Dr. Wayne Lawrence earned his Dr.P.H in epidemiology from the State University of New York at Albany in 2020. He joined the DCEG’s Metabolic Epidemiology Branch as a postdoctoral fellow through the Cancer Prevention Fellowship Program in 2020 and was promoted to research fellow in 2022. He was then elected to serve a three-year term on the AACR Associate Member Council, which develops programs that address the needs of early-career scientists and advises leadership on issues of concern to the next generation of cancer researchers. Dr. Lawrence received the 2022 NCI Cancer Prevention Fellowship Program Merit Award, which recognizes trainees with the ability to rise to the highest level of science, leadership, and service. Additionally, he received the 2022 NCI Director's Award for mentoring and building professional and social support for fellows. Moreover, he was the recipient of the NIH Fellows Award for Research Excellence.
Dr. Lawrence is a social epidemiologist whose research focuses on understanding how the social environment contributes to disparities in disease risk and morality among structurally marginalized populations. His research seeks to understand the relationship between the neighborhood environment and health. More specifically, how do the residential area circumstances in which individuals are born, grow, live, work, and age affect their health and quality of life. Currently, he is investigating the contributions of racial residential segregation, psychosocial stressors, and barriers to quality medical care to exacerbating cancer disparities and premature mortality. His research also examines national trends in leading causes of death by race and ethnicity, and socioeconomic status.
Dr. Lawrence works under the mentorship of Dr. Neal D. Freedman, chief of the Tobacco Control Research Program in the Division of Cancer Control and Population Science, to examine the role of the neighborhood environment on cancer outcomes. He is also mentored by Meredith Shiels, Ph.D., M.H.S., senior investigator, in the Infections and Immunoepidemiology Branch, on descriptive analyses examining trends in mortality among structurally marginalized populations.
Dr. Lawrence serves as Co-Chair of the Social and Structural Determinates of Health Working Group of the Connect for Cancer Prevention Study. In this role, he leads identifying measures to include in the study related to social inequalities and structural racism.