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John R. Lutzker

Professor    Director of the Mark Chaffin Center for Healthy Development

Ph.D., University of Kansas, Developmental and Child Psychology
M.A., San Francisco State College, Developmental Psychology
B.A., San Francisco State College, Psychology
A.A., College of San Mateo


Director of The Mark Chaffin Center for Healthy Development
Professor of Public Health

Dr. Lutzker Curriculum Vita

The Director of The Mark Chaffin Center for Healthy Development and Distinguished University Professor of Public Health at Georgia State University, John Lutzker is a leading expert in child neglect and maltreatment prevention. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Kansas in Developmental and Child Psychology and has worked in a variety of settings including academia (Southern Illinois University at Carbondale, University of California, Irvine, Emory University), and the federal government (CDC as Distinguished Consultant and Chief, Prevention, Development and Evaluation Branch). Lutzker has had over 183 published articles, given over 480 presentations nationally and internationally, written 8 books, and given interviews for NPR, ABC’s Good Morning America, and served as a consultant for 60 Minutes.

Lutzker is responsible for developing one of the few evidence-based child maltreatment and neglect prevention programs, SafeCare®, which is being implemented throughout the United and other countries internationally. The center’s mission is to promote the health, safety, well-being, and quality of life of children, adults, and families with and without disabilities through research, service, and advocacy.

Lutzker has courses in social and behavioral aspects of health and intervention and maternal and child health. The Mark Chaffin Center for Health Development houses the National SafeCare Training and Research Center, Center for Leadership in Disability and Prevent Child Abuse Georgia.


J.R. Lutzker, K. Guastaferro, & M.L. Benka-Coker (Eds.) (2016). Maltreatment of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Washington, DC: A.A.I.D.D.

J.R. Lutzker & J. Merrick (Eds.) (2012). Applied public health: Examining multifaceted social/ecological problems and child maltreatment. New York: Nova.

D.J. Whitaker, & J.R. Lutzker, (2009). (Eds.). Preventing partner violence: Research and evidence-based intervention strategies. Washington, D.C.: American Psychological Association. Also, printed in Hungarian: (2006). Eroszakprevencio: Kutatason es tenyeken alapulo beavatkozasi strategiak. Budapest: Oriold es Tarsa: Kiado.


Book Chapters

Book, Chapter in Scholarly Book-New (Published)

Guinn, A.S., Lutzker, J.R., & Chaffin, M. (2018). SafeCare, the case for parent-infant language training. In P. Leach (Ed.) Transforming infant wellbeing: Research, policy, and practice for first 1001 critical days. Routledge: New York.

Lutzker, J.R., McGill, T., Whitaker, D.J., & Self-Brown, S. (2017). SafeCare®: Preventing Child Neglect through Scaling-up and Examining Implementation Issues of an Evidence-based Practice. In R. Alexander (Ed.), Research and Practices in Child Maltreatment Prevention (2,2): Societal, Organizational, and International Approaches. (pp. 243 – 258). St. Louis: STM Learning.

Guastaferro, K., & Lutzker, J.R. (2017). Getting the most juice for the squeeze: Where SafeCare and Other Evidence-based programs need to evolve to better protect children. In D.M. Teti (Ed.), Parenting and family processes in child maltreatment and intervention. Springer: Cham, Switzerland.

Rostad, W.L., Lutzker, J.R., & Guastaferro, K.M. (2016). Practices Targeting Child Neglect: The use of SafeCare® to enhance parenting skills to reduce neglect. In R. Gardner (Ed.) Tackling child neglect: Research, policy and evidence-based practice. (pp. 278 – 309). London and Philadelphia: Jessica Kingsley Publishers.


Peer-Reviewed Journal Articles

Guastaferro, K., Miller, K., Lutzker, J.R., Whitaker, D., Shanley Chatham, J., Lai, B., Kemner, A. (2017). Implementing a braided home-based parent-support curriculum: Lessons learned. Psychosocial Intervention, (pp. 81-86).

Guastaferro, K., Miller, K., Lutzker, J.R., Whitaker, D.J., Lai, B.S., Shanley Chatham, J., & Kemner, A. (2017). Implementing a Braided Home-based Parent Support Curriculum: Lessons Learned. Psychosocial Intervention, 27, 1-7.

Walsh, J.H. Lutzker, J.R., Guastaferro, K.M., & Whitaker, D.J. (2016). A preliminary analysis of the relationship between hazards in the home and the potential for abuse with families at risk. 9(3) 00-00, International Journal of Child and Adolescent Health.

Prinz, J. Sanders, M.R., Shapiro, C.J., Whitaker, D.J., & Lutzker, J.R. Addendum to “Population-based prevention of child maltreatment: The U.S. Triple P system population trial.” (2016) Prevention Science, 17, 410-416.

Guastaferro, K.M., Lutzker, J.R., and Graham, M.L. (2016). Using a technological augmentation to enhance parent-infant interactions with parents at risk. Child & Family Behavior Therapy, 38, 15-31.

Whitaker, D.J., Rogers-Brown, J.S., Cowart-Osborne, M., Self-Brown, S., & Lutzker, J.R. (2015). Public child welfare staff, knowledge, attitudes, and referral behaviors for an evidence-based program. Psychosocial Intervention, 24, 89-95.

Guastaferro, K.M., Jackson, M.C., Self-Brown, S., Jabaley, J.J,& Lutzker, J.R. (2015). Use of mobile phones to help prevent child maltreatment. In Z. Yan (Ed.), Encyclopedia of Mobile Phone Behavior (Volumes 1, 2 & 3). Hershey, PA: IGI Global.

Strong, L., Lutzker, J.R., Jabaley, J.J., Shanley, J.R., Self-Brown, S., & Guastaferro, K.M. (2014). Training mothers recovering from substance abuse to identify and treat their children’s illnesses. International Journal of Child Health and Human Development, 72, 157-166. Reprinted in Child Health and Human Development Yearbook – 2014 in J. Merrick (Ed.). pp. 175 – 188, and in Children and Childhood: Some international aspects. (2016). Pp. 133-146. New York: Nova

Morales, Y., Lutzker, J.R., Shanley, J.R., & Guastaferro, K.M. (2015). Parent-infant interaction training with a Latino mother. International Journal of Child Health and Human Development, 8,135-145.

Lutzker, J.R., Guastaferro, K., & Whitaker, D.J. (2014). Invited Editorial. More work needed to protect children but promising trend data on victimization. Journal of the American Medical Association Pediatrics, 168, 6, 512-514.