Millan AbiNader, LMSW, PhD

Millan AbiNader, LMSW, PhD

  • Assistant Professor

3701 Locust Walk, Caster Building, D-2
Philadelphia, PA 19104-6214

Research Interests

Gender-based violence

Intimate partner violence

Intimate partner homicide

Rural communities

Community-level risk

Vicarious trauma

Dr. Millan AbiNader is a mixed-methods researcher who seeks to understand the structural factors and social ecology of gender-based violence, with particular attention to intimate partner homicide and rural communities. Before entering academia, Dr. AbiNader worked as a community victim services advocate in the fields of sexual violence, intimate partner violence, family violence, and commercial sexual exploitation/trafficking. She delivered primary prevention interventions K through college, facilitated support groups in the community and in criminal justice settings, and delivered advocacy services to incarcerated women. Dr. AbiNader earned her MSSW from the University of Texas at Austin and her PhD in Social Work from Boston University where she completed an award-winning dissertation examining rural intimate partner homicide. Dr. AbiNader was a Postdoctoral Scholar at Arizona State University’s School of Social Work’s Office of Gender Based Violence under the mentorship of Dr. Jill Messing where she studied intimate partner homicide and risk assessment.

Dr. AbiNader’s current research projects investigate intimate partner homicide risk, vicarious trauma, and intimate partner violence among multi-racial/multi-ethnic individuals among other topics. She is a co-investigator on National Institutes of Health and National Collaborative for Gun Violence Research grants to study intimate partner homicide risk, as well as a PI on an NSF grant to study COVID-19 policies’ effects on homicide rates. Dr. AbiNader integrates her practice experience as a victim advocate and macro social worker with her research, aiming to lead studies that support survivor healing and perpetrator change.


Ogbonnaya, I. N., AbiNader, M. A., Cheng, S., Jiwatam-Negrón, T., Bagwell-Gray, M., Brown, M. L., & Messing, J. T. (in press) Intimate Partner Violence, Police Engagement, and Perceived Helpfulness of the Legal System: An Analysis by Survivor Race and Ethnicity. Journal of the Society of Social Work Research.

Messing, J.T., Campbell, J., AbiNader, M.A., Bolyard, R. (in press) Accounting for Multiple Non-Fatal Strangulation in Intimate Partner Violence Risk Assessment. Journal of Interpersonal Violence.

Messing, J., Wachter, K., AbiNader, M., Ward-Lasher, A., Njie-Carr, V., Sabri, B., Murray, S. Noor-Oshiro, A., Campbell, J. (in press). “We have to build trust”: Intimate partner violence risk assessment with immigrant and refugee survivors. Social Work Research.

AbiNader, M. A., Thomas, M. M. C., & Carolan, K. (in press). Talking (or not) about sexual violence: Newspaper coverage of the confirmation hearings of Justices Thomas and Kavanaugh. Journal of Interpersonal Violence.

Messing, J. T., AbiNader, M.A., Pizarro, J. M., Campbell, J. C., & Brown, M. L. (2021) The Arizona Intimate Partner Homicide (AzIPH) Study: A Step Toward Updating and Expanding Risk Factors for Intimate Partner Homicide. The Journal of Family Violence, 36, 563-572.

Barchi, F., AbiNader, M. A., Winter, S. C., Obara, L. M., Mbogo, D., Thomas, B. M., & Ammerman, B. (2021) “It is like medicine”: Using sports to promote adult women’s health in rural Kenya. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 18(5), 2347. [Special Issue, Physical Exercise and Chronic Diseases Prevention, T. E., Dorner & I. Grabovac (eds.)]

AbiNader, M. A. (2020). Correlates of Intimate Partner Homicide in the Rural United States: Findings from a National Sample of Rural Counties, 2009-2016. Homicide Studies, 24(4),353-376.

AbiNader, M. A., DeVoe, E., & Spencer R. (2020)”It’s Like You Gotta Fly the Plane while You’re Repairing It at the Same Time”: Supporting Rural Intimate Partner Violence Victim Advocates after the Homicide of a Client. Partner Abuse, 11(2), 158-178. DOI:

AbiNader, M. A., Salas-Wright, C. P., Vaughn, M. G., Oh, S., & Jackson, D. (2018) Trends and Correlates of Youth Violence Prevention Program Participation, 2002-2016. American Journal of Preventative Medicine, 56(5), 680-688. DOI:

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