Early Career Investigator Award goes to psychology faculty member Daniel Graham

The Society of Behavioral Medicine has announced that its 2017 Early Career Investigator Award will be given to Dan Graham, Colorado State University assistant professor of applied social and health psychology.

Dan Graham, assistant professor of applied social and health psychology

With his innovative research on nutrition labeling, health psychology and eye tracking, Graham has been recognized for his career achievements. Graham said, “I am so grateful for this incredible honor, and I am humbled by the impressive accomplishments of those who have previously received this award!”

Research for the win

Graham has been working with physical health and nutrition psychology for most of his career. His research includes social and ecological determinants of physical activity and diet, multi-level interventions promoting health behavior, nutrition label use, eye tracking, and the science of learning and embodiment.

Collaborating with students, Graham’s fascinating research projects have helped better the understanding of consumer food choices. Graham has conducted studies where participants are sent off in an aisle of a fake grocery store to choose products to purchase. While participating in these experiments, participants wear eye-tracking glasses. The high-tech eye-tracking software objectively measures visual attention to see if or how long the participants were looking at food labels of the products they chose. This research helped to inform the policymakers who created a new, science-backed food label that has potential to be on the market as early as 2018.

Throughout Graham’s work and 10-year professional membership with the Society of Behavioral Medicine, he has pursued SBM’s mission of “better health through behavior change.” Graham said, “most people tell us they would like to be more active and eat better – the work my students and I do tries to help make these behaviors easier for people.”


The Early Career Investigator Award recognizes Graham’s early career achievements, as well as a publication of a representative paper. The award recipient must be nominated within seven years of receiving a terminal degree. Graham was nominated in 2016, and received his Ph.D. in 2009 from the University of California, Irvine.

Graham will be honored at the Society of Behavioral Medicine’s annual meeting, which runs from March 29 through April 1, 2017 and will be held in San Diego, Calif. He will receive his award at the meeting’s presidential keynote and award ceremony.

The Society of Behavioral Medicine is a multidisciplinary, non-profit organization that recognizes the successes of psychology, medicine, and public health. The organization is home to over 2,200 members. SBM wants behavioral medicine science to draw the attention of policy makers, in order to establish visibility and influence in the behavioral medicine world.