Lloyd Dunn was one of the "scholars with a social conscience" who founded the Kennedy Center in 1965. He was director of Peabody's Mental Retardation Research Training Program, the first doctoral program in the nation for training researchers in this field. He conceived of the Institute on Mental Retardation and Intellectual Development, which came to be known IMRID, and was its first director. The keystone institute of the Center, IMRID was the longest continuously funded program project and made major contributions to behavioral research in mental retardation.
Today, IMRID's mission — basic research on the fundamental processes of learning and memory — is carried out within the Center's Institute for Developmental Neuroscience and the Institute on Genetics and Developmental Pharmacology. The Kennedy Center continues to bring expertise in the biomedical and behavioral sciences to bear in understanding and preventing problems of development and learning.
Lloyd Dunn and his wife Leota collaborated on a number of assessment and instructional devices first published by the AGS Publishing in the 1950s and 60s: the Peabody Picture Vocabulary Test (PPVT), Peabody Individual Achievement Test, Peabody Language Development Kits, and Peabody Early Experience Kits.