Soomi Lee, Ph.D.

Soomi Lee, Ph.D.


Stealth Lab


Sleep; stress; cardiovascular health; work and family; daily activity diversity; middle adulthood; micro-longitudinal methods

Description of Research Interests

My research interests and expertise cover a broad range of topics in the domain of sleep, stress, and health, with a special focus on the population of middle-aged adults. I am particularly interested in the role of occupational environment in stress, sleep, and various health outcomes including cardiovascular health, cognitive functioning, and chronic diseases.

Despite the increase in aging research targeting middle adulthood rather than strictly older adulthood, still little is known about how the interplay between stress and sleep during middle adulthood contributes to health in later adulthood. Middle-aged adults typically have greater pressures stemming from multiple responsibilities both at work and at home (e.g., work-family conflict), which may degrade their sleep and health. Given their multiple roles, I also examine how work-related stressors and resources in middle-aged workers are associated with health and well-being of the family members, including children, spouse/partner, and older parents.

Overall, my research program targets to decrease work-related stress and promote sleep and health in middle-aged workers and their families. To achieve these objectives, I conduct population-based, interdisciplinary studies by using various study designs and methods, including survey, daily diary, sleep actigraphy (an objective method of monitoring sleep), and biomarkers. I have worked on diverse project data sets, such as the Work, Family & Health Study and Midlife in the United States Study (see below for more projects). Through these research projects, I study cross-sectional and longitudinal associations between work-related stress, sleep, and health and the causal effects of workplace-based interventions on decreasing work-related stress and thereby improving sleep and health across occupations. My recently funded pilot project targets to examine sleep health in healthcare and long-term care workers and its association with work performance (see STEATH lab).

Ongoing Research Support

1R56AG065251 - 01A1(Lee, PI)                                                                      09/2020-09/2021

Sleep Health Profiles in Middle-aged Adults in Relation to Cardiovascular Health
Role:Principal Investigator

University of South Florida (Lee, PI)                                                                 05/2019-04/2021
Research & Innovation Internal Awards Program (No. 0134930), New Researcher Grant Award
“Sleep health in direct-care workers and its association with work performance”
Role:Principal Investigator

University of South Florida (Lee, PI)                                                                 05/2019-04/2021
College of Behavioral and Community Sciences Grant Program (No. 18320)
“Cancer center nurses’ sleep health and its association with work performance”
Role:Principal Investigator

Florida Department of Health (Meng, PI)                                                           12/2018-12/2020
Ed and Ethel Moore Alzheimer's Disease Research Award (No. 9AZ28)
“Visually-assisted mindful music listening intervention for persons living with dementia and their caregivers: A pilot study”

Selected Peer-Reviewed Journal Publications

PubMed Publications

Lee, S., Mu, C., Gonzalez, B. D., Vinci, C. E., & Small, B. J. (2020). Sleep health is associated with next-day mindful attention in healthcare workers. Sleep Health. In press.

Lee, S., Chang, A-M., Buxton, O. M., & Jackson, C. L. (2020). Perceived job discrimination and sleep health among working women: Findings from the Sister study. American Journal of Epidemiology. In press.

Lee, S., Charles, S. T., & Almeida, D. M. (2020). Change is good for the brain: Activity diversity and cognitive functioning across adulthood. The Journal of Gerontology Series B: Psychological Sciences. doi: 10.1093/geronb/gbaa020.

Lee, S., Buxton, O. M., Andel, R., & Almeida, D. M. (2019). Bidirectional associations of sleep with cognitive interference in employees’ work days. Sleep Health. Epub ahead of print. PMCID: PMC6239632

Lee, S., Stone, L. K., Engeland, C. G., Lane, N. E., & Buxton, O. M. (2019). Arthritis, sleep health, and systemic inflammation in older men. Arthritis Care & Research. doi: 10.1002/acr.23923.

Lawson, K. M., & Lee, S. (2018). Better previous night sleep is associated with less next day work-to-family conflict mediated by higher work performance among female nursing home workers. Sleep Health, 4(5), 485-491. doi: 10.1016/j.sleh.2018.07.005

Lee, S., Hale, L., Chang, A-M., Nahmod, N. G., Master, L., Berger, L., & Buxton, O. M. (2018). Longitudinal associations of childhood bedtime and sleep routines with adolescent body mass index. Sleep, 42(1)doi: 10.1093/sleep/zsy202 [Epub ahead of print]

Buxton, O. M., Lee, S., Marino, M., Beverly C., Almeida, D. M., & Berkman, L. (2018). Sleep health and predicted cardiometabolic risk scores in 2 employed adult samples. Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine, 14 (3), 371-383.doi: 10.5664/jcsm.6980

Lee, S., McHale, S. M., Crouter, A. C., Kelly, E. L., Buxton O. M., & Almeida, D. M. (2017). Perceived time adequacy improves daily well-being: Day-to-day linkages and the effects of a workplace intervention. Community, Work & Family, 20(5), 500-522. doi: 10.1080/13668803.2017.1365691

Chen, T-Y., Lee, S., & Buxton, O. M. (2017). A greater extent of insomnia symptoms and physician-recommended sleep medication use predict fall risk in community-dwelling older adults. Sleep, 40(11), zsx142. doi: 10.1093/sleep/zsx142 

Lee, S., Crain, T. L., McHale, S. M., Almeida, D. M., & Buxton, O. M. (2016). Daily antecedents and consequences of nightly sleep. Journal of Sleep Research, 26(4), 498-509. doi: 10.1111/jsr.12488

Buxton, O., Lee, S., Beverly, C., Berkman, L. F., Moen, P., Kelly, E., Hammer, L., & Almeida, D. M. (2016). Work-family conflict and sleep: Evidence from Information Technology employees. Sleep, 38(10), 1871-1882. doi: 10.5665/sleep.6172

Lee, S., Koffer, R., Sprague, B., Charles, S. T., Ram, N. & Almeida, D. M. (2016). Activity diversity and its associations with psychological well-being across adulthood. The Journal of Gerontology Series B: Psychological Sciences, gbw118. doi: 10.1093/geronb/gbw118 

Almeida, D. M., Davis, K. D., Lee, S., Lawson, K., Walter, K., & Moen, P. (2015). Supervisor support buffers daily psychological and physiological reactivity to work-to-family conflict. Journal of Marriage & Family, 78(1), 165-179. doi: 10.1111/jomf.12252

Lee, S., Almeida, D. M., Davis, K. D., King, R. B., Hammer, L. B., & Kelly, E. (2015). Latent profiles of time adequacy for paid-work, parenting, and partner roles. The Journal of Family Psychology, 29(5), 788-798. doi: 10.1037/a0039433

Classes Taught

Undergraduate Teaching 

Graduate Teaching