EPRC Staff Team

Deputy Director of Operations, EPRC;  Senior Research Specialist, Smoke-Free Homes Project: Lucja T. Bundy, MA, EdM  Ms. Bundy completed her degree in Psychological Counseling from Teachers College, Columbia University and has over 15 years of project management experience. She has worked on several large-scale research projects involving interventions and technology to improve the quality of care and quality of life of dementia patients in Special Care Units, and telemedicine for diabetes management. Ms. Bundy has worked at Emory University for the last eight years coordinating a skin cancer prevention project (Pool Cool), a glaucoma project (I-SIGHT: Interactive Study to Increase Glaucoma adHerence to Treatment), and on multiple projects with the Cancer Prevention Control and Research Network. Currently, Ms. Bundy serves as Deputy Director of Operations and project lead for the Emory Prevention Research Center's Smoke-Free Homes project. This is a NIH funded project to develop, evaluate, and disseminate a Brief Intervention to Create Smoke-Free Policies in Low-Income Households. lbundy@emory.edu

Associate Director for Research, Intervention Development Dissemination and Implementation: Sean N. Halpin, MA Mr. Halpin completed his degree in Developmental Psychology from Teachers College, Columbia University. He has over 10 years of project management and coordination experience including NIH funded Phase 3 clinical trials and R01 studies, and developmental mixed methods studies. He has worked in a variety of settings, including the Yale University Program on Aging; Atlanta-VA Geriatric Research, Education, and Clinical Center; and, most recently, at Emory University. At Emory University, Mr. Halpin works with the Emory Prevention Research Center and the Intervention Development, Dissemination, and Implementation (IDDI) core. The IDDI provides shared resources to members of the Winship Cancer Institute to access expertise in behavioral science research methods. In addition, Mr. Halpin has led studies related to his area of interest, non-pharmacological treatments for maintaining health into older age. His most recent publications appear in The Gerontologist, Gerontology and Geriatrics Education, Educational Gerontology, and Patient Education and Counseling. Sean.nathaniel.halpin@emory.edu

Evaluation Specialist: April Hermstad, MPH Ms. Hermstad received her Master of Public Health with a concentration in Health Education from Emory’s Rollins School of Public Health, and joined the EPRC in 2007. An Evaluation Specialist since 2011, Ms. Hermstad has conducted numerous mixed-methods process and outcome evaluations of health promotion programs throughout Georgia. Recent evaluation projects include developing multiple evaluation plans and a small qualitative project for Cobb Douglas Public Health’s CDC-funded Community Transformation Grant; an outcome evaluation of a mini-grants program that supported policy and environmental change strategies to improve healthy eating, physical activity, and prevent tobacco use in faith-based organizations; and multiple evaluations of colorectal cancer screening programs in south Georgia and statewide. Additionally, Ms. Hermstad has provided evaluation technical assistance to governmental and community-based organizations in south Georgia. From 2007-2011, Ms. Hermstad co-managed a number of EPRC core research projects that sought to understand and address the influence of physical and social environments on health behaviors. Her professional interests include designing and conducting evaluations of community-based health promotion programs, understanding the role of lifestyle factors in preventing and reversing chronic diseases, and improving community-level access to healthy foods. ahermst@emory.edu

Research Coordinator: Erin Lebow-Skelley, MPH. Ms. Lebow-Skelley earned her Master of Public Health degree in Health Behavior at the University of North Carolina’s Gillings School of Global Public Health. Before joining the EPRC in 2015, Ms. Lebow-Skelley worked on the Evaluation Team of the Prevention Research Centers Program at the CDC, where she and a team designed and implemented the evaluation of the Prevention Research Centers network. While in North Carolina, she worked on a variety chronic disease prevention projects, including a smoke-free multi-unit housing communication initiative with the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services and several local food systems projects with UNC’s Prevention Research Center. Ms. Lebow-Skelley also has a background in early childhood development, pre-and post-natal care, and home visiting. Her interests include program evaluation, dissemination and implementation research, and policy, systems, and environmental strategies to prevent chronic disease and improve health equity. erin.lebow-skelley@emory.edu

Research Associate: Shadé Owolabi Ms. Owolabi recently completed a Master of Science degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling at Penfield College, Mercer University. She joined the EPRC three years ago as a Research Interventionist for the NIH funded Smoke-Free Home's project. Since 2012, she has worked on multiple research and evaluation projects within the EPRC. Prior to joining the EPRC team, Ms. Owolabi trained in applied behavioral science and worked as a behavior data analyst at the Marcus Center. Her research interests include addiction and chronic disease health education, as well as the intersection between mental health and public health; her clinical interests include substance abuse, mental health disparities in low-income and minority communities, and risky health behaviors. shade.o.owolabi@emory.edu

Center Coordinator: Deborah Stephenson, EdM  Ms. Stephenson is responsible for overseeing operations, managing communications, and coordinating administration for the EPRC.  She has an extensive background in project management, communications, process improvement, training, and organizational change management.  Before coming to Emory Ms. Stephenson worked as Marketing and Operations Manager for a small business and spent 20 years working in Fortune 500 corporations providing consulting services in a wide variety of business functions.  She holds a Master of Education from the University of Georgia and a Project Management Professional Certification from The Project Management Institute, Inc. deborah.stephenson@emory.edu

Program coordinator: Betelihem Getachew, MPH  Ms. Getachew received her MPH degree from Emory’s Rollins School of Public health in 2012. After graduation, she worked with Rwanda Zambia HIV Research Group as a project coordinator. Her position with the RZHRG exposed her to international research, working as a liaison between the three countries, managing communication between research teams and stakeholders. In 2014, Beth joined the Behavioral Science and Health Department at Rollins, as a project coordinator for Project DECOY - a two year longitudinal mixed method study on tobacco product use among adolescents in Georgia. She oversees the general operation of the research and compliance with regulatory affairs. Ms. Getachew has an extensive background in research both local and international, in the areas of family planning, HIV/AIDS and most recently tobacco. She is interested in both infectious and chronic diseases and the socio contextual determinants of health.  She is also interested in program planning, evaluation research and implementation of scientific research based interventions. betelihem.getachew@emory.edu

Sr. Research Interviewer: Lakeia Culler. Ms. Culler serves as a Sr. Research Interviewer with Project ACTS II. She leads recruiting initiatives by hosting education sessions with the African American community on the importance of organ and tissue donation. Ms. Culler joined the EPRC team in 2012 and has worked on multiple research and evaluation projects within the EPRC. lakeia.culler@emory.edu

Sr. Research Interviewer: Deirdre Dixon. Ms. Dixon serves as a Sr. Research Interviewer with Project ACTS II. She is instrumental in recruiting participants into the study, and conducting educational sessions throughout metro-Atlanta. Ms. Dixon comes with extensive community-based research experience, as she spent several years as a part of the Emory University School of Medicine in Infectious Disease. deirdre.dixon@emory.edu

Sr. Research Interview Consultant: Cynthia Reid. Ms. Reid has served as a Sr. Research Interview Consultant for Project ACTS II since 2013, and is responsible for recruitment and facilitation of educational sessions, data collection and data entry. She has a long history in organ and tissue donation research, as she previously worked in the same capacity in Phase I of Project Acts. Ms. Reid remains active in the Emory research community. She also currently serves as a consultant for TEACH (HIV Prevention Research Project), and has previously worked on several federally-funded HIV prevention research projects including STARS, P4 for Women, and Ladies First. Creid22@emory.edu

Research Coordinator: Nakeva Redmond, MPH. Ms. Redmond is the Research Coordinator for Project ACTS II and the web-based WEb ACTs Project. Before joining the EPRC in 2015, Ms. Redmond served as a Research and Evaluation Fellow at the CDC, where she led several evaluation projects aiming to improve performance quality in public health laboratories across the country. She comes with background in prevention initiatives, including working with the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services’ statewide breast and cervical cancer prevention project and a community-based project aimed at increasing physical activity in African American men as a means to decrease cancer risk. Ms. Redmond earned her Master of Public Health degree in Health Behavior at the University of North Carolina’s Gillings School of Global Public Health, where she cultivated her interests in patient advocacy, healthcare quality improvement and health equity. nakeva.redmond@emory.edu

Public Health Program Associate: Shelby Rentmeester, MPH Ms. Rentmeester received her Master of Public Health degree from the Rollins School of Public Health at Emory University in 2016. She then joined the Department of Behavioral Sciences and Health Education staff as a public health program associate working with Dr. Kelli Komro’s research group. She helps to coordinate project outcome dissemination and publications for the Cherokee Nation Prevention Trial. Before coming to Emory, Ms. Rentmeester studied at the University of Minnesota – Twin Cities focusing on child psychology and the intersection between health behaviors and human development. Shelby.rentmeester@emory.edu

Research Associate: Paris Harper, MA Ms. Harper is an MPH candidate in the Rollins School of Public Health, Department of Behavioral Science and Health Education. As part of Dr. Komro's lab, she collaborated in the creation and editing of the Communities Mobilizing for Change in Alcohol (CMCA) community organizer's manual, as well as compiling data into graphs, and conducting literature search for Dr. Komro and Dr. Crawford. In addition to working in Dr. Komro’s lab, Paris also works with the Emory University Office of Health Promotion to address adolescent substance use and prevention on campus. Before coming to Rollins, Paris earned her Master of Arts in Anthropology form the University of Georgia. Paris.harper@emory.edu

Evaluation Director: Terrence Kominsky, PhD. Dr. Kominsky works for the Cherokee Nation Behavioral Health and works on externally funded grants and internal research projects that are expected to improve the quality of services provided by the Behavioral Health Department to the Cherokee Nation. Dr. Kominsky’s work focuses on understanding how the continuum of culture within a tribe can be used to improve therapeutic service delivery and how within-tribe discrimination may impact health. Dr. Kominsky received his PhD from Oklahoma State University in Lifespan Developmental Pyschology and continues to work on health promotion and prevention projects with Native American populations. Terrence-kominsky@cherokee.org

NIAAA-funded Postdoctoral Fellow: Brady Garrett, PhD Dr. Garrett is an enrolled citizen of the Oklahoma Cherokee Nation. He earned his PhD in counseling psychology from New Mexico State University and completed his clinical internship at the Southwest Consortium Doctoral Psychology Internship in Albuquerque, NM. He works on location in Tahlequah conducting research and engaging in clinical practice at Cherokee Nation Behavioral Health. Brady’s role in the Cherokee Nation Prevention Trial was as a supervisor for the CONNECT program as well as to gain experience in both research and grantsmanship by working closely with Dr. Kelli Komro and her team of prevention and implementation scientists. His research interests include American Indian health disparities across the lifespan, protective aspects of American Indian cultural identity, and the MMPI-2-RF in relation to American Indian cultural identity. Brady’s clinical interests include psychological assessment, clinical implementation of the MMPI-2-RF, brief psychotherapy, and evidenced-based treatment of anxiety disorders. Brady-garrett@cherokee.org

Community Intervention Supervisor: Dallas W. Pettigrew, MSW Mr. Pettigrew holds a Master of Social Work from the University of Oklahoma.  In the Cherokee Nation Prevention Trial, he supervised the Communities Mobilizing for Change on Alcohol (CMCA) intervention.  Pettigrew is now Community Faculty at the Anne and Henry Zarrow School of Social Work in Tulsa, OK.  His primary of interest is macro social work practice, empowering people and communities to solve their own problems, and giving parents tools to support their parenting skills. dallaspettigrew@yahoo.com