical foundations of behavior analysis. Dr. Rosales previously served as Associate Editor for The Analysis of Verbal Behavior and The Psychological Record. She was on the editorial board of the Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis and coordinated ABAI’s Behavior Dissemination Blog: Verbal Behavior Matters. She is currently the Membership Board Coordinator for ABAI and serves as Co-Coordinator of the Verbal Behavior area for the ABAI conference program. Dr. Rosales has actively worked to raise awareness of behavior analysis to underserved communities through various projects and professional collaborations. She was recently awarded a 5-year training grant from the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs that will serve to fund scholars in interdisciplinary professional preparation in Applied Behavior Analysis and Special Education. One of the primary aims of this project is to diversify the workforce and train practitioners to work with bilingual learners with disabilities. As a proud daughter of Mexican immigrant parents and first generation college student, she is passionate about expanding the diversity of experience and thought within the field. She hopes that her work will help pave the way for future generations of researchers and practitioners who share her passion.

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