Patricia Lester, MD

Co-Director, UCLA CARES Center

Jane and Marc Nathanson Family Professor of Psychiatry, UCLA

Director, UCLA Division of Population Behavioral Health

Director, DMH + UCLA Public Partnership for Wellbeing


A board certified child and adolescent psychiatrist, Dr. Lester has sustained a career-long focus on developing and disseminating preventive interventions, practices, and policies that support child and family resilience in the context of trauma and adversity. Her research and leadership has focused on the study of translational and implementation processes needed to bring evidence-based prevention to scale within systems of care and community settings. In addition to her role as the Co-Director of the UCLA CARES Center, Dr. Lester is the Jane and Marc Nathanson Family professor of psychiatry in the Division of Population Behavioral Health and director of the Division of Population Behavioral Health. She also serves as the director of the Nathanson Family Resilience Center, medical director of the Family Stress, Trauma and Resilience Service (STAR), director of the DMH + UCLA Prevention Center of Excellence, and is on the founding leadership team for the Pritzker Center for Strengthening Children and Families.

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