My name is Sonnie Davies, my pronouns are she/her. I’m not originally from New Mexico but Albuquerque has become my home over the last 10+ years, and my love for the Southwest has cemented my work here.
I’m a first-generation college graduate throughout my entire extended family. I received both my undergraduate (Evolutionary Anthropology) and graduate degrees (Master of Public Health) from the University of New Mexico (UNM) in Albuquerque. Since undergraduate years, I have been passionate about using social science methods to reduce health inequities and support vulnerable populations. Some of my previous work involved studying substance use among pregnant women in New Mexico and utilizing biomarker data (instead of self-reported data) for research done in stigmatized conditions, such as substance use disorder. Although these projects were largely quantitative based, my favorite part was getting to interview and talk with research participants firsthand, and interviewing people continues to be one of the highlights of my work.
I joined PIRE in 2018 to work on implementation projects around reducing inequalities faced by LGBTQ+ New Mexicans. Implementation science studies the context and process of implementing evidence-based practices into a new organizational setting because factors beyond just the intervention itself hugely affect how successful a new project will be. Through these projects I’ve worked in education, healthcare, and community settings, with both adolescents and adults. Some of the outcomes we want to affect include broadly creating safer school environments, reducing suicide among LGBTQ+ adolescents, increasing access to health care and other services for transgender and gender diverse adults, and increasing knowledge and practical skills among the workforce to better serve LGBTQ+ patients and clients in an inclusive and affirming way. In the future I hope to continue working to reduce health inequities among LGBTQ+ New Mexicans, and all marginalized groups, through policy changes and advocacy work in the coming years.