Lina is a vice president for strategy and special initiatives and director of Child Trends’ Hispanic Institute. The Hispanic Institute seeks to provide timely and insightful research-based information and guidance to improve outcomes for Latino children and youth in the U.S. As a family demographer and qualitative researcher, her substantive research focuses on reproductive health and union formation among minority teens and young adults, in particular, Latinos.
Lina is the co-principal investigator (co-PI) of the National Research Center on Hispanic Children and Families, Administration for Children and Families, whose goal is to provide research-based information to improve programming and policies aimed at improving the wellbeing of low-income Hispanic children and families. As the co-PI, she oversees a research agenda that cuts across various areas of family wellbeing, including poverty and self sufficiency, fatherhood and healthy marriage, and early care and education. She directs communication and dissemination activities aimed at ensuring that the Center’s research reaches key and diverse audiences as well as capacity-building activities such as building strategic partnerships within the research, policy, and practice communities and an emerging scholars program aimed at training and increasing the number of young scholars focused on Hispanic families.
Lina has served as principal and co-principal investigator on a number of Federal and foundation grants, including qualitative studies exploring reproductive health care service delivery, contraceptive decision making, teen pregnancy prevention, nonmarital childbearing, as well as cohabitation and union formation among Latinas, low-income individuals, and recent immigrants. She has also directed numerous national, state, and local surveys on a wide array of topics in both English and Spanish. She led the development of measures for several projects spanning multiple domains. A key focus of the work of the Hispanic Center has been to develop measures that are culturally and socially appropriate.