Dr. Thomas Hanlon, Senior Research Scientist, Retires After a 52-Year Relationship with FRI

Dr. Thomas Hanlon has had a long and distinguished career in the areas of personality assessment and treatment evaluation. His initial research experience involved conducting clinical psychopharmacological trials largely involving the treatment of schizophrenic and other seriously ill psychiatric patients. During this same period, he also participated in early treatment evaluation studies of the effectiveness of narcotic antagonists in the treatment of heroin drug addiction. The second stage of his involvement in treatment evaluation studies (which involved collaboration with Dr. David Nurco of Friends Social Research Center) included designing and conducting numerous psychosocial outpatient treatment trials involving addicted substance abusers under probation and/or parole supervision by the Maryland Department of Corrections. Examining the early developmental experiences of these addicted individuals led to Dr. Hanlon’s interest and involvement in drug abuse prevention studies of at-risk adolescent minority youth, first in community behavioral clinics and subsequently within the public school system. (Dr. Hanlon’s extensive list of publications reflects this transitional aspect of his professional experience.) The latter part of his professional career as a senior investigator has also involved the mentoring of junior professional staff at FRI on the analysis, interpretation, and write-up of prevention research findings, with more recent emphasis on the avoidance of sexually transmitted infections, including HIV.

Originally a Maryland State employee, Dr. Hanlon entered State service as a research scientist assigned to the research center at Spring Grove State Hospital, which subsequently became the Maryland Psychiatric Research Center (MPRC) following the reception of a Center foundation grant from the federal government. Having obtained his Ph.D. degree in 1958 from Catholic University of America, Dr. Hanlon became a faculty member of the University of Maryland Medical School when the MPRC was incorporated into the Medical School’s Department of Psychiatry. Dr Hanlon retired from State service in July of 1991.

Dr. Hanlon has had a long association with FRI initially working in conjunction with Dr. Albert Kurland and other founding members of the FRI organization in establishing a program of research at Spring Grove originally involving treatment efforts targeting chronic psychiatric illness. During these early years, Dr. Hanlon was the first recipient of educational support from FRI that enabled him to complete his doctoral training. During his long-term association with FRI, Dr. Hanlon served for 11 years as the Chairman of FRI’s IRB and contributed importantly to the early growth of FRI as a viable research organization.