Head shot of Kojo

Paul Ayernor

Senior Research Analyst / Program Manager
Research Core Staff

Paul Ayernor (Kojo) is a researcher who focuses on social networks, social support, and the subjective well-being of older adults in sub-Saharan Africa. He strives to understand the macro-micro links influencing older adults’ subjective well-being. Paul is a senior research analyst/program manager on the HAALSA project. He is responsible for managing Agincourt study operations and performing data analysis for the HAALSI Agincourt surveys. Paul received his PhD and MPHIL in…

Darina Bassil

Darina Bassil

Research Scientist/Project Director
Research Core Staff

Darina is a research scientist whose work has focused on investigating the relationship between various risk factors and dementia outcomes, as well as studying cross-cultural variations in diagnostic measures of dementia. She is the project director of the HAALSI Dementia Study (HAALSI-HCAP) and is responsible for overseeing study data collection, management and analysis as well as managing the cognitive components of the HAALSA project. Through her work, Darina endeavors to…

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Meagan Farrell

Research Scientist
Research Core Staff

Meagan Farrell’s research has broadly focused on the effects of aging, disease, and injury processes on cognition. As a Pop Center research scientist, she works on the measurement and interpretation of cognitive outcomes for the HAALSA project. Meagan received a PhD in cognitive psychology from the University of Florida before completing a post-doctoral fellowship at Columbia University Medical Center. Her previous work investigated changes to language, memory, and metacognition in…

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Sarah Gao

Research Assistant
Research Core Staff

Sarah is a research assistant working in data management and analysis for the HAALSI Dementia study and the HAALSA project more broadly. Her research interests include cognitive health, reproductive health, and social networks. Sarah holds an MPH in epidemiology from the University of Michigan with a concentration in social epidemiology. Prior to joining HCPDS, she conducted research on the modern public health implications of forced sterilization in the United States…

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Elyse Jennings

Director of Research & Research Scientist
Leadership & Research Core Staff

Elyse joined us in 2016 as a research associate and was promoted to research scientist in 2019. As director of research, she leverages her training and experience as a sociologist and family demographer, as well as her substantive work on the HAALSA project (including her expertise in fieldwork training, survey development, and grant proposal writing) to help to shape and oversee the Center’s research initiatives. Her responsibilities include offering guidance…

David Kapaon

Research Assistant
Research Core Staff

David Kapaon is a research assistant helping with data collection, management, and analysis for the HAALSA project. He holds a dual MA/MS in sustainable international development, and global health policy and management from the Heller School at Brandeis University. Prior to joining HCPDS, David helped conduct research examining the economic and health impacts of the Health Extension Program in Ethiopia.

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Meg Lovejoy

Research Program Director
Research Core Staff

Meg Lovejoy is the research program director for the Work and Well-being Initiative, a broad-based research and policy program designed to develop and implement evidence-based workplace change for worker well-being. She is also project director for the initiative’s core grant, Workplace Redesign for Worker Well-Being: Blueprint for Resilience. This study, funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, examines sustainable practices for enhancing worker well-being, with a focus on low- and…

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Tamara Naidoo

Research Assistant

Tamara Naidoo is a recent graduate from Vanderbilt University with a degree in neuroscience and currently works as a research assistant aiding with data collection, management, and analysis for the HAALSI project. Prior to HAALSI, Tamara conducted research with Baylor College of Medicine to identify therapeutic targets for different neurodegenerative diseases. Her transition from traditional wet lab to public health research was motivated by her desire to better understand the…

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Carla Roberts-Toler

Senior Statistical Analyst
Research Core Staff

Carla is a biostatistician with a background in statistical analysis and research support across various healthcare and biological research settings. As a senior statistical analyst for the HAALSI project, she advises and performs statistical analyses across research areas including the dementia study and the HIV working group and collaborates with senior HAALSI investigators on statistical methods related to data generalizability and transportability between the community and national level. Carla holds…

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Julia Rohr

Research Scientist/Project Director
Research Core Staff

Research Scientist Julia Rohr is project director of HAALSI. She oversees all aspects of this complex and ground-breaking study, including data management and analysis, research dissemination, and training team members on data collection. She served as research associate on the Willows Reproductive Health Impact Evaluation project at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health in the Department of Global Health and Population, leading project work in Turkey. Prior to…