John Wallace Professor, School of Social Work, Katz School of Business, and Department of Sociology, Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences



2301 Cathedral of Learning
Pittsburgh, PA 15260


John M. Wallace Jr. earned his PhD and master’s degree in sociology from the University of Michigan and his BA in sociology from the University of Chicago.

He is the principal investigator on the University of Pittsburgh Center on Race and Social Problems’ Comm-Univer-City of Pittsburgh Project, an integrated program of research, teaching, and service designed to investigate and ameliorate social problems that disproportionately impact economically disadvantaged children, families, and communities. This program includes the Homewood Children's Village. Wallace also is a coinvestigator on the National Institute on Drug Abuse’s ongoing national study of drug use among American young people, Monitoring the Future. His recent research examines comprehensive community revitalization initiatives, racial and ethnic disparities in social and economic well-being, the impact of crime on clergy and congregations, and adolescent problem behaviors including violence and substance abuse.

Most recently, Wallace and Co-PI James Huguley have been awarded a grant from the Richard King Mellon Foundation to support the Pitt Assisted Communities and Schools (PACS) Project. PACS’s goal is to harness the resources of the University of Pittsburgh to conduct research and design, implement and evaluate interventions that support university-assisted community schools and other strategies to improve outcomes for low income children, their families and the communities in which they are nested.

His work has appeared in numerous professional journals, books and monographs. In addition to being a professor and a father, he pastors a church in Pittsburgh’s Homewood-Brushton neighborhood.

Research Interests

  • Community-Based Participatory Research
  • Adolescent Problem Behaviors (e.g., substance use, violence, precocious sex, school dropout)
  • Comprehensive Community Initiatives
  • Role of Faith-Based Organizations in Community Revitalization
  • Social Entrepreneurship

Selected Funded Grants

  • Principal Investigator: John Wallace, Pitt-Assisted Communities and Schools (PACS), Funder: Richard King Mellon Foundation
  • Principal Investigator: John Wallace, Healthy Living, Healthy Learning, Healthy Lives, Funder: National Institute of Health
  • Principal Investigator: John Wallace, Comm-Univer-City of Pittsburgh, Funder: University of Pittsburgh
  • Co-Investigator: John Wallace (Prinicpal Investigator: Lloyd D. Johnston, University of Michigan), Drug Use and Lifestyles of American Youth, Funder: National Institute of Drug Abuse (University of Michigan)

Selected Publications

Wallace, Jr., J. M., O’Malley, P.M., Bachman, J.G., Schulenberg, J.E., and Johnston, L.D. (In Press). Race/Ethnicity, Religiosity and Differences and Similarities in American Adolescents’ Substance Use. In Drug Use Trajectories among African American and Hispanic Youth, Thomas, Y.F., Price, L.N., and Lybrand, L.V. (Eds.).

Primack B.A, Freedman-Doan P., Sidani, J.E., Rosen D., Shensa A., James, A.E., Wallace, Jr., J.M. (2015). Sustained Waterpipe Tobacco Smoking and Trends Over Time. American Journal of Preventive Medicine, 2015 Sep 14. [Epub ahead of print]

Wallace, J.M., Jr., (2015). Exploring, Understanding, and Closing the Achievement Gap(s): Efforts from Harlem to Homewood. In R. Bangs and L.E. Davis (eds.), Race and Social Problems: Restructuring Inequality. New York: Springer.

Wallace, J.M.,Jr. and Teixiera, S.N. (2014). Assessing the State of the Village: Multi-Method, Multi-Level Analyses for Comprehensive Community Change. In Patterson, K.L. and Silverman, R.M., (Eds.), Schools and Urban Revitalization: Rethinking Institutions and Community Development. New York:Routledge.

Teixiera, S.N. and Wallace, J.M.,Jr. (2013). Data Driven Organizing: Partnerships for Community Change in the Homewood Children’s Village. Journal of Community Practice 21(3):248-262.

Gilbert, K. L., Quinn, S. C., Goodman, R. M., Butler, J., & Wallace, J. (2013). A meta-analysis of social capital and health: A case for needed research. Journal of health psychology, 18(11), 1385-1399.

Ohmer, M.L., Sobek, J.B, Teixeira, S.N., Wallace, Jr., J.M., and Shapiro, V.L. (2013). Community-based research: Rationale, methods, roles and considerations for community practice. In Weil, M., Reisch, M., and Ohmer, M.L. (editors). The Handbook of Community Practice, 2nd edition. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications, Inc.

Wallace, Jr., J.M. and Lopez, D.L. (2012). The Homewood Children’s Village, A Child-Centered Comprehensive Community Initiative. Community Development Journal. 31-39