Published November 16, 2011
A research scientist at the RIA for 25 years, Leonard is an expert in marital and family processes, parenting and infant development, interpersonal aggression and bar and domestic violence.
Leonard succeeds Gerard J. Connors, PhD, who decided to step down from the post he has held since 1998 to return to a full-time role as an RIA research scientist.
Since the 1980s, Leonard’s research has been supported by more than $16 million in funding, primarily from the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA).
His current studies focus on the prevalence and predictors of alcohol-related violence among people ages 18 to 30 and on drinking and alcohol-related problems in young couples.
“It is a privilege and honor to be appointed director of the Research Institute on Addictions,” said Leonard, whose appointment begins Dec. 1.
“RIA is an internationally renowned center that, since joining UB in 1999, has brought more than $100 million to Western New York in competitive grants from the National Institutes of Health.”
Leonard has received numerous honors, including a MERIT award from the NIAAA, a symbol of scientific achievement in the research community. He also is the recipient of a SUNY Research Foundation Research and Scholarship Award.
Leonard’s teaching and scholarship in the psychiatry department have been recognized with the Resident Teaching Award, the Murray A. Morphy Mentor of the Year Award and the Josie Olympia Faculty of the Year Award.
Leonard is a past president the American Psychological Association’s (APA) Division of Addictions. He was named a fellow in this division and the APA’s Division of Psychopharmacology and Substance Abuse.
He has served as a member of the Scientific Advisory Council of the Pacific Institute for Research and Education, Prevention Research Center, and as a member of the Scientific Advisory Board for the Center for Drug Abuse Research Translation Center at the University of Kentucky.
At UB, Leonard also is a research professor in the Department of Psychiatry as well as research associate professor in the Department of Psychology in the College of Arts and Sciences.