Past Fellows

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Wendy GrayI am currently a tenure-track assistant professor in the department of psychology at Auburn University. My work is primarily focused on health management during the transition from adolescence to young adulthood and I continue to actively collaborate with the faculty at Cincinnati Children’s. The training I received at the Center for Adherence Promotion and Self-Management has played an invaluable role in my career development. While a fellow, I had the opportunity to work with a number of the Adherence Center faculty, all of whom are leaders in their field. Working in the Adherence Center expanded my research and clinical skills repertoire and provided me with a new level of flexibility I could take with me on the job market. Rather than being someone who was only trained to work with one population, I had expertise that I could mold to the opportunities available at various academic institutions. In addition, during my fellowship years I was able to gain teaching experience and advanced training and mentorship on being a university professor while enrolled at the Preparing Future Faculty program at the nearby University of Cincinnati. This wouldn’t have been possible without the support of my mentors at Cincinnati Children's. They listened to what I wanted for my career and provided me with the resources to achieve my goals. Finally, thanks to the excellent mentorship and training I received from Dr. Kevin Hommel, I was able to develop and submit a successful Career Development Award proposal to the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation of America in my final year of fellowship. Coming into my new academic position with a grant in hand has been a great advantage that I otherwise would not have had had it not been for my training at the Adherence Center. I am grateful for the investment the Adherence Center faculty made in me as well as the support they provided as I explored various career paths and opportunities.

Years in program: 2011 to 2013

View Wendy Gray's CV

Photo of Michele Herzer, PhDI am currently assistant professor with joint appointments in Developmental and Behavioral Sciences, and Gastroenterology. I work primarily with the Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) team, with my time spent evenly between clinical work, research, and program development. I provide clinic-based and outpatient psychological services to youth with Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis, and conduct clinical research that focuses primarily on adherence to medical regimens, disease/treatment knowledge, and transition to adult care. I am also involved in program development, with focus on the development of a multidisciplinary IBD clinic and the development of a standard care transition program that assists youth with IBD in transitioning from pediatric to adult health systems. My fellowship at Cincinnati Children’s offered me specialized training in models of translational research, adherence intervention, measurement, and methodology, and clinical program development; skills which make me uniquely poised to make novel contributions to the field of pediatric adherence research and clinical practice.

Years in program: 2008-2012

Current Position: Clinical Psychologist, Division of Developmental and Behavioral Sciences and Gastroenterology, Children’s Hospital Mercy and Clinics, Kansas City, MO.

View Michelle Herzer's CV

Photo of Shanna GuilfoyleShanna M. Guilfoyle, PhD, is an assistant professor of pediatrics within the Department of Pediatrics and Division of Behavioral Medicine & Clinical Psychology at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center. She currently serves as the clinical psychologist within a multi-disciplinary team in the Division of Neurology’s New Onset Seizure Clinic. She specializes in the assessment and treatment of psychological comorbidities associated with pediatric epilepsy. Broadly, she has studied child, caregiver, and family functioning and their impact on pediatric chronic disease management and adherence across a variety of pediatric chronic conditions (i.e., obesity, transplant, cancer, inflammatory bowel disease, type 1 diabetes). She has served as a clinical interventionist on multiple NIH-funded randomized clinical trials to promote pediatric self-management and medication adherence. The Adherence Center fellowship provided me with the specialized training in adherence assessment and treatment, along with developing strong research skills in the development and execution of randomized controlled clinical trials. The ability to work with multiple Adherence Center faculty members across a broad spectrum of pediatric chronic conditions allowed me to have a more enhanced understanding of adherence measurement and barriers that impede adherence intervention that are unique to specific populations.

Years in program: 2009-2011

Current position: Assistant Professor of Pediatrics in the Division of Behavioral Medicine and Clinical Psychology Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center, Cincinnati, OH

View Shanna Guilfoyle's CV

photo of Meghan McGradyMeghan McGrady is a second-year postdoctoral fellow in the Center for the Promotion of Treatment Adherence and Self-Management. She completed her PhD at the University of Cincinnati and her residency at Cincinnati Children's. She is involved in grant writing, data analysis, and manuscript preparation in the Pai and Hommel labs.

Meghan is also an interventionist on the TEAM study (telehealth behavioral treatment protocol targeting medication adherence in children and adolescents inflammatory bowel disease) and the TAKE-IT study (a clinic-based program targeting oral medication adherence in adolescent kidney transplant recipients). After fellowship, she plans to obtain a position in an academic medical center with a research focus on development and dissemination of patient-centered interventions to promote self-management. Meghan is a study therapist for the ROGER study.

Learn more about Meghan McGrady's Career Goals and Publications

Years in program: 2012

Photo of Yelena WuI am currently an Assistant Professor within the Division of Public Health, Department of Family and Preventive Medicine, and an investigator at the Huntsman Cancer Institute. My fellowship at Children's Center for Adherence and Self-Management was critical in preparing me for my current and future work. The fellowship allowed me to tailor my training to my needs and interests, and thus allowed me to publish and collect data on, and to work with multidisciplinary clinical teams across illness populations. The breadth of these experiences gave me maximal flexibility when applying for jobs. Also, the mentorship I received through the fellowship from faculty in the Adherence Center and throughout Behavioral Medicine and Clinical Psychology was top-notch. The faculty not only provided multiple opportunities to develop my clinical and research skills, but also excellent career development mentorship. The skills I developed in adherence assessment and intervention, collaborations with multidisciplinary teams for clinical care and research, and navigating professional issues, helped me to transition smoothly into my new position and to start a program of research in a new area.

Years in program: 2011-2013

View Yelena Wu's CV

Christopher Siracusa is a second-year fellow in the Division of Pulmonary Medicine and a first-year fellow in the Center for the Promotion of Treatment Adherence and Self-Management. Dr. Siracusa has an interest in chronic disease management, and is the first MD-trained fellow of the program. Dr. Siracusa obtained a BA in Psychology at Ohio University, received his MD at The American University of the Caribbean School of Medicine, and completed his residency training in general pediatrics at Akron Children’s Hospital. Dr. Siracusa began his fellowship in Pulmonary Medicine in July of 2012, during which he was initially funded by a training grant from the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. He is focusing this year examining adherence patterns and barriers to therapy in the cystic fibrosis population, with particular attention to novel, disease-modifying therapies. Dr. Siracusa is also participating in the development of adherence programs in the cystic fibrosis and asthma centers, as well as partaking in adherence intervention training. After he completes his Pulmonary Medicine fellowship in 2015, Dr. Siracusa plans to continue a career in academic medicine, with particular focuses in cystic fibrosis and promotion of treatment adherence.

photo of Naomi Joffe.I am an assistant professor of pediatrics within the Department of Pediatrics and Division of Behavioral Medicine & Clinical Psychology at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center. I currently serve as a clinical psychologist within the Cancer and Blood Diseases Institute (CBDI), working with patients to improve coping with the demands of having a chronic illness, improve their adherence to treatment, educate parents, and teach non-pharmacological strategies to assist with pain management.  Through this role, I provide clinic-based, outpatient, and inpatient services and am also involved with both research and CBDI program development. During my fellowship within the Adherence Center, I contributed to a study working to improve the transition from pediatric to adult care among young adults with sickle cell disease with the goal of improving patient adherence/self-management and disease outcomes. I continue to collaborate in this area with Dr. Lori Crosby and look forward to developing quality improvement projects within the CBDI to improve psychological care for patients with hematologic and immunologic disorders. My fellowship within the Adherence Center provided me with specialized treatment in adherence assessment and treatment and helped her to further develop strong research skills. This fellowship had many benefits including dedicated mentors across domains, excellent didactics addressing issues of professional development, manuscript/grant development, adherence research methodology, intervention, measurement, and clinical service development. I found following fellowship that I was well-prepared for a position in an academic medical center and will continue to use the skills provided to develop our clinical service using patient-reported outcomes to measure success.

Years in program: 2012-2013

Current position:
Assistant Professor of Pediatrics
Division of Behavioral Medicine and Clinical Psychology and Cancer and Blood Diseases Institute
Cincinnati, OH

View Naomi Joffe's CV

Photo of Kate JungerI recently started a clinical faculty position in the Division of Behavioral Medicine and Clinical Psychology at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical center providing clinical services and conducting research in pediatric epilepsy. My fellowship in the Center for Adherence Promotion working with Drs. Avani Modi and Kevin Hommel provided a range of training opportunities to strengthen my clinical and research skills in preparation for my faculty position. Specifically, innovative research studies expanded my knowledge of telehealth interventions, instrument development and validation, and novel clinical assessment methodologies (e.g., tablets and apps). Participation in the Psychology Research Group (PRG) as well as grant and manuscript preparation activities enhanced my scientific writing and increased my knowledge about the funding process. Weekly Adherence Center didactics provided the opportunity to learn about cutting edge research and interventions in the field and professional development issues. Department and hospital wide fellows’ seminars provided additional training in professional development, including how to successfully transition from postdoc to faculty. The cohort based model of training in Behavioral Medicine and Clinical Psychology was an added strength of the overall postdoctoral program, allowing me to cultivate strong and supportive peer relationships. Overall, I greatly enjoyed, benefitted from, and appreciated the training that I received in the Center for Adherence Promotion.

Years in program: 2012-2013

View Kate Junger's CV

Image of Sandra Cortina, PhDThe training I received as one of the first fellows in the Adherence Center provided invaluable mentorship across multiple areas of professional development. While nearly every training program offers experiences in research design and implementation, sophisticated statistical techniques, and specific chronic illness populations, I believe my training in the Adherence Center’s fellowship stands apart in three main ways: program development, flexibility, and variety. I was encouraged to gain training in motivational interviewing, develop and implement my own MI-based interventions for various research programs, collaborated with PI’s from multiple chronic illness groups, and developed working relationships with various providers in clinics and at the in-patient level. Every activity I participated in was by my choice and design; I developed my own interest-driven training program in close collaboration with my mentors and with my career development as a focus. The opportunities I had allowed me to obtain a competitive position with varied responsibilities. Part of my time is spent in the development and implementation of a hospital-wide outcome improvement initiative. As part of the endeavor, I collaborate with hospital leadership and partners across the country to ensure the utility, acceptability, and actual uptake of provider-based training in self-management. The other part of my time is spent in clinical care with patients from a wide range of chronic illness populations (because I specialized in adherence, not a specific disease group I have clinical flexibility). As the clinical service is an integrated clinical research program, I continue to use my research skills in the assessment and report of effectiveness data. Finally, I value the time I have as mentor in the fellowship training program and the chance to give back as much as I received.

Years in program: 2007-2008

Current Position: Assistant Professor of Pediatrics, Division of Behavioral Medicine and Clinical Psychology, Director of Clinical Service, Center for Adherence Promotion and Self-Management, Cincinnati, OH

View Sandra Cortina's CV

Photo of Marisa Hilliard.I am currently in a research-focused junior faculty position at an academic medical center. My fellowship in the Cincinnati Children's Adherence Center prepared me for this role by strengthening my research skills, providing me access to high-quality studies and datasets, supporting me to spend my time conducting analyses and writing, and exposing me to emerging concepts and analytic approaches in adherence research . The targeted adherence training I received within a specific disease group gave me the foundation to establish a programmatic line of research that I am able to independently continue to build as I move beyond fellowship. In addition, the exposure I received to clinical care and research in other disease groups broadened my understanding of adherence across pediatric chronic conditions, which has allowed me to expand my research to new conditions and populations in my current position. Finally, the supportive and collegial environment gave me not only the confidence but also the network of mentors and collaborators that I needed to move from trainee to my next step as an early career professional.

Years in program: 2010-2012

Current Position: Assistant Professor in the Department of Pediatrics at Baylor College of Medicine, Huston Tx.

View Marisa Hilliard's CV

Photo of Lisa Ingerski, PhdLisa Ingerski is currently an Assistant Member in the Department of Psychology at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis, TN. Her current faculty position is distributed across both research and clinical (30%) activities. The two-year fellowship in the adherence center provided the opportunity to collaborate with other early career psychologists and to function, in large part, as a junior faculty member. Participation in rich and varied research and clinical activities as a postdoctoral fellow provided a solid foundation from which to begin an academic career with a focus on adherence in oncology, sickle cell disease, and HIV/AIDS pediatric populations.

Years in program: 2008-2010

Current Position: Assistant Professor, St Jude Children’s Hospital Department of Psychology, Memphis, TN. 

View Lisa Ingerski's CV