Nicole Ennis (Whitehead), Ph.D.

Assistant Professor
Ph.D., 2001, Kent State University

Office: 352-273-6145

Full CV

Link to iRACE Lab Website


Dr. Nicole Whitehead is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Clinical and Health Psychology in the College of Public Health and Health Professions.  Dr. Whitehead received her Ph.D. from Kent State University in 2001 (Clinical Psychology, Health Psychology Track).  She completed an APA approved internship at the University of Miami/Jackson Memorial Hospital.  Her internship focused on the psychosocial aspects of treatment for Cancer, Renal and Trauma patients and their families.  Dr. Whitehead completed a research fellowship at the University of Miami on an NIMH-funded training grant, “Biopsychosocial Processes in Immunology and HIV/AIDS Research.”  Dr. Whitehead’s fellowship work focused on the intersection of Cancer and HIV, through the examination of HPV, an oncogenic virus, stress and cervical cancer progression in HIV+ women.

Dr. Whitehead currently has an affiliate appointment at Columbia University through the HIV Intervention Science Training Program (HISTP).

Research Focus

The long-range objective of Dr. Whitehead’s research program is to improve health outcomes and well-being among low income and minority populations, who face the greatest inequities in health care, through effective interventions that bridge the gaps in traditional care. Her work focuses on those coping with HIV/AIDS and Breast Cancer.  Dr. Whitehead’s current research program has two aims.  First, using community based participatory methods, her work aims to understand the unique factors that influence inequities in health outcomes among low income and minority populations.  Second, to apply this knowledge in the development and dissemination of effective interventions that bridge the gaps in care.

An Intervention for Black Breast Cancer Survivors in Action


Targeting Disparities

Leading the Way for Black Breast Cancer Survivors

HISTP Fellow


External Funding

Current Support

Pilot Funding through HISTP (NIMH)      Whitehead (PI)      11/01/2012-10/31/2014
Title: Social Support, Depression and Health Behavior Outcomes in HIV+ African Americans 50+
Role: Principal Investigator
Goal:  The purpose of this study is to examine the role of social support (size of social network, perceived availability of support, and actual support received), depression and health behaviors (medication adherence, substance use, and sexual risk taking) among African Americans 50 and older living with HIV.

Social Support, Depression, and Health Behaviors

HIV/AIDS Florida
U24 AA022002                     Cook (PI)                   09/01/2012-08/31/2017
Title: Southern HIV Alcohol Research Center (SHARC) Admin and Research Support Core
Role: Co-Investigator
Goal: The State of Florida has the highest rate of new HIV diagnoses in the US. Its ongoing epidemic is characterized by significant racial disparities and special populations including women and men who have sex with men. The Southern HIV Alcohol Research Consortium (SHARC) was created as a CHAART in 2011 to address the impact of high-risk alcohol consumption on HIV outcomes in Florida.

R01 DA14498 (NIDA)       Latimer (PI)     07/01/01 – 01/31/14
Title: Adapt IFCBT as HIV Prevention Intervention for Non-Injection Drug Users
Role: Co-Investigator
Goal: The purpose of this study is to conduct a randomized trial of IFCBT model with adult injection and non-injection drug users.


5R01CA131451-03             Lechner (PI)  08/01/2008-07/31/2013
Title: Facilitation Adjustment in Low-Income Black Women with Breast Cancer
Role: Intervention Core Leader
Goal: The purpose of this study is to address the disparity facing Black breast cancer survivors in South Florida, who are grossly underserved in terms of psychosocial needs using community based participatory research methods.

1R43MH068195-01      Whitehead (PI)
Web Innovations in Self Care and HIV
Goal: This project fostered efficient dissemination of high-quality research data  on behavioral and social factors related to HIV/AIDS and enabled prevention practitioners to easily engage in needed HIV prevention program development, thus helping to bridge the gap between research and practice.
Total Funding Costs: $99,995

Representative Publications

Whitehead, N.E., Trenz, R., Keen, L., Rose, J., & Latimer, W.  (in press).  Younger Versus Older African American: Patterns and Prevalence of Illicit Drug Use. Journal of Ethnicity in Substance Use.

Whitehead, N.E., Hearn, L.E., Marsiske, M., Kahn, M., & Latimer, W.  (in press).  Awareness of Biologically Confirmed HCV Diagnosis Among a Community Residing Sample of Drug Users in Baltimore City.  Journal of Community Health.

Lopez, C. R., Antoni, M. H., Seay, J., Potter, J., O’Sullivan, M., Fletcher, M. A. Pereira, D.B., Whitehead, N. (2013).  Stress Management, Depression and Immune Status in Women Co-infected with HIV and HPV. Journal of Applied Behavioral Research, 18, 37-57.

Lechner, S. C., Whitehead, N. E., Robertson, B. R., Annane, D. W., Vargas, S., Carver, C. S., & Antoni, M. H. (2013). Adaptation of a Psycho-Oncology Intervention for Black Breast Cancer Survivors: Project CARE. The Counseling Psychologist, 41, 286-312.

Jensen, S.E., Pereira, D.B., Whitehead, N., Marion, I., McCalla, J., Andrasik, M., Rose, R., & Antoni, M.H. (2013). Cognitive-behavioral stress management effects on psychosocial well-being in HIV+ women with Human Papillomavirus infection. Health Psychology, 32, 227-230.

Antoni, M.H., Pereira, D.B., Marion, I., Ennis, N., Andrasik, M.P., Rose, R., McCalla, J., Simon, T., Fletcher, M.A., Efantis-Potter, J., and O’Sullivan, M.J. (2008). Stress Management Effects on Perceived Stress and Cervical Intraepithelial Neoplasia in Low-Income HIV Infected Women. Journal of Psychosomatic Research, 65, 389-401.

Rose, R., Peake, M., Ennis, N., Pereira, D. & Antoni, M.H.. (2005) Depressive symptoms, intrusive thoughts, sleep quality, and sexual quality of life in women co-infected with HIV and Human Papillomavirus (HPV).  Chronic Illness, 1,  281-287.

Hobfoll, S. E., Johnson, R. J., Ennis, N. E., & Jackson, A. P  (2003).  Resource loss, resource gain, and emotional outcomes among inner-city women.  Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 84, 632-643.

Druly, J. A., Stephens, M.A.P., & Martire, LM, Ennis, N., Wojno, W.C.  (2003).  Emotional Congruence in older couples coping with wives osteoarthritis: Exacerbating effects of pain behavior.  Psychology and Aging, 18, 406-414.

Ennis, N., Hobfoll, S., & Schroder, K.  (2000).  Money doesn’t talk it swears: How economic stress and resistance resources impact inner-city women’s depressive mood.  American Journal of Community Psychology, 28, 149-173.

Mackenzie, J., Hobfoll, S., Ennis, N., Kay, J., Jackson., A., & Lavin, J.  (1999).  Reducing AIDS risk among inner-city women: A review of the collectivist empowerment AIDS prevention (CE-AP) program.  Journal of the European Academy of Dermatology and Venereology, 13, 166-174.

Under Review

Trenz, R.C., Scherer, M., Whitehead, N.E., & Latimer, W.  Differences in Alcohol Use Severity and Sexual Risk Behaviors Among Female Substance Users.

Manuscripts in Preparation

Whitehead, N.E. & Hearn, L. E.  The role of interventions in addressing psychosocial factors germane to black women diagnosed with breast cancer: A systematic review.

*Hearn, L., Whitehead, N.E., Trenz, R.C., Mariske, M., & Latimer, W.  The relationship between recent crack use and biologically confirmed Trichomoniasis a marker for HIV risk in older drug using adults.

Lechner, S. C., Vargas, S., Whitehead, N. E., Robertson, B. R., Annane, D. W., Phillips, A., Kobetz-Kerman, E., Carver, C. S., & Antoni, M. H. Subjective social status predicts psychosocial outcomes: Preliminary data in black breast cancer survivors.

*Designates Mentee

Books, Contributor of Chapter

Hobfoll, S., Ennis, N., & Kay, J. (2000).  The role of resources in the context of interpersonal loss. In Loss and Trauma General and Close Relationship Perspectives (Eds.) J. H. Harvey & E. D. Miller (pp.267-285).  New York.  Brunner-Routledge.

Courses Taught

  • Thesis Development (Graduate Level)
  • Human Development Across the Lifespan
  • Developmental Psychology: Critical Thinking Writing Intensive

Honors and Awards

  • Accepted to attend the Advanced Psychometrics Methods in Cognitive Aging Research Conference (Travel Award, June 2013)
  • HISTP Travel Award for College on Problem of Drug Dependence Conference presentation (June 2013)
  • Fellow, HIV Intervention Science Training Program, Columbia University (2012-2014)
  • Recipient of the UF Diversity Faculty Award (2012-2015)
  • American Psychosomatic Society, Citation Poster (2002)
  • Lillian Freeman Award, Excellence in Research (Kent State University)
  • Golden Key National Honor Society
  • University Scholar, Schreyer Honors College, Cum Laude Graduate (Pennsylvania State University)

Professional Memberships

  • American Psychological Society
  • American Public Health Association