Current Work

Neuropsychologist and Assistant Professor, Tanisha's area of expertise includes (1) psychosocial factors affecting cognitive aging of Black older adults and (2) health disparities in cognitive aging and dementia.

Personal Hero

My mother and grandmother

Words of Strength

Innovation, compassion, unification


The scale/impact of dementia can be reduced by addressing the social determinants of brain health and through community-driven programming. Efforts and resources should be allocated to the most vulnerable of individuals as a step towards equity. 


Tanisha is examining the effects of racism and gendered racism on the cognitive functioning of Black older adults. A second goal is to examine how psychological coping strategies influence this stress-cognition relationship.


Psychosocial stress is a risk factor for cognitive decline that disproportionately disadvantages older Black adults. It is important to understand how lifetime stressors relate to dementia incidence as well as factors that buffer against decline.

Education & Experience

Tanisha Hill-Jarrett, PhD, is a neuropsychologist and an assistant professor of neurology at the UCSF Memory and Aging Center. Her research applies intersectionality theory to understand how psychosocial stressors and structural racism and sexism impact Black women’s cognitive aging and confer risk for Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias (ADRD). She is additionally interested in improving the measurement and tracking of adverse social exposures (e.g., structural racism and sexism) to better understand how they shape cognitive aging trajectories and association with incident ADRD among Black older adults. As a scientist and clinician, she is committed to making wellness and brain health accessible and participates in the Memory and Aging Center Black/African American Community Outreach Team. Dr. Hill-Jarrett uses Afrofuturism in her community-based work with Black women as a framework to create counternarratives and reimage the future through a lens of hope. She seeks to incorporate Afrofuturism as a tool for brain health among community-dwelling Black elders and a praxis that drives social change and centers aging Black women.

Awards & Honors

University of Minnesota
Diversifying the Community of Neuroscientists (Diversify CNS)
American Psychological Foundation
Rapid Response Grant awardee
University of South Florida
New Research Grant awardee
Scientific Research Network on Decision Neuroscience & Aging
Career Transition Award