Danielle R. Phillips

Danielle R. Phillips CVPhillips, Danielle

Previous Education 

MSW,  University of Hawai’i at Mānoa, Thompson School of Social Work and Public Health 
BS, Psychology, University of Georgia, Franklin College of Arts and Sciences 

Research Interests 

Health equity, promotion, and access among transgender and gender diverse (TGD) youth and young adults; Mental health outcomes and well-being among LGBTQIA2S+ populations; Gender and Sexuality; Sexual reproductive justice and health; Intersectionality Theory; Strengths-based framework; Social justice approaches to health and well-being; Social policy analysis; intervention development. 


Danielle R. Phillips, LSW, is a PhD candidate interested in improving health equity among gender and sexually diverse youth using intersectional and strengths-based approaches to social policy analysis and intervention development. Her research focuses on using a social justice lens to promote, protect, and enhance health outcomes (e.g., mental health and sexual reproductive health) and overall wellbeing among transgender and gender diverse (TGD) young and emerging adults aged 13 to 24 years. Danielle is passionate about gaining an enhanced understanding of the relationship between gender-affirming care and TGD young adults’ perceptions of health and well-being. Since 2016, Danielle has been a research assistant with the Community THRIVES Lab at the University of Maryland’s School of Public Health, under the mentorship of Dr. Elizabeth Aparicio, where her research focuses on adolescent sexual health, teen pregnancy, and parenting. As of 2020, under the mentorship of Dr. Jessica Fish, Danielle joined the Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity (SOGI) Health Lab lead at the University of Maryland’s School of Public Health, where she is a research assistant for the LGBTQ Health Programs Project. Danielle was also selected for the 2020 – 2022 cohort of the International Student Training Network (ISTN) through the International Partnership for Queer Youth Resilience (INQYR), a research partnership between universities and community organizations across Canada, the US, the UK, Mexico, and Australia. Prior to attending the University of Maryland School of Social Work, Danielle worked as a Licensed Social Worker (LSW) in the state of Hawai'i and served as the Director of Social Services at Hale Makua Health Services. She also worked as a Substance Abuse Counselor at Malama I Ke Ola Health Center, a federally qualified health center on the island of Maui. These practice experiences inform her research as it relates to social policy and interventions aimed at enhancing and promoting equity and access to healthcare and overall well-being among TGD populations. Danielle’s dissertation research focuses on gaining an enhanced understanding of the nuances associated with how TGD young and emerging adults aged 13 to 24 years conceptualize health and overall well-being from an intersectional strengths-based perspective. Given the role that hope and gender-affirming experiences can have on improving one’s health and well-being, her dissertation will help fill the gap in literature by exploring what is working well across multiple domains of health and well-being among TGD youth.  

Teaching Interests 

Social Work Practice with Individuals; Human Behavior and the Social Environment; Women and Gender Studies; Human Sexuality; Social Work Theory; Special Topics: Smart Decarceration; Qualitative Research Methods 

Selected Publications 

Kachingwe, O. N., Phillips, D.R., Jasczynski, M., Hillig, E., Chavez, R., Tellei, J., & Aparicio, E. M. (2022). “I told him I’m gonna get it”: intimate partner birth control communication among homeless young women. Culture, Health & Sexuality, 1–17. https://doi-org.proxy-hs.researchport.umd.edu/10.1080/13691058.2021.2025431 

Lee, B.R., Phillips, D.R., Steward, R.K., & Kerns, S.E.U. (2021). Equipping TFC parents as treatment providers: Findings from expert interviews. Journal of Child and Family Studies, 30(1). 

Aparicio, E.M., Kachingwe, O.N., Phillips, D.R., Jasczynski, M., Cabral, M.K., Aden, F., Parekh, E., Espero, J., & Childers, C. (2021). “Having a baby can wait”: Experiences of a sexual and reproductive health promotion program in the context of homelessness among Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and other Pacific Islander youth captured through PhotoVoice. Qualitative Health Research, 31(2), 228-240. 

Aparicio, E.M., Kachingwe, O.N., Phillips, D.R., Fleishman, J., Novick, J., Okimoto, T., Cabral, M.P., Ka‘opua, L.S., Childers, C., Espero, J. & Anderson, K. (2019). Holistic, trauma-informed adolescent pregnancy prevention and sexual health promotion for female youth experiencing homelessness: Initial outcomes of Wahine Talk. Children and Youth Services Review, 107, 104509. 

Kachingwe, O.N., Anderson, K., Houser, C., Fleishman, J., Novick, J., Phillips, D.R., & Aparicio, E.M.(2019). “She was there through the whole process”: Exploring how homeless youth access and select birth control. Children and Youth Services Review, 101, 277-284. 

Aparicio, E.M., Phillips, D.R., Okimoto, T., Cabral, M.K., Houser, C., & Anderson, K. (2018). Youth and provider perspectives of Wahine Talk: A holistic sexual health and pregnancy prevention program developed with and for homeless youth. Children and Youth Services Review, 93, 467-473.