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Lende Receives 2009 Ganey Award

Author: Arts and Letters

Daniel Lende, assistant professor of anthropology at the University of Notre Dame, has been named the winner of the 2009 Rodney F. Ganey, Ph.D., Faculty Community-Based Research Award.

The award, which includes a $5,000 prize, honors a Notre Dame faculty member whose research has made a contribution to a local community organization.

Lende’s work focuses on medical anthropology, the synthesis of biological and cultural anthropology, and applied anthropology. His research centers on behavioral health problems, particularly substance use and abuse.

In 2005, Lende took part in his first community-based research project, “Cultural Barriers and African-American Women in South Bend: Improving Breast Cancer Screening,” with Notre Dame undergraduate Alicia Lachiondo and Margaret McKinney-Arnold of African American Women in Touch. Furthered by a Rodney F. Ganey, Ph.D., Mini-Grant, the study became part of Lachiondo’s senior thesis, and was later published in Qualitative Health Research .

Lende also served as senior thesis advisor to Notre Dame undergraduate Meg Towle as she conducted community-based research on HIV / AIDS with the organization Touching Tiny Lives in Lesotho, the findings of which were later published in the African Journal of % %(caps){font-style: italic}AIDS {font-style: italic} Research .

Inspired by the positive impact of community-based research on learning outcomes, student development and a community organization’s capacity to improve its services, Lende in 2006 developed a community-based research course, “Researching Disease: Methods in Medical Anthropology,” with a grant from Notre Dame’s Center for Social Concerns. In this course, Lende and teams of Notre Dame undergraduates partnered with local community organizations including Imani Unidad, African American Women in Touch, Notre Dame Office of Alcohol and Drug Education, and a support group for veterans suffering with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder ( PTSD ).

The research has since enabled community organizations to improve the conditions in hospital waiting rooms, educate the public about PTSD and provide better services to women living with HIV / AIDS . Findings have been published electronically on, and one project was turned into a guide book, Underneath It All: Humor in Breast Cancer , which has been used by McKinney-Arnold and Memorial Hospital in South Bend.

Lende earned his doctorate in anthropology from Emory University and his bachelor’s degree from Harvard University. He has served as an administrator, counselor and research director in rehabilitation centers in Nigeria and Columbia.

The Ganey Award is funded by local entrepreneur and philanthropist Rod Ganey and awarded by the Center for Social Concerns. The Center facilitates community-based learning, research and service for Notre Dame undergraduates, graduate students and faculty. Since 1983, more than 15,000 students and hundreds of faculty have been engaged in its courses, research and programs.

More information about the Ganey Award is available on the Web at .

Contact: Mary Beckman, Center for Social Concerns, 574-631-4172,

Originally published by Paul Horn at on April 07, 2009.