Division of Chronic Disease Research Across the Lifecourse (CoRAL) - Faculty/Staff

Contact: Emily Oken, MD, MPH
Phone: (617) 867-4879
Email: szilvia_szegedi@harvardpilgrim.org


Faculty
 
Assistant Professor
(617) 867-4835
 
Associate Professor
(617) 867- 4505
 
Vice Chair
Professor
(617) 867-4879
 
 
Fellows
 
Carlos Andres Cardenas Salazar, PhD, MPH

(617) 867- 4520

andres_cardenas@harvardpilgrim.org
 

Fuying Tian, PhD

(617) 867- 4974

fuying_tian@harvardpilgrim.org

 

Samantha Lain, MD

(617) 867- 4873

samantha_lain@harvardpilgrim.org


Staff

Brittany Garrity
Administrative Specialist
Brittany Garrity is an Administrative Specialist for the Division of Chronic Disease Research Across the Lifecourse (CoRAL). She supports faculty members Dr. Marie-France Hivert and Dr. Peter James and works on a variety of CoRAL-wide projects. She received her BS in Biology from the University of Massachusetts at Boston. Brittany worked as a lab manager before joining the Department of Population Medicine in January of 2017.
Phone: 617-867-4519
Email: brittany_garrity@harvardpilgrim.org
 
Lauren Hutchinson, MPH
Data Manager
Lauren Hutchinson, MPH, is a Data Manager for the Division of Chronic Disease Research Across the Lifecourse (CoRAL), Department of Population Medicine at Harvard Medical School and Harvard Pilgrim Health Care Institute. Ms. Hutchinson received her BS in Biology from Simmons College and her MPH in Epidemiology/Biostatistics from Tufts University School of Medicine. She has professional experience in biostatistics, healthcare communication, technical writing and editing, and project management. Her research interests include prenatal genetics as well as the association between prenatal exposures and developmental outcomes in children over time.
Phone: (617) 867-4988
 
Chelsea Jenter, MPH
Program Manager

Chelsea Jenter, MPH, works closely with Dr. Emily Oken and Dr. Jason Block to oversee the operations of the Division of Chronic Disease Research Across the Lifecourse (CoRAL) within the Department of Population Medicine. Ms. Jenter has managed many research projects, spanning from IT interventions to large-scale interventions to nation-wide consortia. Ms. Jenter received her AB from Smith College and her MPH in Health Policy and Management from Boston University. She has worked in the Department of Population Medicine twice: first in the early 2000s, and then again starting in 2011.

Phone: (617) 867-4984
 
Amy Louer, EdM
Project Coordinator
Amy Louer, EdM, is a Project Coordinator for the Division of Chronic Disease Research Across the Lifecourse (CoRAL) at Harvard Pilgrim Health Care Institute. Ms. Louer received her BA in Psychology from the University of Rochester and her EdM in Prevention Science and Practice from Harvard Graduate School of Education. She has coordinated at-home and clinic-based obesity prevention programs in the Boston area and has served as a Research Assistant on Project Viva, a longitudinal pre-birth cohort study. Her interests include delivery of medical education, dual-generation behavioral interventions, and the influences of early life experiences on mental and physical health.
Phone: 617-867-4865
 
Marleny Ortega
Project Coordinator/Phlebotomist
Marleny Ortega is a Project Coordinator for the Division of Chronic Disease Research Across the Lifecourse (CoRAL). She began working at the Harvard Pilgrim Health Care Institute in 2012 as a Research Assistant for Project Viva, a longitudinal study of pre- and perinatal predictors of maternal and child health outcomes. She received her BA in Psychology from Southern New Hampshire University and is currently working on her master degree in Public Health.
Phone: 617-867-4918
 
Nicholas Radigan
Research Assistant

Nicholas Radigan joined Project Viva within the Division of Chronic Disease Research Across the Lifecourse (CoRAL) in October 2016 as a Research Assistant. Earlier this year, Nick received his BS in Biology from Saint Joseph’s University. At SJU, he was involved with their Institute of Clinical Bioethics where he assisted with their health promoter project and conducted his own research about chronic kidney disease in Nicaraguan sugarcane workers. In the future, he hopes to attend medical school and possibly work in internal medicine.
 

Sheryl Rifas-Shiman, MPH
Senior Research Associate
Sheryl L. Rifas-Shiman, MPH, is a senior research analyst/biostatistician in the Department of Population Medicine at Harvard Medical School and Harvard Pilgrim Health Care Institute.  She is involved with many projects at the DPM including observational epidemiology, surveillance, and randomized interventions.  Her research interests include nutrition and other exposures that occur during pregnancy and childhood, and the influence of these experiences on the health of both mother and child.  Sheryl has led several analyses in the area of research methodology and predictors of childhood obesity.  As an educator, she has advised many research fellows and graduate/medical students on their research projects.
Phone: (617) 867-4824
 
Lisa Rokoff, MS
Research Assistant

Lisa Rokoff is a Research Assistant for the Division of Chronic Disease Research Across the Lifecourse (CoRAL). She primarily works on projects related to environmental exposures, such as wood stove emissions, traffic pollution, and perfluoroalkyl substances, and child cardiometabolic health outcomes. Lisa received her BA in Environmental Science from Boston University and her MS in Environmental Health from the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. She joined DPM in 2016.

Michael Seward, AB
Research Assistant
Michael Seward, AB, is a Research Assistant for the Division of Chronic Disease Research Across the Lifecourse (CoRAL). He joined the Department of Population Medicine in 2015 after receiving his AB in Organismic and Evolutionary Biology at Harvard University with a secondary in Global Health and Health Policy. He previously conceived a traffic-light food labeling study at Harvard cafeterias for his undergraduate thesis and currently works on several intervention and epidemiology studies in the department. Michael is pursuing a career in medicine with an active role in health policy, and his research interests include obesity prevention and behavioral science. 
Phone: 617-867-4419
Denise Simon, MPH
Project Manager
Denise Simon, MPH, is a Project Manager for the Division of Chronic Disease Research Across the Lifecourse (CoRAL), Department of Population Medicine at Harvard Medical School and the Harvard Pilgrim Health Care Institute. Ms. Simon has experience in research study design, data collection, project oversight and finances. Her interests include the connection between maternal and child health, healthcare policy, community health education, and obesity prevention. She received a BS in Health Science from Boston University, and her MPH from Boston University School of Public Health concentrating in Maternal and Child Health. She joined CoRAL in 2009.
Phone: (617) 867-4905

Karen Switkowski, PhD, MPH
Research Scientist
Karen Switkowski, PhD, MPH, is a Research Scientist in the Division of Chronic Disease Research Across the Lifecourse (CoRAL), Department of Population Medicine at Harvard Medical School and the Harvard Pilgrim Health Care Institute. She primarily works with Project Viva, a longitudinal study of pre- and perinatal predictors of maternal and child health outcomes, and coordinates Project Viva’s participation in the Environmental influences on Child Health Outcomes (ECHO) Program. She received a BA in Sociology from Emory University, and an MS in Biochemical Nutrition, an MPH in Epidemiology & Biostatistics and a PhD in Nutritional Epidemiology from Tufts University. Her research interests include the impact of early-life nutritional exposures (including maternal diet during pregnancy and infant diet) on child growth patterns and health outcomes.
Phone: (617) 867-4218
Email: Karen_Switkowski@harvardpilgrim.org

Szilvia Szegedi
Senior Administrative Specialist
Szilvia Szegedi, Senior Administrative Specialist in the Division of Chronic Disease Research Across the Lifecourse (CoRAL), provides faculty support to Dr. Emily Oken and Dr. Jason Block and assists with a variety of CoRAL-wide administrative tasks. She also coordinates the CoRAL Blog - WeighingInBlog.org - with Jennifer Thompson and Jason Block. She earned her BA in Communications/Marketing from Boston College. After working seven years as a marketing manager in the non-profit sector focusing on diversity and multiculturalism in the hospitality industry, she joined the Institute in January of 2014. 

Phone: (617) 867-4879



Jennifer Thompson, MPP
Project Manager
Jennifer Thompson, MPP, is a Project Manager for the Division of Chronic Disease Research Across the Lifecourse (CoRAL), Department of Population Medicine at Harvard Medical School and the Harvard Pilgrim Health Care Institute. She has worked on a wide variety of research projects, ranging from health care quality and accessibility in rural Ethiopia to variations in Medicare Part D prescription drug plan formularies. As part of CoRAL, she manages large, multi-center trials focused on the influence of early childhood nutrition and environmental exposures on childhood and young adult health outcomes. She received an AB in History from Harvard College and an MPP in health care policy from the Georgetown University Public Policy Institute. She joined the Department of Population Medicine in 2012.

Phone: (617) 867-4941
 
Nicole Witham
Project Manager

Nicole Witham is a Project Manager for the Division of Chronic Disease Research Across the Lifecourse (CoRAL). She began working at the Harvard Pilgrim Health Care Institute in 2013 as a Research Assistant for Project Viva, a longitudinal study of pre- and perinatal predictors of maternal and child health outcomes. She received her BS in Biology from Northeastern University and plans to attend medical school in the future. Her research interests include childhood obesity prevention and the relationship between behavioral health and obesity. 

Phone: (617) 867-4915

Email: nicole_witham@harvardpilgrim.org