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Gray, David B., PhD

Please note: David B. Gray, PhD, passed away on Thursday, Feb.12, 2015, at 71 (please click here to read his obituary).

Clinical Interests

Community services for people who use mobility devices

Research Interests

Dr. Gray’s research focused on community participation by people with mobility impairments. The goal of the program was to improve community participation through a variety of interventions: improved access to information, availability and accessibility of exercise facilities, trained people to provide personal support, fit technologies to meet individual needs, improve parenting through technology and strategies, conduct peer support for obtaining employment and train driving skills for people with spinal cord injuries. He was also developing and using objective and subjective assessment measures for use in determining the usability of community sites and for effectiveness of community participation interventions. His collaborators included community organizations, academic centers that study community living, and medical rehabilitation center.

Teaching Roles

Mentored occupational therapy student research projects


1974: PhD in philosophy - behavior genetics, University of Minnesota
1970: MA in psychology, Western Michigan University
1966: BA in psychology, Lawrence University


Dr. Gray was active in developing the Participation and Environment components of the International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health (ICF). He was the Deputy Director of the National Center for Medical Rehabilitation Research (NCMRR) at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) from 1990 through 1995. From 1986 to 1987, he was the Director of the National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research (NIDRR) at the U.S. Department of Education in Washington, DC.

Peer-Reviewed Publications

  • Reinhardt JD, Miller J, Stucki G, Skyes C, Gray DB. Measuring impact of environmental factors on human functioning and disability: a review of various scientific approaches. Disability and Rehabilitation, 2011: 1–15.
  • Lehman LA, Woodbury M, Shechtman O, Wang YC, Pomeranz J, Gray DB and Velozo CA. (2011) Development of an item bank for a computerised adaptive test of upper-extremity function. Disability and Rehabilitation. 2010:1-13.
  • Hollingsworth H, Gray DB. The Use of Structural Equation Modeling to Examine Participation within the Context of Environment. Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation. 2010: 91:1174-1181.
  • Walker KA, Morgan KA, Morris CL, DeGroot KK, Hollingsworth HH, Gray DB. Development of a community mobility skills course for people who use mobility devices. American Journal of Occupational Therapy, 2010:64: 547–554.
  • Gray DB, Dashner JD, Morgan KA, Lyles M, Scheller MD, Morris CL, Hollingsworth HH. Influence of a consumer-directed personal assistance services program on the lives of persons with mobility impairments. Disability and Health 2009:2(4): 188-195.
  • Degroot, KK, Hollingsworth HH, Morgan KA, Mortis ML, Gray DB. The influence of verbal training and visual feedback on manual wheelchair propulsion. Disability and Rehabilitation: Assistive Technology 2009:4(2):86-94.
  • Crawford A, Hollingsworth HH, Morgan K., Gray DB. People with Mobility Impairments: Physical Activity and Quality of Participation. Disability and Health 2008:1(1): 7 – 13.
  • Gray DB, Hollingsworth HH, Stark SL, Morgan KA. A subjective measure of environmental facilitators and barriers to participation for people with mobility limitations. Disability and Rehabilitation 2008:30(6): 434-457.
  • Stark S, Hollingsworth HH, Morgan K., Gray DB. Development of a measure of receptivity of the physical environment. Disability and Rehabilitation 2007: 29(2): 123 – 137.
  • Schopp LH, Clark MJ, Hagglund KJ, Stout BJ, Gray DB, Boninger ML. Life activities among individuals with spinal cord injury living in the community: perceived choice and perceived barriers. Rehabilitation Psychology 2007:52(1): 82-88.
  • Stineman MG, Ross RN, Maislin M, Gray DB. Population-Based Study of Home Accessibility Features and the Activities of Daily Living: Clinical and Policy Implications Disability and Rehabilitation. Disability & Rehabilitation 2007:29(15): 1165 – 1175.
  • Bricout J, Gray D. Community receptivity: The ecology of disabled persons’ participation in the physical, political and social environments. Scandinavian Journal of Disability Research 2006:8(1): 1-21.
  • Gray DB, Hollingsworth HH, Stark SL, Morgan KA. Participation Survey/Mobility Psychometric Properties of a Measure of Participation for People with Mobility Impairments and Limitations. Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation 2006:87 (2): 189-197.
  • Stark SL, Edwards D, Hollingsworth HH, Gray DB. Validation of the Reintegration to Normal Living Index in a population of community-dwelling people with mobility limitations. Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation 2005: 86(2): 344-345.
  • Chaves ES, Boninger ML, Cooper R, Fitzgerald SG, Gray DB, Cooper RA. Assessing the Influence of Wheelchair Technology on Perception of Participation in Spinal Cord Injury. Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation 2004: (85):1854-1858.
  • Gray DB. Delivering AT in the Community through an Interdisciplinary Approach. In Craddock, G.M., McCormack, L.P., Reilly, R.B., & Knops, H.T. (11th), Proceedings of the 7th European Conference for the Advancement of Assistive Technology. Assistive Technology- Shaping the Future. 2003, 61-65. IOS Press: Burke, VA.
  • Gray DB, Gould M, Bickenbach JE. Environmental Barriers and Disability. Journal of Architectural and Planning Research 2003: 20(1): 29-37.
  • Gray DB, Morgan, KA, Hollingsworth, HH. Independent living and assistive technology: Work context. Rehabilitation Education. 2001: 15(4): 353-364.
  • Gray DB, Welch P, Hollingsworth, HH. Comparing perspectives of people with disabilities and professionals on the ICIDH-2 Beta-1. Journal of Disability Policy Studies 2000: 11(3):171-178.
  • Gray DB, Hendershot, GE. The ICIDH-2: Developments for a new era of outcomes research. Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation 2000:81(Suppl 2):S10-S14.
  • Gray DB. Developing Capacity for Disability Studies. Disability Studies Quarterly 1999: 19(1):16-18.
  • Morris, R., Lyon, G.R., Alexander, D., Gray, D.B., & Kavanagh, J. (l994). Proposed guidelines and criteria for the description of samples of learning disabled persons. Journal of Clinical and Experimental Neuropsychology 12: 107-111.
  • Gray DB. Disability and Rehabilitation from Policy to Program: A Personal Perspective. American Psychologist 1990: 45(6): 751 - 756.
  • Raventos JM, Kralemann H, Gray DB. Mortality risks of mentally retarded and mentally ill patients after a feeding gastrostomy. American Journal of Mental Deficiency 1984: 19(6):848–854.

Book Chapters and Other

  • Gray DB, Stark SL, Bricout JC, Morgan KA, Hollingsworth HH. Measures of Community Receptivity and Participation by People with Mobility Impairments. In G Andre (Ed.). Handicap and Environment, Institut Garches, Frison Roche, Paris, France, 2005.
  • Gray DB, Cook AM. Assistive technology – law and practice. In Albrecht, G.L, Jerome Bickenbach, David Mitchell, Walton Schalick and Sharon Synder (Associate Editors) Encyclopedia of Disability (5 Volumes) Sage Publications, Thousand Oaks, 2005. 128-134
  • Baum CM, Gray DB. The family and rehabilitation services: Minimizing the impact on personal relationships. In: McColl M, Bickenbach J, eds. Introduction to Disability. London: Saunders; 1998: 167 – 173.
  • Fougeyrollas P, Gray DB. ICIDH, handicap and environmental factors and Social change: The importance of technology. In: Gray DB, Quatrano LA, Lieberman ML. eds. Using, Designing and Assessing Assistive Technology. Baltimore: Brookes Publishing; 1998: 13 – 28.
  • Gray DB, Quatrano LA, Lieberman ML. eds. Designing and Using Assistive Technology: The Human Perspective. Baltimore: Brookes Publishing; 1998.
  • Gray DB, Hahn H. Achieving occupational goals: The social effects of stigma. In Christiansen and Baum (Eds.) Occupational Therapy: Enabling Function and Well-being. 2nd ed. Thorofare, NJ: SLACK Incorporated; 1997: 394-409.
  • Peckham H, Gray DB. Functional neuromuscular stimulation (FNS) Journal of Rehabilitation Research and Development. 1996; 33, No 2: ix-xi.
  • Gray DB, Thompson T. eds. Treatment of Destructive Behavior in Developmental Disabilities. Newbury Park, California: Sage Publications; 1994.
  • Lyon GR, Gray DB, Kavanagh JF, Krasnegor NA. eds. Better Understanding Learning Disabilities: New Views from Research and Their Implications for Evaluations and Public Policies. Baltimore: Brookes Publishing; 1993.
  • Kaiser AP, Gray DB. eds. Enhancing Children's Communication: Research Foundations for Intervention. Baltimore: Brookes Publishing; 1993.
  • Haseltine F, Cole S, Gray DB. eds. Reproductive Issues for Persons with Physical Disabilities. Baltimore: Brookes Publishing; 1993.
  • Gray DB, Graves WH, Cole TM. Federal Funding of Medical Rehabilitation Research: The National Center for Medical Rehabilitation Research and The National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research. In: Maloney FP, Gray RP. eds. Management for Rehabilitation Medicine II. Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation: State of the Art Reviews. 1993; 7, No. 2: 381 - 392.
  • Gray DB, Schimmel A. Future Directions for Research on Reproductive Issues for People with Physical Disabilities. In: Haseltine F, Cole S, Gray DB. eds. Reproductive Issues for Persons with Physical Disabilities. Baltimore: Brookes Publishing; 1993: 337 - 354.
  • Duane DD, Gray DB. eds. The Reading Brain: The Biological Basis of Dyslexia. Baltimore: York Press; 1991.
  • Gray DB: Introduction: National Institutes of Child Health and Human Development Funding for Research on Learning Disabilities 1980 - 1990. In: Duane DD, Gray DB: eds. The Reading Brain: The Biological Basis of Dyslexia. Baltimore: Baltimore: York Press; 1991: vi – xvi.
  • Dibble E, Gray DB. eds. Assessment of Behavior Problems in Persons with Mental Retardation Living in the Community. NIMH (ADMHA) and NICHD PHS DHHS Publication No. (ADM) 90-1642. Washington, D. C.: GPO Superintendent of Documents; 1990.
  • Patrias K, Gray DB. Treatment of Destructive Behaviors in Persons with Developmental Disabilities. National Library of Medicine, NIH, PHS DHHS Publication No. (CBM) 89-11. Washington, D. C.: GPO Superintendent of Documents; 1989.
  • Gray DB, Leclair R, Traub JE, Brummel SA, Maday DE, McDonough FA, Patton PR, Yonkler L. Access to Information Technology by Users with Disabilities: Initial Guidelines. Section 508 Rehabilitation Act. Washington, D. C.: General Services Administration; 1987.
  • Krasnegor NA, Gray DB, Thompson T. eds. Developmental Behavioral Pharmacology. New Jersey: Erlbaum; 1986.
  • Gray DB, Yaffe S. Prenatal Drugs and Learning Disabilities. In: Lewis, M. ed. Learning Disabilities and Prenatal Risk Chicago: University of Illinois Press; 1986: 3-18.
  • Gray DB, Kavanagh JF. eds. Dyslexia: Biological and Behavioral Measures. Baltimore: York Press; 1985.
  • Coates DL, Vietze PM, Gray DB. Methodological issues in studying children of disabled parents. In: Thurman KS. ed. Children of Handicapped Parents New York: Academic Press; 1984: 157 - 180.
  • Gray DB, Yaffe S. Prenatal Drugs. In: Brown CC. ed. Childhood Learning Disabilities and Prenatal Risk. New Jersey: Johnson & Johnson Baby Products Company; 1983: 44-49.
  • Gray DB, Evans C, Rocco F, Heddle BJ. Educational options for the developmentally disabled. In McCormack M, Sciorra LJ, Ming-Ling L, eds. Prevention of Mental Retardation and Other Developmental Disabilities. New York: Decker; 1980.
  • Gray DB. The effects of etiology, drug and visual stimuli on fixed-interval panel pushing in a population of Downs and non-Downs syndrome retarded males. Dissertation Abstracts International. 1975; XXXV, 12.


2012: Lucia Russell Briggs Distinguished Achievement Award Lawrence University
2010: The President Award, Missouri Rehabilitation Association - Eastern Chapter
2010: Distinguish Service Award, National Association of Rehabilitation Research and Training Centers (NARRTC)
2009: Washington University School of Medicine Distinguished Community Service Award
2001-2003: Honorary Professor in the Department of Occupational Therapy University of Queensland, Brisbane, Australia
1998: Fellow of the American Psychological Association
1997: American Public Health Disability Forum Award Distinguished Contribution
1993: NIH Director's Award
1993: Paralyzed Veteran's of America Career Achievement Award
1992: The National Advisory Board for Medical Rehabilitation Research Outstanding Skill and Leadership Award
1990: NICHD Equal Employment Opportunity Special Achievement Award
1990: Public Health Service Special Recognition Award
1990: Special Recognition Award from Howard University
1990: President’s Committee on Employment of People with Disabilities
1987: National Head Injury Foundation Outstanding Service Award
1986-1987: Presidential Appointment to Director, National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research
1985: Public Health Service Outstanding Handicapped Employee of the Year Award
1985-1995: Performance Ratings of Outstanding from NICHD
1979: Merit Award for Outstanding Service, Rochester State Hospital
1980: Rochester Social Adaptation Center Parent Group, Outstanding Service Award
1970-1974: Fellowship in Behavior Genetics, National Institute of Mental Health

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Gray, David B., PhD

Curriculum Vitae
Professor of Occupational Therapy and Neurology

Contact Information

Program in Occupational Therapy
Washington University
Disability and Community Participation Research Office (DACPRO)
5232 Oakland Ave.
St. Louis, MO 63108
Phone: 314-932-1026
Fax: 314-932-1022
RTC on Community Living/Projects/R6

Research Laboratory

Disability and Community Participation Research Laboratory

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