Amy Hequembourg, PhD

Associate Professor

portrait of Amy Hequembourg.

School of Nursing
University at Buffalo
209 Wende Hall
Buffalo, NY 14214-3079

PHONE: 716-829-2608

My research and much of my professional service is aimed at addressing health disparities affecting sexual minorities. By seeking an understanding of the mechanisms fueling this public health crisis, my research aims to inform effective interventions that will improve the health and well-being of sexual minorities.

Amy Hequembourg is an associate professor for the School of Nursing and has devoted her research to understanding and dismantling health disparities among sexual minorities (i.e., gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender individuals). This wide range of individuals suffer from a variety of significant health disparities, including higher rates of substance use disorders, tobacco use, mental health symptoms, trauma symptoms, lifetime sexual victimization, and some forms of cancer. Sexual minorities also report barriers to health care that result in lower health care utilization.

To this end, the bulk of her research is focused on understanding why sexual minorities experience higher rates of adverse health outcomes, elevated rates of health risk behaviors associated with those outcomes (e.g., heavy alcohol use, cigarette smoking), and a higher prevalence of other stressful and traumatic life experiences (e.g., sexual assault, discrimination and microaggressions) compared to heterosexual individuals.

Her current scholarly activities in these areas include a number of ongoing funded projects that have the shared goal of understanding the nature of unique health disparities and risky health behaviors among sexual minorities.


  • NIH Postdoctoral Fellow, Alcohol Etiology and Treatment, Research Institute on Addictions, State University of New York at Buffalo
  • PhD, Sociology, State University of New York at Buffalo
  • MA, Sociology, State University of New York at Buffalo
  • BS, Health Service Administration, State University of New York at Fredonia

Areas of Research

  • Health disparities among sexual minorities
  • Lifetime sexual victimization among sexual minorities
  • Same-sex intimate partner violence
  • Bisexual women's health
  • Microaggressions based on sexual orientation
  • Alcohol problems among vulnerable populations
  • LGBT experiences of violence and discrimination
  • LGBT cultural competency among health care providers
  • Risk-taking among vulnerable groups
  • Differences in health, discrimination and self-identity among women
  • Culturally-informed interventions to reduce health disparities and associated risk behaviors among sexual minorities

Teaching Responsibilities

  • NGC 526 Evaluating Research Evidence for Health Care I Lab
  •  NSG368: Research on Human Sexuality

Recent Publications

Hequembourg, A., Livingston, J., & Wang, W. (2020). Prospective associations among relationship abuse, sexual harassment and bullying in a community sample of sexual minority and exclusively heterosexual youth. Journal of Adolescence, 83, 52-61.

Hequembourg, A., Blayney, J., Livingston, J. A., Bostwick, W., & Auerbach, S. (2019). A mixed methods investigation of victimization and coping among sexual minority compared to heterosexual women. Psychology & Sexuality, 1-20. doi:10.1080/19419899.2019.1678193.

Hequembourg, A., Blayney, J., Bostwick, W., & Van Ryzin, M. (2019). Concurrent daily alcohol and tobacco use among sexual minority and heterosexual women. Substance Use & Abuse, 1-13. doi:10.1080/10826084.2019.1656252

Bostwick, W., Berger, B., & Hequembourg, A. (2019). A mixed-method inquiry of bisexual identity centrality among racially and ethnically diverse women. Journal of Bisexuality. Advance online publication.

Hequembourg, A., & Panagakis, C. (2019). Maximizing respondent-driven sampling field procedures in the recruitment of sexual minorities for health research. SAGE Open Medicine, 7

Blayney, J. A., Hequembourg, A. L., & Livingston, J. A. (2018). Rape acknowledgement and sexual minority women’s mental health and drinking behaviors. Journal of Interpersonal Violence. Advance online publication.

Livingston, J. A., Hequembourg, A., & Testa, M. (2018). Sexual victimization. In R. G. R. Levesque (Ed.) Encyclopedia of adolescence (2nd ed., pp. 2692-2699).

Parks, K. A., Levonyan-Radloff, K., Pryzbyla, S., & Hequembourg, A. (2017). University student perceptions about the motives for and consequences of non-medical use of prescription drugs (NMUPD). Journal of American College Health, 65(7), 457-465.

Hequembourg, A., Parks, K., Collins, R. L., Hughes, T. (2015). Sexual assault risks among gay and bisexual men. Journal of Sex Research, 52(3), 282-295. doi:10.1080/00224499.2013.85683.

Parks, Kathleen A., Levonyan-Radloff, K., Dearing, R., Hequembourg, A., & Testa, M. (2015). Development and validation of a video measure for assessing women’s risk perception for alcohol-related sexual assault. Psychology of Violence, 6(4). 573-585.

Parks, K. A., Levonyan-Radloff, K., Pryzbyla, S., Hequembourg, A. (2015). College student opinions about the use of non-medical prescription drugs. Drug & Alcohol Dependence, 146: e62-e63.

Bostwick, W., & Hequembourg, A. (2014). “Just a little hint”: Bisexual-specific microaggressions and their connection to epistemic injustice. Culture, Health, and Sexuality, 16(5), 488-503. doi:10.1080/13691058.2014.889754.

Dearing, R. L., & Hequembourg, A. L. (2014). Culturally (in)competent? Dismantling health care barriers for sexual minority women. Social Work in Health Care, 53(8), 739-761. doi:10.1080/00981389.2014.944250.

Bostwick, W., & Hequembourg, A. (2013). Minding the noise: Conducting health research among bisexual populations and beyond. Journal of Homosexuality, 60, 1-7.

Hequembourg, A., & Dearing, R. (2013). Exploring shame, guilt, and problematic alcohol use among sexual minority men and women. Journal of Homosexuality, 60, 1-24.

Hequembourg, A., Livingston, J., & Parks, K. (2013). Sexual victimization and associated risks among lesbian and bisexual women. Violence Against Women, 19(5), 634-657.

Livingston, J., Bay-Cheng, L., Hequembourg, A., Testa, M., & Downs, J. (2013). Mixed drinks and mixed messages: Adolescent girls’ perspectives on alcohol and sexuality. Psychology of Women Quarterly, 37(1), 38-50.

Parks, K. A., Levonyan-Radloff, K., Hequembourg, A., Dearing, R. L., & Testa, M. (2013). Validation of video vignettes for assessing alcohol-related sexual assault risk perception. The Addictions Newsletter (Fall/Winter), 17-19.

Honors and Awards

  • Summer Fellowship, International LGBT University of Michigan Psychology Summer Institute, 2010
  • Dissertation Fellowship, University at Buffalo College of Arts and Sciences, 2002
  • First Place, Society for the Study of Social Problems Family Division Graduate Student Paper Competition, 2001
  • Graduate Student Excellence in Teaching Award, University at Buffalo, 1999
  • Graduate Student Teaching Award, University at Buffalo, Department of Sociology, 1998

Professional Activities

  • September 2019 – present: Budget Officer, Nursing Summit, Gay and Lesbian Medical Association (Health Professionals Advancing LGBTQ Equality) 
  • June 2020 – present: University at Buffalo, School of Nursing, Committee on Diversity and Inclusion Committee Chair and Unit Diversity Officer 
  • Ad Hoc Grant Reviewer: National Institutes of Health
    • June 2020: Special Emphasis Panel: Methods and Measurement in Research with Sexual and Gender Minority (SGM) Population, Meeting ZMD1 MLS(A1)R
    • March 2019: Special Emphasis Panel: Healthcare Delivery and Methodologies, Meeting ZRG1 HDM W (03) Minority Health and Health Disparities, Meeting ZMD1 DRI(01)
    • June 2018: Special Emphasis Panel: Minority Health and Health Disparities, Meeting ZMD1 DRI(01)
  • September 2019: Invited Panel Participant, Bisexual Health Workshop, National Institutes of Health, Sexual & Gender Minorities Research Office 
  • 2019 – present: University at Buffalo, School of Nursing, PhD Program Committee Member
  • August 2019 – present: Consulting Editor, Journal of Sex Research



Co-Investigator (PI Dominic Parrott, Co-Is Masyn, Swartout)
Proximal Effects of Alcohol on Same-Sex Intimate Partner Violence
R01; NIH, National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism
Award Amount: $2,507,736

Co-Investigator (PI Dominic Parrott, Co-Is Masyn, Swartout, Stappenbeck)
Proximal Effects of Alcohol on Same-Sex Intimate Partner Violence: Urgent Competing Revision
R01 Urgent Competing Revision; NIH, National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism
Award amount: $303,806

2018 – 2020  
Multi-Principal Investigator (with PIs Rychtarik and McGillicudy)
Stress in LGBT Individuals with an Alcohol Use Disordered Same-Sex Partner
Howard T. Blane Director’s Award for the Development of Research in Addictions
Award Amount: $24,715


2018 – 2019
Co-Investigator (PI: Beedle [Leonard])
NYS Opiod STR Project II
Research Foundation for Mental Hygiene, Inc. (Prime: SAMHSA)
Award Amount: $274,999

2015 – 2019 (NCE)
Principal Investigator (Co-Investigators: Livingston and Collins)
Sexual Assault Mechanisms among Diverse Women
National Institute of Justice
Direct costs: $581,916

Co-Investigator (PI: Bostwick)
E-diaries to Assess Health Effects of Microaggressions
NIH, National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities
Award Amount: $371, 583

Principal Investigator (Mentors: R. Lorraine Collins, Kathleen Parks, Michael Frone)
Alcohol and Victimization: The Role of Gender & Sexual Identity
K01; NIH, National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism
Award amount: $522,280