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Associate Director, Gaurav Dave, MD, DrPH, MPH

Gaurav Dave, M.D., DrPH, MPH

Gaurav Dave, M.D., DrPH, MPH

Associate Director

Gaurav Dave is a Research Associate Professor in the School of Medicine and the Associate Director of the Center for Health Equity Research at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (UNC). Dave is an expert in the field of formative and summative evaluation research, specializing in evaluating multi-level, complex initiatives, programs and interventions. He has over 15 years of clinical and public health practice and evaluation experience. His area of research focuses primarily on hypertension and chronic diseases, integrating systems thinking in evaluation research. He is the Director of Evaluation of the NIH-funded North Carolina Translational and Clinical Sciences Institute (TraCS) at UNC, which aims at to accelerate clinical and translational research from health science to discovery to dissemination to patients and communities. Dave co-directs the Systems Science and Evaluation Lab at UNC to foster the integration systems thinking and evaluation in biomedical, clinical and public health research. He serves as the Evaluation chair for HRSA’s Southeast Regional Genetics Network at Emory University to improve health equity and health outcomes in individuals with genetic conditions, reduce morbidity and mortality caused by genetic conditions.

As the principal evaluator and investigator, Dave has worked on various federally and foundation-funded projects all over the U.S., including the Newborn Screening and Sickle Cell Disease Program, Heart Matters and Community Initiative to Eliminate Stroke. Dave has a medical degree from the University of Pune, India and worked as an emergency room physician in Mumbai, before coming to the U.S. in 2004. He attended UNC Greensboro and completed a Masters and a Doctorate in Public Health in 2006 and 2011 respectively, with a concentration in public health, community-based prevention research and evaluation. Dave’s research interests include evaluation, systems science, and methods research to reduce disparities associated with chronic diseases and hypertension.

Karar Zunaid Ahsan

Karar Zunaid Ahsan, Ph.D., MIPH

(919) 360-5462

Karar Zunaid Ahsan, Ph.D., MIPH

Postdoctoral Research Associate

Karar “Zunaid” Ahsan has worked in the fields of monitoring and evaluation (M&E) and research in the health sector for over 15 years. Most recently he worked at MEASURE Evaluation at UNC, where he was Senior Research Associate and served as the M&E Advisor to the Program Management and Monitoring Unit (PMMU) of the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare in Bangladesh. Previously, he worked for the World Bank’s South Asia Health, Nutrition and Population Sector and the International Centre for Diarrhoeal Disease Research, Bangladesh (icddr,b) where he was involved in developing knowledge products and strategic analytical tasks on demographic and epidemiological transitions, health equity and health systems strengthening. He has authored more than 40 technical reports/book chapters and had 16 articles published in peer-reviewed journals. He has also presented in various international symposiums and conferences on issues related to policy and programs for health systems strengthening, monitoring and evaluation, and epidemiological and demographic transitions. He graduated in Applied Statistics from the University of Dhaka and earned a Master of International Public Health from the University of Sydney. He recently earned his Ph.D. from the Department of Maternal and Child Health in the Gillings School of Global Public Health at UNC.

Rakiah Anderson

Rakiah Anderson, MPH

(984) 209-8471

Rakiah Anderson, MPH

Evaluation Project Coordinator

Rakiah Anderson, MPH, is an Evaluation Project Coordinator on the Abacus team in UNC’s Center for Health Equity Research. She earned her MPH (2020) in Health Behavior from the UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health and trained in Culturally Responsive Evaluation with support from the American Evaluation Association GEDI Scholarship.

Anderson’s career commitment is to use culturally responsive research and evaluation approaches to advance equity and improve health outcomes.

Sarah Asuquo

Sarah Asuquo, MBBCh, MPH

Sarah Asuquo, MBBCh, MPH

Evaluation Research Assistant

Sarah Asuquo, MBBCh, MPH is an Evaluation Research Assistant at the UNC Center for Health Equity Research and Abacus, where she works with the Tracking and Evaluation Team for the Rapid Acceleration of Diagnostics-Underserved Populations (RADx-UP) program and the RADx-UP Coordination and Data Collection Center (CDCC). She earned her MPH in Health Behavior at the UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health; before her MPH work, she was a practicing physician in Nigeria. As an MPH student, Asuquo worked with the North Carolina State Trauma Advisory Council (NC STAC) to develop clinical practice guidelines and an evaluation plan to reduce unnecessary CT scan imaging of pediatric trauma patients in health facilities in North Carolina. Her research interests include program evaluation, healthcare implementation science, healthcare access, mental health and health disparities.

Tara Carr

Tara Carr, MPH

Tara Carr, MPH

Research Program Manager

Tara Carr is a Research Program Manager of the Rapid Acceleration of Diagnostics, Underserved Populations (RADx-UP) program with the UNC Center for Health Equity Research. She earned her MPH and is currently a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Nutrition in the UNC Gillings School of Public Health. She was a Graduate Research Assistant with the Children’s Healthy Weight Research Group at the UNC Center for Health Promotion and Disease Prevention, working on evaluation for federally-funded, multi-level intervention studies in the early care and education setting.

As a 2021 HHS Early Care and Education Scholar, Carr’s dissertation research uses mixed methods to better understand predictors of childcare providers’ feeding styles, beliefs and practices, which have been implicated in the development of childhood obesity. As a doctoral student, she was also a member of the Evaluation Team for the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation-funded 100 Million Healthier Lives Campaign – Spreading Community Accelerators through Learning and Evaluation (SCALE) 2.0 initiative. Her research interests include community-based participatory research and evaluation of complex interventions to address health and well-being disparities

Lia Garman, MPH

Lia Garman, MPH

Evaluation Research Assistant

Lia Garman serves as an Evaluation Research Assistant for the RADx-UP (Rapid Acceleration of Diagnostics – Underserved Populations) program at CHER, as well as on the Abacus Evaluation Team. She recently completed her MPH at UNC in the Department of Maternal and Child Health, where she provided research and evaluation support to the Clinical Scholars and ACOG leadership development programs, and worked to advance health equity in Title X service provision through the Family Planning National Training Center. Her previous roles involved reproductive health research, provider training and advocacy. She received her BA from UNC in Anthropology.

Jason Gonzalez-Martinez

Jason Gonzalez-Martinez

Jason Gonzalez-Martinez

Administrative Support Associate

Jason Gonzalez-Martinez serves as an Administrative Support Associate for the Abacus Evaluation Team at the UNC Center for Health Equity Research. A Miami native, he graduated from Florida International University in 2016 with a B.A. in Interdisciplinary Studies. He brings years of administrative experience from his previous role as a Program Coordinator where he worked with faculty, staff and students.

Jade Hollars

(919) 428-4350

Jade Hollars

Graduate Research Assistant

Jade Hollars is a MPH candidate in the Maternal, Child and Family Health concentration at UNC-Chapel Hill. Her interest areas surround health advocacy, family planning, and fertility support. She is passionate for improving community outreach and education while addressing gaps between programs and community involvement, especially within rural and underserved communities and populations.

Jade’s background is in biology where she participated in 4 years of research at Western Carolina University focusing on the regenerative effects of keratin on human embryonic kidney cells exposed to hypoxic environments which mimicked the environment of the heart following cardiomyopathy. Her goal is to integrate these physical science skills into her public health research in the improvement of the health and well-being of mothers and families.

Allyson Kelley

Allyson Kelley, DrPH, MPH, CHES

(919) 265-7549

Allyson Kelley, DrPH, MPH, CHES

Consultant

Allyson Kelley is a community health scientist and the founder of Allyson Kelley & Associates PLLC. She leads a multidisciplinary team of associates and together they work to evaluate programs that result in opportunities for community healing and transformation.

Since 2005, Kelley has worked with tribes and organizations as a research partner, public health consultant, evaluator, methodologist, epidemiologist, mentor, author and educator. Her research interests include building community capacity to address the cultural, social and environmental factors that contribute to differences in health outcomes among underserved populations in the United States.

Kelley earned her master’s degree in Public Health Practice from the University of Alaska Anchorage and her doctorate in Public Health from UNC Greensboro. Her first book, Evaluation in Rural Communities (Routledge, 2018) has been recognized as a practical, how-to guide for evaluation throughout the US. Kelley’s second book, Public Health Evaluation and the Social Determinants of Health (Routledge, 2020) provides insight into evaluation methods that build health equity.

Kelley loves teaching the next generation of public health workers and is an associate professor at UNC Greensboro. She lives in the central Oregon mountains and loves the outdoors and unplanned adventures.

Lisa Marie Krinner

Lisa Maria Krinner, Ph.D., M.Sc.

Lisa Maria Krinner, Ph.D., M.Sc.

Research Program Manager

Lisa Maria Krinner earned her Ph.D. in the Department of Public Health Sciences at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. Her research focuses on childhood adversity and other psychological traumas, and successful coping strategies for managing stress and build resilience. She has also conducted research on health behaviors related to chronic disease self-care management, physical activity and mental health.

Marlena Kuhn

Marlena Kuhn, MPH

Marlena Kuhn, MPH

Evaluation Research Assistant - Data

Marlena Kuhn is an Evaluation Research Assistant within the UNC Center for Health Equity Research for the Rapid Acceleration of Diagnostics-Underserved Populations (RADx-UP) program. She earned her MPH from the UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health in 2021 and her B.S. in Neuroscience from Trinity University in 2019. Her interests revolve around leveraging data analytics techniques to support projects promoting health equity.

Carmen D. Linarte

Carmen D. Linarte, MPH

Carmen D. Linarte, MPH

Evaluation Research Assistant

Carmen D. Linarte, MPH, is an Evaluation Research Assistant in the School of Medicine at the Center for Health Equity Research and Abacus (a program evaluation and research consultancy) at UNC Chapel Hill. She earned her MPH from Florida International University, with a focus in Health Promotion and Disease Prevention. Linartes’ projects have been in Miami-Dade County, and the greater South Florida area. With over 10 years of extensive experience working in higher education research, Linarte has established a strong community based participatory research (CBPR) interest.

Her specialties include a strong background in community health program initiative planning and implementation, patient recruitment and retention in a variety of settings, with proficient knowledge of clinical research practices and protocols. She has collaborated with the development of a Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Training for community health workers, facilitator guide, and been involved with three different NIH-funded CBPR projects at the University of Miami.

She is passionate in being involved with innovative health initiative programs to ensure positive community impact and will continue to serve and advocate for communities.

Valerie Lucas

Valerie Lucas

(919) 727-8278

Valerie Lucas

Evaluation Research Assistant

Valerie Lucas is an Evaluation Research Assistant at CHER and Abacus where she primarily works on the RADx-UP (Rapid Acceleration of Diagnostics, Under-served Populations) program. She is a recent graduate of UNC with a B.S. in Economics and a B.A. in Global Public Health. As an undergraduate, Lucas provided monitoring, evaluation and research support to Carolina for Kibera as a Peacock Fellow. She also successfully defended an anthropological thesis on the impact of economic inequality on social and mental health among community health volunteers on Kibera, an informal settlement on the outskirts of Nairobi. Lucas has volunteered with Community Empowerment Fund as a Community Engagement Coordinator and with Durham Volunteer Doulas as a postpartum doula.

Jabari Myles

Jabari Myles, M.S.

(919) 402-7935

Jabari Myles, M.S.

Statistician

Jabari Myles serves as a Statistician on the Evaluation Team on the Say Yes! COVID Test grant for the UNC Center for Health Equity Research. Previously, he has consulted across a number of industries, including pharmaceutics, transportation, electrical engineering and finance. He earned his Masters of Science in Analytics in 2018 from NC State University.

Cheryl Noble

Cheryl C. Noble, MSPH, MSW

Cheryl C. Noble, MSPH, MSW

Senior Evaluation Consultant

Cheryl Noble, MSW MSPH is an evaluation consultant with expertise in leadership development, health equity and organizational development. She is a Senior Evaluation Consultant with Abacus, an evaluation consultancy group in UNC-Chapel Hill’s School of Medicine. She has experience working with programs focused on leadership development, health equity and social service provision in the academic, international non-profit, health care, government and public health sectors.

Noble has provided evaluation services for multiple programs, including the NIH Rapid Acceleration of Diagnostics-Underserved Populations (RADx-UP) project, Clinical Scholars Leadership Institute, Food Systems Leadership Institute, the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists Leadership Institute, and the Maternal and Child Health Public Health Leadership Institute. She regularly collaborates with academic, philanthropic, non-profit and public health partners to develop comprehensive evaluation approaches measuring program outcomes and impacts. After 10 years of experience in evaluation and 15 years of experience in the human service industry, she has expertise in a variety of evaluation methods, focusing on mix-methods approaches, qualitative analysis, social network analysis, and Concept Mapping, among others. She earned her B.S. in International Relations from Bethel University and her MSW and MSPH from UNC-Chapel Hill.

Abisola Osinuga, Ph.D., MPH

(319) 512-6701

Abisola Osinuga, Ph.D., MPH

Associate Evaluator

Abisola Osinuga is an Associate Evaluator of the Rapid Acceleration of Diagnostics, Underserved Populations (RADx-UP) program at the UNC Center for Health Equity Research. She earned her Ph.D. in Occupational and Environmental Health from the University of Iowa. Her research is focused on addressing gender inequalities and maternal health disparities by assessing how the physical, social and environmental conditions of unpaid domestic work impacts women’s health. While in graduate school, Osinuga worked at the Iowa Public Policy Center as a research evaluation intern, collaborating with the Health Policy team by evaluating the impact of health policy initiatives on the cost of, access to, and use of, health care services and systems in the state of Iowa. She is experienced at designing, implementing and evaluating research programs, using behavioral theories and psychometric methodologies to develop surveys, coordinating research projects at home and abroad, and applying exposures assessment tools/methods in uncharted work settings.

Tahna Patel

Tanha Patel, MPH

Tanha Patel, MPH

Associate Director of Evaluation

Tanha Patel is a Program Evaluator and public health professional who partners with executive leadership to implement innovative solutions that improves the health of individuals and the public. Patel leverages her experiences and skills to help government, non-profit and foundation-funded public health programs become more strategic and effective so that they can empower people to leave their own positive impact on their communities.

Patel believes in building internal capacity among program leaders and staff to understand what about their programs is working, how to continuously improve and what impact they are having. She has been consistently recognized as an emerging leader. Patel is currently serving as an chair for the American Evaluation Association’s Translational Research Evaluation Special Interest Group and has co-chaired a working group that identified key opportunities to strengthen clinical and translational science research evaluation. She has also co-authored several publications sharing evaluation methods and findings of evaluation studies.

Patel is well positioned to envision emerging trends and opportunities to influence the future of health, health care and health equity. Her experience working with healthcare systems, government initiatives across the translational spectrum, and foundation supported community-based initiatives, allows her to bring a unique perspective to any team looking to develop innovative ideas to shift systems and culture.

Karla Rascon-Garcia

Karla Rascon-Garcia

Karla Rascon-Garcia

Assistant Data Manager

Karla Rascon-Garcia is working on her Ph.D. in Epidemiology at the University of California, Davis. She joined CHER in 2021, fusing her quantitative skills with her passion for alleviating public health burdens among the most disadvantaged. Her background started with interests in food security through animal health. Her humanitarian zeal has led her to volunteer in countries including Uganda, Mozambique and South Africa. Whether milking cows or performing network analyses, a servant posture and stewardship of humility is central to her academic and humanitarian pursuits. Though trained in quantitative methods, she remains empathetically rooted to impact the lives behind the numbers. People are her motivation, and her love for coding and data science is the avenue through which she can contribute to alleviating health disparities, locally and internationally.

Michelle Song

Michelle Song, MSPH

(509) 990-4198

Michelle Song, MSPH

Data Analytics Team Lead

Michelle Song leads the Data Analytics team in Abacus Evaluation and is a Data Manager with the UNC Center for Health Equity Research (CHER). Before coming to UNC-Chapel Hill, Song was a Technical Advisor with the Data Science, Impact, and Learning team at Jhpiego, an affiliate of Johns Hopkins University and a leading global health organization. She has over 10 years of experience in data systems and use across domestic and international health systems and public health programs to improve health outcomes. She has designed and implemented economic and program evaluations for health systems, advocacy strategies and improvement of internal operations. Song earned her MSPH from Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and executive education Certificates in Business Communication and Management Development from the Johns Hopkins Carey Business School. Her health and non-health sector experience create a unique perspective from which to understand complex systems, how to make data work for the people who collect and manage it, and how to communicate clear messages data can contain. Her current work focuses on bringing data analytics and visualization to research and evaluation that is furthering the goal of improving health outcomes and equity.

Madison R. Walker

(317) 750-7784

Madison R. Walker

Evaluation Research Assistant - Data

Madison is a current Master of Public Health (MPH) student in the department of Health Behavior at UNC. She graduated from Indiana University in 2017 with a Bachelor of Science in Psychology. Afterward, she worked in program evaluation for a community-based behavioral health center. Now, Madison works as an Evaluation Research Assistant for RADx-UP, an NIH-funded program aimed to understand the factors associated with COVID-19-related health disparities and reduce those disparities among underserved and vulnerable populations, and with the Abacus Evaluation Team. Madison’s research interests include program evaluation, implementation science, mental health, and health disparities research.

Miranda Rain Wenhold

Miranda Rain Wenhold, MSEd

Miranda Rain Wenhold, MSEd

Evaluation Project Coordinator

Miranda Rain Wenhold is an Evaluation Project Coordinator with the Abacus Evaluation team in UNC’s Center for Health Equity Research. Wenhold also leads program development for the University of Pennsylvania’s Project for Mental Health and Optimal Development.

Wenhold earned her M.S.Ed. in School and Mental Health Counseling from the University of Pennsylvania and is a certified Pennsylvania School Counselor (K-12) and Mental Health Counselor. She has also served as Research Project Manager for various grant-funded initiatives at UNC and the University of Pennsylvania.

Wenhold’s foremost areas of interest are development psychology, public policy, mental health, education and criminal justice reform.

 

Mary Wolfe

Mary Wolfe, Ph.D.

Mary Wolfe, Ph.D.

Senior Research Scientist

Mary Wolfe, Ph.D., is a Senior Research Scientist in the UNC Center for Health Equity Research. She earned her Ph.D. in City & Regional Planning from UNC-Chapel Hill, where she investigated transportation access to health care as well as innovative solutions to transportation barriers to care.

Before coming to UNC-Chapel Hill, Wolfe was a Fulbright scholar at the Netherlands Institute for Health Services Research. Her research focuses on connections between the built environment and health to understand disparities in health care access and health outcomes.

Juan Yanguela

(984) 369-4886

Juan Yanguela

Graduate Research Assistant

Juan Yanguela serves as a Graduate Research Assistant for the University of North Carolina (UNC) Center for Health Equity Research. He is a PhD candidate in the Department of Health Policy and Management at UNC.  He earned a BSc in Biomedical Sciences from the University of Manchester (UK) in 2017 and an MSc in Evidence-Based Policy from Oxford University in 2018. He has previously worked for the English National Health Service (NHS) and as a healthcare consultant in the private sector. Broadly, his research interests include the use of digital and data-driven technologies to integrate health and social care and the development of innovative strategies to address the social determinants of health.

Jaimee Zeyzu

Jaimee Zeyzus, M.A.

Jaimee Zeyzus, M.A.

Evaluation Project Coordinator

Jaimee Zeyzus serves as an Evaluation Project Coordinator for the Abacus Evaluation Team at the UNC Center for Health Equity Research. She transitioned to the School of Social Medicine from the School of Nursing, where she operated as a Project Manager. She earned her M.A. in Forensic Psychology from the University of Denver and worked as a clinician specializing in the treatment and evaluation of forensic populations.  She also has 12 years of experience working in law enforcement, most recently as a Special Agent with the NCSBI conducting criminal investigations.