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Karen Roberto

Karen Roberto, University Distinguished Professor

Karen Roberto, University Distinguished Professor
Karen A. Roberto Professor and Director of the Center for Gerontology

Department of Human Development and Family Science
230 Grove Lane
Blacksburg, VA 24061
540-231-7657 |

Karen Roberto is a University Distinguished Professor of Human Development and Family Science at Virginia Tech.

  • Health and Social Support of Older Women
  • Chronic Illness in Late Life (osteoporosis, pain, cancer)
  • Caring for Older Persons with Memory Problems
  • Program Evaluation
  • Elder Abuse/Late Life IPV
  • PhD, Texas Tech University
  • MS, Texas Tech University
  • BA, Indiana University of Pennsylvania
  • Board of Directors, Gerontological Society of America
  • Senior Fellow, Center for Gerontology, Virginia Tech
  • Founding Director, Institute for Society, Culture, and Environment, Virginia Tech
  • Past Chair, Behavioral and Social Sciences Section of the Gerontological Society of America
  • Past Director, Center for Gerontology, Virginia Tech
  • Editorial Board, The Gerontologist
  • Editorial Board, Journal of Women and Aging
  • 2012 Distinguished Mentorship in Gerontology Award, Behavioral and Social Sciences Section, Gerontological Society of America
  • 2007 Fellow - World Demographic Association
  • 2006 Alumni Award for Excellence in Research, Virginia Tech


Wacker, R. R., & Roberto, K.A. (2011). Aging social policies: An international perspective. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage

Resnick, B., Gwyther, L. & Roberto, K.A. (Eds.) (2011). Resilience in aging: Concepts, research, and outcomes. New York: Springer Publishing.

Journal Articles

Roberto, K.A., Brossoie, N., McPherson, M., Pulsifer, M.B., & Brown, P. (in press). Violence against rural older women: Promoting community awareness and action. Australasian Journal on Ageing. doi: 10.1111/j.1741-6612.2012.00649.x 2.

Brossoie, N., Roberto, K.A., & Barrow, K. M. (in press). Making sense of intimate partner violence in late life: Comments from online news readers. The Gerontologist. doi: 10.1093/geront/gns046. 3.

Roberto, K.A., McPherson, M., & Brossoie, N. (in press). Intimate partner violence in late life: A review of the empirical literature. Violence Against Women. 4.

Roberto, K.A., McCann, B.R., & Brossoie, N. (in press). Intimate partner violence in late life: An analysis of national news reports. Journal of Elder Abuse & Neglect.

Edited Books

Roberto, K.A. (Ed.). (1996). Relationships between women in later life. Haworth Press. [Selected for inclusion on the Women’s Studies Core Lists, 2001]

  • 2012-16 Cancer Survivorship among Older Adults in Rural Appalachia. Cooperative State Research, Education, and Extension Service, Department of Agriculture, under Project No. VA-139732 of the Virginia Agricultural Experiment Station, $25,000.
  • 2011-15 Non-Intrusive Multi-Patient Fall-Risk Monitoring in Health Care Facilities. National Science Foundation, $1,200,000. Thurmon Lockhart, PI; Dong S. Ha, Karen A. Roberto, Mark Lach, Co-PIs.
  • 2010-15 Appalachian Community Cancer Network II. National Institutes of Health /National Cancer Institute, (1U54CA153604-01), $6,503,314 ($579,994/Virginia Tech; PI for Virginia; CoDirector, Training Core).

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