Meet Our Team

The center includes a diverse group of investigators with a broad range of expertise and experience leading very large, geographically distributed projects. Click below to learn more about each of the center’s investigators.

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Image of Brian Ahmedani


Cinical & Masters-Level
Social Worker 

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Image of Dr. Johnson


C.S. Mott Endowed Professor of Public Health 

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Lauren Weinstock


Clinical Psychologist and Professor of Psychiatry and Human Behavior

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Sarah A. Arias, PhD

 Arias, Sarah

Dr. Sarah Arias is an Assistant Professor in the Psychosocial Research Program at Butler Hospital, with a faculty appointment in the Department of Psychiatry and Human Behavior at the Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University.

Dr. Arias’ research interests include suicide treatment and prevention, substance abuse treatment and prevention, as well as factors affecting health-related decision making.

Brown University Psychosocial Research Program

Brown University Biography

James Barrett, PhD

 Ahmedani, Brian

Dr. James Barrett is a nationally-recognized expert in adolescent mental health, risk assessment, school safety and juvenile justice. He is a licensed psychologist and is a consultant, evaluator, trainer, speaker and author. Dr. Barrett has a private practice where he provides training, assessment and consultation. He specializes in school consultations, juvenile risk assessment, threat assessment and training for schools and law enforcement.outlook india

Dr. Barrett has presented at numerous national conferences on juvenile justice, gang violence, juvenile safety assessment, preventing retaliatory violence, and police-mental health partnerships. He has contributed to national meetings convened by SAMHSA, the MacArthur Foundation and the International Association of Chiefs of Police. He is a contributor to Translational Issues in Psychological Science, the Journal of Applied Juvenile Justice Services, Psychological Services, Adolescent Psychiatry, The Community Psychologist, and The Handbook of Human Development for Health Professionals.

Health Equity Research

Sandra Berg, PhD

 Berg, Sandra

Dr. Sandra Berg has joined the Complex Health Solutions team as the behavioral health senior director to focus on program development and overall organizational strategic approach to meet the behavioral health needs of the CareSource members. She currently serves as the chair of the governor’s subcommittee on children’s mental health in Kansas and is a voting member on the evidence-based practices subcommittee for the governor’s mental health advisory council. Dr. Berg served on three legislative workgroups to help move forward historical legislation for mental health reform in Kansas during the 2020 and 2021 legislative sessions. Sandra served as executive director in the Kansas Medicaid managed care market for nearly 8 years before joining CareSource.

Prior to her role in managed care, Dr. Berg has served as executive director of 3 psychiatric residential treatment facilities for children, the clinical director of a children’s psychiatric hospital, clinical director of a special purpose school and has been a presenter at both the local and national level. She has served on many advisory groups for mental health as well as consulted with Fortune 500 groups. Dr. Berg is a licensed clinical professional counselor and has doctoral degree in industrial/organizational psychology.


Jordan M Braciszewski, PhD

 Braciszewski, Jordan

Dr. Jordan Braciszewski is a fully licensed psychologist. He currently works at Henry Ford Health as the site principal investigator and co-investigator for multiple projects.

Dr. Braciszewski research interests include: Substance use among vulnerable populations, technology-based interventions for substance use, and access to health care.

Henry Ford Health Biography

Gregory K. Brown, PhD

 Brown, Gregory

Dr. Gregory Brown is a Research Associate Professor of Clinical Psychology in Psychiatry

Director, Penn Center for the Prevention of Suicide, University of Pennsylvania, School of Medicine. Clinical Psychologist, Corporal Michael J. Crescenz VA Medical Center, Philadelphia, PA, University of Pennsylvania

Diversity Search Advisor, University of Pennsylvania. Co-Director, Penn Innovation in Suicide Prevention Implementation Research (INSPIRE) Center, University of Pennsylvania, School of Medicine.

Dr. Brown is an internationally renowned expert in suicide prevention whose work has led to transformational advances in the treatment of suicidal individuals. His research aims to develop and evaluate the effectiveness of innovative, targeted interventions designed to reduce vulnerability factors associated with suicide behavior in high risk populations and to examine and improve the implementation of evidence-based treatments into “real world” settings to prevent suicide.

University of Pennsylvania Biography

Nicholas Carson, MD, FRCPC

 Carson, Nicholas

Dr. Nicholas Carson is an Assistant Professor in Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School and a Clinical Research Associate at the Health Equity Research Lab and the Center for Multicultural Mental Health Research. He is the Division Chief for Child & Adolescent Psychiatry at the Cambridge Health Alliance.

Dr. Carson's research interests include the application of natural language processing and machine learning approaches to support adolescents at risk for severe psychiatric outcomes, such as suicide and psychosis. Hestudies the quality of mental health services for multicultural communities, particularly among youth, and pursues co-productive performance improvement strategies to support shared decision making with families.

Health Equity Research Lab

Valeria A. Chambers, Ed.M., CAS, CPS


 Chambers, Valeria

Ms. Chambers is a Senior Community Researcher at the Health Equity Research Lab, Department of Psychiatry at Cambridge Health Alliance. She is a Research Consultant for the Center of Excellence for Psychosocial and Systemic Research, Massachusetts General Hospital, and a trainer for AdCare Educational Institute, Bureau of Substance Addictions Services. She is the founder and coordinator of Black Voices: Pathways 4 Recovery, a state-wide peer support and leadership network and is an instructor for the Harvard Medical School Department of Continuing Education. She also co-facilitates a weekly GPS Group Peer Support group for Black Leaders who work in human service roles.

Ms. Chambers works to help improve mental health systems of care for people of color and other communities that have been marginalized, by promoting social justice, cultural responsiveness, and mental health advocacy.

Health Equity Research Lab

Elizabeth S. Chen, PhD, FACM

 Chen, Elizabeth

Dr. Elizabeth Chen is Interim Director of the Brown Center for Biomedical Informatics, Associate Professor of Medical Science, and Associate Professor of Health Services, Policy, and Practice at Brown University.

Dr. Chen's research involves leveraging electronic health data along with health information and communications technology to support biomedical discovery and healthcare delivery. Specific research interests include clinical documentation, clinical decision support, health information needs, standards and interoperability, natural language processing (NLP), and data mining and machine learning.

Brown University Biography

Brown University Research

JohnBosco Chika Chukwuorji, PhD

 John Bosco Chukwuoji

Dr. JohnBosco Chika Chukwuorji is a research associate at Michigan State University supporting the National Center for Health and Justice Integration for Suicide Prevention (NCHATS). He completed his predoctoral research as a Fulbright scholar at Cleveland State University Cleveland, Ohio USA (2019-2020) and earned his PhD in clinical psychology at the University of Nigeria Nsukka in 2021. He holds editorial positions in several reputable journals.

Dr. Chukwuorji's research is focused on finding innovative approaches to provide quality mental healthcare for people living with challenging health conditions, forcibly displaced persons, justice-involved individuals, and other vulnerable populations.

Jennifer Johnson Team

Erin Comartin, PhD, LMSW

 Comartin, Erin

Dr. Erin Comartin is an associate professor at WSU School of Social Work. She received her Ph.D. and M.S.W. degrees from Wayne State University.

Dr. Comartin research focuses on social welfare policies and interventions for vulnerable populations in the criminal/legal system. Most recently she is working with community partners to evaluate the implementation and outcomes of Behavioral Threat Assessment and Management teams, which attempt to prevent mass violence events

Wayne University Biography

Benjamin Lê Cook, PhD, MPH

 Cook, Benjamin

Dr. Benjamin Lê Cook is Director of the Health Equity Research Lab at Cambridge Health Alliance, Associate Professor in the Department of Psychiatry at the Harvard Medical School and Visiting Clinical Associate Professor at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine. He holds a Ph.D. in Health Policy from Harvard University and an MPH in Health Behavior and Health Education from UNC Chapel Hill. Dr. Cook is a health services researcher focused on improving quality of life, and access and quality of treatment for individuals living with mental illness and substance use disorder.

Dr. Cook’s NIH, AHRQ- and Foundation-funded research tracks healthcare disparities in the U.S. and the impacts of health reform on disparities, seeks to understand discrimination in the patient-provider interaction, and evaluates the impact of hospital-based interventions on health equity. As Director of the Health Equity Research Lab, he also oversees research on criminal justice and mental health, transgender health, opioid use treatment evaluation, integrated behavioral health care, and the promotion of community-engaged research partnerships. Dr. Cook has experience mentoring students and faculty at all levels in health disparities and health system evaluation.


Health Equity Research Lab

Dharma Cortés, PhD

 Cortes, Dharma

Dr. Dharma Cortés received her bachelor’s degree in Psychology and a Master’s degree from the University of Puerto Rico, a Doctorate degree in Sociology from Fordham University, and completed her post-doctoral training in Medical Anthropology at Harvard Medical School’s Department of Social Medicine.

For more than twenty years Dr. Cortés has been conducting community-based research with Latinos in the U.S., focusing on acculturation, health, mental health, and access to healthcare. She has contributed as principal investigator, co-investigator and consultant to studies funded by the NIH, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, and the Robert Wood-Johnson Foundation.

Health Equity Research Lab's site

 James Dearing, PhD

 Dearing, James

Dr. Jim Dearing is Brandt Endowed Professor in the Department of Communication at Michigan State University.He received his Ph.D. in Communication Theory and Research from the University of Southern California. Dr. Dearing studies the diffusion of innovations, including the adoption and implementation of new evidence-based practices, programs, technologies and policies.

Dr. Dearing’s research and teaching spans dissemination science, implementation science, program sustainability, and the psychological and sociological basis of the diffusion process. He works with research and practice improvement teams in environmental remediation, nursing care, water conservation, injury and fatality prevention, public health, and healthcare.

MSU College of Communication Arts and Sciences Biography

Maji Hailemariam Debena, PhD, MSW

 Debena, Maji

Dr. Maji Hailemariam Debena is an assistant professor in the Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology, and Reproductive Biology in the College of Human Medicine.

Dr. Debena’s research interests include health disparities, mental health, underserved communities including women and justice-involved individuals. Her completed and ongoing research engagements focus on low-resource settings including those low-resource settings within a high-income country context.

MSU Public Health Biography

Christopher M Fischer, MD

 Fischer, Christopher

Dr. Christopher Fischer is an emergency medicine physician and the Chair of the Department of Emergency Medicine at Mount Auburn Hospital in Cambridge, Massachusetts and an Assistant Professor of Emergency Medicine at Harvard Medical School (HMS). He is responsible for the clinical operations in the emergency departments at Mount Auburn Hospital, a teaching hospital of Harvard Medical School. Dr. Fischer is committed to the teaching and education of medical students and residents.

Research Website Link

He provides direct bedside supervision to residents in emergency medicine, internal medicine, psychiatry and pediatrics in the emergency departments at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and Cambridge Health Alliance and Mount Auburn Hospital. In addition, Dr. Fischer provides both didactic and bedside clinical teaching to medical students at Harvard Medical School. In 2018, he was selected as a member of the inaugural cohort of Core Faculty for Clinical Skills Assessment in the HMS Program in Medical Education. Over the last 10 years, Dr. Fischer has sought to improve the care of patients in the emergency department through clinical innovations that improve patient safety. He holds his leadership positions in the emergency departments at Harvard-affiliated hospitals and has done so while maintaining a commitment to the education of medical students, residents and junior faculty members.

Havard Catalyst Profile

Brandon A. Gaudiano, PhD

 Gaudiano, Brandon

Dr. Brandon Gaudiano holds joint academic appointments as Professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Human Behavior at the Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University, and in the Department of Behavioral and Social Sciences at the Brown School of Public Health. He is the Director of the Transitional Outpatient Program at Butler Hospital, and is a Research Psychologist at the Providence VA Medical Center. In addition, he is Primary Faculty in the Mindfulness Center at Brown University.


Dr. Gaudiano's research focuses on developing and testing novel psychosocial treatments for patients with mood and psychotic disorders, including suicidality. His studies investigate cognitive-behavioral and acceptance/mindfulness-based therapies, digital and mobile health technologies, and dissemination/implementation issues. The aim of this research is to improve the standard of care for individuals with difficult-to-treat clinical conditions, including during treatment transition periods. His research and experience of direct provision of care includes working with patients who deal with poverty, discrimination, and homelessness.

Brown University Biography

Jessica Hulsey

 Hulsey, Jessica

Jessica Hulsey is the founder of the Addiction Policy Forum, a national nonprofit organization that helps patients, families, and communities affected by the disease.

Jessica is a national expert with more than 30 years in the field with expertise in addiction treatment, prevention, recovery, criminal justice responses to SUD, medications for addiction treatment, addiction stigma and evidence-based practices. Jessica translates the science and conducts trainings for key stakeholders, including judicial leaders, corrections officials and staff, prosecutors, law enforcement, families impacted by addiction, physicians and other health care professionals.

Addiction Policy Forum Biography

Rich Jones, ScD

 Jones, Rich

Dr. Rich Jones is an epidemiologist and methodologist. He leads the Quantitative Science Program (QSP) at the Brown University Warren Alpert Medical School, Department of Psychiatry and Human Behavior, the Department of Neurology.

Dr. Jones’ main research areas concerns the cognitive reserve hypothesis in cognitive aging, dementia, Alzheimer disease, and delirium; and measurement and methodology in the clinical neurosciences.

Brown University Biography

Braeden C. Kelly

 Kelly, Braeden

Braeden Kelly has been working as a Director, Programs Operations at Addiction Policy Forum for 7 years. Addiction Policy Forum is part of the Organizations industry, and located in Maryland, United States.


Kent Key, PhD, MPH


 Key, Kent

Dr. Kent Key is a Health Disparities Researcher. He is faculty at the Michigan State University College of Human Medicine in the Charles Stewart Mott Department of Public Health. Dr. Key is an expert in building equitable relationships between community and academic partners for health research and elevating community-identified health priorities to the research enterprise.

Dr. Key’s Research interests include Community-Engaged Research, Community-Based Participatory Research, Racial and Ethnic Health Disparities Research, Social Determinants of Health African American Health across the Life Span

African American Aging Research

African American Women’s Research Mental Health, Youth Development and Career Exploration, Health Equity, and

Patient-Provider Health Communication.

Kent Key, PhD, MPH (

Dean Sheryl Kubiak, PhD


 Kubiak, Sheryl

Dean Sheryl Kubiak, PhD, currently serves as dean and professor of the Wayne State University School of Social Work, and founding director of the of the school’s Center for Behavioral Health and Justice.

Dean Kubiak’s Sheryl Kubiak, PhD currently serves as dean and professor of the Wayne State University School of Social Work. As the director of the of the school’s Center for Behavioral Health and Justice, Kubiak’s team provides local communities, organizations, and behavioral health and law enforcement agencies with an array of expert support examining the intersection of criminal/legal systems and behavioral health across Michigan.


Wayne State University Biography

Research link:

Wayne State University Dean - Director

Melissa P Maye, PhD

 Maye, Melissa

Dr. Melissa Maye is a licensed clinical psychologist who is an Assistant Scientist in the Center for Health Policy and Health Services Research at Henry Ford Health and is dually appointed as an Assistant Professor through Pediatrics in the College of Human Medicine at Michigan State University.


Dr. Maye’s specific research interests focus on identifying implementation strategies that may increase infants hospitalized in the neonatal intensive care unit access to developmentally supportive interventions that may promote better language and cognitive outcomes and testing/developing implementation strategies that are informed by principles of behavioral economics that increase the quality and quantity of community providers persistent use of evidence-based early interventions within inclusive settings.

Henry Ford Health Biography


Kate Miley, PhD, CNP, PMHNP-BC

 Miley, Kathleen

Dr. Kate Miley is an Assistant Research Investigator at the HealthPartners Institute. Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, University of Minnesota Medical Center. PhD - University of Minnesota, School of Nursing, Minneapolis, MN; MS - Boston College Connell School of Nursing, Boston, MA, Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner specialty; BS - Northeastern University, Boston, MA, Major: Philosophy.

Dr. Miley’s research interests include first episode psychosis, bipolar disorder, serious mental illness, early intervention in psychiatry, health promotion and cardiovascular comorbidities in serious mental illness, social isolation and social functioning, suicide prevention, clinical decision support, machine learning, causal discovery analyses.

Health Partners Institute Biography

Ivan W. Miller, PhD

 Miller, Ivan

Dr. Ivan Miller is a Professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Human Behavior at the Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University where he directs the Brown Consortium for Research Innovation in Suicide Prevention (CRISP). Dr. Miller is also the Director of the Psychosocial Research Program at Butler Hospital. Dr. Miller has been funded continuously by the National Institutes of Health for over 40 years for his work on developing and evaluating treatments for individuals with severe mood disorders and suicide risk during care transitions.


Dr. Miller has published over 300 articles, chapters and books focused on suicide risk and prevention, clinical trials for severe mood disorders and the role of the family in psychiatric disorders. Dr. Miller was one of the Principal Investigators of the multi-site ED-SAFE study investigating the efficacy of screening and brief interventions in reducing suicide among emergency department patients – one of the largest studies of suicide prevention conducted in the US. For this work, he was recently awarded the Minerva award for “Best Clinically Useful Original Research Paper in Mental Health.” Dr. Miller is a member of the Scientific Review Board of the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, and has consulted regularly with National Institute of Mental Health, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Administration and The Joint Commission on issues of screening and prevention of suicidal behavior.


Brown University Biography


Ted R. Miller, PhD

 Miller, Ted

Dr. Ted Miller is a health economist, community planner, and operations research analyst with 35 years of experience studying the epidemiology, cost, and prevention of both deliberately self-inflicted injury and crime/incarceration. Ted is a Principal Research Scientist at the Pacific Institute for Research Evaluation in Beltsville, Maryland.

Dr. Miller’s publications are listed at .

Google Scholar Profile .

Rebecca C. Rossom, MD, MS

 Rossom, Rebecca

Dr. Rebecca Rossom is Geriatric psychiatrist and associate professor at the University of Minnesota Medical School. She received her MD at the University of Minnesota.

Dr. Rossom’s research interests include, depression, suicide prevention, serious mental illness, chronic disease, opioid use disorder, aging, and cognition.

Rossom, Rebecca C., MD, MS (

Kimberly Sperber, PhD

 Sperber, Kimberly

Dr. Kimberly Sperber received her Ph.D. in Criminal Justice from the University of Cincinnati in 2003 and has worked in the field for more than 20 years. She is currently the criminal program justice lead at CareSource.

Dr. Sperber’s areas of expertise include CQI and outcomes evaluation, implementation of evidence-based practices within community-based programs, correctional risk/needs assessment, accreditation, and organizational risk management.


Faye S. Taxman, PhD

 Taxman, Faye

Dr. Faye Taxman is a University Professor at the Schar School of Policy and Government at George Mason University. She has a Ph.D. from Rutgers University’s School of Criminal Justice. She is a health service criminologist.

Dr. Taxman is recognized for her work in the development of seamless systems-of-care models that link the criminal justice system with other health care and other service delivery systems and reengineering probation and parole supervision services. She is the current Principal Investigator for the National Institute on Drug Abuse ‘s Justice Community Opioid Innovation Network (JCOIN) and HEAL Accelerator for the National Institute on Health

George Mason University Center for Advancing Correctional Excellence

George Mason University JCOIN Training & Engagement Center (JTEC)