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Celeste Watkins-Hayes

November 2020

Celeste Watkins-Hayes Celeste Watkins-Hayes, Ph.D., C’96, is a professor of sociology and African American studies at Northwestern University.

She is an author and educator widely credited for her research on public policies and governmental agencies targeting low-income families, including with her current role as principal investigator of the Health, Hardship, and Renewal Study on the social and economic consequences of HIV/AIDS for Chicago-area women of diverse racial, ethnic and socioeconomic backgrounds.

Her research focuses on urban poverty; social policy; HIV/AIDS; nonprofit and government organizations; and race, class and gender. Recently, the University of Michigan Regents approved her appointment as the Jean E. Fairfax Collegiate Professor of Public Policy. In 2009, she received a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Health Investigator Award and a National Science Foundation Early Career Award to conduct this research. She holds a Ph.D. and master’s in sociology from Harvard University and a bachelor’s degree from Spelman, where she graduated summa cum laude.

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