Find A PhysicianHome  |  Library  |  myDownstate  |  Newsroom  |  A-Z Guide  |  E-mail  |  Contact Us  |  Directions
curve gif

SUNY Downstate PRIDE Summer Institute

Program to Increase Diversity Among Individuals Engaged in Health-Related Research (PRIDE)

Faculty and Advisors

The team of multidisciplinary experts that have partnered to provide the didactic training are a group of renowned scientists, many of whom already collaborate to conduct research in health disparities under the auspices of the BHDRC. Mentors include senior faculty, established researchers and experienced mentors in the fields of clinical and basic cardiovascular disease research and behavioral medicine and sleep disorders. Partnerships with community-based organizations also aid in providing training in the conduct of community-based participatory research, an important and innovative approach to preventive medicine. The work of the Institute is accomplished in the context of Brooklyn, New York, a model urban setting in which to conduct health disparities and cardiovascular disease and behavioral medicine and sleep disorders research.

Institute Directors: Cardiovascular Health Disparities

Mohamed Boutjdir, PhD, FAHA – Program Director

Dr Boutjdir will be responsible for the management of all aspects of the PRIDE Institute. He is the current Director of the SIPID at Downstate, the Director of the Training and Mentoring Core of the BHDRC and is part of the AHA International Mentorship Program. Dr Boutjdir has extensive administrative and scientific leadership experience and has successfully directed and managed all aspects of the current SIPID program at Downstate. He. He is a Professor of Medicine, Cell Biology/Physiology and Pharmacology with extensive experience in training and mentoring both MDs and PhDs, in the conduct of cardiovascular research (see mentees table in Appendix 3).To date, more than 46 clinical and basic science fellows have trained with Dr. Boutjdir and are currently working in prestigious academic departments across the nation.

Dr. Boutjdir also has extensive teaching experience. He has been a regular contributor to the teaching programs of cardiovascular physiology and laboratory classes for cardiac electrocardiography at the Departments of Physiology and Pharmacology, Cell Biology and Medicine. He also contributed to health disparity courses in the School of Public Health and serves as a Faculty for the didactic courses on Responsible Conduct in Research, as a reviewer during the SIPID mock study section and serves as a mentor. As the Director of the Training and Mentoring Core of the BHDRC, Dr Boutjdir supervised and coordinated the monthly cultural competency and health disparities seminars that are attended by faculty, cardiology fellows and students institution-wide. In addition, he directly supervises the placement of fellows under the Core with mentors who conduct health disparities research.

Dr Boutjdir's major research interests are channelopathies in the cardiovascular system, sudden cardiac death and antiarrhythmic therapy. He has published more than 70 articles in peer reviewed high impact journals and served as Chair and reviewer in several national review committees such as NIH, AHA, Veterans Affairs and March of Dimes. He is also a reviewer in a number of important journals such as Circulation, Circulation Research, Journal of American College of Cardiology and the American Journal of Cardiology and serves on several executive boards, thesis committees and editorial board.

Girardin Jean-Louis, PhD – Co-Director

Dr. Jean-Louis is a minority investigator and an Associate Professor in the Departments of Medicine and Neurology at Downstate. Dr. Jean-Louis maintains an active research and training program (see appendix 3) in the areas of behavioral sleep medicine, metabolic syndrome, and cardiovascular disease. He has been actively involved in teaching and training programs at the undergraduate, graduate, and post-doctoral levels. He has trained 34 undergraduate/graduate students of which 25 were African American, 2 were Latino and 7 were South East Asian. In the last 15 years, trainees working with Dr. Jean-Louis at various academic institutions have co-authored numerous scientific abstracts and papers and have presented their work at scientific meetings. In the last 3 years, he has been the Program Coordinator for the SIPID, addressing needs of 19 minority scholars from various institutions across the United States, and providing logistical support to ensure SIPID's success. He has been instrumental in developing and implementing the SIPID evaluation plan. More recently, he was the PI on two Brooklyn-based studies: one assessing adherence to referrals for sleep evaluations and the other on associations of heart disease with risks of sleep apnea. He is currently Principal Investigator of an RO1 assessing barriers to sleep apnea evaluation and treatment in minorities and developing culturally and linguistically tailored behavioral models.

Judith Mitchell, MD, FAHA – Co-Director

Dr Mitchell is the Director of the Heart Failure Clinic and Co-Director of the SIPID. Dr. Mitchell will bring the clinical expertise to the Institute. She is Associate Professor of Medicine and Director of the Heart Failure Center at Downstate. Dr. She is a Fellow of the American College of Cardiology, and the AHA, and she is board certified in cardiovascular diseases, nuclear cardiology and echocardiography. Her commitment to abolishing disparity in health care through research and education is unwavering. She serves as an active member of the local AHA disparity group. Dr. Mitchell is widely published including several book chapters. One of her recent publication in the American Heart Journal was entitled "Observations Regarding Outcome in Minorities in the Sudden Cardiac Death in Heart Failure Trial". She is a reviewer for several journals including Circulation, Journal of the National Medical Association, American Family Physician and ACC journal. She is very proud of her participation in the training of over 50 cardiology fellows over the past decade who practice in various settings near and far.

Institute Directors: Behavioral Medicine and Sleep Disorders

Girardin Jean-Louis, PhD – Program Director

Dr. Jean-Louis is Professor in the Department of Medicine and Psychiatry and Research Director of the Sleep Disorders Center at SUNY Downstate Medical Center. He is well known in the field of Sleep Medicine and has made a significant contribution in the literature on aging and sleep, circadian rhythm, health disparities, and ethno-gerontology. Dr. Jean-Louis maintains an active research program at the Brooklyn Health Disparities Center, working with several minority fellows, residents, medical students, and college students. His research interests include: associations of metabolic syndrome with sleep apnea and cardiovascular disease, eye diseases and circadian rhythm dysfunctions, and insomnia in medical and psychiatric disorders. He is currently ascertaining effects of a behavioral model to increase adherence to physician-recommended OSA evaluation and treatment among blacks. He is also conducting a five-year, multi-site trial assessing effects of sleep restriction on metabolic and molecular markers of cardiovascular disease.

Gbenga Ogedegbe, MD – Program Director

Dr. Ogedegbe is Associate Professor at New York University School of Medicine in the Division of General Internal Medicine. He is a board-certified internist, hypertension specialist and clinical epidemiologist. As a physician-scientist, the programmatic focus of his research is the translation into clinical practice, and dissemination of evidence-based behavioral interventions targeted at hypertension-related outcomes and blood pressure control in African Americans who receive care in community-based primary care practices. He has extensive experience in the development and implementation of practice-based trials of behavioral interventions targeted at minority populations. He is the PI of an NHLBI- funded R01 trial, Project Leader of two NIH-funded trials including Columbia University's P60 Health Disparities Center for Health of Urban Minorities. He has completed several studies that examined the barriers faced by minority populations regarding medication adherence, expectations of hypertension management, and self-efficacy in this population. Dr. Ogedegbe is a permanent memember of the NIH study section Behavior, Medicine, Intervention and Outcomes (BMIO3).

SUNY Downstate Faculty and Advisors:

Clinton D Brown, MD

Clinton D Brown, MD is Director of the BHDRC and Clinical Associate Professor of Medicine, Division of Renal Diseases at Downstate. Dr. Brown received his education at prestigious institutions with a long history of high quality training and of serving the medically underserved. He earned his medical degree from Tufts University School of Medicine. He completed his postgraduate training at Harlem Hospital where he was instrumental in providing medical services to African-Americans in that community at a time when there was a stark lack of services in the area. Dr. Brown completed his nephrology fellowship at Downstate. Dr Brown became a Rockefeller Scholar at the Rockefeller University where he conducted research in lipid metabolism. Dr. Brown's clinical and research interests are in the areas of lipid disorders, arteriosclerosis, diabetes, hypertension, obesity, kidney disease and hemorheology. He has served as PI for many clinical trials that involve treatment of high blood cholesterol, hypertension and the anemia of kidney disease. Dr Brown will lead and participate in the panel discussions on Challenges and Opportunities for Minority Faculty along with other Minority Faculty at Downstate and serve on the Advisory Committee.

Ruth C. Browne, ScD

Ruth C. Browne, ScD, Executive Director of the Arthur Ashe Institute for Urban Health will be one of the faculty in charge of providing training in cultural competency and community-based participatory research. Dr. Browne received her doctorate from the School of Public Health at Harvard and has extensive community-based research experience, especially as it relates to Brooklyn communities. She is the PI on a center grant (P20) supporting the BHDC. Dr. Browne is an expert in the field of health disparities, community-based participatory research strategies and increasing the numbers of minority students in the health professions. In this regard, she leads the NY Committee for Minorities in the Health Professions, an effort funded by the Kellogg Foundation. She is African-American. Dr Browne and her staff provided will provide one full day training on competency and community-based participatory research.

Jeffrey S. Borer, MD

Jeffrey S. Borer, MD, is Professor, Chairman of Medicine and Chief/Division of Cardiovascular Medicine and Director of the Howard Gilman Institute of Heart Valve Disease and The Institute for Cardiovascular Translational Research, SUNY Downstate. Dr Borer was Gladys & Roland Harriman Professor of Cardiovascular Medicine, Weill Medical College of Cornell University (1983 - 2008) where he was Chief, Division of Cardiovascular Pathophysiology. Currently, he Chairs the Circulatory System Devices Advisory Panel of FDA, having served 3 terms as Chairman of the Cardio-Renal Drugs Advisory Committee during his tenure as a FDA Advisor, which began in 1977. He also was Advisor to NASA from 1984-2005, chairing the NASA-NIH Advisory Subcommittee on Biomedical and Behavioral Research (1995-2003). Dr. Borer is Editor-in-Chief of Cardiology and Advances in Cardiology. He serves on the editorial boards of nine peer-reviewed journals in cardiology and cardiovascular imaging and has authored 400 scientific papers and book chapters and four books. He is the past President/NY Cardiology Society (1990 - 1991) and is the President and Founding Board Member, Heart Valve Society of America (2004 - present). Dr Borer will participate in the Institute by attending the welcoming sessions along with the President and Dean of Downstate, gives a seminar on writing and publishing, participate at the mock study section and serve on the Advisory Committee.

Michael A. Joseph, PhD, MPH

Michael A. Joseph, PhD, MPH, is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Preventive Medicine and Community Health at Downstate. He completed his MPH in Chronic Disease Epidemiology at Yale University and his Ph.D. in Epidemiologic Science at the University of Michigan School of Public Health. Dr. Joseph's research interests are in social epidemiology, particularly issues of behavioral and cultural determinants of cancer screening practices among communities of color, and he is currently extending his research endeavors internationally through collaborations with the University of Zimbabwe School of Medicine in Harare, Zimbabwe. Dr. Joseph teaches Epidemiology and Biostatistics in the School of public health Program and previously served as Course Director for Fundamentals of Epidemiology and Biostatistics in the Sophie Davis School of Biomedical Education at the City College of NY. He will participate in the Institute through didactic and hands-on laboratory application of epidemiologic, statistical analytic tools such as SPSS and Principles of Biostatistics.

Judith LaRosa, PhD, RN

Judith LaRosa, PhD, RN, Professor and Vice Dean of the School of Public Health at the Department of Preventive Medicine and Community Health at Downstate was the first Deputy Director of the Office of Research on Women's Health, National Institutes of Health. She is co-author of the legislatively mandated 1994 NIH Guidelines on the Inclusion of Women and Minorities as Subjects in Clinical Research. Dr. LaRosa has published in the areas of heart disease, women's health, workplace health promotion and disease prevention. She is a fellow in the New York Academy of Medicine, the American Academy of Nursing and the AHA. Dr. LaRosa has received numerous awards for her work such as the 1994 NIH Director's Award and NIH Merit Award for her outstanding contribution to women's health and the 1993 AHA for her outstanding contribution to the prevention and treatment of heart disease in women. She will contribute to the Institute through the didactic courses on Cultural Perception of Acute Coronary Syndrome, Healthcare Policy, the mock study section, will serve as a mentor, and on the Advisory Committee.

Jason Lazar, MD, FACC

Jason Lazar, MD, FACC, is Director of Cardiology fellowship program and non-invasive cardiology section at Downstate. Dr. Lazar received his medical degree from the SUNY at Syracuse and completed his postgraduate training at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center in Pennsylvania. Dr. Lazar is currently Director of Non-Invasive Cardiology and Associate Director of the Cardiovascular Fellowship Training Program at Downstate. He is also Clinical Assistant Dean in the College of Medicine. Dr. Lazar's research interests include the epidemiology of coronary heart disease in women, in high risk populations, and health disparities. He is a member of the editorial board of the Journal of Invasive Cardiology, serves as a reviewer for several peer-reviewed journals, and is widely published. He is a Fellow of the ACC and the ACCP. He is also a member of the AHA Long Island Chapter, and the American Society of Echocardiography. Dr Lazar will be responsible for the lectures on Pathophysiology of Hypertension and Basic Cardiac Pathophysiology, a tour of the non-invasive cardiac laboratory, will serve on the mock study section and as a mentor.

Samy McFarlane, MD

Samy McFarlane, MD is Professor of Medicine and Endocrinology at Downstate. Currently he is Director of the sub-specialty Fellowship Program in Endocrinology, Diabetes and Hypertension. He was selected for the Outstanding Educator of the Year Award, 2002-2003 by his students. He is also one of five mentors in an important NIH-training grant: Building Interdisciplinary Research Careers in Women's Health. As a mentor, Dr. McFarlane has won 2 international Awards in 3 years for research projects conducted by his fellows. He is the PI on several clinical trials, and has been extraordinarily successful in recruiting the largest number of patients for the DREAM study, which is an international trial to determine whether or not commonly prescribed drugs could prevent diabetes. Dr. McFarlane's is a co-founder of the Brooklyn Diabetes Task Force, an organization aimed at empowering the community through education and advocacy. He has published over 40 articles over the past 2 years including book chapters, reviews and original research in major journals. He also serves as guest and section editor for several medical journals. Dr McFarlane will lecture about Diabetes, Cardiovascular Diseases and health disparities, will contribute to the mock study section and as a mentor.

M.A.Q. Siddiqui, PhD

M.A.Q. Siddiqui, PhD, Professor and Chairman of the Department of Cell Biology at Downstate. Dr. Siddiqui heads a very active laboratory with a main interest in the investigation of the molecular mechanisms underlying heart development and disease. Siddiqui's laboratory has identified two novel transcription factors that appear to play a critical role in myogenic development. The laboratory also has active research in signal transduction mechanisms that are active in the pathological states of heart development such as hypertrophy and myocardial ischemia. Dr. Siddiqui has an outstanding record of training and mentoring students at different levels of education and in a number of different programs. He has served on multiple NIH, AHA and other national and international review committees and editorial boards. He will contribute to both didactic basic cardiovascular sciences, mock study section and mentor.

Michael A. Weber, MD

Michael A. Weber, MD, is a Professor of Medicine and Associate Dean for Research at Downstate. Dr. Weber's career has focused primarily on hypertension and preventive cardiology. He has published numerous research articles in the medical literature and has authored and/or edited 10 books. Dr. Weber was one of the founders of The American Society of Hypertension and has served as its President. He is currently Chair of the Society's Hypertension Specialists Program. He is a Fellow of the American College of Physicians, the ACC and the AHA. Dr. Weber has particular expertise and extensive experience in the design and conduct of clinical trials. He has helped design and participated in a large number of national and international clinics outcomes trials. His primary research interests include the role of the renin-angiotensin system in the genesis of hypertension and as a major factor in cardiovascular prognosis. He will contribute to the didactic courses on research design and conduct of clinical trials as well as to the mock study section.

Walfredo Leon, MD

Dr. Leon is the Director of the pulmonary and sleep labs at SUNY Downstate. He is Vice-chair of the Cultural Diversity in Medicine network of the ACCP and it is this network that provides the ACCP with the expert resources in the areas of disparities in health care and cultural competencies. He has successfully obtained an educational grant to produce an educational training tool for physicians and other healthcare workers on Lung Health in Minorities, which was distributed through the American College of Chest Physicians.

Freddy Zizi, MBA

Mr. Zizi is the PRIDE Project Coordinator. He coordinates all programmatic requirements of the Training Institute. He coordinates the implementation of the curriculum and mentoring programs. He works closely with all key personnel in the project to address problems and concerns of the institute faculty and mentees. He maintains the program's website, which he utilizes to communicate with mentees and mentors. He acts as liaison between mentors and mentees and between mentors and program directors. He coordinates annual meetings of Program Directors.

Faculty and Mentors from Other Institutions: Cardiovascular Health Disparities

Donna Arnett MD

Dr. Arnett completed her BS in nursing from the University of South Florida in 1981. For five years she practiced critical care nursing. In 1987 she began graduate work in epidemiology at the University of South Florida, working in cardiovascular clinical research. She received her MSPH in 1987. In 1988 Dr. Arnett began her PhD work under the mentorship of Drs. Al Tyroler and Gerardo Heiss. Among other advances, her research resulted in establishing arterial stiffness as an important cardiovascular risk factor. From 1992 to 1994, Dr. Arnett was an AHA Postdoctoral Fellow at UNC. Dr. Arnett joined the University of Minnesota in 1994. At UMN she ran the Minnesota Heart Survey and participated in the NHLBI Family Heart Study, studies that set out to identify genes that contribute to coronary heart disease and hypertension. In 1995, her first R01, "HyperGEN: Genetics of Left Ventricular Hypertrophy," evaluated the genetic contribution to LV enlargement among families with hypertension. Throughout her career, Dr. Arnett's genetic and pharmacogenetic research has been in the vanguard of evolving genotyping technologies and analytical methods, from the era of microsatellite linkage studies to state-of-the-art epigenetic analyses and whole-exome searches for rare causal variants. Dr. Arnett has served on various NHLBI committees, and she recently began her 3-year presidential tenure for the AHA.

Carla Boutin-Foster, MD

Carla Boutin-Foster, MD is a general internist and clinical epidemiologist who holds faculty positions in both the Division of General Internal Medicine and in the Department of Public Health as an Associate Professor of Medicine and Associate Professor of Public Health at Weill Cornell Medical College. She is also the Nanette Laitman Clinical Scholar in Public Health and Community Health. Dr. Boutin-Foster's research activities focus on identifying the psychological and social determinants of health outcomes in patients with cardiovascular disease and on the social epidemiology of health disparities in cardiovascular disease. Her previous funding includes a grant from the NHLBI to identify attributes in the doctor-patient relationship that are most associated with health behavior modification in patients with coronary artery disease. Her research also focuses on partnering with community-based organizations and faith-based organizations in conducting community-based participatory research in an effort to address health disparities in cardiovascular disease. Her teaching activities include teaching cultural competence to the first year medical students as part of Medicine, Patients and Society and teaching fellows in the Clinical Epidemiology Fellowship at the Weill Cornell Graduate School of Medical Sciences. Dr Boutin will contribute to the participatory research seminar with the Arthur Ash, the seminar on Linking Biology, Intellectual Attainment and Poverty to Health Disparities and the mock study section.

Keith Ferdinand, MD, FACC, FAHAD

Dr. Ferdinand is an adjunct clinical professor at the Morehouse School of Medicine and Chief Science Officer of the Association of Black Cardiologists (ABC), Inc. in Atlanta, Georgia. Dr. Ferdinand received his medical degree from Howard University College of Medicine. He is board certified in internal medicine and cardiovascular disease, a diplomat certified in the subspecialty of nuclear cardiology, a certified specialist in clinical hypertension in the American Society of Hypertension, and a fellow of the American College of Cardiology. Dr. Ferdinand has served on the National High Blood Pressure Education Program Coordinating Committee and is a past member and President of the Louisiana State Board of Medical Examiners. Dr. Ferdinand is also a fellow at the American Heart Association (FAHA), American Society of Hypertension (FASH), and the National Lipid Association (FNLA). Dr. Ferdinand is also the past President of the Orleans Division of the American Heart Association (AHA); and past Chair of the Board of Association of Black Cardiologists, Inc. (ABC). In 2004, he received the Louis B. Russell, Jr., Memorial Award from AHA and the Walter M. Booker Community Service Award from ABC.

Robert E. Fullilove, EdD

Dr. Fullilove is the Associate Dean for Community and Minority Affairs, Professor of Clinical Sociomedical Sciences and the co-director of the Community Research Group. He also co-directors the newly formed degree program in Urbanism and Community Health in the Department of Sociomedical Sciences. Dr Fullilove has authored numerous articles in the area of minority health. From 1995 to 2001, he served on the Board of Health Promotion and Disease Prevention at the Institute of Medicine (IOM) at the National Academy of Sciences. Since 1996, he has served on five IOM study committees that have produced reports on a variety of topics including substance abuse and addiction, HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, and damp indoor spaces and health. In 2003 he was designated a National Associate of the National Academies of Science. In 1998 he was appointed to the Advisory Committee on HIV and STD Prevention (ACHSP) at the Centers for Disease Control, and in July, 2000, he became the committee's chair. Finally, in 2004, he was appointed to the National Advisory Council for the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine at the National Institutes of Health [NIH]. Dr Fullilove serves on the editorial boards of the journals Sexually Transmitted Diseases, and the Journal of Public Health Policy. He has twice been awarded the Distinguished Teaching Award at the Mailman School of Public Health, and in May, 2002, he was awarded an honorary doctorate from Bank Street College of Education.

George Gasparis

Dr. Gasparis is the Asst. Vice President and Sr. Asst. Dean for Research Ethics at Columbia University Medical Center. He also serves as the Executive Director, Human Subjects Protection Program for Columbia University/Columbia University Medical Center. In this capacity, he is responsible for a comprehensive human subjects protection program and the administration of five IRBs at Columbia. Prior to his arrival at Columbia University in June 2003, Mr. Gasparis was the Director for the Division of Assurances and Quality Improvement at the Office for Human Research Protections (OHRP). Mr. Gasparis also has had prior experience with IRBs. He was the Director, Office of Human Research at The George Washington University Medical Center (GWUMC) from 1991-1996. In that capacity he served as the administrator for the GWU Medical Center IRB, Director of the Research Pharmacy, and also served on the behavioral IRB for the university. Mr. Gasparis also has had extensive experience with clinical trials. From 1980 until 1991, he was employed at the GWU Lipid Research Clinic and served as the Data Manager from 1984 to 1991. During his tenure as Data Manager he managed over 40 clinical trials, including NIH awards and studies for 10 different pharmaceutical companies.

James R. Gavin III, MD, PhD

James R. Gavin III, MD, PhD is Clinical Professor of Medicine and Senior Health Advisor on Health Affairs, Emory University School of Medicine, Atlanta, Georgia. Dr. Gavin has a long and distinguished history of research and commitment to minority faculty development. He is a past president of the Morehouse School of Medicine, Atlanta, GA (2002-2004). He served as senior scientific officer at the Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) from 1991-2002 and director of the HHMI-National Institutes of Health Research Scholars Program from 2000-2002. Dr. Gavin is Senior Program Consultant and National Program Director (1992-present) of the Harold Amos Minority Medical Faculty Development Program (AMFDP) of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. Approximately 150 scholars have completed all four years of the AMFDP. Of these, more than 80 percent are still in academic medicine, including 21 professors, 43 associate professors, and 45 assistant professors. In addition to serving as faculty and on the advisory committee to the Institute, Dr. Gavin will assist in identifying and recruiting senior minority faculty to increase the pool of mentors and assignment of mentees. Dr. Gavin is African American. He will continue to serve as a faculty member of the Institute by seminars on Career Development, Challenges and Opportunities for Minority Faculty.

Janet Hall MD

Dr. Hall is Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School and anaffiliate faculty member in the school's Division of Sleep Medicine, Associate Physician in Medicine at the Massachusetts General Hospital, Associate Chief of the Reproductive Endocrine Unit and has just completed a three-year term as the first Vice- President for Clinical Research of the Endocrine Society, and current President-Elect for the Endocrine Society. Dr. Hall's research focuses on the neuroendocrine interactions underlying normal human reproduction and the changes that occur both with aging and in clinical disorders of ovulation. Critical to progress in this area is the use of indirect techniques to gain access to information about the neuroendocrine control of reproduction. To accomplish this, Dr. Hall has developed and used a combination of clinical investigative approaches and models to investigate the complex interactions of the hypothalamic, pituitary and gonadal components of the reproductive axis. These have included the use of GnRH receptor blockers as physiologic probes, the use of sleep and circadian protocols, and most recently the use of positron emission tomography (PET).

Eldrin Lewis, MD, MPH

Dr. Lewis is in his 8th year as a faculty member in the cardiovascular division at Brigham and Women's Hospital and is now an Assistant Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School. He was one of the first recipients of the Minority Faculty Development Award, which is a 7 year award given to promising young physicians with research potential. He is involved with several large, international clinical trials and has approximately 50 publications during his early career. He also received a grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation to study the role of quality of life assessment in clinical decision making in patients with heart failure and several grants from the National Institutes of Health. Dr. Lewis is Vice-Chair of the American Heart Association Heart Failure and Transplant committee and Associate Director of the Cardiology clerkship for Harvard Medical School students who rotate at Brigham and Women's Hospital. Dr. Lewis has become an international expert in the area of quality of life and heart failure and serves on scientific committees to review grants for the American Heart Association and the recently formed Task Force for the Standardization of Definitions for Endpoint Events in Cardiovascular Trials.

Dexter A. McKenzie, MD

Dr. McKenzie is a dedicated and experienced medical provider, medical educator, organizer and community servant. As a strong believer in the power of knowledge, he has an unwavering commitment to research, community education, mentoring, promotion of healthy living and the elimination of racial and ethnic health disparities. Dr. McKenzie grew up in Brooklyn, New York, where he earned degrees in chemistry and pharmacy before obtaining an MD with honors from Meharry Medical College in Nashville Tennessee. He completed residency training at Kings County Hospital in Internal Medicine and Pediatrics. He is the founder of the Student National Pharmaceutical Association at LIU, founder of the Global Alliance Independent Practice Association and co-founder of one of the earliest comprehensive outpatient HIV programs in Brownsville, Brooklyn. Dr. McKenzie is affiliated with SUNY Downstate as Assistant Professor of Medicine. He is the current Chairman of the Health Committee for the Brooklyn NAACP, Chairman of the Health Committee for the National Black Leadership Commission on AIDS and President of the Provident Clinical Society of Brooklyn (Affiliate of the National Medical Association). Dr McKenzie conducts community health forums, hosts a popular radio talk show on health and contributes regularly as health editor of several publications.

Susana Morales, MD

Susana Morales, MD, is the Director of the Center for Multicultural and Minority Health and Associate Chair of Educational Affairs and Associate Professor of Clinical Medicine, Weill Medical College of Cornell University Associate. She is also an attending physician of the NY-Presbyterian Hospital (NY-Weill Cornell Campus). The mission of the Multicultural Center she directs is to promote cultural diversity among the faculty and house staff of the Department of Medicine; to foster research in minority health and health policy; to educate physicians on the sociocultural influences affecting patient's health, beliefs and behaviors; and to expand the relationship of the Department and the larger institution with the community. Dr. Morales will serve as a faculty for the Institute, bringing expertise in cultural competency training, health disparities and teaching and mentoring tools for recruiting and retaining minorities in medicine.

Olugbenga G. Ogedegbe, MD

Olugbenga G. Ogedegbe, MD, is an Associate Professor of Medicine at NYU School of Medicine. He is the Director of the Center for Healthful Behavior Change in the Division of General Internal Medicine. Dr. Ogedegbe is a member of the newly constituted Eighth Joint National Committee on the Detection, Evaluation, Prevention and Treatment of Hypertension (JNC-8) and Fellow of the AHA on High Blood Pressure Council. He has extensive experience in the implementation of behavioral interventions, with a focus on minority and low-income populations. He is the PI of two NHLBI-funded R01 trials designed to improve medication adherence and BP control in hypertensive black patients. He is also the Core Leader of the Minority Oversight Core of the NIH-funded Center for Behavioral Cardiovascular Health and a Project Leader on Columbia University's Center of Excellence Health Disparities (P60 NIMCHD). He has completed several studies that examined the barriers faced by this population regarding expectations of BP management, medication adherence, self-efficacy, and most recently a motivational interviewing intervention. Dr Ogedegbe will participate in the behavioral interventions for blood pressure control, the mock study section and as a mentor.

Thomas A. Pearson, MD, MPH, PhD

Dr. Thomas A. Pearson will serve as a mentor and a Faculty member of the Summer Institute. Dr. Pearson is the Associate Dean for Clinical research and Department Chair of Community & Preventive Medicine and the Albert D. Kaiser Professor, Division of Epidemiology, Community & Preventive Medicine at the University of Rochester in Rochester, NY. Dr. Pearson has a long and illustrious history in clinical research, research training and mentoring, and commitment to minority faculty development. He is the Principal Investigator for the Rochester Clinical Research Curriculum, supported by a K30 grant from the National Institutes of Health. He has trained more than 185 fellows in his K30 program, 20% of whom are from underrepresented minority groups. He is also Program Director for an Institutional Research Training Grant from the NHLBI, entitled "Research Training in Preventive Cardiology." Approximately one-third of the fellows in this program are minorities. Dr. Pearson also has a demonstrated commitment to patients and scientists with disabilities. He is Principal Investigator of the Centers for Disease Control Prevention Research Center at the University of Rochester. The focus of the center is on the health risks in the deaf and hard-of-hearing population of Rochester. This is the only center of its kind in the United States that addresses health needs among the deaf. Dr Pearson in partnership with the NHLBI staff will provide full day training on successful grant writing, will serve as a mentor and on the advisory committee.

Clyde Yancy, MD, FACC, FAHA, MACP

Dr. Yancy's post graduate training in Internal medicine and Cardiology from Parkland Memorial Hospital and the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, TX; and his initial faculty appointment in 1989 from the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, TX. After serving on the faculty at UT Southwestern [Professor of Medicine, Medical Director of the Heart Failure/Heart Transplantation Programs, and an Associate Dean of Clinical Affairs], he accepted his current appointment at Baylor University Medical Center and the Baylor Heart and Vascular Institute in September, 2006.Dr. Yancy's academic and professional interests include hypertension, heart failure and heart transplantation, ethnic/ racial disparities in cardiovascular disease, and clinical trials. He has been principal investigator, a member of the steering committee, or subcommittee chair or a participant in over 30 multicenter studies.Dr. Yancy has authored or co-authored more than 200 contributions to the literature including: abstracts, peer reviewed journal articles, review articles, book chapters, and books. He is an Associate Editor of the American Journal of Cardiology. He is on the editorial board of numerous other journals, including the American Heart Journal, Baylor University Medical Proceedings, Cardiology in Review, Journal of Cardiovascular Pharmacology and Therapeutics, Circulation, Circulation – 'Heart Failure' and Circulation – 'Cardiovascular Quality and Outcomes'. He is a regular reviewer for the New England Journal of Medicine, Journal of the American College of Cardiology, and the Journal of the American Medical Association, among other publications. Dr. Yancy has been the recipient of numerous recent honors and awards: the Marquis Who's Who in America, October 2008; Cardiologists-In-Training Hero Award, Association of Black Cardiologists, Inc, 2006; Outstanding Teacher 2005-2006, UT Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas; America's Top Physicians, "Guide to America's Top Physicians," 2006 e-book; "Top 643 Doctors of 2006" featured "Top Doctor," D Magazine, October 2005; and Texas Super Doctors 2005 through 2008 noted in Texas Monthly magazine. In 2003, he was named "AHA (National) Physician of the Year".Dr. Yancy is a member of the Heart Failure Society of America, (Executive Committee); American College of Cardiology (Guidelines Taskforce Committee) the American Heart Association (multiple appointments) and several others. As of 2009-2010, he is President-Elect of the American Heart Association. Currently, he is the immediate past Chair of the FDA's Cardiovascular Device Panel, serves as an ad hoc adviser to the FDA, and is a member of several NIH study sections.

Faculty and Mentors from Other Institutions: Behavioral Medicine and Sleep Disorders

David Rapoport, MD

Dr. Rapoport is Associate Professor of Medicine at the NYU School of Medicine in the Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine. He is the Director of the Sleep Medicine Program and Director of Sleep Disorders Center. He is board certified in Pulmonary Medicine and Sleep Medicine. Dr. Rapoport is the Program Director of the ACGME accredited NYU Sleep Fellowship program and coordinates the Research Program at the Sleep Center. He has a long-standing interest in the physiology of OSA. He is PI of the NYU site of an NIH sponsored multicenter epidemiologic study on Sleep Disordered Breathing and Cardiovascular Disease. He is the founder and President of the Foundation for Research in Sleep Disorders.

Indu Ayappa, PhD

Dr. Ayappa is an Associate Professor of Medicine in Department of Medicine, Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine. She oversees the majority of the sleep medicine fellowship research activities along with Dr. Rapoport. Her research interests are in developing new techniques for the diagnosis and treatment of sleep apnea, physiology of the upper airway and investigating the relationship between sleep disordered breathing and daytime function. She is Principal investigator on NIH and industry sponsored research grants. Dr. Ayappa's research database (150 carefully characterized patients with both CPAP compliance data and daytime functional evaluation, plus 2,300 ambulatory evaluations of SDB patients) is a great asset to PRIDE scholars.

Art J. Spielman, PhD

Dr. Spielman is Professor of Psychology at the City University of New York. He is also Associate Director of the Center for Sleep Medicine at Weill Cornell Medical College (New York-Presbyterian Hospital). His research interests include circadian rhythms and medical problems (e.g., cerebral blood flow velocity); insomnia; imaging the brain with laser light to assess regional oxygen concentrations non-invasively. He has authored numerous peer-reviewed scientific articles and book chapters. Recently, he and colleague, Dr. Glovinsky, published 'The Insomnia Answer: A Personalized Program for Identifying and Overcoming the Three Types of Insomnia'.

Bill Gerin, PhD

Dr. Gerin is Professor of Behavioral Health; Director, The Mind-Body Cardiovascular Psychophysiology Laboratory. His current research interests include: the role of social stressors and angry rumination in biological dysregulation and development of heart disease, non-pharmacological interventions to reduce blood pressure in hypertensive patients, white coat hypertension, and stress and health. Dr. Gerin teaches pre- and post-docs in the art of obtaining NIH funding, and experimental and clinical trials methodology.

Bonnie Spring, PhD

: Dr. Spring is Professor of Preventive Medicine and Psychology and Psychiatry at Northwestern University. She is the President of the Society of Behavioral Medicine. She has extensive experience in training and mentoring junior faculty. For seven years she has served as invited faculty in the NIH summer institute on behavioral clinical trials; for 30 years, she has mentored many students and faculty. She is a past recipient of Society of Behavioral Medicine's Distinguished Research Mentor Award. Her trainees have earned 13 individual mentored research career development awards totaling $2 million.

Carla Boutin-Foster, MD

Dr. Boutin-Foster is a minority investigator and Associate Professor of Medicine and Associate Professor of Complementary and Integrative Medicine. She is Director of an NIH-funded Comprehensive Center of Excellence in Health Disparities Research and Community Engagement. Dr. Boutin-Foster's long-term goal is to develop research that will broaden current understanding of the root causes of health disparities in CVD and that will guide the development of effective community-based interventions.

Daniel F. Kripke, MD

Dr. Kripke is Professor of Psychiatry (Emeritus) at the University of California, San Diego. He has written hundreds of medical articles and has given invited lectures in 18 countries. Dr. Kripke established one of the first sleep clinics in the United States and published the first controlled clinical trial of bright light treatment. He has trained and mentored several sleep researchers and clinicians, many of whom were minority.

James R. Gavin III, MD, PhD

Dr. Gavin is a minority investigator and Clinical Professor of Medicine and Senior Health Advisor on Health Affairs, Emory University School of Medicine. He has a long and distinguished history of research and commitment to minority faculty development. He served as senior scientific officer at the Howard Hughes Medical Institute and Director of the HHMI-National Institutes of Health Research Scholars Program. He is Senior Program Consultant and National Program Director of the Harold Amos Minority Medical Faculty Development Program of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. In addition to serving as n external member of the Advisory Committee, He will assist in identifying senior minority faculty to increase the pool of mentors.

John Allegrante, PhD

Dr. Allegrante is Professor of Health Education and Deputy Provost of Teachers College. He holds joint appointments in the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences and Department of Sociomedical Sciences at the Mailman School of Public Health of Columbia University. He has had over two decades of funding from the NIH to support research on health behavior and health outcomes in chronic disease. He is a Fellow of the New York Academy of Medicine and member of the Academy of Behavioral Medicine Research.

Jose Laredo, MD

Dr. Laredo is Associate Professor of Clinical Medicine at UCSD and Medical Director of the UCSD Sleep Medicine Center. He is currently undertaking an NIH-funded epidemiological study of sleep-health in Hispanics in San Diego County. Dr. Laredo is co-investigator in the largest NIH sponsored research project to study Hispanics (Study of Latinos [SOL]) that seeks to follow longitudinally the health of 16,000 Hispanics in the US. Other research projects include the investigation of the role of peripheral chemoreceptors in the development of hypertension in patients with obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) and the association of sleep apnea with asthma.

Judith Ockene, MD

Dr. Ockene is Professor of Medicine, Division Chief of Preventive and Behavioral Medicine, and Associate Vice Chancellor of Faculty Administration at the Medical School. Some of her research interests include the prevention and control of disease, management of chronic illness, and the relationship of lifestyle behaviors to disease. She has been the PI on numerous studies including the national Women's Health Initiative.

Karina W. Davidson, PhD

Dr. Davidson is the Herbert Irving Professor of Behavioral Medicine in Medicine and Psychiatry, and the Director of the Center for Behavioral & Cardiovascular Health within General Medicine at Columbia University. Her research focuses on the biopsychosocial mechanisms explaining why depression and anger predict worse outcomes for patients with CVD. She is the PI on am NHLBI-funded program project (PULSE) examining novel depression phenotypes and their pathophysiological and behavioral mechanisms underlying ACS recurrence risk.

Katherine Seelman, PhD

Dr. Seelman is Professor of rehabilitation science and technology at the School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences at the University of Pittsburgh. Her research and education interests include science and technology R&D trends that enhance independence for people with disabilities and older adults; end-user and stakeholder participation; Disability Studies; Science, Technology and Public Policy and International Rehabilitation. In 2002. Pennsylvania Governor Ed Rendell appointed her to two disability State Advisory Committees.

Kenneth Bridges, MD

Dr. Bridges received his MD from Harvard Medical School in 1976. Since, he has developed a clinical program in sickle cell disease and hemoglobin disorders, the Joint Center for Sickle Cell and Thalassemic Disorders. Dr. Bridges created one of the first World Wide Web sites that provided information on hemoglobin disorders. As a member of the Harvard Medical School faculty, Dr. Bridges served as chairman of the admissions subcommittee for applicants from underrepresented minority groups. Dr. Bridges served on professional societies such as the American Society of Hematology and held research review committee appointments at the National Institutes of Health.

Kenneth L. Lichstein, PhD

Dr. Lichstein is Professor at the University of Alabama. He has 30 year history of studying sleep and over 20 years of continuous external funding to bear in his duties as a lecturer and grantsmanship mentor. Over the past decade, he has actively studied normal and disturbed sleep in different ethnic groups including African Americans, Hispanics, and Asians. He has had a commitment to training a diverse group of sleep health providers.

Kevin Fiscella, MD, MPH

Dr. Fiscella is Professor of Family Medicine and Community & Preventive Medicine, and the Wilmot Cancer, University of Rochester School Medicine. He is Associate Director of the Center for Communication and Disparities Research, Co-Director of Community Engagement for the University of Rochester CSTI and Co-Director of the Greater Rochester Practice-Based Research Network. He has worked for over twenty-five years in federally qualified health centers (FQHCs). He has served on numerous national committees related to disparities and quality including those for the National Quality Forum, the National Committee for Quality Assurance, and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.

Lisa Cooper, MD, MPH

Dr. Cooper is Professor of Medicine at Johns Hopkins University School of Public Health. Her research program focuses on patient-centered strategies for improving outcomes and overcoming racial and ethnic disparities in healthcare. She has conducted several observational studies to better define barriers (e.g., patient attitudes, beliefs, and preferences) to equitable care across racial and ethnic groups and mechanisms for disparities in health status and healthcare (e.g., patient-physician communication, race discordance between patients and physicians). She is the PI of the Center for Population Health and Health Disparities -- Hopkins Center to Eliminate Cardiovascular Disparities. Her research links patient and clinician attitudes and behaviors with health outcomes.

Matthew M. Burg, PhD

Dr. Burg is Professor of Medicine in the Department of Medicine, Behavioral Cardiovascular Health and Hypertension Program at Columbia University. His primary research interests are on the role of stress and emotion in the development and expression of CVD, with a particular focus on ACS and arrhythmia. He also has interests in the patho-physiological mechanisms by which emotion and stress are linked to CVD.

Michael Grandner, PhD

Dr. Grandner is a Postdoctoral Fellow at the Center for Sleep and Circadian Neurobiology (CSCN) at the University of Pennsylvania, and a member of the Division of Sleep Medicine in the Department of Medicine. He is currently studying how sleep and sleep-related behaviors are related to longevity, mental health, obesity, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease. Research projects currently involve home-based sleep assessments, polysomnography and actigraphy, neurobehavioral performance and neuropsychological functioning, metabolic measurements such as insulin resistance, dietary preferences, psychological health and quality of life assessments. He also studies sleep and health at the community and population level.

Nakela Cook MD, MPH, FACC

Dr. Cook is a medical officer in the Clinical Applications and Prevention Branch in the Division of Cardiovascular Sciences at the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI). Her research portfolio includes comparative effectiveness research, cardiovascular imaging, racial/ethnic and gender disparities in cardiovascular disease, and cardiovascular health services and outcomes research in general. She enjoys the breadth of methodologies in her work at NHLBI, spanning outcomes research, epidemiology, and clinical trials. Dr. Cook continues to mentor residents and fellows while remaining clinically active in general clinical cardiology at Washington Hospital Center.

Robert E. Fullilove, EdD

Dr. Fullilove is Associate Dean for Community and Minority Affairs, Professor of Clinical Sociomedical Sciences and the co-director of the Community Research Group. Previously, he served on the Board of Health Promotion and Disease Prevention at the Institute of Medicine at the National Academy of Sciences. He has also served on five IOM study committees that have produced reports on a variety of topics including substance abuse and addiction, HIV/AIDS, and tuberculosis. In 2003, he was designated a National Associate of the National Academies of Science. In 1998 he was appointed to the Advisory Committee on HIV and STD Prevention (ACHSP) at the CDC, and in July, 2000, he became the committee's chair. Finally, in 2004, he was appointed to the National Advisory Council for the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine at the NIH.

Thomas A. Mellman, MD

Dr. Mellman is Professor of Psychiatry and Associate Dean for Clinical and Translational Research at Howard University College of Medicine. He is the Principal Investigator representing Howard for the Georgetown Howard Universities Center for Clinical and Translational Science supported by a Clinical Translational Science Award from NIH. Dr. Mellman's primary research interest over the years has been the role of sleep in posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and the early aftermath of trauma. His additional research interests include other aspects of the psychobiology and treatment of PTSD, evidence-based practices in psychopharmacology, and the role of stress in health disparities. He has a consistent track record of mentoring junior investigators and interdisciplinary collaboration.

« Back to Top