Engineering professor named as new Consortium to Combat Substance Abuse director


By Melissa Krug

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Paul Griffin, professor of industrial and manufacturing engineering and recently returning Penn State faculty member, will become the next interim director of the Consortium to Combat Substance Abuse (CCSA) beginning in summer 2021. Griffin, an expert in health systems engineering, is already a co-funded faculty member of CCSA within the Social Science Research Institute (SSRI).

CCSA is Penn State’s network of researchers, educators and practitioners who work together to develop and implement effective programs, policies and practices aimed at preventing and treating addiction and its spillover effects on children, families and communities.

Griffin is eager to lead CCSA by helping to identify where engineering and technology researchers can help fill in the gaps for social scientists. “I have big shoes to fill, but I am thrilled for the opportunity to lead the expansion of CCSA’s reach throughout the broader research community,” said Griffin.

Stephanie Lanza, professor of biobehavioral health and director of the Edna Bennett Pierce Prevention Research Center, serves as CCSA’s current interim director. Lanza plans to stay closely involved with the work of CCSA and will remain a member of CCSA’s executive committee.

“CCSA remains laser focused on novel, interdisciplinary solutions to the systemic problems of substance use,” Lanza said. “I think Paul Griffin will provide important leadership to the consortium’s efforts moving forward. I am excited to see how his focus on health systems analytics will bring new research perspectives to Penn State’s efforts as well as bring in the expertise of others to widen our network’s reach.”

Prior to returning to Penn State, Griffin served as the St. Vincent Health Chair and director of the Regenstrief Center for Healthcare Engineering at Purdue University and as the Virginia C. and Joseph C. Mello Chair in the H. Milton Stewart School of Industrial and Systems Engineering at Georgia Tech. From 2009 to 2014, he was the Peter and Angela Dal Pezzo Chair and the head of the Harold and Inge Marcus Department of Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering at Penn State.


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Paul Griffin, professor of industrial and manufacturing engineering. IMAGE: PENN STATE COLLEGE OF ENGINEERING