People Notes May 2012

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Geneve Allison, an assistant professor at the School of Medicine, received a Best Poster Award at the third annual clinical and translational science meeting, Translational Science 2012, in Washington, D.C. Allison’s poster is titled “Collaboration Turns Electronic Health Research into Comparative Effectiveness Research.”

Astier Almedom, director of the International Resilience Program of the Institute for Global Leadership and a professor of the practice in humanitarian policy and global public health at the Fletcher School, was invited to present her proposed indicators of community resilience at a meeting of the Organisation for Economic and Co-operative Development on “Post-2015 Development Goals: Designing Targets and Indicators” in Paris from April 9 to 11. This was followed by the Rockefeller Foundation’s “Embracing Change: Building Social, Economic and Environmental Resilience” event in Washington, D.C., where Almedom served on a panel on April 20. On May 8, the Copenhagen School of Global Health at the University of Copenhagen will cohost an awareness-raising seminar with the Danish Network on Humanitarian Assistance, which will feature Almedom as a contributor. An article she coauthored, “ ‘Hope Is the Engine of Life’ and ‘Hope Dies with the Person’: Analysis of Meaning Making in FAO-supported North Caucasus Communities Using the ‘Sense and Sensibilities of Coherence’ Methodology,” appeared in the Journal of Loss and Trauma.

Sandra Ayres, an assistant professor of biomedical sciences at the Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine, was selected by the American College of Theriogenologists to serve on its scientific abstract committee for a four-year term.

Robert Bridges, professor of biomedical sciences at the Cummings School, has been appointed an honorary professor in the Department of Anatomy at the University of Otago in Dunedin, New Zealand. The three-year appointment recognizes Bridges’s active NIH-funded collaboration with Dave Grattan at the Centre for Neuroendocrinology in the medical school at the University of Otago.

Yannru “Jason” Cheng, E12; Wenshiang “Sean” Chung, E12; Greg Wong, E12; and Xihan Zhang, A13, comprised the Team Eos/Medivise, which competed in the Microsoft Imagine Cup U.S. Finals in the category of software design. It was the second time in three years that a team from Tufts has made it to the finals. The team developed a system called Medivise—a cloud- and mobile-based service that automates the process of monitoring patients undergoing treatment for tuberculosis. The system can be expanded to deliver other types of health-care information to individuals, especially the poor and those in developing countries. The product was prototyped and a Windows Mobile app was implemented for the finals. The team was flown to Seattle for the competition. Watch a video of their effort.

Jenny Citrin, D14, was named a Boston Schweitzer Fellow for 2012–13 by the Albert Schweitzer Fellowship. Originally founded in 1940 to support Albert Schweitzer’s medical work in Africa, the yearlong fellowships are designed to develop leaders in service who are dedicated to addressing the unmet health needs of underserved communities. Citrin is developing iSmile, a program to encourage prevention of dental disease through fun and nontraditional oral health education. With mentoring from Tufts dental and nutrition students, high school students from the Josiah Quincy Upper School in Boston’s Chinatown neighborhood will develop the interactive, Internet-based education module on dental health, specifically the dietary causes of cavities, for 5- to 11-year-olds. Serving as community and peer educators, the high school students will then mentor their lower-school counterparts in healthy behaviors. Citrin’s fellowship is supported by DentaQuest Foundation.

Jeffrey Coots, MPH13, was named a Boston Schweitzer Fellow by the Albert Schweitzer Fellowship for 2012–13, joining 250 other fellows across the country who will be developing and implementing health-service projects in underserved communities. Coots is one of four Tufts students to be so recognized. He is working to increase access to primary care for individuals who have recently returned home from prison. In addition to assisting individuals in registering for medical coverage and locating primary-care physicians, he will organize “Healthy Reentry” workshops aimed at building knowledge around common health challenges and introducing strategies for collaborating with a primary-care provider to mitigate the effects of chronic disease.

Kelly Sims Gallagher, an associate professor of energy and environmental policy and director of the Energy, Climate and Innovation Research Program at the Fletcher School’s Center for International Environment and Resource Policy, was quoted in a story by Bloomberg News on China’s efforts to cut carbon emissions from coal. “If the Chinese don’t dramatically reduce carbon emissions from coal, there’s no way we can make a dent in climate change globally in the time period that matters,” she said.

Kevin P. Gallagher, G99, G03, a senior researcher at the Global Development and Environment Institute, conducted a briefing for the International Monetary Fund executive board on the report “Regulating Global Capital Flows for Long-Run Development.” The new report was launched at the Brookings Institution; the full audio of the discussion is available here. Gallagher appeared on CNN to discuss recent Chinese investment in Latin America, which is the topic of his report published in February. He was selected to receive this year’s highly competitive Gitner Award for Distinguished Teaching in the College of Arts & Sciences at Boston University.

Sarah Goff, an assistant professor of medicine based at Baystate Medical Center, received a Best Poster Award at the third annual clinical and translational science meeting, Translational Science 2012, held in Washington, D.C. Goff’s poster is titled “Sources of Variation in Hospital Infection Rates in Women Following Childbirth.”

Michael Kowaleski, an assistant professor of clinical sciences at the Cummings School, became president-elect of the Veterinary Orthopedic Society at the organization’s 39th annual conference in Crested Butte, Colo., in early March.

Jennifer Kritz will start her new position as deputy director of public relations on Tufts’ health sciences campus on June 11. She is currently communications director for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts’ Executive Office of Health and Human Services, which includes 16 state agencies that collectively account for half the state budget. Kritz and her team engage daily with a broad range of news outlets to handle media inquiries, manage crisis communications and present positive stories about the work of HHS agencies. She also has held communications, research and policy positions with public figures ranging from Swanee Hunt and Hillary Rodham Clinton to the governor of Rwanda’s Kigali-Ngali province. Kritz holds a master’s in public policy from the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard, as well as B.A. and M.A. degrees in English from Columbia University.

Paul Lehrman, G10, a lecturer in the Department of Music in the School of Arts and Sciences, was the featured after-dinner speaker at Analog Devices’ General Technical Conference, a company-only annual event that brings together more than 1,000 engineers from around the world. He spoke about Tufts’ music engineering program and how it brings together students from Engineering and Arts and Sciences, and also about the Ballet Mécanique, a musical/technical/historical project he has been working on for 15 years and was the topic of his Ph.D. dissertation at Tufts.

Joann Lindenmayer, an associate professor of environmental and population health at the Cummings School, convened a panel on “One Health: Concept to Action” and a plenary session on “Building a Biomedical Research Culture” at the International Conference on Emerging Infectious Diseases, held in Atlanta in March.

Jana Mazor-Thomas, V13, a student in the combined D.V.M./M.S. in comparative biomedical sciences program, attended the National Wildlife Rehabilitators Association annual conference in March, when she accepted the Ed Hiestand Memorial Veterinary Student Scholarship and presented a talk titled “Pain-suppressed Behaviors in the Red-tailed Hawk.”

William Moomaw, professor of international environmental policy and director of the Center for International Environment and Resource Policy (CIERP) at the Fletcher School, gave a talk to the Tufts community on Earth Day, April 20, on “Overcoming the Challenges of Climate Change.” The event was cosponsored by the Tufts Institute of the Environment, Tufts’ Office of Sustainability, the Tufts Climate Policy and Planning Coalition and CIERP.

Julie Nelson, a senior research fellow at the Global Development and Environment Institute, won an award from the Institute for New Economic Thinking for her proposal on “Expanding Ethical Thinking on the Economics of Climate Change.” She also presented a seminar on “Ethics and the Economist: What Climate Change Demands of Us” at Penn State.

Emily Pitcairn, a doctoral student in biology in the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, has been awarded a 2012 National Defense Science and Engineering Graduate Fellowship. The fellowship is sponsored by the Department of Defense and covers tuition and fees and offers a $31,000 stipend for three years.

Sindhya Rajeev, M.D./MPH15, participated in the Clinton Global Initiative University Conference in Washington, D.C., in late March. Clinton launched the conference in 2007 to engage the next generation of leaders on college campuses around the world.

Tara D. Sonenshine, J81, was confirmed as Under Secretary of State for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs in the U.S. State Department on March 29. She had been an adviser at the U.S. Institute of Peace, focusing on projects related to programmatic outreach and growth. Before joining the institute, she was special advisor to National Security Advisor Samuel “Sandy” Berger. She served in various capacities during the Clinton administration, including transition director for the National Security Council. She began her career in broadcast journalism in 1982 at ABC News in New York, where she went on to become editorial producer of Nightline. During her tenure at ABC News, Sonenshine earned 10 Emmy Awards. A former contributing editor for Newsweek, Sonenshine has written on foreign affairs for the New York Times, the Washington Post and other newspapers.

Mio Tamanaha, MPH13, was named a Boston Schweitzer Fellow by the Albert Schweitzer Fellowship for 2012–13, joining 250 other fellows across the country who will be developing and implementing health-service projects in underserved communities. Tamanaha is one of four Tufts students to be so recognized. Tamanaha is addressing youth homelessness in downtown Boston by establishing an empowerment program for homeless youth ages 14 to 23. The program will create a social network through which these youth can connect with their peers, and will also involve an advocacy project that serves as a forum for the youth to become community educators in advocating for themselves and their peers. By creating a sense of belonging and purpose, the project also will serve as a stepping stone to improved health and educational outcomes. Tamanaha will be working with the Boston nonprofit Bridge Over Troubled Waters on this project.

Michael VanElzakker, a doctoral student in psychology in the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, has been awarded a 2012 National Defense Science and Engineering Graduate Fellowship. The fellowship is sponsored by the Department of Defense and covers tuition and fees and offers a $31,000 stipend for three years.

Timothy A. Wise, G05, research and policy director at the Global Development and Environment Institute (GDAE), interviewed two of the world’s leading agricultural economists, Peter Timmer and Michael Lipton, as part of the 2012 Leontief Prize event. The interviews, as well as the award recipients’ lectures, are available on GDAE’s Leontief page. Wise gave a presentation at the Heinrich Böll Foundation on the global food crisis, building on his recent report “Resolving the Food Crisis: Assessing Global Policy Reforms Since 2007.”

Nan Yi, G12, a doctoral student in the research group of Maria Flytzani-Stephanopoulos, professor of chemical engineering, received the Graduate Student Silver Award from the Materials Research Society. The award is open to graduate student researchers in materials science from around the world in chemistry, physics, biology and engineering. Yi is the first Tufts graduate student to win the award, and is one of the few recipients in the field of chemical engineering since the award was established in 2004. Yi presented his work, titled “Catalytic Hydrogen Production from Methanol and Formic Acid Reactions Over Efficient and Stable Gold Clusters on Cerium Oxide,” at the 2012 Materials Research Society spring meeting in San Francisco.

Mohamed Zeidan, M15, was named a Boston Schweitzer Fellow by the Albert Schweitzer Fellowship for 2012–13, joining 250 other fellows across the country who will develop and implement health-service projects in underserved communities. He is one of four Tufts students to be so recognized. Zeidan is addressing high re-visit rates to Boston emergency rooms by establishing a medical student follow-up program at Tufts Medical Center. Focusing on patients without primary-care physicians, students will meet with as many patients as possible to ensure that they understand their condition and the necessary steps for a full recovery. The project aims to provide underserved patients with advocates in the health-care system while also educating future physicians on the needs of the community.