The Gerontological Society of America (GSA) — the nation’s largest interdisciplinary organization devoted to the field of aging — has chosen David Almeida, professor of human development and family studies at Penn State, as the 2023 recipient of the Robert W. Kleemeier Award.
This distinguished honor is given annually to a GSA member in recognition for outstanding research in the field of gerontology. It was established in 1965 in memory of Robert W. Kleemeier, PhD, a former president of the Society whose contributions to the quality of life through research in aging were exemplary.
The award presentation will take place at GSA’s 2023 Annual Scientific Meeting, which will be held from November 8 - 12 in Tampa, Florida. This conference is organized to foster interdisciplinary collaboration among researchers, educators, and practitioners who specialize in the study of the aging process.
At Penn State, Almeida is also a Population Research Institute associate and a faculty member in the Center for Healthy Aging. He is a life-span developmental psychologist with a primary focus on stress and coping during middle adulthood. His research examines the effects of biological and self-reported indicators of stress on health. Almeida’s primary interest has been the role of daily stress on healthy aging, but he has also examined stress processes in specific populations and contexts, such as the workplace and family interactions, parents of children with developmental disabilities, and family caregivers.
His research has shown that minor yet frequent daily stressors are often better predictors of important health outcomes than major life events. To further his research in this area, he developed an instrument, the Daily Inventory of Stressful Experiences, which has been used in large scale epidemiologic and intervention studies on health and well-being. Almeida’s research has received continuous funding from the National Institutes of Health since 1996, and has received funding from many other agencies, including the German Research Council, the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, the W.T Grant Foundation, and the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation.
Almeida is the principal investigator of the National Study of Daily Experiences (NSDE), one of the in-depth studies that are part of the MacArthur Foundation National Survey of Midlife in the United States. NSDE is the largest longitudinal diary study of daily experiences and health in the U.S. He also directs the Workplace Practices and Daily Family Well-Being Project, a component of the Work, Family, Health Study. This project investigates the daily health effects of an employer-initiated workplace program designed to increase employee flexibility and control over how and when their work is done and to increase the support of supervisors for employees’ work-family issues. And Almeida is a co-principal investigator for the Quick Interventions Nomographically-tailored for Cognitions and Emotions (QUINCE) Project, a component of the Science and Behavior Change Study.
Almeida is also the associate director of the National Institute on Aging T32 Training Program on Integrative Biological and Psychosocial Pathways to Healthy Aging. This program provides pre- and post-doctoral scientists with the foundational training needed to integrate a broad range of psychosocial and biological concepts, and to use advanced data acquisition and analysis methods in their own research.
Almeida is a GSA fellow, which represents the highest category of membership within the Society.