Donny Gerke

Donny Robert Gerke

Assistant Professor

What I do

As a social work scholar and educator, I am deeply committed to advancing health equity and promoting wellness with those most marginalized in our society. To achieve these goals, I work in partnership with community members to understand and address health disparities that impact LGBTQ+ communities.

Specialization(s)

LGBTQIA, health and wellness, addictions and substance use

Professional Biography

Assistant Professor Donny Gerke's research agenda broadly examines mental health, substance use, and other social and environmental determinants of health disparities and health risk behaviors in vulnerable populations, with a focus on LGBTQ+ populations. His scholarship is informed by over five years of post-MSW practice experience in community-based health promotion with adolescent and adult LGBTQ+ populations at risk for HIV, STIs, and substance misuse. His recent studies include: an examination on the relationships between exposure to violence (child abuse and neglect, intimate partner violence, community violence), mental health problems, substance use, and HIV risk behaviors in young Black and White gay, bisexual, or other men who have sex with men (YMSM) recruited from community-based HIV prevention agencies, evaluations of a live and automated two-way text-messaging intervention and a peer educator intervention to improve HIV-related health outcomes among Black YMSM living with HIV, and an exploration of health literacy and health care access among transgender and non-binary Coloradans. Dr. Gerke teaches Power Privilege, & Oppression, Substance Use Interventions, Evolving Perspectives and Trends in Health and Wellness, and Pedagogy in Social Work Education.

Degree(s)

  • Ph.D., Social Work, Washington University, 2018
  • MSW, Direct Practice Mental Health Concentration, Washington University, 2005
  • BS, Social Work, Seattle University, 2004

Professional Affiliations

  • Society for Social Work Research (SSWR)
  • Other

Media Sources

Key Projects

  • HRSA Subcontract through Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis 2
  • SPSN Subcontract

Featured Publications

Gerke, D. R., Budd, E., & Plax, K. (2016). Measurement non-invariance of safer sex self-efficacy between heterosexual and sexual minority black youth. Journal of the Society for Social Work and Research, 7, 569-584.
Ramsey, A. T., Satterfield, J. M., Gerke, D. R., & Proctor, E. K. (2019). Technology-based alcohol interventions in primary care: Systematic review. Journal of medical Internet research, 21(4).
Auslander, W. F., Thompson, R., & Gerke, D. R. (2014). The moderating effect of marijuana use on the relationship between delinquent behavior and HIV risk among adolescents in foster care. Journal of HIV/AIDS and Social Services, 13(2), 179-197.
Gerke, D. R., Prusaczyk, B., Baumann, A., Lewis, E., & Proctor, E. (2016). A model for providing methodological expertise to advance dissemination and implementation of health discoveries in clinical and translational science award (CTSA) institutions. Implementation Science.

Presentations

Gerke, D. R., & Aulander, W. (2019). Adverse childhood experience are associated with increased polydrug use and PTSD symptoms in young men who have sex with men. International Conference for Social Work in Health and Mental Health. York England.
Gerke, D. R., & Aulander, W. (2019). Identifying intervention target outcomes for reducing HIV risk behaviors in HIV-negative black and white young men who have sex with men in the United States. International Conference for Social Work in Health and Mental Health. York England.
Gerke, D. R. (2019). Pathways among syndemic factors of violence, substance use, and HIV risk behaviors in black and white young men who have sex with men. National HIV Prevention Conference. Atlanta GA.
Gerke, D. R. (2019). Pathways among syndemic factors of violence, substance use, and HIV risk behaviors in black and white young men who have sex with men. National HIV Prevention Conference. Atlanta GA.
Gerke, D. R., Glotfelty, J., Schlueter, J., Freshman, M., Slovacek, S., & Plax, K. (2018). More than just reminders: Improving HIV outcomes for young men who have sex with men (YMSM) through text messaging. 146th annual meeting of the American Public Health Association. San Diego CA.

Awards

  • Excellence in Abstract Submission among New Investigators, HIV/AIDS section of the American Public Health Association
  • Doctoral Fellow Award , Society for Social Work and Research
  • National Institute of Drug Abuse Director’s Travel Award, College on Problems of Drug Dependence Annual Meeting
  • National Institute on Drug Abuse Ruth L. Kirschstein Individual Pre-doctoral Training Award, National Institute on Drug Abuse