FACULTY & STAFF

Contact number: 202-687-5367

FACULTY

Lucile L. Adams-Campbell, Ph.D. is Professor of Oncology and Associate Director of Minority Health and Health Disparities Research. Dr. Adams-Campbell is a cancer epidemiologist with over 30 years of experience in the field. She is an internationally recognized expert in minority health and health disparities research and is a member of the National Academy of Medicine.  She has co-led two of the largest national cohort studies, the Women’s Health Initiative and the Black Women’s Health study for over two decades. She currently focuses primarily on metabolic syndrome and cancer with emphasis on diet and exercise interventions. Dr. Adams-Campbell received her undergraduate (biology) and master's degree (biomedical science) from Drexel University; and her PhD in epidemiology from the University of Pittsburgh.

Chiranjeev Dash, MBBS, PhD, MPH (Cancer Epidemiologist) is Associate Professor of Oncology and Assistant Director of Minority Health and Health Disparities Research at Lombardi. Dr. Dash's research focuses on cancer epidemiology and prevention intervention studies among minorities and medically underserved populations. Some of his ongoing research projects include investigating the molecular epidemiology of oxidative stress among African-Americans, a pilot study of exercise among African-American men, and a study on the association of endocrine disruptors with breast density among women undergoing breast cancer screening. Dr. Dash is also part of transdisciplinary teams conducting research on physical activity interventions in high-risk health disparity populations, oral health disparities in the District of Columbia, and impact of environmental exposures on breast cancer.

Kepher H. Makambi, PhD (Associate Professor of Biostatistics) works in the Department of Biostatistics, Bioinformatics, and Biomathematics. He received his PhD in statistics from the University of Dortmund (Germany). Dr. Makambi has many years of collaborative experience in the design and analysis of community intervention trials, behavioral studies, epidemiologic studies, basic science studies including proteomics and glycomics. His research interests include statistical methods in meta-analysis, adaptive design methods in clinical trials, structural equation modeling, statistical methods in epidemiology, and application of complex survey methods.

Sarah J Oppeneer Nomura, PhD (Research Instructor) completed her Ph.D. in Epidemiology at the University of Minnesota and has a B.S. and M.S. in Nutrition from the University of Minnesota. Her primary research interest is the role of diet, and diet-related (e.g. advanced glycation endproducts) exposures and chronic diseases (e.g. obesity, type II diabetes) in cancer risk and survivorship. Dr. Nomura is particularly interested in investigating the contributions of differential diet, and related exposures, to cancer disparities, and developing intervention approaches for reducing these disparities.

COLLABORATING FACULTY

Dr. Cavalli, PhD (Assistant Professor of Oncology) works at Georgetown University Medical Center, and is a member of the Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center and of Fisher Center for Familial Cancer Research. She is a molecular cytogeneticist, with 25 years of experience in the field. Her main research interest is the study of genomic instability in breast cancer, through the identification and characterization of the genetic alterations involved in the origin and progression of these tumors. Currently her lab is focusing on projects that aim to characterize the genomic and transcriptome profiles of triple negative breast tumors (TNBC), a clinically aggressive and molecularly heterogeneous breast cancer subtype. Her studies target women of minority populations, such as African-Americans and Latinas, the racial/ethnic groups that present with the highest rates in incidence and mortality of TNBC. The main goal of these studies is to understand the biological basis of their cancer disparities, which can contribute to the identification of race/ethnic specific molecular markers with therapeutic potential. In addition to her laboratory research, Dr. Cavalli is a member of the Clinical Review Committee at LCCC, and co-directs the Health Disparities course at the Tumor Biology Program of Georgetown University. She maintains continuing and active educational and research collaborative programs with several international universities, including Brazil, South Africa and France, having mentored and received in her laboratory more than 30 undergraduate and graduate students.

Alejandra de Mendoza, PhD (Research Instuctor in the Cancer Prevention and Control Program) Dr. Hurtado is a bilingual Social Psychologist with training in Anthropology and Communication, Culture, and Technology. In the last ten years she has conducted research on health disparities with underserved ethnically/racially diverse populations including Latinos and African Americans. Some of her ongoing research projects in translational genomics include the development of culturally adapted interventions to enhance the use of genetic counseling services  in Latina women and Black women at-risk of hereditary breast and ovarian cancer. She is also developing a Social Network Research Registry to enhance the engagement of Latina breast cancer survivors in research. 

Tawara D. Goode, MA (Assistant Professor and Director of the Georgetown University National Center for Cultural Competence, Center for Child and Human Development)  Professor Goode is actively involved in the development and implementation of programs and initiatives in the area of cultural and linguistic competency at local, national, and international levels.  She had a primary role in developing curricula, assessment instruments, professional development series, and other resources that support cultural and linguistic competence in academic and clinical settings.  Her research projects and interests focus on the role of cultural and linguistic competence in addressing health and health care disparities and increasing the participation of underrepresented racial and, ethnic, and cultural groups in all aspects of research.  

Kristi D. Graves, Ph.D. (Behavioral Scientist) is an Associate Professor of Oncology and in the Cancer Prevention and Control Program at Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center. Dr. Graves received her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University and completed post-doctoral training at the University of Kentucky. Dr. Graves has led a PCORI-funded project to test an intervention that aims to help Latina breast cancer survivors and their caregivers improve their quality of life. Dr. Graves collaborated with Nueva Vida, Inc (Washington DC) and three other community organizations (two in New York and one in California) on this effort. Dr. Graves is also co-leading an R01-funded project to explore symptoms experienced by patients diagnosed with thyroid cancer who received radioactive iodine treatment. She is also leading a pilot study to understand the experience of stigma among African American, Latina and Chinese American breast and cervical cancer survivors. In prior work, Dr. Graves investigated ways to inform people about genetic testing for genetic changes related to small increases in cancer risk. She is interested in translational research and research that improves cancer survivorship.

Bridget Oppong, MD (Adjunct Assistant Professor of Oncology) Throughout her medical training, Dr. Oppong has maintained an interest in disparities research impacting women's health, specifically in breast cancer outcomes, triple negative breast cancer and young women's fertility after cancer diagnosis. She received her undergraduate degree from the University of Pennsylvania, and her MD and General Surgery Residency from the University of Rochester School of Medicine. She obtained additional training as a Breast Surgical Oncology Fellow at the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York City.

STAFF

Tesha Coleman, MS (Program Director, Capital Breast Care Center) Capital Breast Care Cancer is a community- based navigation program providing breast cancer screening services to women regardless of their ability to pay. Ms. Coleman provides the direction and oversight of all CBCC programming including community education and outreach, patient navigation and transportation services. She is responsible for data collection, grant management and program outcomes for CBCC programs. Ms. Coleman works closely with the clinical providers to ensure timely quality breast cancer screening services for women navigated through CBCC.    She received a Bachelor's of Science in Health Management from Howard University and Master's of Science in Health Care Administration from University of Maryland University College.

Everett Dodson (Community Health Educator) develops and implements community outreach plans that effectively address the current needs of DC communities. Mr. Dodson is a nationally recognized expert on community and men's health issues. He currently serves as Vice Chair of the National Cancer Institute (NCI) Director's Consumer Liaison Group, and is a member of the NCI Clinical Trials Advisory Committee and Patient Advocate Steering Committee. His efforts as a health advocate have been recognized by The Prostate Net. Mr. Dodson is a member of the National Alliance of African American Prostate Cancer Advocates, and is a former chairperson for the Mid-Atlantic Region of the National Black Leadership Initiative on Cancer. Mr. Dodson
has over twelve years of experience in community engagement and men's health.

Mary Gleason, NP (Family Nurse Practitioner) provides medical screening for research participants. She has experience caring for patients with hematologic and oncologic malignancies across the continuum of care. She also has experience providing supportive care and education involving clinical research protocols in the bone marrow transplant setting. Ms. Gleason received her undergraduate degrees in journalism and nursing from Northwestern University and University of Virginia, respectively, and her master of science in nursing from Georgetown University.

Nathaly González, BS (Bilingual Patient Navigator/Community Outreach Coordinator with the Capital Breast Cancer)  provides navigation from outreach, education, screening to diagnostic services in community settings. She navigates patients throughout the DC metropolitan region and conducts community outreach in underserved areas. Originally from Colombia, South America, Nathaly is a graduate of the University of Autonoma in International Commerce and also of Benedict College where she earned a Bachelor’s degree in Business Management.

Rhonda Hamilton, MPA (Community Liaison and Patient Navigator)received her master’s degree in public administration from Southeastern University. She was raised in the District and has spent the past 13 years working in the community and advocating on behalf of residents. Ms Hamilton is actively engaged in recruitment for environmental and breast health studies. She also schedules patients for mammography screenings throughout the District Maryland and Virginia as a patient navigator with the Capital Breast Care Center.

Jennifer Hicks, MS (Certified Cancer Exercise Specialist) develops and conducts exercise interventions for clinical trials which focus on physical activity and cancer risk and prevention. She also helps to create community-based exercise programs designed to reduce cancer disparities among the underserved and ethnic minority populations. Ms. Hicks received her MS in exercise physiology at Howard University and her second MS in Tumor Biology from Georgetown University.

Marquita Iddirisu, MPH (Patient Navigator/Community Outreach Coordinator) is a public health professional with over 7 years experience in community health and clinical research.  She received her Masters in Public Health degree in Health Promotion from George Washington University and her Bachelors Degree in Biology from Spelman College.  In 2014, she joined the Capital Breast Care Center, an initiative of Georgetown Lombardi Comprehensive Care Center, where she navigates women in the DC metropolitan area for mammography and clinical breast care services. Ms. Iddirisu also develops health education curriculum and tailors presentations to various audiences. Additionally, she helps to write grants for community programming to increase mammography adherence.

Dale Mooney (Community Outreach Coordinator) is a native Washingtonian and has spent the past 20 years working to help underserved populations. Mr. Mooney is responsible for outreach and publication dissemination from the Office of Minority Health and Health Disparities and Capitol Breast Care Center concerning research projects to women and men among minority communities throughout the District, Maryland and Virginia.

Sherieda T. Muthra, MS (Program Manager) plans, manages, and oversees daily activities of the Oral Health Disparities Program. Her current research includes the implementation of community-based needs assessments, educational interventions, and biospecimen studies for cancer research. Her focus is community outreach and the reduction of health disparities in underserved and minority populations in the District of Columbia. Ms. Muthra received her master of science in Cancer Biology, Prevention, and Control through the University of the District of Columbia and the Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center at Georgetown University Medical Center.

Vivian Watkins (Research Coordinator) is responsible for coordinating and implementing recruitment strategies for the Office of Minority Health and Health Disparities Research as well as the Capital Breast Care Center. As a DC native she is particularly interested in increasing awareness regarding health disparities and minority research and increasing participation in clinical trials and research studies.    She aids in fostering the offices relationship with the surrounding community as well as increasing its visibility through her participation in various health fairs, community church sponsored events, and health education workshops. Ms. Watkins has over 10 years of experience in cancer and tobacco research.