Former Research Group Members
Akanksha Acharya, MS
Former Data Manager/Analyst
Akanksha joined Kirchhoff group in February 2017 to assist with data management and analysis for several studies, including one project analyzing statewide Utah Immunization Surveillance System Data. Akanksha completed her undergraduate degree in Nursing from India and graduate degree in epidemiology from Germany. Her research interests include long term health effects among cancer survivors and association between lifestyle habits and cancer risk. She enjoys travelling and spending time with her family.
Bree Barbeau, MPHFormer Graduate Research Assistant
Bree is an epidemiologist with the Utah Department of Health. She worked as a graduate research assistant with Dr. Kirchhoff in 2014 while earning her Masters of Public Health in Epidemiology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Her research with Dr. Kirchhoff’s team focused on longitudinal hospitalization outcomes among childhood and adolescent cancer patients.
Former Administrative Assistant
After proudly serving in the US Army, Kathryn returned to her home state of Utah to raise her family and complete her education. She has a BS in Business Administration and hopes to complete her MBA in the next year. She previously spent 10 years in sales/marketing but sought a career change, joining the HCI team in November 2015. In her spare time, she enjoys working with a non-profit organization that mentors and assists international exchange students. She also enjoys reading, cooking and spending time with her better half William and her children; Josh (20) who attends college and plays football in Chico, CA and Ava (7) who plans on being POTUS 2045. She looks forward to adding supportive value to the team.
Brynn Fowler, MPHFormer Research Analyst/Project Manager
Brynn Fowler received her Master in Public Health degree from the University of Utah in December of 2014. In Brynn’s Master’s training she focused on global health, community engaged research, health behavior, and cancer prevention. She is excited to be joining the Kirchhoff group to be working on the Survivorship, Symptom Management and Quality of Life (SSMQOL) Initiative Plan as well as expanding her research skills and interests.
Claire Hacking, MPHFormer Graduate Research Assistant
Claire joined the team in January 2014 as part of her MPH practicum project which focused on the use of survivor care plans as a survivorship tool for pediatric cancer survivors. As of August 2015, Claire began a Masters program for Genetic Counseling at the University of Arkansas. Claire is happy to have been a part of the Kirchhoff team and is looking forward to further expanding her skills and research opportunities.
Michelle JuddFormer Administrative Assistant
Michelle Judd worked as an Administrative Assistant at HCI for many years. She enjoyed working with this new group and learning more in regards to the various childhood cancer focus’s that there are and the need for continued education.
Sapna Kaul, PHD, MAFormer Post Doctoral Fellow
Sapna is a health economist who joined our team in 2013. She completed her PhD in economics from Virginia Tech. Sapna’s research interests include healthcare cost analyses, cost-effectiveness and cost-benefit analyses, meta-analysis and non-market valuation (e.g., contingent valuation and willingness to pay). Her work is heavily focused on econometric and statistical methods for handling complex health care data. Sapna also has expertise in environmental economics and is interested in exploring the associations between environment and health outcomes. As of fall 2015, Sapna moved on to become an Assistant Professor in the Department of Preventive Medicine and Community Health University of Texas Medical Branch Galveston, TX.
Roberto Montenegro, MD, PhDFormer Medical Student
Roberto was born and raised in East Los Angeles, CA. Roberto attended Pitzer College, in Claremont, CA, where he majored in Psychobiology and Sociology and completed an honor’s thesis that examined inequalities in emergency room visits secondary to doctor-patient communication breakdown. Roberto completed a PhD in Sociology at UCLA, with an emphasis in Medical Sociology, Race/Ethnicity, and Multimethod research. As a medical student at the University of Utah School of Medicine, Roberto continued his research on pediatric cancer, pediatric palliative care, pediatric cancer survivorship and doctor-patient communication.
Roberto is currently an APA SAMHSA fellow and is working on a national mixed-methods study (survey, interviews, and epigenetics) looking at how microaggressions impact the professional and personal lives of sexual minority physician residents, with a focus on sexual minorities of color. He is also exploring the use of personalized music in inpatient psychiatric units to assess its potential to mitigate nursing shift-change associated agitation. Roberto is interested in child psychiatry, neuropsychiatry, language and cognition, and multicultural psychiatry.
Gina NamFormer Research Assistant
Gina Nam received her B.S. in biological chemistry and B.A. in Japanese with a minor in pediatric clinical research from the University of Utah in 2013. She worked with Dr. Kirchhoff and her team as a research assistant, and enjoyed learning about the impact of clinical research on health care outcomes. Her recent projects focused primarily on survivorship among adolescent and young adult populations. Gina started her MPH at UCLA in the fall of 2015. Gina hopes to continue her studies in public health, and is interested in cancer epidemiology.
Former Research Analyst
Sam joined the Kirchhoff group in July 2015 to assist on the Huntsman-Intermountain Adolescent and Young Adult Cancer Study. After graduating from the University of Utah in Spring 2016 with an HBA in History and a minor in Pediatric Clinical Research she is now a full-time analyst with the team. She loves finding links between the humanities and the sciences and her public health interests include health disparities, models of care, and cancer survivorship. Her current projects focus on patient navigation and palliative care for adolescents and young adults. She really enjoys working with the adolescent and young adult population.
Jacob PettitFormer Graduate Research Assistant
Jacob joined the team this year as a graduate research assistant and is earning his Masters degree in Statistics at the University of Utah. He comes from a diverse research background including the study of chili pepper micropropagation, invasive plant species distribution, and bat populations in the Heber Valley area. He is currently working with Rochelle in cleaning and analyzing data for a project examining differences in outcomes among pediatric cancer patients of different ethnicities. He is excited for this opportunity to expand his research experience and interests.
Stephanie SchottFormer Research Analyst
Stephanie recently graduated from the University of Utah with a degree in Health Promotion Management and minors in Business and Pediatric Clinical Research. She joined the team in summer 2015 after interning with the Utah Department of Health’s Division of Emergency Services developing the CHIRP Program. She has worked on various pediatric pilot studies at Primary Children’s Hospital and has focused primarily on improving the emergency medical care provided for children with complex healthcare needs. In addition to working with Dr. Anne Kirchhoff, Stephanie also works with Dr. Mark Fluchel.
Rochelle Smits-Seeman, MSFormer Research Analyst/Data Manager
Rochelle joined the team in the summer of 2014 after expanding her experience in project management with a local non-profit organization. Previously she graduated with a Master of Science in Experimental Psychology from Utah State University in 2012. Her prior research experience ranges from impulsivity research with rats to incentivizing fruit and vegetable consumption in elementary schools. She has enjoyed contributing her project management experience to the team as well as expanding her skills in data management and analysis.
Eduardo Zamora, MPHFormer Research Analyst/Project Manager
Eduardo has a Masters of Public Health from the University of California, Los Angeles with a concentration in Community Health Sciences. He is interested in health disparities and equitable access to health services, and has a long history working in community health settings. He is currently working as an Epidemiologist/ Evaluator at the Utah Department of Health in the Healthy Living through Environment, Policy, and Improved Clinical Care Program (EPICC). In this program he focuses on developing strategies to improve community-clinical linkages, to ensure people with or at high risk for chronic disease have access to resources that support, prevent, delay, or manage chronic conditions.