Dr. Puffer is an Assistant Professor in Psychology and Neuroscience and Global Health at Duke University and is a licensed clinical psychologist. Her research focuses on developing and evaluating family- and community-based interventions to address child and adolescent mental health needs in low-resource settings. Current research studies include evaluations of parenting programs, family strengthening and family therapy interventions, and community-based mental health and HIV prevention efforts in religious congregations. Dr. Puffer is an investigator on trials in Kenya, Liberia, Thailand, Ethiopia, and El Salvador. She also conducts studies to validate measures of family well-being and mental health for low- and middle-income country settings.
Before joining Duke in 2012, Dr. Puffer was a postdoctoral fellow at the Duke Global Health Institute and completed a Fogarty International Clinical Research Fellowship funded by the National Institutes of Health to conduct intervention research on child mental health and HIV prevention in Kenya. She then served as a research and evaluation technical advisor at the International Rescue Committee conducting impact evaluations of humanitarian programs in refugee and post-conflict settings and has continued working with the IRC as an academic partner. Dr. Puffer completed her PhD at the University of South Carolina in Clinical and Community Psychology in 2008.