LEEAD Scholar 2019-20 Cohort

Ebony Reddock, PhD, MPH

Dr. Ebony Reddock is a program evaluator with over 10 years of experience working with health and human services organizations to plan, implement, and improve their work.  Dr. Reddock completed her MPH and PhD training in Health Behavior and Health Education at the University of Michigan School of Public Health. She have extensive experience in community-based research and evaluation, with particular expertise and interest in participatory, qualitative, and arts-based research methods with community-based organizations. She is also an experienced trainer and instructor, having taught courses and workshops on Community-based Public Health, Health Disparities, Research Methods, Community Health Education and Diversity in Research. Dr. Reddock is a lifelong Michigan resident, having worked with a number of community-based organizations in Southeastern Michigan on program development, management and evaluation projects in areas ranging from higher education pipeline programs, poverty reduction, HIV/AIDS prevention and outreach, youth development and human service programs.

Jaymie Lorthridge, MSW, PhD

Dr. Jaymie Lorthridge is a Westat Senior Study Director with over 20 years of experience working on behalf of vulnerable communities. She transitioned to a research and evaluation career after spending several years as a uniformed patrol officer in Atlanta, Georgia, observing the social determinants that dictated citizens’ quality of life. For the past 15 years, her work has included evaluations of health and human service business processes and community-based programs aimed at improving supports and outcomes for residents, families, youth, and children exposed to violence and at risk of experiencing adverse and disparate health, mental health, and educational outcomes. In collaboration with multidisciplinary teams and through partnerships with government representatives and community stakeholders, she has designed and implemented studies that support data-driven decision making and inform program implementation and policy improvements. She designs data collection tools and uses quantitative and qualitative methods to assess achievement of project objectives.

Jennifer García, PhD, MPH

Dr. Jennifer García is a public health researcher with expertise on the social determinants of health, community organizing as a public health strategy, and community-based participatory research. As a Senior Research Associate at the Psychology Applied Research Center at Loyola Marymount University, she works closely with grassroots community-based organizations on research and evaluation projects that address the root causes of childhood obesity, mental health disparities, and homelessness. She also mentors undergraduate students through the Engaged Learning and McNair Scholars programs at LMU. Her research focuses on the contextual factors that create urban inequality and contribute to health inequity. Specifically, her areas of interest include Critical Race Theory, residential segregation, and stress and resilience. Dr. García holds a PhD in Public Health from the University of California, Los Angeles, a Master of Public Health from the University of Michigan, and a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from San Diego State University.

Jennifer Torres, PhD

Dr. Jennifer Torres is a Research Scientist at Michigan Public Health Institute (MPHI) in the Center for Healthy Communities. Her current work at MPHI focuses on research, evaluation, and quality improvement in the areas of maternal child health and Native health and wellness. Her peer-reviewed publications cover primarily the topics of gender studies, reproductive and sexual health, and medical sociology. Jennifer received her BS in Psychology from Michigan State University in 2002 and her PhD in Sociology from University of Michigan in 2014. She lives in Howell, MI with her husband and two sons, ages 9 and 14.

Jochebed G. Gayles, PhD

Dr. Jochebed G. Gayles’ programmatic line of research focuses on adolescent well-being in cultural, social and developmental contexts. Dr. Gayles’ substantive research interests have been guided by ecological, social, and holistic developmental science theories for human development. Dr. Gayles’ interest in the dynamic multifaceted and multileveled nature of adolescents and their environments is evident in Dr. Gayles’ theoretical and methodological approaches to studying well-being. This informs Dr. Gayles’ evaluation and translation work, which includes investigating and evaluating evidence-based strategies that target adolescent health and well-being, via applying basic and developmental science and public health models to inform prevention efforts. In addition, Dr. Gayles’ developing evaluation and translation work focuses on the equitable evaluation of policies, practices and programs and the use of equitable policy decision-making spaces, with particular attention to understanding why and for whom programs do not work and how effective strategies can better reach and be tailored to serve diverse populations.

Kimberly Harris, MBA, PhD

Dr. Kimberly Harris is a Senior Research Associate at ETR Services and a former adjunct professor of graduate statistics and research methods at North Carolina Agricultural and Technological State University. Dr. Harris has over a decade of experience working with adult learners in the Workforce Development space. She has conducted extensive career and technical education (CTE) research and served as an adult education professional. 
Dr. Harris has conducted research at the University of California, Berkeley’s Lawrence Hall of Science, as part of the Science Learning Activation Lab. She also served as a program evaluator for the Initiative to Maximize Student Development (IMSD) Undergraduate Scholars and Graduate Fellows program, a student support program in the Biological and Behavioral Sciences departments at UC Berkeley. 
Currently, Dr. Harris serves as an evaluator and researcher on social justice projects that include food justice, workforce development in STEM, and housing insecurity.

L. Brooke Keliikoa, DrPH

Dr. L. Brooke Keliikoa is an Assistant Specialist in the Office of Public Health Studies at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa. As a member of the Healthy Hawai‘i Initiative Evaluation Team, her faculty position entails evaluating various chronic disease prevention and health promotion efforts. Dr. Keliikoa’s research interests include cross-sector collaboration and built environment approaches for physical activity. She has a Doctor of Public Health degree from the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa and a BA in Psychology from Lewis & Clark College. Dr. Keliikoa was born and raised in Honolulu, Hawai‘i.

Nitya Venkateswaran, PhD

Dr. Nitya Venkateswaran is a senior research associate in the Center for Evaluation and Education Equity at RTI International. Dr. Venkateswaran has extensive experience researching the implementation of K-12 and post-secondary educational initiatives aimed to improve youth outcomes for wide range of local, federal, and private foundation clients using qualitative and quantitative methods. She aims address structural inequities that systematically marginalize groups across dimensions of race, class, and gender and is committed to a participatory program evaluation process that elevates stakeholders and ensures they play a meaningful role. Dr. Venkateswaran received her PhD in Educational Leadership and Policy Studies at the University of Washington. She has specific expertise researching central office and school leader practices that support instructional improvement, teacher learning and professional development, and authentic community/family engagement.  Before RTI, she worked in various youth-serving nonprofits in diverse communities of color.

Rachel Powell, PhD, MPH

Dr. Rachel Powell currently serves as a Senior Program Officer at CDC Foundation with a diverse portfolio including global and domestic work. In addition, she is an adjunct professor at Georgia State University and has served as an independent consultant with non-profit and universities. Previously, Dr. Powell worked on emergency response efforts for the hurricane response in Puerto Rico and US Virgin Island; two Zika response projects in Puerto Rico, and Ebola response in the U.S. She was an ORISE fellow at CDC’s Division of Nutrition, Physical Activity & Obesity serving as the Operations Manager for Let’s Move Child Care, a sub-section of the First Lady Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move campaign.
Dr. Powell’s interests include media literacy, targeted unhealthy food marketing, maternal and child health (women’s health; breastfeeding; childhood obesity in schools, communities, and early care and education), health communication (risk communication; campaigns; social marketing; formative research), and qualitative research.

Rosemary Nabaweesi, DrPH

Dr. Rosemary Nabaweesi, has expertise in health services research, focusing on implementation research and childhood trauma. Dr. Nabaweesi’s research explores innovative methodologies for observation of home and car passenger safety practices, understanding psychosocial factors that contribute to disparate uptake of infant safe sleep recommendations by vulnerable populations. Her research focuses on childhood injury prevention and health disparities reduction for rural and minority populations. She uses implementation science tools and academic-community partnerships to improve rural minority children’s health status. She also studies the impact of policies (recommendations) on clinical provider practices and child caregivers.
For her KL2 research project she conducted a developmental formative evaluation within a local African American community organization to determine barriers faced by and facilitators encountered by community advisors (when advising mothers) and expectant mothers when participating in or seeking safe sleep interventions. She used focus groups and key informant interviews.

Sandy-Asari E. Hogan, DrPH, MPH

Dr. Sandy-Asari E. Hogan recently joined Booz Allen Hamilton as an Evaluator. Prior to this, Dr. Hogan worked as a PPEO (ORISE) Evaluation Fellow in the CDC National Center for Injury Prevention and Control (NCIPC) on the Division of Analysis, Research and Practice Integration (DARPI) team – providing evaluation related technical assistance and working on various prescription drug/opioid-related (PDO) projects. Previously, Dr. Hogan served as the Maternal & Child Health Director for the Dallas & Fort Worth March of Dimes and, as a policy analyst in the Department of Government Relations at Parkland Health & Hospital System in Dallas, Texas. Sandy is a servant leader whose interests focus on efforts that support the elimination of health inequities and continues to contribute to the field of public health through the examination of various determinants of health and the application of translational research to improve health outcomes, promote social justice, and achieve health equity.

Tamara Cadet, PhD, LICSW, MPH

Dr. Tamara Cadet is an Associate Professor at Simmons University School of Social Work. She brings more than 25 years of practice experience to her research and teaching working in the fields of substance abuse, adoption, mental health, health care, schools, and oncology with children, adults, families, and older adults, as both a social worker and as a community organizer. She has a motto, that if she is not thinking about the underserved or under-represented client or patient, then she has forgotten the most important part of conducting research. It is this commitment to social justice that permeates every aspect of her research. Her ultimate objective is to advance efforts to develop health promotion interventions for underserved and underrepresented older adults in order to contribute to reducing oncology-related disparities. She particularly enjoys translating her research to practice for community-based organizations where she serves and preparing social workers for effective evidence-based practice.

Tamarah Moss, PhD, MPH, MSW

Dr. Tamarah Moss is currently an assistant professor with the Graduate School of Social Work and Social Research at Bryn Mawr College. Dr. Moss’ main research interests are threefold: 1) evaluation in community practice and health service delivery; 2) health equity among adolescents, LGBTQ+ and HIV positive communities; and 3) international social work and social work education. She is currently the primary investigator for evaluation on a demonstration project designed to advance hospital services for youth who have been sex trafficked, and those at risk in Washington, DC. Children’s National Health System is the prime recipient for this work, funded by the Office of Victims of Crimes, Department of Justice. Dr. Moss volunteers in leadership positions with national and international organizations, including the American Evaluation Association, Association of Caribbean Social Work Educators, and Council on Social Work Education. Dr. Moss is honored to be a part of the 2019-2020 cohort of Leaders in Equitable Evaluation and Diversity (LEEAD) Scholars Program, emphasizing equitable and culturally responsive evaluation.

Tanisha Tate Woodson, PhD

Dr. Tanisha Tate Woodson has more than 13 years of experience developing, implementing and managing collaborative projects on a variety of research topics including early childhood education, health care quality, behavioral health and community development. Currently, she is the Project Director of a statewide needs assessment focused on understanding the reach and quality of early childhood education services for children ages birth to five in the state of Oregon. Over the course of her research career, she has used a variety of research methods and approaches and incorporated a community-based participatory research and equity evaluation lens for studying the most vulnerable populations. 
Dr. Woodson has authored peer-reviewed articles, presented her research at national conferences and taught college courses in research methods, program evaluation, and community-based research approaches. She earned her masters degree in Health Management and Policy from the University of Michigan, and earned her doctorate in Social Welfare from Case Western Reserve University.

Tiberio Garza, PhD

Dr. Tiberio Garza is an Assistant Professor of Educational Psychology and Higher Education at the University of Nevada Las Vegas (UNLV) and Associate Director for UNLV’s Center of Research, Evaluation, and Assessment (CREA). His interest is the application of advanced statistical analysis and culturally relevant evaluation research and methods. In his position, he works with community, school, and university advocates for the betterment of young students’ lives and motivating them to pursue higher education. He is passionate about utilizing evaluation and statistics for helping young people, regardless of language and culture barriers, become resilient and succeed in their life and educational pursuits.

Meet More LEEADers

Every Leaders in Equitable Evaluation and Diversity (LEEAD) cohort is composed of Scholars from a variety of backgrounds who represent multiple interests, each bringing unique perspectives creating a robust community. LEEADers are dedicated to moving the field of evaluation toward social justice through culturally responsive and equitable evaluation (CREE).

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