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Project Investigator Biography

Beti Thompson, Ph.D. Beti Thompson, Ph.D.

Fred Hutchinson Cancer Res. Ctr., Cancer Prevention Program
PO Box 19024, M3-B232,
Seattle, WA 98109-1024
phone: (206) 667-4673
fax: (206) 667-5977

Beti Thompson is a Full Member of the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center and a Professor of Health Services at the University of Washington. Her major research focus is on cancer prevention through lifestyle change, such as dietary practices and smoking behavior, as well as encouraging populations to participate in cancer screening activities. Much of her work takes place at the community level. Dr. Thompson has authored more than 150 scholarly articles. She is committed to a community organization approach to intervention and utilizes that strategy whether dealing with an entire community, a worksite as community, or a subpopulation group as a community.

Dr. Thompson leads a collaborative study with New Mexico State University. With her co-Principal Investigator in Las Cruces, Dr. Mary O’Connell, she works to increase the cancer research infrastructure at NMSU. In addition, the U54, funded in 2007, focuses on cancer health disparities through projects that target Hispanic individuals living in rural and border communities, exchange programs with under-represented undergraduate and graduate students, and with a FHCRC-based course on cancer health disparities. This five year study is in the second year of its U54 and was preceded by a five year U56 grant that helped pave the way for a productive collaboration.

Dr. Thompson leads three large community studies, all of which focus on health disparities, in the Lower Yakima Valley of Washington State. One study focuses on cancer awareness, prevention, and screening; one focuses on diabetes education and prevention; and the third aims to reduce the take-home pathway of pesticide exposure among children of farmworkers. The Yakima Valley is largely Hispanic and she has a large staff of bilingual, bicultural people in the Valley and in Seattle. As part of her work with Hispanics, she has mentored a number of Hispanic students through high school, undergraduate, and graduate scientific studies.

Updated: 05/22/13