Mary Rebecca Read-Wahidi, PhD ( is a Postdoctoral Research Fellow and medical anthropologist at the Social Science Research Center (SSRC), Mississippi State University. Read-Wahidi joined the SSRC in 2015 after receiving her PhD in Biocultural Medical Anthropology at The University of Alabama. She has more than 10 years’ experience working with rural populations, migrant populations, and agricultural workers on issues such as psychosocial stress, barriers to accessing healthcare, improving services at community healthcare facilities, and equality/empowerment through culturally-specific practices, and she utilizes both qualitative and quantitative methods in her research. She has developed a line of research Mexican immigrants in rural Mississippi on projects related to devotion to the Virgin of Guadalupe and health-related disparities. As a member of the Feed the Future Soybean Innovation Lab (SIL) Socioeconomic/Gender Equity Research Team, Read-Wahidi is currently working on a project to identify best practices and potential barriers to the sustainable adoption of soy among men and women smallholder farmers in Ghana’s Northern Region as a means of improving household economic and nutritional status. This research primarily utilizes the Women’s Empowerment in Agriculture Index (WEAI), and was adapted by the Socioeconomic/Gender Equity Research Team (lead by Kathleen Ragsdale) to include soybean modules and to ensure the survey was culturally relevant for use in Ghana. She is also co-PI on the Focus 4 Teens Evaluation Team, a CDC-funded project lead by Mississippi First and focused on pregnancy prevention among vulnerable teens in the Mississippi Delta.