Outstanding Contributions to Health Psychology by a Senior Professional

Timothy W. Smith, PhD
Timothy W. Smith, PhD

Timothy W. Smith, PhD , University of Utah

Professor Timothy Smith is a very deserving recipient of the 2016 Outstanding Contributions Award to Health Psychology by a senior scientist from the Society for Health Psychology. He has a remarkable record of research, service, and teaching befitting of this award and the distinguished list of prior recipients.  This award highlights the amazing consistency of Tim’s scholarship having previously been awarded the Early Career Award for Outstanding Contributions to Health Psychology.  This honor also adds to the list of his accomplishments, which include being a state high school champion in wrestling, as well as a club champion in golf.

To start, Tim’s program of research on psychosocial risk factors has had a significant impact on theory and method. He has been a leader in challenging the field to take more integrative approaches by utilizing broader frameworks like the interpersonal circumplex as a means to unify psychosocial risk factor modeling.  His broad but systematic conceptual approach linking traits and social processes to health has been a model on how to understand complex psychosocial risk factors across levels of analysis.

Not only has the quality of Tim’s work been exceptional but his productivity is phenomenal. He has published 267 articles / chapters in the very best outlets in the field.  Tim has been awarded a number of prestigious awards including early career awards from the division as well as the American Psychosomatic Society; the Distinguished Scientist Award from the Society of Behavioral Medicine; and the Patricia R. Barchas Award in Sociophysiology from the American Psychosomatic Society.  He was also elected President of the Society for Health Psychology as well as the Academy of Behavioral Medicine Research.  Tim has unselfishly served the division and broader discipline as well by chairing numerous committees and being an associate editor for major journals including Health Psychology and American Psychologist.

Tim has also made strong contributions to the teaching and training missions of the discipline. He is a co-author on a best-selling introductory Health Psychology textbook and one of the founders of the Health Psychology program at the University of Utah which was one of the first national programs of its kind.  Tim is also an outstanding educator having won several prestigious awards for teaching and mentoring at the University of Utah.  The quality of his mentoring is also evident in the fact that two of his past graduate students have been awarded distinguished early career awards from APA.  Tim cares deeply about mentoring and has been an unselfish mentor to countless undergraduates, graduates, and junior faculty.

Tim’s achievements in any one area would be a good career for most. However, it is the combination of excellence across every domain of scholarship and its consistency over time that makes Tim truly deserving of this award.  His footprint on the field is obvious and he has the deep appreciation and respect of his colleagues and those fortunate enough to also call him a friend.

Bert N. Uchino, PhD
University of Utah