Lab Members

Deanna Kepka, MPH, PhD

Deanna Kepka, PhD, MPH, is a Huntsman Cancer Institute (HCI) investigator and an assistant professor in the College of Nursing at the University of Utah. She is a member of the Cancer Control and Population Sciences (CCPS) research groupKepka’s main research interests are the gaps in health care access and quality for vulnerable populations. She fo... Read More

Kaila (McDonald) Christini, MsPH, MS

Kaila (McDonald) Christini, MsPH, MS

Program Manager
kaila.christini@hci.utah.edu

Kaila is a program manager in the Huntsman Cancer Institute Kepka Research Lab at the University of Utah. Her research interests include population science research that addresses clinical and health disparities in cancer risk and outcomes, multi-factor environmental and health modeling, spatial modeling, spatial data science, epidemiologic methodology and study design, and data visualization. After watching her grandmother suffer from brain and lung cancer as a result of breast cancer, and the impact it had on the entire extended family, she is driven towards quality improvement, reduction of disparities, and increased access for cancer prevention and care.

Jade Hill, MPH

Jade Hill, MPH

Program Manager
jade.h.hill@hci.utah.edu

Jade is a program manager in the Huntsman Cancer Institute Kepka Research Lab at the University of Utah. Jade possesses a master of public health and a bachelor of science in health promotion. She has prior research experience managing a large-scale, federally funded project focused on pregnant women diagnosed with opioid use disorder. She currently assists Dr. Kepka in the implementation of numerous projects. Her research interests include health equity, women’s health, cervical cancer prevention, and epidemiological concepts. Her goal is to merge her passion for public health and evidence-based research to attain health equity.

Nellie Webb

Nellie Webb

Undergraduate Research Assistant
u1118991@utah.edu

Nellie is an undergraduate at the University of Utah in her final semester before receiving her honors degree in nursing. While originally from California, she has started to call the Utah mountains home. She’s often occupied with nursing school, but in her free time you can find her on a hike, reading a good book, or skiing in the winter.

Jacob Lipscomb

Jacob Lipscomb

Undergraduate Research Assistant
jacob.lipscomb@hci.utah.edu

Jacob is an undergraduate in applied mathematics at the University of Utah. He has also been working at the Huntsman Cancer Institute Hospital in sterile processing for five years. He is engaged and living with his fiancé, Courtney, in Holladay. He loves plants, reading, and spending time outdoors between Bear Lake and Strawberry Reservoir.

Shauna Ayers

Shauna Ayers

Research Consultant
shauna.ayres@hci.utah.edu

Shauna is a research consultant for the Kepka Research Lab within Huntsman Cancer Institute at the University of Utah. She earned a master of public health from University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and dual bachelor of science degrees in health education and promotion and psychology from the University of Utah. She has experience in academic, community-based, and hospital-based research. Her research interests include health communications, prevention-focused interventions, and public health sustainability. Her ultimate goal is to help all people live happier, healthier, and more fulfilling lives.
Ryan Tuohy

Ryan Tuohy

Administrative Assistant
ryan.tuohy@hci.utah.edu

Ryan is the administrative assistant for the Kepka team. He is responsible for managing the administrative tasks, budgeting, and grant support for the Kepka team.

Deanna Kepka

Deanna Kepka, PhD, MPH, MA
Principal Investigator

Cancer Center Bio

Contact Us

Deanna Kepka, PhD, MPH, MA
Principal Investigator
2000 Circle of Hope, Rm 4144
Salt Lake City, UT 84112

Phone: 801-587-4565
Email: deanna.kepka@hci.utah.edu