October 28-31, 2012
Keynote Speaker - Joan Borysenko, Ph.D.
Wayne Allen, B.A., Program Manager, Wellness Pointe, Longview, Texas
Wayne Allen is a Program Manager for the Wellness Pointe where he administers HIV education, prevention and testing to High risk heterosexual men. He has been working in the field of HIV/AIDS over 8 years. His most successful area of expertise has been working with youth and college age populations. He feels that being a former college athlete has attributed much to the success of the program.
Sharita Ambrose, M.P.H., Training Specialist, Cardea, Austin, Texas
Sharita Ambrose is a training specialist who delights in facilitation, interaction, and learning new things from those she trains. She received her undergraduate degree in Health Administration at Texas Southern University and her Master’s Degree in Public Health from A.T. Still University. She has worked in many aspects of the field of HIV/STD prevention which includes working with youth, high risk populations, and minority populations. In her eight years of service in the public health field she has strived to meet the challenges she faces in helping people to choose healthier choices to decrease risk factors for STDs and HIV/AIDS.
Nancy Amodei, Ph.D., Clinical Professor, Division of Community Pediatrics, University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, San Antonio, Texas
Nancy Amodei is a licensed clinical psychologist who, as part of a multidisciplinary team, provided clinical services to South Texas minority women, children and families infected and affected by HIV for approximately nine years. She currently serves as the Evaluator for Project HEART, a Special Project of National Significance funded by the Health and Human Services Administration (HRSA).
Kevin Anderson, Community Outreach and Education Coordinator, AIDS Foundation Houston, Houston, Texas
Originally from California, Kevin Anderson has lived in Houston for 13 years. In 2006, Kevin founded Brother2Brother LIVE and Brother2Brother Book Club, a male focused discussion group that gathers to discuss issues that a pertinent within the community. After many years of discussion and hearing common needs from the community Kevin founded heART&SOUL in February 2009, a non-discriminatory space that focuses on expression and the arts such as spoken word, dance, singing and literary. Over a two year span Kevin experienced artist expression personal stories of stigma, discrimination and abuse to name a few and then launch The T.R.U.T.H. Project on June 24, 2011 as a means to address factors and issues that are directly connected to the GLBT community and society that are often not spoken of. Understanding the need to address HIV/AIDS In December 2011, Kevin was able to mobilize over 700 individuals to witness The T.R.U.T.H. Project and have conversation around HIV Awareness in an OUT OF THE BOX arts centered experience. Healing and mobilization has been his focus for a community that often remains unheard and unseen.
Teri S. Anderson, MT (ASCP), Associate Clinical Training Coordinator, Denver STD/HIV Prevention Training Center, Denver, Colorado
Teri Anderson is the Associate Clinical Training Coordinator for the Denver Prevention Training Center (PTC). She graduated from the University of Colorado Denver with a bachelor of science in medical technology in 1981. Her employment at Denver Public Health began in 1981 as a stat laboratorian, clinician and research associate in the STD Clinic. In 1988, she assumed the role of the Clinical Coordinator for the Denver PTC and directed the clinical training program for eight years. During these years, Teri was an instrumental part of the formation of a national PTC network and co-chaired the new network’s Evaluation and Curriculum Committees. In 1996, she assumed an associate role with the PTC to raise her children. In her current role as Associate Coordinator, she coordinates clinical courses, precepts students in the clinic and presents at many conferences and trainings.
Olusanya Olufunto Anuoluwa, Texas A&M University Health Science Center, School of Rural Public Health, Department of Epidemiology, College Station, Texas
Sonia Arbona, Ph.D., Medical Geographer, Department of State Health Services, Austin, Texas
Sonia Arbona is a medical geographer with the DSHS TB/HIV/STD Unit's Information and Projects Group. She uses geographical analysis and GIS to conduct epidemiological investigations of HIV/AIDS and other STDs in the State of Texas. Her earliest research was on tuberculosis and access to tuberculosis clinics in Puerto Rico. Her subsequent research focuses on diverse subjects, including the presence of chemical pollution of water resources in Puerto Rico, access to dental care in rural Guatemala, forecasts of HIV infection in Puerto Rico, and the use of agrochemicals in rural Guatemala. Prior to her work in the public sector, she was an Assistant Professor at the University of Texas at Austin, Shippensburg University (Pennsylvania), and the University of Puerto Rico.
Lisa Y. Armitige, M.D., Ph.D., Medical Consultant, Heartland National TB Center, San Antonio, Texas
Dr. Armitige is a Medical Consultant at the Heartland National Tuberculosis Center in San Antonio, Texas. She completed her MD and PhD training at the University of Texas Medical School at Houston and joined the faculty there in 2005. While at UT-Houston, she garnered many teaching awards while caring for a panel of HIV positive patients at Thomas Street Clinic and tuberculosis patients at LBJ Hospital. She joined Heartland in 2010 and currently serves as a medical consultant for a 13-state region as well as managing patients at the San Antonio TB Clinic and consulting on in patients at the Texas Center for Infectious Diseases.
Leigh Jarrell Arrington, L.B.S.W., Program Director, SPCAA Project CHAMPS, Lubbock, Texas
Leigh Arrington graduated from Baylor University with a Bachelor of Arts in Social Work. She started her career working as a Ryan White Case Manager for SPARC (South Plains AIDS Resource Center) in Lubbock, Texas where she assisted clients by coordinating and facilitating their access to appropriate HIV medical care, primary health care, psychosocial services, housing assistance and other needed social support services. After SPARC, Leigh continued her work as a Ryan White Case Manager at PPAL (Planned Parenthood Association of Lubbock, Inc.) where she also assisted administrative staff in implementing the Ryan White Part B, State Services and HOPWA programs as service providers changed. In addition, she served on both LOMA (Lubbock, Odessa, Midland, Amarillo) and the Pan West Planning Assembly, which previously were the community-based planning bodies for HIV/AIDS prevention strategies and services for the Pan West Area of Texas. Since April 2008, Leigh has worked as the Program Director for Project CHAMPS under South Plains Community Action Association, Inc. As Program Director she is responsible for overall program management and supervises the provision of all Ryan White Part B, State Services and HOPWA services in a 15 county HIV service delivery area. Leigh was instrumental in the grant writing process as well as the development and implementation of the Ryan White Program and accompanying support services for South Plains Community Action Association, Inc.
Sharon Asonganyi, M.P.H., Capacity Building Assistance Coordinator, Behavioral and Social Science Volunteer Program, American Psychological Association (APA), Washington, DC
Sharon Asonganyi is the Capacity Building Assistance Coordinator for the American Psychological Association’s Behavioral and Social Science Volunteer Program. Her interest in the HIV/AIDS field was kindled during her travels and involvement in HIV response efforts at rural clinics in her native country of Cameroon. Sharon has an M.P.H. from Boston University in Social and Behavioral Sciences, focusing on HIV/AIDS research with prenatally infected adolescents at Boston University. During her graduate studies, Sharon co-developed a pilot intervention study at Boston Children’s Hospital on utilizing technology to promote treatment adherence in adolescent clients. Prior to joining the BSSV Program, Sharon worked for the Boston Public Health Commission’s Ryan White Part A HIV Health Services Planning Council and Quality Management units.
Chris Bartlett, Executive Director, The William Way Community Center, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Oralia V. Bazaldua, Pharm.D., FCCP, BCPS, Associate Professor, Department of Family and Community Medicine, The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, San Antonio, Texas
Oralia Bazaldua is an Associate Professor in the Department of Family and Community Medicine at The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio. Dr. Bazaldua has also served as the Director of Pharmacy Education in the Department of Family and Community Medicine since 1998. Dr. Bazaldua is the author of numerous articles and publications covering a variety of pharmacological and health literacy topics. She has also spoken at dozens of meetings and conferences.
April Biasiolli, M.A., Research Area Specialist (Intermediate), University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, San Antonio, Texas
Nike Blue, M.P.H., Director of Prevention Services, AIDS Foundation Houston, Inc., Houston, Texas
Nike Blue has eight years experience in the areas of HIV/STD prevention, community awareness, and public health research. Her work has contributed to the AIDS Foundation Houston's (AFH) status as a leader in the provision of services to Houston and surrounding areas, as the manager an trained facilitator for CDC's 'Evidence Based Interventions' Healthy Relationships, Focus on Youth with IMPACT, Popular Opinion Leader and VOICES. Nike also directs the implementation of AFH’s homegrown interventions Wall Talk Peer Education Program, Get Started Girl, the T.R.U.T.H Project and Hip Hop for HIV Awareness. She has been intricately involved in the HIP HOP for HIV Awareness initiative since its inception in 2007. She is an active member and Chair of the Houston Area African American State of Emergency Task Force a member of the Houston Community Planning, Texas Community Planning Group, and Urban Coalition for HIV/AIDS Prevention Services.
Craig L. K. Boge, M.P.H., Epidemiologist, TB/HIV/STD Epidemiology and Surveillance Branch, Department of State Health Services, Austin, Texas
Craig Boge is an epidemiologist with the TB/HIV/STD/Viral Hepatitis Epidemiology and Surveillance Branch of the Texas Department of State Health Services. He earned a bachelor of arts from Stanford University in 2007 and a master of public health in epidemiology from the University of Washington in 2010. He joined the Branch in 2011 and has worked primarily in monitoring mortality of HIV/AIDS cases.
Gail Bolan, M.D., Director, Sexually Transmitted Disease Prevention Program, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia
Dr. Gail Bolan was appointed Director of CDC's Division of Sexually Transmitted Disease Prevention (DSTDP) at the National Center for HIV/AIDS, Viral Hepatitis, STD, and TB Prevention (NCHHSTP) in December 2010. She began her public health career in 1982 as an Epidemic Intelligence Service (EIS) officer in the Respiratory and Special Pathogens Branch at CDC. She gained international experience with a three month meningitis surveillance project in Burkina Faso, Africa. Following EIS, she completed an infectious disease fellowship that included bench research on the characterization of a Neisseria gonorrhoeae iron-regulating protein that was thought to be a potential vaccine antigen candidate. In 1987, she began a life-time career in the field of STD prevention and control as Director of the STD Prevention and Control Program at the San Francisco Department of Public Health jointly with an academic appointment in the Department of Medicine at University of California San Francisco Medical School. In 1997, she became the Chief of the STD Control Branch at the California Department of Public Health as well as the Director of the California STD/HIV Prevention Training Center. In these positions, she consistently demonstrated a strong and enthusiastic commitment to the field of STD prevention. In 2010, Dr. Bolan received the CDC Jack Spencer Award, which honors an individual for a career of exceptional contributions to excellence in STD prevention characterized by outstanding commitment to science-based programs, continuous innovation, and profound commitment to helping people. Dr. Bolan earned her medical degree from the Dartmouth Medical School in Hanover, New Hampshire. She completed her training in internal medicine at the University of Virginia, Charlottesville, and subspecialty training in infectious diseases at the Tufts New England Medical Center in Boston and the Stanford Medical Center.
Christopher Bolinger, M.S., CF-SLP, Acute Care Speech Pathologist, University Medical Center, Lubbock, Texas
Chris is an acute care speech pathologist at University Medical Center (UMC) hospital in Lubbock. He previously served as an HIV/STD outreach educator for Lubbock and the surrounding counties. His area of research includes swallowing disorders (dysphagia) in persons with HIV/AIDS. Both Chris and the rest of the UMC speech pathology team seek to improve the patients’ quality of life, ability to take PO medication, prevent aspiration of food and liquids, and improve/maintain intake of oral nutrition and hydration.
Clyde Boyd, Prevention Program Supervisor, Communicable Disease Unit, Austin Travis County Health and Human Services Department, Austin, Texas
Clyde has been in the HIV prevention field for 15 years. In June of 2011, Clyde was promoted to the Prevention Program Supervisor. He currently manages a staff that provides HIV/STD testing at a City of Austin Health and Human Services Office and mobile outreach van. Clyde is active on the Austin HIV prevention Task Force.
Bernard M. Branson, M.D., Associate Director for Laboratory Diagnostics, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Division of HIV/AIDS Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia
Tristan Broussard, M.P.H, Surveillance Investigator, HIV/STD Surveillance, Houston Department of Health and Human Services, Houston, Texas
Tristan Broussard started as an intern at the Houston Department of Health and Human Services to develop a local natural disaster response plan for the City of Houston. In 2009, he began working under the HDHHS-Bureau of Epidemiology. He specialized in routine H1N1/Influenza /Rubella/vaccine preventable disease surveillance activities and adult and perinatal HIV surveillance. Currently, Tristan is working on assessing the accuracy of self-reported HIV testing behaviors within the local Houston population.
Christina Camacho, L.M.S.W., Risk Reduction Coordinator, Austin Travis County Integral Care - Community AIDS Resource and Education (C.A.R.E.) Program, Austin, Texas
Christina has provided social services in settings ranging from a homeless shelter for women, teens, and children to a Naturally Occurring Retirement Community. She has worked within the HIV/AIDS field since 2007. Christina currently manages prevention and outreach programs, which targets individuals at high risk of obtaining a HIV infection. Christina currently serves as the chair for HIV/AIDS and Aging Coalition in Central Texas.
Deborah Carr, Assistant Senior Public Health Advisor, HIV/STD Prevention and Care Branch, Texas Department of State Health Services, Austin, Texas
Deborah Carr received her B.A. degree in Sociology from California State University Dominguez Hills. She has worked in public health for the past 21 years in positions ranging from: Disease Interventions Specialist, Research Analyst, Special Projects Coordinator, Public Health Advisor and Assistant Senior Pubic Health Advisor. Ms. Carr currently serves as the Chair of the Field Staff Advisory Committee, also Chair of the Career Development sub-committee for the CDC Division of STD Prevention, Field Services Branch. Deborah is assigned to the Texas Department of State Health Services, HIV/STD Prevention and Care Branch.
Melvin C. Carter III, Project Director, Comin 'Up Gang Intervention Program, Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Fort Worth, Fort Worth, Texas
Melvin Carter has worked for the Boys and Girls Club for 22 years, serving youth in Louisiana, Kansas, and Texas. He started his career as a part-time gym director, transitioning into full-time employment as a Branch Director in Lafayette, Louisiana. His next assignment was in Minden, Louisiana where he is the founding Executive Director. The group started with a dream and made Boys and Girls Club a reality. Moving to the Midwest he took on the challenge of Chief Professional Officer of the Boys and Girls Club of Central Kansas operating three clubs and serving over 4,000 members. Feeling the need for excitement he joined forces with the Boys and Girls Club of Greater Fort Worth and took on the challenge as Program Director for the Comin’Up Gang Intervention Program. He also became Chief Professional Officer for the Boys and Girls Club of Central Louisiana leading three clubs with membership of 2,000. Texas is his home so he accepted the position of Director of Branch Services with the Boys and Girls Club of Greater Fort Worth serving 8,000 members and six clubs. Presently, he is the Project Director for the Comin’Up Gang Intervention Program serving 1,056 gang involved youth at nine different locations. He is honored to serve the most precious resource in America our youth.
Ruby Chapman, B.S.N., R.N., Nursing Coordinator, Thomas Street Health Center, Houston, Texas
Ruby Chapman is a registered nurse with thirty plus years of experience, with twenty years in the performance improvement/quality management arena. She has been employed with the Harris County Hospital District (HCHD) in Houston for the vast majority of her career in various roles. Her current position is the Nurse Coordinator for HIV Services. She coordinates the quality management component related to improvement of systems and processes. The coordination involves multi-disciplinary interactions with all levels of staffing. Her primary function is to ensure the services rendered to the clients served meets and/or exceed their expectations. Ruby is an active member of the Houston EMA Ryan White Quality Management Committee, where she serves as a co-facilitator of the Primary Care Workgroup. She was a member of the Texas team for NQC/HRSA Cross Parts 5 State Collaborative. Ruby completed the National Quality Center (NQC) programs Train the Trainer, Training Quality Leaders, and Training Coaching Basics programs.
Jennifer A. Chase, M.S.P.H., Epidemiologist, TB/HIV/STD Surveillance Group, Department of State Health Services, Austin, Texas
Jennifer Chase is an epidemiologist with the TB/HIV/STD Surveillance Group at the Texas Department of State Health Services. Jennifer has been working in HIV and STD surveillance as an epidemiologist for over 10 years. Prior to joining the Texas Department of State Health Services, Jennifer worked for the California STD Control Branch in Berkeley California and the Louisiana HIV/AIDS Program in New Orleans Louisiana. Currently, she works primarily with the monitoring and analysis of HIV laboratory data.
Sabeena Chintapalli, M.P.H., Epidemiologist, Epidemiology and Surveillance Branch, Texas Department of State Health Services, Austin, Texas
Sabeena Chintapalli is an epidemiologist who has worked with the Texas Medical Monitoring Project in varying capacities (analysis, data collection, data cleaning, etc.). After attending the University of Texas, Austin for her undergraduate coursework, she went on to receive a master of public health in epidemiology from Emory University. Sabeena has been involved with the project for the last five years.
Minister Joseph Collins, City of Austin HIV Planning Council, Black Faith-based Health Initiative, Austin, Texas
Joseph Collins is an Associate Minister at St. Mary Missionary Baptist Church in Pflugerville, Texas. He also serves the Central Texas community as an appointed member of the City of Austin HIV Planning Council. Joseph is also a Director at the Black Faith-based Health Initiative and the author of HIV Ministry Transitions: Steps to Develop an HIV-Compassionate Church. He is a frequent speaker at churches and conferences on issues of faith and health.
Leslie Denice Conley, L.M.S.W.-IPR, HIV Services Part D Case Manager, Parkland Health and Hospital System, Dallas, Texas
Leslie Conley is a Part D HIV Case Manager at Parkland Health & Hospital System in Dallas. She has been providing case management services to HIV+ women for more than nine years. She obtained her Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology from Texas A&M University and her Master of Science in Social Work degree from the University of Texas-Arlington. She is currently a Licensed Master Social Worker with Independent Practice Recognition in the State of Texas. She is a charter member of the State of Texas Consortium for Perinatal HIV Prevention.
Kevin Cranston, M.Div., Director, Bureau of Infectious Disease, Massachusetts Department of Public Health, Boston, Massachusetts
Kevin Cranston is the Director of the Massachusetts Department of Public Health (MDPH) Bureau of Infectious Disease and was the former Director of the MDPH HIV/AIDS Bureau. Other roles in the HIV/AIDS Bureau included Deputy Director for Policy and Programs and Director of AIDS Prevention and Education. Kevin previously served as the AIDS/HIV Program Director at the Massachusetts Department of Education. He is past Chair of the National Alliance of State and Territorial AIDS Directors (NASTAD) and served as a technical assistant through NASTAD’s Global Program to the national and state/provincial AIDS control programs of Nigeria, Brazil, and South Africa. Kevin earned his Master of Divinity degree at Harvard University. He currently serves on the Board of the National Coalition for LGBT Health.
Mary Cullinane, R.N., WHNP, BC, Nurse Consultant, STD/HIV Prevention and Intervention Services Group, Department of State Health Services, Austin, Texas
Mary Cullinane joined the STD program at DSHS in 2009 after 27 years in women’s health and family planning. She has worked in direct care as a women’s health nurse practitioner and in management of clinic services. She worked at DSHS when it was Texas Department of Health in the Maternal-Child Health Program. She is a graduate of the University of Texas.
Moupali Das, M.D., M.P.H., Assistant Clinical Professor, Divisions of HIV/AIDS and Infectious Diseases, SFGH, University of California, San Francisco, California; Director of Implementation Science and Evaluation Research, HIV Prevention Section, San Francisco Department of Public Health, San Francisco, California
Arturo Diaz, Jr, C.P.M., City of Laredo Health Department, Laredo, Texas
Arturo Diaz, Jr. has twenty three years experience in the areas of HIV/STD prevention services, social marketing and program implementation. His work has contributed to the City of Laredo Health Department’s status as a leader in the provision of HIV/AIDS/STD services to Laredo and the surrounding border areas. He served as a member of Third World Countries with the National Alliance of State and Territorial AIDS Directors (NASTAD). In 1991 he organized the first AIDS walk in Laredo and has been instrumental in reaching out to faith based organizations, public, private and government entities to support and partner with the HIV/AIDS movement. He is the Co-founder of PILLAR (People with Ideas of Love, Liberty, Acceptance and Respect). He is a friend to many people living with HIV.
Dawn Dickerson-Sankofa, M.P.H., Health Equity Coordinator, Tarrant County Public Health, Fort Worth, Texas
Dawn Dickerson has a 20-year history of public health work addressing health disparities. Her work includes health education, risk reduction and behavioral health intervention utilizing Community Based Participatory research. She has worked on various health topics, and has dedicated the majority of her career addressing STD and HIV prevention among youth. Prior to coming to Texas she managed an HRSA Ryan White funded Adolescent Initiative where youth providers, youth and community worked together on HIV testing, Adherence and youth lead programs and events that connected youth to care and existing services. She also was a community health trainer for a CDC funded STD prevention program in Harlem called Check Out that Body. As the Health Equity coordinator at Tarrant County Public Health she coordinated the development of the PRIDE program. PRIDE is a train the trainer for community youth providers to empower them with the skills and tools necessary to incorporate the PRIDE STD/HIV prevention education into their existing youth programs.
Julie Dombrowski, M.D., M.P.H., Acting Instructor of Medicine, University of Washington, Deputy Director for Clinical Services, Seattle & King County (PHSKC) HIV/STD Program, Seattle, Washington
Dr. Dombrowski is an Acting Instructor of Medicine at the University of Washington and the Deputy Director for Clinical Services in the Seattle & King County (PHSKC) HIV/STD Program. In her public health role, she serves as the Medical Director of the PHSKC STD Clinic and oversees the King County HIV Care and ART Promotion Program, a project to improve engagement in HIV care and antiretroviral use in King County. Her research focuses on clinical and population-based interventions to improve access to, engagement in, and quality of HIV/STD Care.
Brian Emerson, B.S., QC/QA Coordinator and HIV-1 RNA (NAAT) Supervisor, Dallas County Health and Human Services, Laboratory Services, Dallas, Texas
Brian Emerson is the supervisor of the HIV-1 RNA NAAT section of Dallas County Health and Human Services Laboratory. Prior to serving in this position, Brian worked for Carter Blood Care Blood Band as a supervisor for various departments.
Stephen J. Fallon, Ph.D., President, Skills4, Inc., Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Over the past 17 years, Dr. Stephen Fallon has provided best practice trainings, written and reviewed grants, and delivered strategic planning services to HIV/AIDS prevention, support and care providers in 40 states. Dr. Fallon directed HRSA’s national hub for technical assistance to the Ryan White community (the TARGET Center), currently serves as a consultant for four CDC-funded national TA providers. Dr. Fallon’s research has appeared in The Journal of Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndromes, AIDS and Behavior, The Journal of Urban Health and in community publications such as Positively Aware magazine. In his home state, in 2009, Dr. Fallon launched Latinos Salud, a non-profit HIV prevention agency in the greater Ft. Lauderdale region, serving Latinos at-risk and living with HIV.
Miranda Fanning, M.P.H., TB/HIV/STD Data Reporting Manager, TB/HIV/STD Surveillance Group, Department of State Health Services, Austin, Texas
Miranda is the Data Reporting Manager for TB/HIV/STD Epidemiology and Surveillance. Her team manages reporting of TB and HIV cases in Texas, while also evaluating the data’s quality, completeness and timeliness. Miranda served as an epidemiologist with the same branch from 2008-2010. Prior to working at DSHS, Miranda worked as a data analyst for the District of Columbia Medical Assistance Administration.
Rebecca T. Filipowicz, M.P.H., M.S., M.C.H.E.S., Manager, TB/HIV/STD Surveillance Group, Department of State Health Services, Austin, Texas
Ms. Filipowicz has been working at DSHS in the field of HIV, STD, and TB surveillance since April, 2010. In her current role, she is primarily responsible for overseeing Core HIV Surveillance, HIV Incidence Surveillance, Molecular HIV Surveillance, and TB Case Surveillance. Prior to this, she worked for the Florida Department of Health in Duval County as the Coordinator for the Center for Health Statistics at the Institute for Health Policy, Evaluation, and Research. In addition, she has held positions as the Region 1 Coordinator for Chronic Disease, Heath Promotion and Education in Florida and worked as a program evaluator and instructional designer for the Rollins School of Public Health at Emory University, where she continues to hold an Affiliated Adjunct Faculty appointment. Rebecca has a Master's degree in Public Health with a concentration in Behavioral Sciences and Health Education from Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia. She also holds a Master's degree in Kinesiology with an emphasis in Exercise Physiology from the University of North Texas. In addition Rebecca is a Master Certified Health Education Specialist. Rebecca has experience working in program planning, implementation and evaluation, health statistics, instructional design, distance-based instruction, and community mobilization.
Connie Folse, M.P.H., Training Specialist, Cardea, Austin, Texas
Connie is a Certified Health Education Specialist and holds a Master’s degree in Public Health. She brings a strong background in community health education and outreach, adolescent sexuality, LGBT health, needs assessment, and training and curriculum development. Connie has worked as a Family Planning Counselor/Health Educator and Homeless Youth Case Manager for a Title X Family Planning Clinic and has provided HIV/STD counseling and testing in various settings.
Kenneth Foster, Sr., Ph.D., Associate Professor, Texas Women’s University – Department of Psychology and Philosophy, Behavioral and Social Science Volunteer (BSSV), American Psychological Association (APA), Washington, DC
Dr. Foster first became involved in HIV/AIDS research in the 1980s. In 1990 he was field coordinator for one of the first federally-funded risk HIV risk behavior projects for intravenous drug users. His areas of expertise have included social identity, social stigma and attitudes, adolescent issues, substance abuse and its concomitant effects, including HIV and AIDS. A major part of his research experience and interests revolve around the role of culture in relation to risk behavior.
Nell Gaither, Trans Pride Initiative, Dallas, Texas
Nell currently works with Trans Pride Initiative, a nonprofit organization assisting and advocating for the rights of transgender and gender nonconforming persons in areas of healthcare, education, housing, and employment. She has been involved in support and advocacy efforts for transgender persons for eight years, including serving on the steering committee for Resource Center Dallas’ GEAR (Gender Education, Advocacy, and Resources) program, which is the Center’s transgender services program. Nell has been closely involved and helped run the GEAR Transgender Healthcare Program for approximately three years.
Khalil G. Ghanem, M.D., Ph.D.; Associate Professor of Medicine, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine; Director, STD, HIV, TB Clinical Services, Baltimore City Health Department, Baltimore, Maryland
Khalil Ghanem is Associate Professor of Medicine at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Associate Professor of Population, Family, and Reproductive Health at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, and Director of STD/HIV/TB Clinical Services at the Baltimore City Health Department. He attended medical school at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston where he also completed training in internal medicine. He subsequently moved to Johns Hopkins for fellowship training in infectious diseases during which time he completed a CDC/ATPM STD Prevention Fellowship.
Brian Goldberg B.A., Epidemiology Surveillance Investigator, Houston Department of Health and Human Services, Houston, Texas
Vincetta Green, Co-Programs Director, The Wright House Wellness Center, Austin, Texas
Vincetta Green started her career interning with the City of Austin Law Department, and later transitioning into working as a Social Service Case Manager for 10 years with the City of Austin’s Health and Human Service Department. Vincetta has also worked as a HIV Prevention Outreach Worker with Austin Outreach and Community Service Center. In 2005, Vincetta rooted her education and resources to The Wright House Wellness Center in the Minority AIDS Initiative Program, later as Case Manager Coordinator, and is currently Co-Programs Director for Disease Prevention and Disease Management.
Richard M. Grimes, Ph.D., Adjunct Professor at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston, Medical School, Department of Internal Medicine, Houston, Texas
Dr. Grimes has been actively engaged in the HIV/AIDS epidemic since 1983. He served as a volunteer at Montrose clinic (now Legacy) from 1983-2010 and was Chair of its board from 1985 to 1993. He was one of the founders of the Houston Clinical Research Network and was Chair of its board from 1989-93. He served on its IRB from 1989 until 2010. He was Chair of the Board of the Catholic Diocese of Galveston/Houston AIDS Ministry from 1988-1993. He was director of the AIDS Education and Training Center for Texas and Oklahoma from 1988 to 1999. He has been the Associate Director of the Baylor-UT Houston Center for AIDS Research and Director of its Behavioral Science Core since 2004. He is a reviewer for over 20 journals and is on the editorial board of the Journal of Environmental and Public Health. He has over 100 publications dealing with HIV/AIDS and its related conditions. He has presented his research at conferences in 15 countries including research that has been based in Canada, Kenya, Ghana, Haiti and Thailand.
Isaac Gross, Domestic HIV Associate, Clinton Health Access Initiative, Boston, Massachusetts
Isaac Gross is a Domestic HIV Associate at the Clinton Health Access Initiative (CHAI), an organization focused on increasing access to essential medicines. He leads CHAI’s domestic drug access work, and is currently supporting HarborPath in its mission to simplify the process through which people living with HIV/AIDS access HIV medication. Before joining CHAI’s domestic drug access team, Isaac ran a $10 million HIV drug donation for CHAI in West and Central Africa. He graduated cum laude from Brown University.
Melissa Grove, M.S., LPC, Executive Director, Legacy Counseling Center, Dallas, Texas
Melissa Grove is currently Executive Director for Legacy Counseling Center in Dallas, Texas. The center is the area's largest provider of mental health and substance abuse services for people living with HIV/AIDS. Ms. Grove has been working with HIV+ people for over 22 years and specializes in issues pertaining to disclosure, adherence, and coping with issues pertaining to HIV/AIDS. In her work with Legacy, she also opened Legacy Founders Cottage, a Licensed Special Care facility for critically and terminally ill people who are HIV+. This year Ms. Grove expanded the HIV+ women's program to create a national conference for HIV+ women to help them become grassroots leaders in the fight against HIV/AIDS.
E. Gail Gutierrez, R.N., B.S.N., M.S.N., FNP-BC, CDE, Waco, Texas
Gail Gutierrez is clinic manager for a corporate health clinic in Waco, Texas. She has worked in numerous primary care clinics in Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, and Montana with high risk individuals, minority populations, and youth. She continues to help individuals make choices to decrease their risk factors and increase healthy mental, physical, and emotional well being.
Michelle Harper, Director of Acute Care Policy, Medicaid/CHIP Program, Health and Human Services Commission, Austin, Texas
Michelle Harper is the Director of Acute Care Policy for the Medicaid/CHIP program at the Texas Health and Human Services Commission. Michelle and her team research, analyze and develop policy options for implementation of Medicaid and CHIP initiatives and then lead the implementation of these initiatives. Michelle and her team work on a variety of issues, including: the Women’s Health Program, CHIP program policy, Accountable Care Organizations, and the Medicaid Breast and Cervical Program. Most recently, members of the Acute Care Policy team have been working collaboratively with the Department of State Health Services and Ryan White Part A grantees to improve collaboration with the Texas Medicaid program and assist Ryan White providers in navigating the Medicaid system (e.g., providing technical assistance to Ryan White providers enrolling in Medicaid and contracting with Medicaid managed care health plans).
Dwayne R. Haught, M.S.N., A.C.R.N., Manager, Texas HIV Medication Program, Department of State Health Services, Austin, Texas
Dwayne Haught is a registered nurse who has worked in a variety of HIV/AIDS service positions over the last 30 years. Most recently he received the HRSA HIV AIDS Bureau’s Nicholas Rang Part B Service Award at the Ryan White All Titles Conference in Washington, DC in 2010. He has been the Texas HIV Medication Program Manager for the past 12 years.
Meagan Hatton, University of North Texas, Denton, Texas
Meagan Hatton is currently a senior double majoring in geography and photojournalism at the University of North Texas. She is a member of the Tau Sigma Honor Society and the Alpha Sigma Lambda Honor Society. Meagan was one of twenty students selected for the Honors College Fellows Program in the spring of 2012 in which she actively engaged in HIV/AIDS research. She is also a member of the Health and GIS Research Group, which is composed of faculty, Ph.D. students and graduate students. She is a proud member of the North Texas Energy and Environment Club and was the club Event Coordinator in 2010–2011 and President in 2011–2012. She was the Outreach Coordinator and a Steering Committee member for the non-profit environmental organization, ReEnergize Texas, in 2011 and 2012, in which she brought Texas environmental issues to the students on UNT’s campus. Among other things, Meagan is also a dancer for UNT’s African Drum and Dance Ensemble. She will be attending graduate school in geography in fall 2013 and plans to specialize in medical and health geography. After graduate school, she plans to volunteer for the Peace Corps helping children in Africa who are living with HIV/AIDS. She wishes to pursue a career as a medical geographer working in Africa and dreams of being a photographer for National Geographic.
Cara J. Hausler, M.P.H., Interim STD/HIV Branch Manager, San Antonio Metropolitan Health District, San Antonio, Texas
Nicole Hawkins, M.P.H., Epidemiologist, TB/HIV/STD Epidemiology and Surveillance Branch, Department of State Health Services, Austin, Texas
Nicole Hawkins is an epidemiologist with the Texas Department of State Health Services where she works on data reporting and analysis for HIV, STD and TB surveillance data. She also assists with data collection and analysis for the Medical Monitoring Project and summary report activities for the National HIV Behavioral Surveillance System project.
Charles Henley, L.C.S.W., Manager, Ryan White Grant Administration, Harris County Public Health Services, Houston, Texas
Charles Henley is a lifelong resident of Texas who has worked in the Ryan White program since 1991, including serving as the manager of Houston’s Ryan White Part A program since 1997. He grew up and attended high school and college in San Antonio, graduating from Trinity University in 1973. After moving to Houston in 1980, Charles earned his Masters of Social Work from the University of Houston. In 1997, he became manager of Houston's Part A program. That year Houston, along with its counterparts in the other Texas EMAs/TGAs, instituted ongoing quarterly meetings of Texas Part A grantees, an endeavor that has evolved into an invaluable asset to the Part A programs in Texas, and was expanded several years ago include TDSHS, the Part B grantee. These grantee meetings, now in their 15th year, have provided an opportunity for Texas Part A and B grantees and planning councils to discuss and develop solutions to the many challenges faced by stakeholders. In 2000 he spearheaded the Houston EMA’s development and implementation of an automated client-level data system that provided benefit to all stakeholders. The resulting Centralized Patient Care Data Management System (CPCDMS) enabled the Houston EMA to implement an enterprise-wide data system that supports quality care by ensuring accountability of service provision, supports monthly uploads of Houston Part A and B data to the State’s ARIES data system, while reducing the burden on consumers in establishing eligibility and accessing care. In 2004 Charles received the Hank Carde Award for Metropolitan Service from HRSA’s HIV/AIDS Bureau for his efforts in developing the CPCDMS.
Anna Henry, Planner, Houston Regional HIV/AIDS Resource Group, Houston, Texas
Anna Henry graduated from Eastern Illinois University with a BA in Sociology in 2002. After graduating Anna worked as a Parent Educator and Volunteer Coordinator in a child abuse prevention program facilitating support groups for teen moms ages 13-19. Anna then worked as the Case Manager at a domestic violence shelter and as the Director of Social Services at a 120 bed long term care facility where she conducted cognitive assessments, psychotropic drug reviews and managed the behavior management program. Anna joined The Resource Group in October 2008 after moving to Houston. Anna also has an extensive volunteer history working as a youth mentor, girl scouts troop leader, PTO president, long term care Ombudsman, and family service worker for the Ronald McDonald House.
Melissa Hield, Associate Commissioner – Consumer Protection, Texas Department of Insurance, Austin, Texas
Melissa Hield joined the Texas Department of Insurance (TDI) in 1989 as the agency strategic planner and is currently the Associate Commissioner for TDI's Consumer Protection Section in the Compliance Division. She oversees the toll-free Consumer Help Line, complaints resolution, and public education and outreach activities. She served as the grant administrator for a $2.7 million grant from the federal Department of Health and Human Services to operate a consumer assistance program from October 2010 to March 2012.
Gretchen Hinkle, Prevention Program Manager, AIDS Services of Austin, Austin, Texas
Gretchen initially got involved with HIV education as a Red Cross HIV/AIDS Educator while still in college. Her professional career began working with families in the foster care system as a Case Manager followed by teaching students with emotional and behavioral challenges in both public and residential settings. She has worked in HIV testing and prevention since 2006 across two states. Presently, Gretchen provides leadership and support for AIDS Services of Austin’s HIV testing programs as well as VOICES/VOCES evidence based intervention.
Loretta Holland, Executive Director, Waterloo Counseling Center, Austin, Texas
Loretta Holland is the Executive Director of Waterloo Counseling Center in Austin, Texas and has more than 20 years of experience in fund raising and nonprofit management. Ms. Holland holds the designation of Certified Fund Raising Executive (CFRE), conferred by the Association of Fundraising Professionals and is a 1991 graduate of the Grantsmanship Training Center International’s Proposal Writing Program. She has served as a reviewer for various government grantors, including AmeriCorps and the Texas Workforce Commission, and has conducted numerous trainings on fund raising strategies, including grantsmanship. Ms. Holland is a Past President of the Greater Austin Chapter of the Association of Fundraising Professionals, a member of The Junior League of Austin and was selected as “Outstanding Fundraising Professional” by the Greater Austin Chapter of the Association of Fundraising Professionals in 2007.
Linda Hollins, M.B.A., HIV/STD Program Manager, Health Service Region 6/5 South, Texas Department of State Health Services, Houston, Texas
Linda Hollins has served as the HIV/STD Program Manager for Health Service Region 6/5 South, Texas Department of State Health Services since September, 2007. She oversees a staff conducting HIV/STD surveillance, prevention and public health follow-up for 12 counties in HSR 6/5 South. She began her public health career in 1981 as a disease intervention specialist (DIS) at Houston Department of Health & Human Services. She serves on the leadership team for the Texas Black Women’s Initiative addressing the disproportionate impact of HIV on Black women in Texas.
Joyce James, L.M.S.W., Associate Deputy Executive Commissioner, Center for Elimination of Disproportionality and Disparities, Texas Health and Human Services Commission, Austin, Texas
Joyce James began her professional career as a Child Protective Services (CPS) caseworker in 1980 and has established an impressive 32-year history in the field of Child Welfare. She has been a strong advocate for children, youth, and families, and an influential voice in raising and increasing public awareness about disproportionality in child welfare and other child and family serving systems. Ms. James served as the Texas Child Welfare Director from 2004-2009 and also served as the Deputy Commissioner for Texas Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS) from January 2009- September 2010. Ms. James is currently the Associate Deputy Executive Commissioner for the Center for Elimination of Disproportionality and Disparities at the Texas Health and Human Services Commission. She was appointed to this role in September 2010, by HHS Executive Commissioner Tom Suehs, placing this work at the highest level of Health and Human Services in Texas.
Leo Kattari, M.S.W., Trainer, Kattari Consulting, Denver, Colorado
Leo Kattari is a social worker, activist and diversity/inclusivity specialist who has worked with organizations such as The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, Arizona State University, the Mayo Clinic, and the Boys and Girls Club to bring LGBTQ and multiple identity inclusivity to medicine and non-profit communities. Currently working towards advancing adolescent sexual health, he formerly developed and coordinated LGBTQA Services at Arizona State University, which included providing education and trainings to the general community on issues of diversity and inclusion, providing support services to students, and establishing and implementing various programs and events. Leo has a Master’s in Social work from the University of Denver, and has taught policy and statistic classes at ASU’s School of Social Work. He is passionate about creating dialogue around social justice, equity, and intersectionality, frequently conducting workshops that highlight social identities, LGBTQA issues, ally development and the praxis of inclusion.
Shanna Katz, M.Ed, ACS, Sexologist, Kattari Consulting, Denver, Colorado
Shanna Katz is a board certified sexologist, sexuality educator and diversity/inclusivity speaker, who has worked with organizations such as The Colorado Department of Public Health Education, Brown University, the Mayo Clinic and the American Medical Students Association’s sexual health scholars program to bring LGBTQ and disability inclusivity to medicine. A member of the American Association of Sexuality Educators, Counselor and Therapists (AASECT), the American College of Sexologists (ACS), the Society for the Scientific Study of Sexuality (SSSS) and the National Coalition for Sexual Freedom (NCSF), she uses her Master’s of Sexuality Education to provide accessible, open-source sex education and inclusivity training to people around the country by putting on workshops at places such as Brown University, SUNY-Purchase, The National Collegiate Leadership Conference, The Center for Sexual Pleasure and Health, the University of Arizona, Colorado College, Hofstra University, the Center for Sex Positive Culture, and the New York LGBT Center. Additionally, she sits on the Board of Directors for the Center for Sexual Positive Culture (Colorado) and the Center for Sexual Pleasure and Health (Rhode Island).
J. Dalton Keel, M.S.N., R.N., C.C.R.N., Nurse Consultant, Pan-West Regional HIV Services, STARCare Specialty Health System (formerly Lubbock Regional MHMR), Lubbock, Texas
Dalton Keel is a Nurse Consultant for STARCare Specialty Health System. STARCare is the HIV Services Administrative Agency for Pan-West, Texas Planning Area two and West Texas, Texas Planning Area one. Combined, the areas cover sixty-four counties divided into HIV Service Delivery Areas (HSDA’s) – Amarillo, El Paso, Lubbock, and Midland/Odessa (www.panwest.org). Dalton has eleven years of nursing experience. He began his career as a civilian Critical Care Nurse, transitioning to Flight Evacuation Nurse for the United States Air Force. He continues to serve in the Air Force Reserves and attends the Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) Program at the University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston.
Amy Killelea, Senior Manager, Health Care Access, NASTAD, Washington, D.C.
Amy Killelea is a Senior Manager with the National Alliance of State & Territorial AIDS Directors (NASTAD) Health Care Access Program. Amy joined NASTAD in June 2012 and is helping to lead NASTAD’s health care reform implementation efforts, including developing implementation resources and technical assistance for state HIV/AIDS programs and working on policy recommendations and analysis to inform federal implementation. Prior to coming to NASTAD, Amy worked as a senior fellow in Harvard Law School’s Center for Health Law and Policy Innovation and Treatment Access Expansion Project. Her work there included legal and regulatory analysis of federal health care reform, Medicaid policy analysis and advocacy, as well as state law and policy initiatives focused on removing state barriers to access to care for low-income people living with HIV. Amy received her B.A. from Smith College and J.D. from Georgetown University Law Center.
Surabhi Kukké, M.P.H., Texas Council on Family Violence, Austin, Texas
David L. Lakey, M.D., Commissioner, Department of State Health Services, Austin, Texas
Januari Leo, M.S.W., Public Affairs Field Specialist, Legacy Community Health Services, Houston, Texas
Januari Leo is the Public Affairs Field Specialist for Legacy Community Health Services in Houston, Texas. Working in the Government Relations Department, Januari is responsible for following local, state and federal healthcare policy, and organizing a statewide community to take action. She is also a founding member of the Texas HIV/AIDS Coalition.
Amy Leonard, M.P.H., Senior Director of Public Health Services, Legacy Community Health Services, Houston, Texas
Amy Leonard has been the Senior Director of Public Health Services at Legacy Community Health Services since 2009. Before that, she was a Research Coordinator in the Allergy and Immunology Department at Baylor College of Medicine at Texas Children’s Hospital. Amy began her professional career in HIV/AIDS as the Associate Director of Education at AIDS Foundation Houston beginning in 1991.
Peter Leone, M.D., Professor of Medicine, UNC School of Medicine; Adjunct Associate Professor of Epidemiology, Gillings School of Global Public Health; and Medical Director, North Carolina HIV/STD Prevention and Control Branch, Chapel Hill, North Carolina
Rachel Lowry, R.N., B.S.N., CA-CP SANE, Dallas County Health & Human Services, Denton County SANE Team, Dallas, Texas
Rachel Lowry is a RN clinician at the Dallas County STD Clinic and has worked in the clinic for six years. She also recently joined the Denton County SANE Team and has worked with pediatric, adolescent and adult victims of sexual assault since last year.
Cordella Lyon, R.N., HIV Screening Coordinator, Baptist Hospitals of South East Texas, Beaumont, Texas
Cordella was employed as a Licensed Practical Nurse at Kimball Medical Center 2000-2009. In 2005 she became the Office Manager of Med Center, where she facilitated the implementation of Suboxone Therapy for opiate abuse, which is still in still being practiced today. She is currently the HIV Screening Coordinator at Baptist Hospital in Beaumont, Texas where she collaborates with the local Department of Health and other relevant organizations to notify and link those who are HIV positive to care.
Kadidiatou Magassa, Face AIDS - Southwestern University, Georgetown, Texas
Originally from Harlem, New York, Kadidiatou Magassa is the youngest of immigrant parents from Mali. Eager to explore and question the most fundamental concepts of human existence, Ms. Magassa has a strong desire to understand the essentials of providing support to individuals affected by underdevelopment. With a passion to work with youth, she aims to guide young people from historically marginalized communities through their pursuit for social justice around their community’s greatest challenges. Guiding students to think creatively and critically, Ms. Magassa seeks to work with youth in exploring international issues with and through an artistic lens and media literacy. An award winning youth media producer and graphic designer, she is in the process of completing a bachelor of arts in international studies and political science at Southwestern University.
Kimberly Fitzpatrick Malerba, R.N., B.S.N., Nurse Manager, Legacy Community Health Services, Houston, Texas
Kimberly Malerba received a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Texas Woman’s University in 2004. She immediately began her career as a Registered Nurse working on the Medical Intensive Care Unit at The Methodist Hospital in Houston Texas. For the last two and a half years she has been the Nurse Manager at Legacy Community Health Services- Legacy Montrose Clinic working with HIV + patients. She oversees the daily clinical operations of both Pediatric and Adult Medicine, which includes the assessment and scheduling of patients seeking acute care for a variety of issues including PEP.
Darriane Martin, M.S., Program Director, HIV Prevention Department, AIDS Arms, Inc., Dallas, Texas
Darriane Martin is currently employed as the Prevention Program Director with AIDS Arms, Inc., and manages a team of individuals who implement public health strategies endorsed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and funded by The Texas Department of State Health Services. The team is responsible for providing outreach HIV/ STD testing, risk reduction counseling and group level interventions in Dallas County and seven other surrounding counties. Prior to HIV/ STD prevention, she worked for several years in the field of mental health and substance abuse serving as a crisis intervention Having worked on the "front-line" as an outreach worker, HIV tester, group facilitator, risk reduction counselor and now a director of programs, she has a wealth of experiences to help influence the community change need to end this epidemic. Darriane has a Master of Science degree in Sociology with dual focus in Community Counseling.
Patrick L. Martin, Program Development Director, Houston Regional HIV/AIDS Resource Group, Houston, Texas
Patrick L. Martin has worked for The Resource Group since September 1999. He graduated with a bachelor’s degree from Southwestern University, a private liberal arts college, in Georgetown, Texas. After graduating, he returned to Houston and started working in the healthcare field. He spent 5 years as a case manager at Montrose Clinic and Diocesan AIDS Ministry. During this time, he learned the strong social work focus of case managing clients and partnering with them to accomplish goals that including initiation of medical care, increased compliance with medical goals, accessing mental health and substance abuse resources and increasing housing stability. In 1999, Patrick joined The Resource Group. He led both the positions of Grants Monitor and Grant Monitoring Coordinator before being promoted to his current position of Program Development Director in 2004. This position was created to reflect the work he was doing in managing all funded programs at TRG including serving a project director for the Part C and D grants. As Program Development Director, he is responsible for overseeing the Data, Clinical, Consumer Involvement, and Quality Management Departments. Patrick has been facilitating the monthly meetings of the Serving the Incarcerated and Recently Released Partnership of Greater Houston since its creation in 2009.
Manisha Maskay, Associate Executive Director, Community and Client Services, AIDS Arms, Inc., Dallas, Texas
Dr. Maskay has over 30 years of experience in public health, program development and evaluation. She has significant expertise in building integrated systems of care in medical and public health settings. She is currently Associate Executive Director, Community and Client Services at AIDS Arms, Inc., Dallas where she has led the ‘agency-wide’ evaluation process. She was Director of the Division of Planning and Preparedness at Columbus Public Health in Columbus, Ohio for five years and was an Assistant Professor of Medicine and Director of Clinical Nutrition and Health Education Services at the University of Chicago for 15 years.
James J. McCarthy, M.D., F.A.C.E.P., Assistant Professor of Emergency Medicine, University of Texas Medical School- Houston, Medical Director, Emergency Center, Memorial Hermann Hospital - Texas Medical Center, Houston, Texas
James (Jamie) McCarthy serves as Medical Director for Emergency Services at Memorial Hermann Hospital - TMC in Houston, Texas. He currently helps coordinate Houston's CDC funded initiative for routine HIV screening in emergency centers. Research interests include HIV and cost effectiveness/sustainability of screening efforts.
Jenny R. McFarlane, Routine HIV Testing and Perinatal Prevention Coordinator, Department of State Health Services, Austin, Texas
Jenny McFarlane has worked with HIV/AIDS and STDs for the past twenty-four years. She spent the beginning of her career working with the incarcerated, substance users, sex trade workers, and individuals living with HIV and AIDS. Jenny has worked for the Texas Department of State Health Services’ (DSHS) HIV and STD Comprehensive Services Branch for the past twelve years providing direct technical assistance and monitoring and leading a team of consultants who monitored and provided technical assistance to HIV and STD prevention, administration and care services programs funded by the DSHS. In addition to her duties, Jenny has become a specialist in HIV perinatal prevention, evidence based interventions, routine HIV testing in health care settings, HCV counseling and testing and the administration of HIV services and housing assistance for people living with HIV/AIDS. Currently, Jenny is the state coordinator for the implementation of routine HIV testing in health care settings and HIV perinatal prevention.
Travea A. McGhie, M.D., M.P.H., Infectious Disease Fellow, Texas A&M College of Medicine, Scott and White Memorial Hospital, Temple, Texas
Travea McGhie is a Clinical Infectious Disease Staff at an academic center in Central Texas, where her fellowship was completed. Originally from Jamaica, West Indies, she migrated to United States and completed college and medical school in Maryland and Washington, DC, respectively. She developed a keen interest in infectious disease after receiving a National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases Fellowship while in medical school. She later volunteered for the National Health Corps, which motivated her to pursue a master’s in public health in Baltimore, Maryland. While her husband was stationed at Fort Hood, Texas, she was able to study the differences in outcome among rural and non-rural HIV residents in Central Texas.
Mary Chapman McIntosh, M.Ed., Capacity Building Consultant, Department of State Health Services, Austin, Texas
Mary has been a sex educator since the age of 19 when she was involved with SAR (Sexual Attitude Reassessment) workshops and studied at the Institute for the Advanced Study of Human Sexuality in San Francisco to produce the workshops. Professionally, she worked with children, teens, young adults and adults in a counseling capacity and as an educator in areas of human sexuality, including sexual health and the prevention and treatment of abuse. Mary worked for many years in the Family Planning Program at the Texas Department of Health in special projects and currently is a capacity building specialist for the HIV/STD Comprehensive services Branch of the Texas Department of State Health Services.
Marlene McNeese-Ward, Bureau Chief, HIV/STD and Viral Hepatitis Prevention, Houston Department of Health and Human Services, Houston, Texas
Sharon K. Melville, M.D., M.P.H., Manager, TB/HIV/STD Epidemiology and Surveillance Branch, TB/HIV/STD/Viral Hepatitis Unit, Department of State Health Services, Austin, Texas
Dr. Melville has been working at the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) in the field of HIV and STD epidemiology and surveillance for over 15 years and recently expanded her area of responsibility to include TB epidemiology and surveillance. In her capacity as TB/HIV/STD Epidemiology and Surveillance Branch Manager, she is responsible for overseeing TB/HIV/STD Surveillance across the State and for monitoring disease burden and trends in TB/HIV/STD and analyzing and disseminating data on TB, HIV and STD in Texas. Dr. Melville is the principal investigator for multiple federal grants and cooperative agreements including the HIV/AIDS Surveillance Cooperative Agreement, the Medical Monitoring Project Grant and the National HIV Behavioral Surveillance Grant. Prior to coming to DSHS, Dr. Melville was Assistant Professor of Family and Community Medicine at the University of Massachusetts Medical Center in Worcester, MA. She has co-authored numerous peer-reviewed journal articles and brings expertise in TB/HIV/STD and viral hepatitis epidemiology, surveillance, disease prevention and control, program evaluation, and clinical knowledge.
Jeffrey A. Meyer, M.D., M.P.H., Epidemiologist Supervisor, Houston Department of Health and Human Services, Houston, Texas
Osaro Mgbere, Ph.D., M.P.H., Epidemiologist-Biostatistician/Project Coordinator, Houston Department of Health and Human Services, Houston, Texas
Nancy Miertschin, M.P.H., HIV Projects Manager, Thomas Street Health Center, Harris Health Systems, Houston, Texas
Nancy has been involved with developing and implementing HIV programs for the past 17 years, first as Planner for the Ryan White Grant Administration in the Houston EMA and for the past 15 years as HIV Projects Manager for Harris Health Systems (Harris County Hospital District). She has served on the Ryan White Planning Council, State of Texas Assembly Group East (STAGE) (secretary), Statewide Coordinated Statement of Need Committee (chair), and Texas HIV Medication Advisory Committee (vice-chair). Since 2006, she has been instrumental in implementing routine HIV testing in Houston’s public hospitals, community health centers, and healthcare for the homeless sites.
Kathy Miller, President, Texas Freedom Network, Austin, Texas
During her time at Texas Freedom Network, Kathy Miller has helped the organization become a respected and influential champion of religious freedom, civil liberties and strong public schools. In her roles as spokesperson for TFN and other organizations, Kathy has testified before the Texas Legislature and the U.S. Congress and has appeared on national cable news networks such as CNN, MSNBC and FOX and the major broadcast networks. She has also given numerous interviews on local, state and national radio and has appeared in state and national newspapers such as the New York Times, Wall Street Journal and Washington Post.
Jason W. Mitchell, M.P.H., Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Health Promotion and Risk Reduction Programs, School of Nursing, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Dr. Mitchell is an Assistant Professor at the University of Michigan School of Nursing. His research interests broadly include: 1) examination of how relationship dynamics affect HIV/STI risk; 2) implementation and evaluation of newer prevention strategies for MSM, gay male couples, and other at-risk populations; and 3) assessment of structural factors toward HIV/STI risk among most-at-risk-populations in developing countries. In addition, Dr. Mitchell uses advanced methodological and analytical techniques to better understand the complexities of relationships, and how various factors contribute to HIV risk among couples and other vulnerable populations.
Norman Mitchell, CEO, Bee Busy Learning Academy, Inc., Houston, Texas
Norman Mitchell is a writer, director, producer, creator, and public speaker. In 1983, Norman Mitchell learned that his high school drama teacher and mentor, Emmitt Faulkner, (a middle-aged, white, homosexual male, living in the Montrose area in Houston,) was HIV positive. This was the first time he heard of the disease that would later become a passion in his life. Norman became a national stand-up comedian, performing on various television shows such as; It’s Showtime at the Apollo, HBO’s Def Comedy Jam, BET’s Comicview, and Keenan and Kel, to name a few. He is the co-founder Bee Busy Learning Academy, Inc (Bee Busy). Norman has developed an array of prevention programs targeting minority youth and adults. He has dedicated his life to the elimination of HIV/AIDS. Norman co-wrote the HIV/STD prevention manual, “Everything You Should Know About HIV”. Norman has now accepted a new role as the interim CEO of Bee Busy Wellness Center, a primary care Agency designed to provide primary medical care to persons infected with and affected by HIV.
Chris Mobley, M.Ed., Senior Program Consultant, HIV/STD Program, Department of State Health Services, Austin, Texas
Chris has worked in the HIV field since 2007. He began his career as a Peace Corps volunteer working for a home-based care agency in South Africa and eventually moved to San Antonio and began working for Bexar County’s Ryan White program. He is currently a Senior Program Consultant with the Department of State Health Services and has been with the agency since 2009.
Meagan Moore, Face AIDS - Southwestern University, Georgetown, Texas
Meagan Moore has done ethnographic research on adherence of people living with HIV/AIDS to antiretroviral treatment. She is currently serving in AmeriCorps and hopes to enter graduate school for a master of public health with a focus in epidemiology in the fall of 2013. She is a recent graduate of Southwestern University in Georgetown, Texas.
Dwayne Morrow, Jr., Prevention Services Program Manager, AIDS Foundation Houston, Houston, Texas
Dwayne Morrow, Jr. is the Prevention Services Program Manager for AIDS Foundation Houston (AFH). He currently manages health education and risk reduction programs funded by the City of Houston, the Texas Department of State Health Services and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. He also manages the counseling, testing and referral programs funded through those grants. Mr. Morrow has worked for AFH for the five years he has been in the field of HIV/STD Prevention.
Kirk Myers, M.P.H., Chief Executive Officer, Abounding Prosperity, Dallas, Texas
Sylvia Odem, M.P.H., Epidemiologist, Epidemiology and Surveillance Branch, Texas Department of State Health Services, Austin, Texas
Sylvia Odem is an Epidemiologist and the Project Manager for the Texas Medical Monitoring Project, the first statewide supplemental surveillance project to look at both clinical outcomes and behavioral activities in conjunction. She previously coordinated the Supplement to HIV/AIDS Surveillance (SHAS) project in Texas (2000-2004) and in Los Angeles, California (1995-1997), a patient interview project. She also coordinated the Adult Spectrum of Disease (ASD) project in Texas (1998-2004), a medical chart review data collection project. Prior to her work in HIV/AIDS, she worked on research projects related to prenatal care access and the use of hospital education centers.
Olufunto Olusanya is a second year master’s student in Epidemiology at the School of Rural Public Health, Texas A&M Health Science Center and a graduate assistant with the Center for Community Health Development. She graduated from University College Hospital, Nigeria with a Bachelor of Medicine and Surgery. She worked with the Hygeia Foundation, a sub-recipient of The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis, and Malaria (GF), as a program officer where she supervised five GF-assigned hospitals in the provision of free ART, prevention of mother-to-child transmission (PMTCT), and counseling services to HIV-positive individuals. During this period, she was instrumental in initiating the collection of dried blood spot samples for the Polymerase Chain Reaction test, which made HIV screening possible in newborns, and the development of PMTCT job aids for use by GF-assigned private health facilities.
Joseph R. Oppong, Ph.D., Professor of Geography, Associate Graduate Dean, Department of Geography, University of North Texas, Denton, Texas
Kimberly A. Parker, Ph.D., M.P.H., C.H.E.S., Assistant Professor, Department of Health Studies, Texas Woman’s University, Denton, Texas
Dr. Kimberly A. Parker is an Assistant Professor at Texas Woman’s University in Denton, Texas. Dr. Parker conducts qualitative and mixed-methods research involving sexual behaviors that influence STI and HIV transmission in African American men and women. Currently serves as the Principle Investigator of a qualitative study which examines the lived experiences of HIV positive African American women in the Deep South and is the lead evaluator for the Hope in Our Soul project, an intervention that targets faith based organizations to increase minority participation in HIV prevention research in Atlanta, Georgia. Dr. Parker’s past research includes serving as the qualitative researcher/evaluator for a HIV Prevention Trials Network (HPTN) ISIS 064 grant in the Atlanta-Metropolitan area, a two years and is a prospective study to estimate the overall HIV type 1 incidence rates in African American women at risk for HIV acquisition. She has also served as the qualitative evaluator for a Phase I clinical trial to assess safety, tolerability, and product acceptability of a vaginal mircobicide gel (UC781) being studied to prevent HIV transmission. Her research interest includes social sexual factors that influence HIV transmission in African Americans, reproductive and sexual health, and women’s health.
Janak A. Patel, M.D., Professor, Department of Pediatrics and Director, Division of Pediatric Infectious Disease and Immunology, Children’s Hospital, University of Texas Medical Branch, Galveston, Texas
Pastor Keely Petty, Bethel International Christian Fellowship, San Antonio, Texas
Pastor Keely Petty serves alongside her husband, Sr. Pastor Lee Petty in various Ministry capacities at Bethel International Christian Fellowship in San Antonio. She is an author, international conference speaker, and host of “Joy In Our Town” community affairs program for the Trinity Broadcast Network. She is also the Founder of Girl Worth Mentoring, which empowers teen girls to fulfill their God given destiny through life skill training. Pastor Keely leads and participates in a wide range of faith-based programs in her community and throughout the State of Texas and across the nation.
Susan Philip, M.D., M.P.H., Deputy Health Officer, Director, STD Prevention and Control Services, San Francisco Department of Public Health, San Francisco, California
Since 2009 Susan Philip has been the Director of the STD Prevention and Control Section of the San Francisco Department of Public Health. The STD Section is recognized nationally and internationally for its clinical expertise, and epidemiologic and clinical research. Recent areas of focus for the section include improving community provider training in STD diagnosis and management, and assessing community level determinants of sexual health. Currently, Dr. Philip serves as President of the California STD Controllers Association and on the Board of Directors of the National Coalition of STD Directors. She is also an assistant clinical professor of medicine in the Division of Infectious Diseases at University of California, San Francisco, and sees HIV primary care patients at San Francisco City Clinic.
Jonathon Poe, M.S.S.W., Manager, HIV Information Program Group, Texas Department of State Health Services, Austin, Texas
Jonathon Poe received a master of science in social work from the University of Texas at Arlington in 2003. Nearly 20 years ago, Jonathon worked on the Young Men’s Survey (YMS), the first CDC-sponsored community-level HIV behavioral research project for young MSM, which was conducted through the Dallas County Health Department and the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas (UT Southwestern). While at UT Southwestern, he also worked on Web-Based HIV Behavioral Surveillance (WHBS), which looked at HIV risk behaviors among online MSM, and he provided technical assistance and training for the HIV Incidence Surveillance and the Variable, Atypical and Resistant HIV Surveillance (VARHS) programs. In 2009, Jonathon started working at the DSHS Central Office in Austin doing HIV and TB surveillance. He is currently the Team Lead for the HIV/STD Prevention Data and Evaluation Team in the HIV/STD Prevention and Care Branch.
Joseph G. Prejean, Jr., Ph. D., Incidence and Viral Resistance Team, HIV Incidence and Case Surveillance Branch, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia
Joseph Prejean, Ph.D. is the Team Supervisor of the Incidence and Viral Resistance Team in the HIV Incidence and Case Surveillance Branch at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta, Georgia. This team has developed and monitored the implementation of national HIV Incidence Surveillance and Variant, Atypical, and Resistant HIV Surveillance used to track the leading edge of the HIV epidemic. He is the lead author of the PLoS ONE publication “Estimated HIV Incidence in the United States, 2006–2009” and his team has published estimates of transmitted HIV drug resistance. Prior to joining CDC, he served as the Director of the Dartmouth Hitchcock HIV Risk Reduction Program at Dartmouth Medical School, one of the first HIV prevention programs to address the HIV prevention needs of individuals living with HIV.
John B. Pryor, Ph.D., Distinguished Professor, Department of Psychology, Illinois State University, Normal, Illinois
John B. Pryor is a Distinguished Professor of Psychology at Illinois State University (ISU). Pryor is a Fellow of both the American Psychological Association and the Association for Psychological Science. He has been a Visiting Professor at the University of Illinois at Champaign/Urbana (1999) and at Maastricht University (MU) in the Netherlands (2009). In addition to his appointment as a Distinguished Professor at ISU, he has an ongoing appointment as a Visiting Professor at MU. As a social psychologist, he has been a contributor to the research literature on HIV-related stigma for over 20 years. His work on HIV has been funded by RMCC, CDC, and the Ford Foundation. He also has worked with the Academy for Educational Development on their National HIV/AIDS Anti-Stigma Initiative. This Initiative seeks to reduce HIV/AIDS-related stigma and discrimination to protect the human and social assets of those infected and affected by HIV/AIDS. His most recent research includes studies of how HIV-related stigma impacts the mental health of persons living with HIV/AIDS and an examination of how stigma affects families and others associated with HIV/AIDS.
Richard Rapp, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Wright State University, Dayton, Ohio
One of Dr. Rapp’s areas of interest is developing interventions that engage individuals in care. His work in testing interventions for substance abusers and newly diagnosed HIV-positive individuals has been supported by the National Institute on Drug Abuse and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Amanda Reese, HIV Prevention Consultant, HIV/STD Program, Department of State Health Services, Austin, Texas
Amanda Reese holds a B.S in Community Health Education from Texas A&M University. She began her career in the field of HIV/STD at Austin/Travis County Health and Human Services Department where she worked in the communicable disease unit. Eventually, Ms. Reese worked at Workers Assistance Program–Texas HIV Connection as a training specialist. She facilitated trainings on a number of topics including HIV, STDs, Hepatitis C, Tuberculosis, and motivational interviewing and trained Prevention Counseling and Partner Elicitation (PCPE). When Texas switched to Protocol-based counseling (PBC) in 2005, Ms. Reese provided training and technical assistance on PBC through out the state. Ms. Reese continues to provide technical assistance to community based organizations in Texas as an HIV Prevention Consultant for the Department of State Health Services.
Cornelis A. Rietmeijer, M.D., Ph.D., M.S.P.H., Professor, Community and Behavioral Health, Colorado School of Public Health, University of Colorado Denver, Denver, Colorado
Dr. Rietmeijer is the Medical Director of the Denver Clinical Prevention Training Center. He is also a professor in the Department of Community and Behavioral Health at the Colorado School of Public Health. His research interests include the epidemiology and prevention of chlamydia infections, the resurgence of STDs and HIV among men who have sex with men, the Internet as a risk and prevention environment, expanding testing to non-traditional venues using new technologies, and STD clinic operations. Dr. Rietmeijer received his medical degree and Ph.D. from the University of Amsterdam Department of Medicine, and a master of science in public health from the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center.
Ken Ripperger-Suhler, Ph.D., Research Associate III, Department of Kinesiology and Health Education, The University of Texas at Austin, Austin, Texas
Dr. Ripperger-Suhler’s work includes 8 years in elementary and secondary education as well as 10 years in adult higher education. He has worked the last 3 years as the outcome monitoring program coordinator for the Texas DSHS. The emerging focus of his work is community assessment and development and their impacts on public health.
Ann S. Robbins, Ph.D., Manager, HIV/STD Prevention and Care Branch, Department of State Health Services, Austin, Texas
Dr. Ann Robbins is the Manager of the HIV/STD Prevention and Care Branch at the Texas Department of State Health Services where she is administrator of an integrated HIV and STD prevention and treatment program. Prior to work in this position, she managed program evaluation and advanced epidemiologic research focusing on HIV/STD prevention and HIV services. Her publications and presentations have included epidemiologic inquiries, evaluation of activities to improve community-based planning, improvement of health planning data within the Ryan White Program, and promotion of program integration practices. Dr. Robbins has worked on international technical assistance teams in Botswana and Ethiopia, and is proud to be on the Executive Committee of the National Alliance of State and Territorial AIDS Directors.
Elder Deneen Robinson, Managing Elder of External Ministries, Living Faith Covenant Church, Dallas, Texas
Deneen Robinson currently serves as the Managing Elder of External Ministries for Living Faith Covenant Church. In addition, she is employed by UT Southwestern’s HIV/AIDS Clinical Research Unit as the Education Coordinator. One of her first national roles was to serve on the Editorial Advisory Board for Positivewords.com, which is an online HIV newsletter, as well as participate in content development for the website. She has been featured in HIV Plus and POZ. Deneen has worked with Visionary Health Concepts to create a tool for patients and physicians on lipoatrophy and treatment initiation. She has also worked with The Well Project and the Black AIDS Institute. In everything she does, she wants to communicate the importance of education in whether you are a victim to HIV or a VICTOR. God has definitely made room for her gifts and she feels privileged to serve God’s people.
Felipe Rocha, M.S.S.W., Manager, TB/HIV/STD/Viral Hepatitis Unit, Department of State Health Services, Austin, Texas
Felipe Rocha has been the Director of the TB/HIV/STD/Viral Hepatitis Unit at the Texas Department State Health Services (DSHS) since December 1, 2010. Prior to serving in this position, He was the Manager of the Health Communications and Community Engagement Group within the former TB/HIV/STD Unit at DSHS. Felipe worked for the National Alliance of State and Territorial AIDS Directors (NASTAD) as the Country Advisor in Ethiopia, where he worked with Ethiopian and U.S. government agencies to help implement social mobilization interventions and promoting anti-retroviral treatment adherence. He also worked in Cambodia providing training on HIV counseling and testing as well as on community planning. Prior to his work with NASTAD, he was the Manager of the DSHS HIV/STD Comprehensive Services Branch for almost five years and the Deputy Director of the AIDS Bureau at the Massachusetts Department of Public Health for almost six years.
M. Elaine Rogers, B.A., L.C.D.C./A.A.C., CRCS Counselor, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, Texas
Ms. Elaine Rogers has a Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology and is a Licensed Chemical Dependency Counselor (LCDC) and Advanced Addictions Counselor (AAC). She has been working with the alcohol and drug addicted client for 25 years and HIV prevention for 23 years. Elaine has been providing Comprehensive Risk Counseling and Services (CRCS) for nine years. She began working with the Choosing Life: Empowerment, Action, Results (CLEAR) intervention in May 2011.
Susan Rokes, HIV Program Director, Planned Parenthood Gulf Coast, Houston, Texas
Susan has overseen the HIV testing and counseling program at PPGC for the last nine years. She is the current Community Co-Chair of the Texas Community Planning Group.
Michele A. Rountree, Ph.D., Associate Professor, University of Texas at Austin, School of Social Work, Austin, Texas
Warangkana Ruckthongsook, M.S., University of North Texas, Department of Environmental Science, Denton, Texas
Warangkana Ruckthongsook is a Ph.D. student in Environmental Science at the University of North Texas (UNT). She has been working as a research assistant in Medical Geography at UNT since 2010 and is a member of the Health and Medical Geography Research Group at UNT. Her research interests lie in the areas of medical geography, geographical epidemiology, and environmental health and epidemiology. She uses the applications of remote sensing, GIS, and geographic analysis to study spatial patterns of disease, environment, and health. Her previous research includes an investigation of how living conditions and neighborhood characteristics impact the spatial distribution of tuberculosis in Tarrant County, Texas and the impact of land use and land cover change on the spatial distribution of Buruli ulcer in southwest Ghana. Her recent research focuses on spatial and race and ethnicity disparities of HIV/AIDS in Texas.
Francisco Ruiz, M.S., Senior Manager, Health Equity, National Alliance of State & Territorial AIDS Directors (NASTAD), Washington, D.C.
Francisco Ruiz brings to his work over ten years of HIV/AIDS experience in the U.S., Latin America, and Caribbean. Francisco serves as a Senior Manager in the Health Equity Program at the National Alliance of State and Territorial AIDS Directors (NASTAD) where he provides guidance on how to address the disproportionate impact of HIV/AIDS among the most impacted communities, particularly Latino communities and gay men of all races and ethnicities. Additionally, Francisco serves as chair of the National Latino AIDS Action Network (NLAAN), a network of civil society and key stakeholders that identifies and prioritizes the key HIV/AIDS prevention, research and care and treatment needs of Latino communities. In 2010, Francisco was named one of the 100 most influential AIDS advocates by POZ Magazine. His commentary and work has appeared on various media outlets such as Destination Casa Blanca, TuSalud, POZ Magazine, and AIDS.gov.
Kasey Russell, M.P.H., Epidemiologist, TB/HIV/STD Surveillance Group, Department of State Health Services, Austin, Texas
Manuel G. Sanchez, Jr., HIV/AIDS/STD Program Director, City of Laredo Health Department, Laredo, Texas
Manuel “Manny” Sanchez is the HIV/AIDS/STD Program Director at the City of Laredo Health Department and is the Co-founder of PILLAR (People with Ideas of Love, Liberty, Acceptance and Respect)- a non-profit organization that provides counseling and educational services to people dealing with emotional turmoil related to bullying, suicidal ideation, and sexual identity issues. He has over 20 years experience in public and mental health services 13 of which have been in the HIV prevention and care services field especially as an advocate for community action against HIV/AIDS/STDS. He currently serves on the HIV/STD Prevention Community Planning Group for Texas and has served as Chairperson for the South Texas HIV Planning Assembly, a planning body that focused on the needs of people living with HIV/AIDS, and as the Area 6 leader for the VOICES of South Texas- an HIV/STD prevention community planning group. Mr. Sanchez has also served as a technical advisor to Third World Countries with the National Alliance of State and Territorial AIDS Directors (NASTAD).
Lamont Scales, M.A., N.C.C., Coordinator for Gay, Bisexual, and Other MSM Activities, Office of Health Equity, Office of the Director, Division of HIV/AIDS Prevention, National Center for HIV, Viral Hepatitis, STD and TB Prevention, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia
Mr. Lamont Scales serves as the MSM Coordinator within the Office of Health Equity (OHE), Office of the Director (OD), Division of HIV/AIDS Prevention (DHAP), National Center for HIV/AIDS, Viral Hepatitis, STD and TB Prevention (NCHHSTP), Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in Atlanta, Georgia. Mr. Scales coordinates and monitors the Division’s activities related to reducing health inequities among gay, bisexual, and other MSM (referred to as MSM). Mr. Scales has extensive experience and training in HIV prevention among MSM, including program management, organization and project coordination, communication and facilitation, and professional counseling. Mr. Scales served as Prevention Programs Manager for AID Atlanta, Inc., from 2009-2012. In that capacity, his duties included monitoring and evaluating the overall performance of all staff and projects in their prevention services portfolio, assisting the Director with developing departmental policies and procedures, serving as an expert adviser within the agency and in the community at large, and contributing to the development of grant proposals. Prior to 2009, he served as Program Coordinator-Men's STD Clinic and Substance Abuse/Housing Case Manager at AID Atlanta, Inc. Additionally, Mr. Scales has held numerous positions as a Mental Health Therapist, in the Atlanta and Philadelphia areas, and is also a National Certified Counselor. Mr. Scales is a CDC/ASPH Institute for HIV Prevention Leadership Fellow and a co-author on a number of peer reviewed publications and presentations pertaining to MSM, including Prevalence of serodiscordance, seropositivity, and exclusionary factors in US male couples presenting for Couples Voluntary Counseling and Testing (CVCT): preliminary results (2011, IAS). Mr. Scales received a bachelor of arts in psychology in 2004 from Temple University and a master of arts in professional community counseling in 2009 from Argosy University.
Jamie Schield, B.S., M.P.H.A., Planning Coordinator, North Central Texas HIV Planning Council, Fort Worth, Texas
Jamie is an elder in the field of HIV. Some say emeritus, some say dowinger queen. He has been a volunteer, frontline staff, executive director, HIV planner, CPG chair, federal grant reviewer, politico and activist. He is most proud of still being a volunteer.
Douglas Schuster, M.P.H., Epidemiologist/Program Specialist, Epidemiology and Surveillance Branch, Department of State Health Services, Austin, Texas
Douglas Schuster is an epidemiologist with the Texas Department of State Health Services, where he works on special projects and data analysis related to HIV, STD and TB surveillance data. He also assists with data collection and analysis for the Medical Monitoring Project and consults on the control of vector-borne illnesses for the Texas Zoonosis Control Branch.
Doran Senat, B.A., Administrative Coordinator, United Black Ellument/Resource Center Dallas, Dallas, Texas
Doran Senat is currently the Administrative Coordinator for United Black Ellument, which is the leading HIV Prevention project for YBMSM in Dallas lead by the Resource Center Dallas. Doran is currently a member of The Mpowerment Project’s National Advisory Board in San Francisco, California. He is a proud graduate of Fisk University in Nashville, Tennessee where he graduated with a B.A. in History. He is also a member of Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia, National Music Fraternity, Alpha Phi Omega National Service Fraternity, and DFW Pride Movement. Doran like many of his peers shares a great love and pride for his community and works tirelessly to continue the fight for HIV/AIDS community of Dallas. He enjoys spending his past time with his partner and practicing classical music. He serves as a mentor for many youth throughout the country and takes his work and character seriously. He devotes his success to his Lord and Savior as well as the leadership and guidance of his family.
Shane U. Sheu, M.P.H., Epidemiologist, TB/HIV/STD Epidemiology and Surveillance Branch, Department of State Health Services, Austin, Texas
Shane Sheu is an epidemiologist and project coordinator of the National HIV Behavioral Surveillance (NHBS) System. She has been involved with NHBS for three years and presented last year during the Texas HIV/STD Conference. Sheu earned a bachelor of science with honors at the University of Arizona and a master of public health at the University of Texas School of Public Health.
Dawn Smith, M.D., M.S., M.P.H., Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia
William Smith, Executive Director, National Coalition of STD Directors (NCSD), Washington, D.C.
William Smith is Executive Director of the National Coalition of STD Directors (NCSD) in Washington, DC. NCSD represents state, territorial, and large city health departments funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to carry out STD prevention actives. NCSD promotes sexual health through a specific focus on preventing STDs and its areas of work involve policy, advocacy, promoting health equity, and technical assistance and capacity building. Previously, Mr. Smith was the Vice Present for Public Policy at the Sexuality Information and Education Council of the United States (SIECUS) where he spearheaded national efforts to end abstinence-only-until-marriage programming and was involved in the creation of new federal programs to support evidence-based interventions aimed at preventing teen pregnancy and STDs, including HIV. Mr. Smith has worked in nearly every state in the country in some capacity, as well as having been engaged in significant sexual health promotion efforts in Mexico, other parts of Latin American, and in parts of Europe. Prior to joining SIECUS, Mr. Smith managed the Religion and Public Values Program at The National Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy. At the National Campaign, Mr. Smith launched an innovative community-based model to overcome conflict around teen sexuality. He is currently completing his doctoral degree in Political Philosophy with a focus on American federalism and the American founding. Mr. Smith is also an Associate Fellow of the Robert Wood Johnson Center for Health Policy at the University of New Mexico where he also teaches.
Harold Steward, Artistic Director, Fahari Arts Institute, Dallas, Texas
Harold Steward is an arts administrator and theater practitioner with over 15 years of experience in the field of arts and education. Mr. Steward studied communication at Newman University in Wichita, Kansas and playwrighting at Marymount Manhattan College in New York City. Mr. Steward currently serves as a Performing Arts Coordinator for the City of Dallas Office of Cultural Affairs’ South Dallas Cultural Center. Mr. Steward is also the Artistic Director of Fahari Arts Institute, a multi disciplinary black queer arts organization in Dallas. Steward is a steering committee member of the Community Prevention Network (CPN), where he leads trainings on social, racial and gender justice and also serves on the Youth Advisory Board for Abounding Prosperity Inc. As an educator, Steward has taught creative dramatics, theater of the oppressed and lead trainings on Arts Integration for various organization including The South Dallas Cultural Center, Big Thought of Dallas, Dallas’ Soul Rep Theatre, Open Stage of Harrisburg, Harrisburg Independent School District, Dallas Independent School District, Southern Methodist University and agencies in both The North Texas and Central Pennsylvania Conference of the United Methodist Church. Steward is a recipient of the Apostle Alex D. Byrd Empowerment Award (Legacy of Success Foundation) and Best Theatrical Director (Dallas Voice Reader’s Choice) Steward has also been recognized as an Up Starter in The Arts by D magazine and 2011 notable Queer Local by the Dallas Voice. Steward’s Philosophy is that all humans are served by art and art improves the quality of all life for mankind.
Jennifer Taussig, M.P.H., AIDSVu Project Director, Rollins School of Public Health, Emory University, Atlanta, Georgia
Jennifer Taussig is an Associate Director of Research Projects in the Epidemiology Department at Emory University’s Rollins School of Public Health. She is responsible for directing AIDSVu, a national HIV surveillance mapping project. Jennifer has over 15 years of experience working in HIV surveillance, research, policy, and program development. Formerly she was Director of the HIV Epidemiology Section at the Georgia Division of Public Health. Prior to her work there, she was the Statewide Public Health Coordinator with the Georgia Department of Corrections where she was responsible for developing and coordinating public health programs in the state prison system. She has authored and co-authored several publications related to HIV prevention among injection drug users and was responsible for instigating a landmark study of HIV seroconversion among male state prison inmates in Georgia.
Michael Thomas, STD Program Project Coordinator, Houston Department of Health and Human Services, Bureau of HIV/STD and Viral Hepatitis Prevention
Lupita Thornton, B.S.B./M., STD Program Project Coordinator, Houston Department of Health and Human Services, Houston, Texas
Lupita Thornton has been with the Houston Department of Health and Human Services since 1989.
Chetan Tiwari, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Department of Geography, University of North Texas, Denton, Texas
David L. Trees, Ph.D., Lead, Gonorrhea Molecular Epidemiology and Reference Lab, Laboratory Reference and Research Branch, CDC Division of STD Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia
Microbiology and Pontiac GTOs are shared passions for David Trees, Ph.D., and his wife, Eija, who also works at CDC as a research microbiologist in PulseNet. Trees himself works in the Laboratory Reference and Research Branch, within the Division of Sexually Transmitted Disease Prevention, studying microorganisms that cause sexually transmitted infections such as gonorrhea, chlamydia, chancroid, and syphilis. Trees joined CDC 22 years ago and believes that CDC offers a microbiologist "the rare opportunity to combine scientific research with public health." "My team acts as a reference laboratory for gonorrhea," explained Trees. "This involves both identification testing and antimicrobial susceptibility testing. The group is also involved in numerous antimicrobial resistance studies in which we provide molecular typing techniques and whole genome sequencing to help determine relatedness of resistant isolates."
Margaret Vaaler, Ph.D., Epidemiologist III and Data Team Lead, HIV Care Services Group, Department of State Health Services, Austin, Texas
Margaret Vaaler is an epidemiologist within the HIV Care Services Group at the Department of State Health Services. She currently studies linkage to care, retention in care, and unmet need patterns among HIV patients in Texas. She’s worked in both the public and private sector researching patterns in health care, health behaviors, and maternal and child health. She has a variety of research experience beyond health, including family studies, mental health, and volunteering. She is also a research affiliate of the University of Texas Austin’s Population Research Center.
Rodney VanDerwarker, M.P.H., Administrative Director and Vice President, The Fenway Institute at Fenway Health, Boston, Massachusetts
Rodney VanDerwarker has worked in HIV prevention and services since 1994 when he ran an AIDS service organization in southwest New Hampshire. He joined Fenway Health in 1997 and coordinated the Explore study, a randomized controlled trial of a multi-site behavioral intervention to help prevent HIV transmission among gay, bisexual and other men who have sex with men. In 1999, he served as Associate Director for Research Operations and oversaw all community education and study operations. In 2002, he was named Administrative Director of The Fenway Institute, Fenway Health’s division focused on research, education and health advocacy, and Vice President within Fenway Health. In this role, he has worked closely with Institute faculty and other collaborating researchers on the design and implementation of research studies and professional development programs in HIV/AIDS and lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) health. He directs strategic planning efforts for The Fenway Institute and serves on the Senior Management team for Fenway Health. He also directly oversees program design and implementation for community education efforts. This work has included serving as Project Director for the New Champions Project, a multi-site methamphetamine prevention program funded by SAMHSA, and Boston RESPECT, a multi-intervention HIV prevention program funded by CDC. Rodney earned his Master’s in Public Health focusing on Policy and Management from Boston University in 2007 and has co-authored several peer-reviewed articles and abstracts with TFI colleagues over the past fifteen years.
Mary VanWisse, Ph.D., Training Specialist, DSHS Health Communication and Community Engagement Group, Austin, Texas
Mary VanWisse earned a bachelor of arts and a master of arts at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. She earned a doctorate in speech communication at the University of Texas at Austin. She has worked for 10 years in public health, both in tobacco cessation and HIV/STD prevention. While in academia, she was interested in the intersection of cultural, social and political influences, and the impact on family and interpersonal relationships. Since moving to public health, she has looked for pragmatic applications of how these connections affect our physical and mental health.
Janina Vazquez, Care Services Group Manager, HIV/STD Prevention and Care Branch, Austin, Texas
Ricky L. Vaughn, L.B.S.W., M.P.H., Lead Medical Case Manager, SPCAA Project CHAMPS, Lubbock, Texas
Ricky Vaughn is currently the Lead Medical Case Manager for SPCAA Project CHAMPS, the Ryan White provider in Lubbock. He has been working in some capacity in the field of HIV/STD for 11 years. For the last two and a half years, he has been working as part of the AIDS Service Organization as well as serving as a member of the HIV Multidisciplinary Treatment Team through Project CHAMPS’ contracted HIV Medical Clinic at the Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center Department of Internal Medicine. After graduating from Texas Tech University, Ricky worked for over two years as a case manager at South Plains AIDS Resource Center providing medical, social, as well as housing services. He then went on to work for the City of Lubbock Health Department for over 5 years as a Disease Intervention Specialist. He identified persons with serologic and laboratory identified positive sexually transmitted diseases and then coordinated referrals for treatment and care. Ricky was also charged with identifying possible contacts and notifying them of the need for testing and possible treatment of the identified infections as well as worked as a back-up clinician in the STD Clinic. While at the health department, Ricky earned his Master of Public Health through Walden University.
Veronica A. Villela-Perez, B.A., Project Coordinator, Division of Community Pediatrics, University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, San Antonio, Texas
Veronica Villela-Perez is the Project Coordinator for the Women’s HEART Project and the Practice Based Research Network (PBRN) Resource Center at the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio (UTHSCSA). In the ten years that she has been at UTHSCSA, she had coordinated several HIV and substance abuse prevention/treatment projects targeted at adolescents in the juvenile justice system. She has experience in engaging investigators, community clinicians and community partners in research collaborations.
Gene W. Voskuhl, M.D., Medical Director, AIDS Arms, Inc., Dallas, Texas
Dr. Voskuhl is an infectious disease physician who has been providing HIV-specific care to PLWH for 14 years, serving as Medical Director of Ryan White funded clinics in Oklahoma City and Dallas. He has been active in clinical research, Ryan White planning, and LBGT advocacy. His work as a professor has been recognized with an Outstanding Faculty Award for his time teaching HIV care to young physicians. In 2011 he was honored with the Best HIV Specialist in Dallas Award during 2011.
Corinne Weisgerber, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Communication, St. Edward's University, Austin, Texas
Dr. Weisgerber is an associate professor of Communication at St. Edward's University in Austin, Texas where she teaches social media, interactive media, PR, interpersonal communication, research methods, and persuasion. She serves as the Communication Department area coordinator and the PRSSA chapter advisor. She is fascinated by the Internet and has been studying computer-mediated communication and online relational development since the beginning of her doctoral studies at the Pennsylvania State University. Her current research interests include social media, communication pedagogy, and visual communication. She is fluent in 4 languages and has a working knowledge of 2 more. Read her blog: Social Media Class
Christopher White, Ph.D.
Michelle Wilkinson, M.P.H., University of Texas Houston School of Public Health, Department of Epidemiology, Houston, Texas
Michelle Wilkinson is a Ph.D. student in Epidemiology at the University of Texas School of Public Health at Houston. She was the research assistant on the National HIV Behavioral Surveillance study in Houston for two years. She earned her BA in history from Bucknell University and became interested in public health after volunteering with the Guyana Red Cross and traveling to distant villages promoting condom use and HIV education. Michelle is originally from Houston.
Mark Wilson, Division Manager, Adult Health Services, Tarrant County Public Health, Fort Worth, Texas
Mark P. Wilson is Program Director for Tarrant County’s Adult Health Services Division which is the STD/HIV Prevention program for the County. He has worked in public health for 40 years, beginning with a 20 year CDC career as a Public Health Advisor in Chicago, New York City, Iowa and Indiana. He them managed the City of Detroit STD Program for 11 years, before moving to Texas in 2004 to manage the only fully combined STD, HIV Prevention and HIV Surveillance program in the state.
La Shonda Worthey, B.S., STD/HIV Program Manager, Dallas County Health and Human Services, Dallas, Texas
La Shonda Worthey manages and directs the STD/HIV Program in Dallas County, Public Health assigned region that includes 49 counties and the Prevention Training Center Southeastern quadrant of the United States. She has served in this capacity for the past four years. Prior to that, she was the Training Supervisor for the Prevention Training Center for five years. She was a Public Health Advisor with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta, Georgia and Pensacola, Florida for five years. She interviewed and counseled clients with STDs, particularly syphilis and HIV. She has been in public health for the past 19 years. She has worked in multiple capacities, including correctional facilities (local, county and state), local alcohol and drug treatment centers, and in congenital syphilis. She serves on the Dallas Independent School District School Health Advisory Committee. She was a speaker at the 11th and 14th Annual Texas HIV/STD Conferences in Austin, Texas.
Biru Yang, Ph.D., M.P.H., Epidemiologist/Biostatistician, Houston Department of Health and Human Services, Houston, Texas