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Kimberly Balsam, PhD



Contact Information:

Other Positions:

Professor, Department of Psychology, Professor, Director of the LGBTQ Area of Emphasis, Director of the Center for LGBTQ Evidence-Based Applied Research (CLEAR)


PhD and MS


PhD, Clinical Psychology, University of Vermont (2003)
MS, Counseling Psychology, University of Oregon (1994)
BA, Psychology, University of Oregon (1991)


Kimberly F. Balsam, PhD, received her PhD in Clinical Psychology from University of Vermont in 2003 and her M.S. in Counseling Psychology from University of Oregon in 1994.  She completed a predoctoral internship at the VA Puget Sound in Seattle, WA from 2002-2003, a postdoctoral fellowship at University of Washington from 2003-2006, and was Research Assistant Professor in the UW School of Social Work from 2007-2012. 

Dr. Balsam’s research focuses broadly on the health and well-being of stigmatized populations, with an emphasis on ethnically diverse lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender, and queer people. She has published over 50 peer-reviewed articles, many in top journals in the field of psychology.  She has also authored numerous book chapters related to LGBTQ psychology and is the editor of the 2004 book Trauma, stress, and resilience among sexual minority women: Rising like the Phoenix.  Dr. Balsam has been the principal investigator on grants funded by National Institutes of Health continuously since 2003.  Most recently, she was awarded an R01 grant from NICHD to conduct a 10 year longitudinal follow up study of same-sex and heterosexual couples previously surveyed in 2001-2 (R01HD069370, Longitudinal study of legal status, stigma, and well-being among diverse couples). CUPPLES Study. Current projects in collaboration with students include studies of Compassion Cultivation Training with LGBTQ adults, transgender and gender nonconforming parents, emotion and behavior among transgender and cisgender adults, and gender diversity/non-binary gender within LGBTQ communities.  Dr. Balsam supervises student research in the RISE (Research on Intersectional Sexual and gender minority Experiences) lab. RISE.

Dr. Balsam is Past President of APA’s Division 44 (Society for the Psychology of Sexual Orientation and Gender Diversity) and is currently Co-Chair of the Division 44 Task Force on Racism. She is also a Fellow of this Division and was the 2010 recipient of their Distinguished Scientific Contribution Award. Her presidential columns detailing her activities during her presidential year, which focused on intersectionality, non-binary identities, mentoring, and dissemination can be found here

Dr. Balsam also has a 20-year history of clinical practice in a wide range of settings including community mental health, correctional, inpatient, and most recently private practice.  Her clinical interests include cognitive behavioral therapy with adults experiencing depression, anxiety, and PTSD and couples therapy with same-sex and heterosexual couples. 

At PAU, Dr. Balsam is Professor, Director of the LGBTQ Area of Emphasis, and Director of the Center for LGBTQ Evidence-Based Applied Research. She teaches research methods and clinically-oriented courses in the PhD program and psychopathology in the MS program.

Areas of Interest:

Teaching interests: Research methods, clinical skills and evidence-based treatment, psychopathology, LGBTQ issues in psychotherapy

Research and clinical interests: LGBT psychology, women and gender, same-sex and heterosexual couples, trauma, CBT

Selected Publications:

(past 3 years)

Eliason, M., Robinson, P., & Balsam, K. F. (2017).  Development of an LGB-specific health literacy measure.  Health Communication. Advance online publication.

Balsam, K. F., Rostosky, S. S., & Riggle, E. D. B. (2017).  Breaking up is hard to do: Women’s experience of dissolving their same-sex relationship.  Journal of Lesbian Studies, 21, 30-46.

Riggle, E. D. B., Wickham, R. E., Rostosky, S. S., Rothblum, E. D., & Balsam, K. F. (2017).  Impact of civil marriage recognition for long-term same-sex couples.  Sexuality Research and Social Policy, 14, 223-232.

Testa, R. J., Rider, N., Haug, N., & Balsam, K. F. (2017). Gender confirming medical interventions and eating disorder symptoms among transgender individuals. Health Psychology. Advanced online publication.

Testa, R. J., Michaels, M. S., Bliss, W., Rogers, M. L., Balsam, K. F., & Joiner, T. (2017).  Suicidal ideation in transgender people: Gender minority stress and interpersonal theory factors.  Journal of Abnormal Psychology, 126, 125-136.

Wickham, R. E., Beard, C. L., Riggle, E. D. B., Rothblum, E. D., Rostosky, S. S., & Balsam K. F. (2016).  Accuracy and bias in perceptions of conflict style among same-sex and heterosexual couples.  Journal of Research in Personality, 65, 109-119.

Rostosky, S. S., Riggle, E. D. B., Rothblum, E. D., & Balsam, K. F. (2016).  Same-sex couples’ decisions and experiences of marriage in the context of minority stress: Interviews from a population-based longitudinal study.  Journal of Homosexuality, 63, 1019-1040.

Richards, M. A., Rothblum, E. D., Beauchaine, T. P., & Balsam, K. F. (2016).  Adult children of same-sex and heterosexual couples: Demographic “thriving.”  Journal of GLBT Family Studies, 13, 1-15.  

Riggle, E.D.B., Rothblum, E.D., Rostosky, S.S., Clark, J.B., & Balsam, K.F. (2016). 'The secret of our success': Long-term same-sex couples' perceptions of their relationship longevity. Journal of GLBT Family Studies, 12, 319-334.

Pflum, S. R., Testa, R. J., Balsam K. F., Goldblum, P. B., & Bongar, B. (2015).  Social support, trans community connectedness, and mental health symptoms among transgender and gender nonconforming adults.  Psychology of Sexual Orientation and Gender Diversity, 2, 281-286.

Molina, Y., Marquez, J. H., Logan, D. E., Leeson, C. J., Balsam, K. F., & Kaysen, D. L. (2015).  Current intimate relationship status, depression, and alcohol use among bisexual women: The mediating roles of bisexual-specific minority stressors.  Sex Roles, 73, 43-57.

Clark, J. B., Riggle, E. D. B., Rostosky, S. S., Rothblum, E. D., & Balsam, K. F. (2015).  Windsor and Perry: Reactions of siblings in same-sex and heterosexual couples.  Journal of Homosexuality, 1-16.

Balsam, K. F., Molina, Y., Blayney, J. A., Dillworth, T., Zimmerman, L. & Kaysen, D. (2015).  Racial/ethnic differences in identity and mental health outcomes among young sexual minority women.  Cultural Diversity and Ethnic Minority Psychology, 21, 380-390.

Testa, R. J., Habarth, J., Peta, J., Balsam, K. F., & Bockting, W. (2015). Development of the Gender Minority Stress and Resilience Measure. Psychology Of Sexual Orientation And Gender Diversity,doi:10.1037/sgd0000081

Riggle, D. B., Mohr, J. J., Rostosky, S. S., Fingerhut, A. W., & Balsam, K. F. (2014). A multifactor Lesbian, Gay, and Bisexual Positive Identity Measure (LGB-PIM). Psychology of Sexual Orientation and Gender Diversity, 1(4), 398-411. doi:10.1037/sgd0000057

Kaysen, D. L., Kulesza, M., Balsam, K. F., Rhew, I. C., Blayney, J. A., Lehavot, K., & Hughes, T. L., (2014). Coping as a mediator of internalized homophobia and psychological distress among young adult sexual minority women. Psychology of Sexual Orientation and Gender Diversity, 1(3), 225.

Matthews, A. K., Balsam, K. F., Hotton, A., Kuhns, L., Li, C. C., & Bowen, D. J. (2014).  Awareness of media-based antitobacco messages among a community sample of LGBT individuals.  Health Promotion and Practice, 1524839914533343.

Book Chapters (past 3 years)

Balsam, K. F., Martell, C. M., Jones, K., & Safren, S. A. (in press, invited).  Affirmative cognitive-behavioral therapy with sexual and gender minority clients.  In G. Y. Iwamasa (Ed.), Culturally responsive cognitive-behavioral therapy: Assessment, practice, and supervision (2nd Edition).  Washington, DC: American Psychological Association Press.

Balsam, K. F., Evans, W. R., & Tomita, K. (in press).  Victimization among Lesbian, Gay, and Bisexual Populations.  In Gerber, P. (Ed.), Worldwide Perspectives on Lesbians, Gays, and Bisexuals.  Santa Barbara, CA: Praeger Press.

Balsam, K. F., & Heyne, G. M. (2017) Homophobia. The SAGE

Encyclopedia of Psychology and Gender, Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE Publication Inc.

Balsam, K. F. & Rios, V. (2017). Sexual desire. The SAGE

Encyclopedia of Psychology and Gender, Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE Publication Inc.

Balsam, K. F. & Webb, A. (2017). Pansexuality. The SAGE

Encyclopedia of Psychology and Gender, Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE Publication Inc.

Balsam, K. F. & Simonetti, J. (2017). Lesbian Dating.  The SAGE

Encyclopedia of Psychology and Gender, Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE Publication Inc.

Balsam, K. F. & Evans, W. R. (2016). Health Disparities. In A. Goldberg (Ed.), The SAGE

Encyclopedia of LGBTQ Studies. New York: SAGE Publications.

Skinta, M. D., Balsam, K. F., & Singh, R. S. (2016).  Healing the wounds of rejection: Deepening vulnerability and intimacy with Functional Analytic Psychotherapy.  In M. Skinta & A. Curtin (Eds.), Mindfulness & Acceptance for Gender & Sexual Minorities: A Clinician’s Guide to Fostering Compassion, Connection, & Equality using Contextual Strategies. Oakland, CA: Context Press.

Goldblum, P., Balsam, K. F., Skinta, M., Pflum, S., & Evans, R.W. (2015). Psychotherapy with Lesbian, Gay, and Bisexual Clients: Toward an evidence-based affirmative approach.  Invited Chapter in Bongar, B. & Beutler, L. E. (Eds.), Comprehensive Textbook of Psychotherapy, 2nd Edition. New York, NY: Oxford University Press.


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