Associate Director of Research, Director of Health Equity Working Group, and Associate Professor of General Internal Medicine

(919) 668-4580

411 West Chapel Hill St, Suite 300, Durham NC 27701

More background information at

Dr. Keisha Bentley-Edwards is the Associate Director of Research and Director of the Health Equity Working Group for the Samuel DuBois Cook Center on Social Equity and an Associate Professor of Medicine, Division of General Internal Medicine, at Duke University. She holds several leadership positions within Duke’s Clinical and Translational Science Institute, and faculty affiliations with Duke’s Global Health and Cancer Institutes.

Dr. Bentley-Edwards’ research focuses on how racism, gender, and culture influence development throughout the lifespan, especially for African Americans. Her research emphasizes cultural strengths and eliminating structural barriers to support healthy development in communities, families, and schools. Dr. Bentley-Edwards has published and lectured extensively on the use of racial socialization and racial cohesion strategies to facilitate positive outcomes in Black adolescents, as well as how teacher perceptions and school resources can influence disciplinary practices and classroom management. As head of the Cook Center’s Health Equity Working Group, Dr. Bentley-Edwards leads a mixed method study investigating the relationships between religion and spirituality and cardiovascular disease risk factors for African Americans. She is dedicated to healthy birth and pregnancy outcomes, and reproductive health in general. Dr Bentley-Edwards is committed to eliminating racism and its effects on equitable outcomes in health systems, schools, and society. Her research has been supported by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, IBM, and the National Institutes of Health. Dr. Bentley-Edwards regularly shares her expertise on the role of structural racism and bias on health, education and social outcomes with families, policymakers, practitioners, and the media.