As the Director of Resilient Baton Rouge, Robin brings more than 20 years of experience in disaster recovery and community resilience. Prior to joining Resilient Baton Rouge, Robin was the Director of Community Resilience for GCR Inc., a Louisiana-based consulting firm where she led disaster recovery and resilience planning efforts for communities across the country including the states of New York, New Jersey and California and communities close to home including the City of New Orleans and Lake Charles and Calcasieu Parish. Following Hurricanes Katrina and Rita, Robin moved back home from New York City to serve in multiple roles at the Louisiana Recovery Authority. As Executive Director of the Louisiana Recovery Authority, Robin oversaw more than $14 billion in housing, infrastructure and economic development recovery initiatives following Hurricanes Katrina and Rita, Hurricanes Gustave and Ike and the BP Oil Spill. Robin also led real estate planning for the Housing Authority of New Orleans and implemented their $30 million Choice Neighborhoods Initiative. Robin is an Adjunct Professor at Tulane University’s Masters in Sustainable Real Estate
Leslie T. Grover, PhD is the project manager for Resilient Baton Rouge. She holds a Ph.D. in Policy Studies from Clemson University, a Master in Public Administration from Mississippi State University and Bachelor’s degrees in both Social Policy and Print Journalism from Dillard University of Louisiana. She has published extensively in the fields of community development policy, health disparity policy, and socioeconomic and racial disparity. Her research has contributed to the development of state level policy and local level health policy in Louisiana and South Carolina. She currently serves as an Endowed Professor of Public Policy and Public Administration at Southern University and A&M College in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and is a Robert Wood Johnson Interdisciplinary Research Leader.
Dr. Wells is Director of the Semel Institute’s Center for Health Services and Society, Co-Director of the California Behavioral Health Center of Excellence and Associate Director of the National Clinician Scholars Program at UCLA. His research focuses on improving mental health outcomes through a community- partnered, participatory research approach. Dr. Wells received the American Psychiatric Association’s Research Prize, Junior and Senior Investigator Awards of Academy Health, and is an elected member of the National Academy of Medicine. Dr. Wells co-led a major American Red Cross post-Katrina relief effort in New Orleans. He is Principal Investigator of Community Partners in Care (CPIC) and the Community and Patient Partnered Research Network. He will be co-presenting with Felica Jones, Director of Programs at Healthy African American Families II and CPIC investigator. Both received the Association of Clinical and Translational Science 2014 Team Science Award, 2014 APHA Thomas Bruce Award, and 2015 Campus-Community Partnership for Health Annual Award.
Ben Springgate, MD, MPH, FACP is an internist and faculty member at LSUHSC- NO. He currently serves as an Associate Professor of Clinical Medicine and the Director of the MD/MPH Program at LSUHSC-NO. He has strong interests in improving population health, quality of care, and in reducing health disparities.
Ashley Wennerstrom, PhD, MPH is an assistant professor of clinical medicine at Tulane School of Medicine. She also serves as the director of the Louisiana Community Health Worker Institute. She is a co-founder and past chair of the Louisiana Community Health Outreach Network, a local professional group for community health workers. Dr. Wennerstrom is also the Community Health Clerkship Director for Tulane School of Medicine, a required course which educates students about the social determinants of health, the non-medical aspects of patients’ lives such as education, housing, employment, language, environment, nutrition, and safety.
For more than 20 years, Suzy Sonnier has advocated for Louisiana residents in healthcare, human services and education. She is a dynamic leader, who is passionate about demonstrating results within complex systems through shared strategies, innovative thinking and focused execution. In March 2016, she was appointed the Baton Rouge Health District’s first Executive Director.
In her role, Sonnier works with hospital administrators, government agencies, community leaders, and medical professionals to implement the Health District’s strategic plan. The plan creates a unified medical community that enables Baton Rouge healthcare providers to combine their strengths and make coordinated investment decisions that will enhance care in the region, facilitate economic development and position Baton Rouge as a destination for healthcare.
Sonnier previously served as Secretary of the Department of Children and Family Services, where she managed Louisiana’s child welfare, child support enforcement, disability determination services and low income economic assistance programs. Prior to that she was Chief Operations Officer at the Louisiana Workforce Commission. She holds a Masters of Public Administration from LSU and a Bachelor of Arts in Communication from the University of Louisiana at Monroe. She was selected by Health District members after a regional search.
Jeanne Miranda, PhD is a Professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences at UCLA. She has focused her research on providing mental health care to low-income and minority communities. She holds a Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from University of Kansas and completed post-doctoral training at University of California, San Francisco. Dr. Miranda's major research contributions have been in evaluating the impact of mental health care for ethnic minority communities. She is currently working to evaluate an intervention her team developed to provide care for families adopting older children from foster care. She is adapting depression interventions for young women in Uganda and evaluating a government micro-finance program in Uganda. She is recently funded to develop and test a resilience intervention for low-income and minority LGBT populations.
Bowen Chung, MD, MSHS is an Associate Professor-in-Residence in the Department of Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, an Adjunct Scientist at the RAND Corporation, an Investigator at the Los Angeles Biomedical Research Institute, and a Research Scientist at Healthy African American Families II. Dr. Chung is currently an attending child and adolescent psychiatrist for the Los Angeles County Department of Mental Health at Harbor – UCLA Medical Center in Torrance, CA. Dr. Chung’s research has focused on studying approaches for the financing and delivery of health services to improve health outcomes for adult chronic diseases such as depression in partnership with under-resourced, minority communities. He was a key leader of a community-academic partnership and research project, Community Partners in Care, which won the 2014 Association for Clinical and Translational Science’s Team Science Award and the 2015 Community Campus Partnerships for Health Annual Award for adherence to social justice principles.
Armen Arevian, MD, PhD is Assistant Professor-in-Residence in the Department of Psychiatry at UCLA; Director of the Innovation Lab at the Semel Institute at UCLA; Director of the Translational Technology and Communications Core at the California Center of Excellence in Behavioral Health; and Director of the Consultation-Liason and Telepsychiatry at the UCLA Santa Monica Hospital. Dr. Arevian’s research can be broadly described as “participatory informatics” – the intersection of neuroscience, information technology, psychiatry, and community-partnered participatory techniques. This is a combination of community-based participatory research techniques (CBPR), translational neuroscience, and predictive analytics. Dr. Arevian also integrates his neuroscience background to work towards identifying novel, “behavioral biomarkers” (defined as objective measures of underlying mental or physical states derived from behavioral measurements) through analysis of voice and speech patterns to predict wellness in patients with severe mental illness.
Craig Landry, PhD, LCSW received his MSW from California State University, Long Beach and his Ph.D. in Social Welfare from the University of California Los Angeles. His academic research as well as his clinical practice has been focused on the implementation and provision of integrated collaborative mental health care. Craig’s extensive clinical practice experience includes collaborative depression care in a large integrated HMO, community mental health outpatient treatment with adults and children at a large community mental health center, and medical social work at a level one-trauma center. He is an adjunct Assistant Professor at CSUDH in the MSW program and served as a case management content expert in the Community Partners in Care Study. Craig is particularly interested in community participatory research that contributes to the development and utilization of empirically supported, culturally competent interventions for use in mental health and health services.
Catherine G. Haywood is the community service program manager for the Tulane Prevention Research Center (PRC). Catherine is responsible for coordinating and leading the community outreach activities of the Tulane PRC and related externally-funded research and service projects. These outreach activities take place primarily in low-income neighborhoods in the greater New Orleans area and involve community education, community outreach, and research projects in select neighborhoods. Catherine received her bachelor’s degree in Social Work from Southern University in New Orleans. She is one of the founders of the nonprofit organization, Women with A Vision, Inc. Founded in New Orleans in 1992, Women with a Vision focuses its work on combating the HIV/AIDS crisis in communities of color.
Dr. Donisha Dunn-Lombard is a board certified Psychiatrist and Internal Medicine physician. She developed an innovative model of care that fully integrated mental health into the primary care setting. She implemented quality improvement initiatives and research on addressing mental health and the collaborative care model. During her time at Tulane she incorporated the Combined Internal Medicine and Psychiatry Resident clinic into the medical home, and supervised Primary Care track-Internal Medicine Residents as well as those in the Combined Psychiatry/Internal Medicine residency program. Since 2014 she has been the consulting psychiatrist for JenCare Neighborhood Medical Centers in New Orleans, a primary and specialty care practice for seniors. In 2015 she became the consulting psychiatrist for NAMI (National Alliance on Mental Illness) New Orleans. In this capacity she continues her work to support sustainable team- based models of care where mental health and primary medical care are both prioritized.
Angie Kirkland is a Community Health Worker focusing on behavioral health at Ruth U. Fertel/Tulane Community Health Center. Ms. Kirkland is making strides in outreach programming at the Brinton Family Health and Health Center. Ms. Kirkland is a native New Orleanian who has worked in community health for the past 18 years and deeply understands the obstacles people face in getting adequate health resources. She recently began a NAMI support group called “Hope and Healing, which is held every Monday from 10:30am till noon in the community room at the clinic. This group is free and open to the public for anyone concerned about their emotional health. Ms. Kirkland’s says, “I hope to spread the message that mental health is as important as physical health – there should be care for the whole person.”
Diana Meyers, RN is the Director of Mission and Wellness of Anna’s Place NOLA and a registered nurse. She has been working in healthcare for over 30 years, the first 20 in hospitals and the last 10 in community health. She works with under- served communities to provide health and wellness resources and youth academic enrichment programs. Mrs. Meyers was also the Founding Director of REACH NOLA, which worked to improve access to quality care for those suffering from depression and PTSD after Hurricane Katrina. Diana is a native of New Orleans and an active member of her church, St Anna’s Episcopal Church
Dr. Edward Trapido is Professor and Associate Dean for Research at the Louisiana State University School of Public Health. He is also Deputy Director for Population Science in the Scott Cancer Center, and the Coordinator for LSU Health Sciences Center’s research on the Gulf Oil Spill. Dr. Trapido. Dr. Trapido represented the National Cancer Institute following the post 9/11 World Trade Center disaster, working with mid and long term health issues among residents of the area and first respondents. A cancer epidemiologist by training, Dr. Trapido received his ScD and ScM degrees from the Harvard University School of Public Health, and an MSPH from the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill.