Michael Hecht

President

Michael L. Hecht (Ph.D., University of Illinois) is President of REAL Prevention LLC and Distinguished Professor Emeritus at Pennsylvania State University. Hecht specializes in developing and evaluating culturally grounded, narrative health messages to engage diverse communities. RP's evidence-based substance use drug prevention intervention, keepin' it REAL (kiR), started as a small R01 in the 1990s and has since been successfully disseminated and implemented in all 50 states and 20 other countries to over 1 million youth each year. Hecht's work spurred the creation of Real Prevention LLC., a business that provides consulting, training, support, and evaluation services to organizations interested in adopting evidence-based programs or developing new interventions. Current technology-based projects involve collaborations with the American Cancer Society in the development of Parents HPV Stories (promoting HPV vaccination), 4-H for distributing REAL media (substance use prevention) and AASA: The Superintendents Association in the development of Mighty Teens (reducing risky sexual behavior), the Student Wellness Portal (reducing prescription opioid misuse), and REAL Social Influencer (reducing vaping). RP’s Opioid Rapid Response System is the first evidence-based program for recruiting and training lay citizens to use Narcan to reverse opioid overdoses. These projects utilize face-to-face delivery, e-learning curriculum, interactive video games, and apps to promote health among children, youth, and adults and has been supported by grants and contracts from the National Institutes of Health, the Center for Disease Control, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the Merck Educational Foundation, U.S. Department of State, Marchionne Foundation, Council for European Studies, Arizona Disease Control Commission and the Nemours Foundation among others. Hecht has served on NIH's Community-Level Health Promotion Review Group, including being selected as its chair, as well as on numerous editorial boards in communication and other fields. If you have any questions please email, Michael at michael@real-prevention.com.