Dr. Margarita Alegría

Dr. Margarita Alegría is the Chief of the Disparities Research Unit at the Massachusetts General Hospital and a Professor in the Departments of Medicine and Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School. From 2002-2015 she was the Director of the Center for Multicultural Mental Health Research at Cambridge Health Alliance and was previously the Director of the Center for Evaluation and Sociomedical Research at the University of Puerto Rico. She obtained her B.A. in Psychology from Georgetown University in 1978 and her Ph.D. from Temple University in 1989.

Throughout her career, she has remained dedicated to generating knowledge that can be used to increase equity in health outcomes and healthcare services for disadvantaged and minority populations. Dr. Alegría has published over 200 papers, editorials, intervention training manuals, and several book chapters on topics such as improvement of health care services delivery for diverse racial and ethnic populations, conceptual and methodological issues with multicultural populations, and ways to bring the community’s perspective into the design and implementation of health services.

In October 2011, she was elected as a member of the National Academy of Medicine in acknowledgement of her scientific contributions to her field. She has also been a recipient of notable awards, such as the Mental Health Section Award by the American Public Health Association (2003), the Health Disparities Innovation Award by the National Institutes of Minority Health (2008), and the Simone Bolivar Award by the American Psychiatry Association (2009). Dr. Alegría was selected as El Planeta’s (Massachusetts’s largest circulating Spanish-language newspaper) 2013’s Powermeter 100 most influential people for the Hispanic community in Massachusetts. Dr. Alegría also received the 2016 Cynthia Lucero Latino Mental Health Award from William James College.