Research Group


Dianne Hezel

Dianne Hezel

Dianne graduated from Georgetown University with a BA in psychology and English. Her primary research interests lie in cognitive processing in anxiety disorders, particularly in Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder and Social Anxiety Disorder. She is currently conducting studies that examine theory of mind in Social Anxiety Disorder, personality factors in non-clinical hoarders, and the relationship between emotional distress and physical pain tolerance in OCD. A Boston area native, Dianne is an avid Red Sox and Patriots fan and enjoys running and reading in her spare time.

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Nicole LeBlanc, M.A.

Nicole is a current doctoral candidate in Clinical Science at Harvard. Her research focuses on interpersonal factors in the development and maintenance of psychopathology. Specifically, she is interested in processes that prevent recovery following the death of a loved one and lead to Complicated Grief. She is also interested in how social isolation/social support affect risk/resilience for mood and anxiety disorders. Nicole is currently working on her dissertation, which is an intervention to increase social connectedness among young adults. She can be reached at 

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Emily Bernstein

Emily graduated from Yale University in 2012 with a B.S. in Psychology. She is interested in the intersection of emotion regulation and information processing, and her research aims is to identify transdiagnostic interventions for the prevention and treatment of affective disorders. Emily is currently working on studies examining how aerobic exercise influences emotional responses to positive and negative stimuli, and how exercise may benefit mood through enhanced attentional control and emotional resilience. She can be reached at

Payton Jones

Payton graduated from Brigham Young University in 2015 with a B.S. in Psychology. He is interested in the etiology of mood and anxiety disorders, especially depression. His research is currently focusing on using networks of observable symptoms to explain the emergence and maintenance of psychopathology without relying on latent categories (e.g., symptoms are the disorder, rather than symptoms being caused by the disorder). He is also interested in how cultural factors impact psychopathology and how these factors relate to increasing rates of depression and anxiety. He can be reached at


Alexandre Heeren

Alexandre is a Postdoctoral Fellow in Clinical Psychology. He graduated from the Université Catholique de Louvain at Louvain-la-Neuve (Belgium) and received his postgraduate clinical training from a joint program of Université Catholique de Louvain and the University of Geneva (Switzerland). An enduring theme across his research is the role of cognitive mechanisms of psychopathology, and especially the exploration of attentional processes in anxiety and related psychopathology.  Current research includes extension of his work to the network approach to psychopathology, investigation of potential transdiagnostic “bridges” across disorders (e.g., attentional mechanisms, avoidance, affiliative system, guilt), and several translational-research agendas. He can be reached at