Marguerita Lightfoot, PhD

Director, CAPS
Voice: (415) 476-6312

Dr. Marguerita Lightfoot is Director of the Center for AIDS Prevention Studies (CAPS) and Director of the Technology and Information Exchange (TIE) Core at CAPS. Dr. Lightfoot is a counseling psychologist whose research has included HIV prevention work in the juvenile justice system and with runaway and homeless youths in Los Angeles. One particular focus of her research with adolescents has been to adapt and utilize interactive and engaging delivery of HIV preventive activities on computers. In addition, she has worked as a Mental Health Clinician at a mental health clinic that served primarily low-income people of color. She’s conducted psychotherapy with predominately African American and Latino adults, couples, and families infected and/or affected by HIV. She is particularly interested in developing cost-effective interventions that are easily translatable with utility in community settings and utilizes new technologies to engage disenfranchised individuals in health promotion activities. She has a unique ability to determine the programmatic needs of the most vulnerable populations and develop programs that are cutting-edge and likely to successfully engage these populations to increase mental health functioning and well-being. A notable, ongoing research project has been adapting interventions to reduce HIV-related risk among urban street youths and youths living with HIV in Uganda.

Research interests

Adolescents & youth, intervention, prevention, adapting interventions

Current research


  • 1997 – PhD (Counseling Psychology), University of California, Los Angeles
  • 1992 – MA (Counseling Psychology), University of California, Los Angeles
  • 1990 – BA (Psychology), University of California, Los Angeles


Articles by Dr. Lightfoot at PubMed.