• AAFP NRN Staff & Committees

    AAFP NRN Staff

    The National Research Network is part of the Research, Science and Health of the Public Division.

    Jennifer K. Carroll, MD, MPH - Network Director
    1-800-274-2237, ext 6146
    Dr. Carroll is a family physician and Associate Professor of Family Medicine at the University of Colorado. She recently relocated from Rochester, NY to Denver, CO and began as the director of the American Academy of Family Physicians National Research Network. Dr. Carroll's clinical work, research, and community service have focused on underserved populations in federally qualified health centers. She also has a strong interest in interventions to promote healthy lifestyles (such as physical activity, healthy diet, and healthy weight) in primary care and community settings. Dr. Carroll has a Doctorate of Medicine from the University of Connecticut School Medicine, as well as an Masters Public Health from the University of Rochester, where she also completed her residency. She has clinical certifications in Integrative and Holistic Medicine and Exercise Prescription and Programming.

    Alicia Brooks-Greisen - Bilingual Research Coordinator
    1-800-274-2237, ext. 6155
    Alicia joined the PeRson EmPowered Asthma RElief study (PREPARE) asthma study team in December 2018 to serve as bi-lingual coordinator for Spanish speaking study participants. Prior to this, Alicia worked as a Project Director of community-based participatory research projects at KU Medical Center and has also been a Spanish teacher before that. Additionally, she is a yoga teacher, specializing in prenatal, trauma/anxiety and chronic pain.

    Elisabeth Callen, PhD, GStat – Senior Data Scientist
    1-800-274-2237, ext. 6145
    Dr. Callen is the Senior Data Scientist at the American Academy of Family Physicians National Research Network where she focuses on providing data management and analysis to a variety of practice-based patient-centered research studies. Specifically, she has experience with compiling, organizing, cleaning, analyzing, and interpreting data from a variety of topic areas including patient- and practice-centered outcomes research. Dr. Callen also has expertise in data science, statistics, and biostatistics including expertise with quantitative and qualitative data, Electronic Health Record (EHR) data, Bayesian and Frequentist methods, data analysis, and practice-based outcomes research. She has Bachelor’s degrees in Astronomy and Mathematics and a Masters of Science in Atmospheric Science from the University of Kansas. Her doctorate is in Meteorology with a minor in Statistics from Iowa State University.

    Miriam Dickinson, PhD - Senior Scientist - Biostatistician
    Dr. Dickinson is an Associate Professor in the Department of Family Medicine and an Adjunct Associate Professor in the Department of Preventive Medicine and Biometrics, University of Colorado Health Sciences Center. Miriam’s areas of research and teaching interest include practice-based research, health services research, research methods, and multilevel modeling.

    Christina M. Hester, PhD, MPH – Research Director
    1-800-274-2237, ext 6147
    Christina M. Hester, PhD, MPH serves as the research director for the AAFP National Research Network and is responsible for the conduct, overall supervision, staffing, and budgeting of studies fielded within the AAFP NRN. Christina is a microbiologist and primary care researcher and has developed a translational research program with the goal of reducing health disparities. Her work focuses primarily on increasing colorectal cancer screening uptake and elucidating the role of the gut microbiota in colorectal cancer risk and disparities. Christina formerly served as Assistant Director for Research in the University of Kansas Medical Center’s Family Medicine Residency Program, within which she mentored all residents through inception, implementation, and completion of primary care, community health, and health disparities related research projects.  

    Angie Lanigan, MPA, RDN, LD - Research Project Manager
    1-800-274-2237, ext. 6382
    Angie Lanigan worked for the AAFP NRN from 2006-2011 and returned in 2018. She currently serves as a Research Project Manager and oversees study management, data collection, and site facilitation. During her time away from the AAFP NRN, she became a Registered Dietitian and has worked in direct patient care in acute care settings, community education, and nutrition program development. Angie is passionate about research in nutrition therapy and lifestyle modifications.

    Natalia Loskutova, MD, PhD - Senior Scientist and Director of Evaluation
    1-800-274-2237, ext. 6149
    Dr. Loskutova is a Senior Investigator and Director of Evaluation at the American Academy of Family Physicians National Research Network where she focuses on practice-based patient centered research activities applicable to primary care. She is also an Adjunct Assistant Professor at the University of Kansas Medical Center Department of Family Medicine. Dr. Loskutova received her medical training in general psychiatry. She received her PhD in Rehabilitation Sciences from the University of Kansas Medical Center with the focus on aging, cognitive impairment and neurorehabilitation. Dr. Loskutova’s primary research interests are in practice-based studies and aging, especially in improved detection, management, care delivery and patient safety in aging. She has served in key roles on several large practice-based research projects, has a strong background in research design and methods and in-depth understanding of practice-based research, dissemination and implementation research and research evaluation.

    Cory Lutgen, BS - Research Project Manager
    1-800-274-2237, ext. 6150
    Cory joined the NRN in 2017 and serves as project manager for multiple research studies that encompass numerous stakeholders, research institutions, and primary care practices. He oversees study management and communication, data collection and analysis, site facilitation and leadership. Prior to joining the NRN, he spent 9 years working in Biopharmaceutical R&D and advancement. Cory received a BS in Microbiology from the University of Kansas.

    Brian K. Manning, MPH, CHES - Associate Research Director
    1-800-274-2237, ext. 6151
    Brian became involved in research in 1999 following a brief stint in the NFL. He currently serves as a project manager for many studies and is responsible for the preparation, implementation, budget, analysis, manuscript preparation and overall supervision of these studies. Brian has extensive experience with conducting large-scale randomized clinical trials that address areas in smoking cessation, dietary modifications, and patient/doctor communication.

    Joel Shields, MA – Research Project Manager
    1-800-274-2237, ext. 6152
    Joel has served as a senior project coordinator for the PeRson EmPowered Asthma RElief study (PREPARE), a pragmatic asthma trial based at Harvard University, since August 2016. He is involved with project management, research design, data collection, supporting research sites, human subjects protection and IRBs, and practice and subject recruitment. Prior to his work on PREPARE, Mr. Shields worked as a quantitative and qualitative research in the Marketing Division at the American Academy of Family Physicians from 2006-2016. Mr. Shields completed his Master of Arts degree in sociology from the University of Missouri – Kansas City in 2007 and his Bachelor of Science in sociology from Missouri State University in 2000.

    Elizabeth W. Staton, MSTC - Writer
    Elizabeth works on improving written, graphic, and electronic communication and usability. She writes and edits grant applications, papers, and other materials. She is also an Instructor in the Department of Family Medicine, University of Colorado School of Medicine.

    Kaari Van Auken - Senior Program Coordinator
    1-800-274-2237, ext. 6153
    Kaari performs and/or coordinates administrative activities for the AAFP National Research Network, is responsible for maintaining the research network membership, coordinates meetings and conference calls for various NRN staff and senior scientists, manages the NRN’s Advisory Group, and performs contract or project work as assigned.

    Melissa K. Filippi, PhD, MPH – Research Investigator
    Dr. Filippi is a Research Investigator at the AAFP National Research Network and has over 20 years of health care research experience. She has a PhD in Anthropology with an emphasis in Medical Anthropology from the University of Kansas and an MPH from the University of Kansas Medical Center (KUMC). Dr. Filippi has held faculty positions at KUMC in the Departments of Family Medicine and Preventive Medicine and Public Health, and she has worked in industry as well. Her research interests include health disparities, community engagement, and public health. Dr. Filippi has managed several projects focusing on clinicians and the promotion of healthy lifestyles, and has directed the collection, analysis, and dissemination of data for numerous projects. Her multidisciplinary background provides a solid foundation for conducting qualitative research and understanding socio-cultural and behavioral factors that relate to lifestyle interventions.

    Ashley Kucera, MPH – Research Coordinator
    Ashley joined the Home vs Office for Medication Enhanced Recovery (HOMER) project in August 2020. Prior to this, Ashley received her Master’s in Public Health with areas of focus in health education, wellness promotion, health management and policy. She formerly worked as a Study Coordinator for Alzheimer’s disease physical health intervention studies at KU Medical Center. Additionally, she has delivered community-based nutrition and physical activity interventions for underserved populations throughout her community.

    Jill Alai, MPH – Research Coordinator
    Jill joined the AAFP National Research Network as a research coordinator in July 2020. She has experience working with rural local health departments, conducting community-based participatory research, and policy and program evaluation. Jill received her Master of Public Health in health policy and management from the University of Massachusetts Amherst in 2020.

    Diana Weber, CFRA – Research and Operations Administrator
    Diana joined the AAFP National Research Network as the Research and Operations Administrator in November 2019. She came to AAFP National Research Network from the University of Kansas Medical Center Research Institute. Diana supports the fiscal management and accountability of the AAFP National Research Network and other teams within the Academy.

    Ann Wade, BS, BJ – Research Engagement Specialist
    Ann is the Research Engagement Specialist at the AAFP National Research Network and manages communications and marketing efforts that support the research conducted through the Network. She has a background working in health care in academic and nonprofit organizations to advance marketing, communications, fundraising, and project management goals.  

    Leadership and Senior Scientists

    The Leadership Group consists of eight individuals who meet weekly to review and discuss upcoming and current grant opportunities, proposals, and future research focus for the AAFP NRN.

    Jennifer K. Carroll, MD, MPH - Network Director (SEE BIO UNDER ABOVE HEADING: STAFF OF THE AAFP NRN)

    Christina Hester, PhD, MPH - Research Director (SEE BIO UNDER HEADING: STAFF OF THE AAFP NRN)

    Rodger Kessler, PhD, ABPP - Senior Scientist
    Dr. Kessler is a senior scientist and director of the Collaborative Care Research Network at the AAFP NRN, assisting with investigator activities on various studies. Dr. Kessler is also a Research Assistant Professor at the University of Vermont College of Medicine in the Department of Family Medicine and a Clinical Associate Professor at Arizona State University in the Doctorate in Behavioral Health Program. His research interests include Practice based research, cost effectiveness and cost offset effectiveness of behavioral health in primary care.

    Kim S. Kimminau, PhD - Senior Scientist
    1-800-274-2237, ext. 3184
    Dr. Kimminau serves as a senior scientist for the AAFP NRN.She is a biomedical anthropologist and health services researcher. Throughout Kim's career, she has taught, and worked both in the public and private sectors. Her focus is on policy and practice issues in primary care, community/health and health disparities. Her personal areas of research interest include oral health, overweight/obesity and cervical cancer. Kim is currently sharing her time between the AAFP NRN and the University of Kansas Medical Center, where she is an Associate Professor of Family Medicine.

    Joseph LeMaster, MD, MPH - Senior Scientist
    Dr. LeMaster is a senior scientist at the AAFP NRN, assisting with investigator activities on various studies. Dr. LeMaster is also an Associate Professor at the University of Kansas Medical Center in Family Medicine. His clinical focus is on health promotion, preventive health, refugee healthcare, and adolescent medicine while his research interests include community-based participatory research on physical activity and wellness topics among adults and children - as well as studying the effects of exercise on chronic disease processes.

    Natalia Loskutova, MD, PhD - Director of Evaluation (SEE BIO UNDER ABOVE HEADING: STAFF OF THE AAFP NRN)

    Brian Manning, MPH, CHES - Associate Research Director (SEE BIO UNDER ABOVE HEADING: STAFF OF THE AAFP NRN)

    Wilson D. Pace, MD, FAAFP - Senior Scientist
    1-800-274-2237, ext.
    Dr. Pace is the CEO of DARTNet Institute, an organization that conducts research, supports collaboration among health care providers and organizations, and hosts data sets of health information for quality improvement and research. Dr. Pace also served as the director of the AAFP NRN from 2004 to 2015. He will remain at AAFP NRN as a senior scientist and will continue to work in the capacity of a Principal investigator for a few limited projects. Dr. Pace's past research has focused on patient centered health information technology, electronic data collection techniques, behavioral change, practice reorganization, and patient safety. Dr. Pace received his MD degree from the University of California, Irvine, in 1979. He is a board-certified Family Physician with a CAQ in Geriatrics.

    Advisory Group Members

    Follow the link to learn more about the AAFP NRN Advisory Group, and apply for an open position(s).  

    Current Advisory Group Members

    Edward Bujold, MD, FAAFP
    AG Role: Historian
    Chief Medical Officer of KPN Health Analytics
    Family Physician at Family Medical Care Center
    Granite Falls, NC

    Joan Fleishman, PsyD
    AG Role: Behavioral Health Clinician
    Assistant Professor, Behavioral Health Clinical and Research Director
    Department of Family Medicine at Oregon Health & Science University
    Portland, OR

    Yalda Jabbarpour, MD
    AG Role: Robert Graham Center
    Medical Director of the Robert Graham Center
    Washington, DC

    Jeanie Latz, BS
    AG Role: Community Member
    Executive MBA Faculty, University of Missouri
    Governance and Strategy Consultant
    Kansas City, MO

    Ranit Mishori, MD, MHS, FAAAP
    AG Role: PBRN Expert Researcher
    Professor, Department of Family Medicine
    Georgetown University School of Medicine
    Washington, DC

    Rebecca Mullen, MD, MPH
    AG Role: SRF Engagement
    Research Fellow at University of Colorado Family Medicine Residency
    Aurora, CO

    Rahmat Na’Allah, MD, MPH
    AG Role: Residency Clinician
    Residency Clinician at UnityPoint Clinic - Family Medicine - Peoria
    Peoria, Illinois 2

    Courtney Pilkerton
    AG Role: Resident/Fellow
    West Virginia University
    Morgantown, WV

    Lisa Regehr, BS
    AG Role: Chapter Executive
    Director of the Minnesota Academy of Family Physicians
    St. Louis Park, MN

    Wayne Reynolds, DO
    AG Role: Family Medicine Clinician Researcher
    Sentara Family Physicians - Gloucester
    Gloucester, Va

    Matthew Simpson, MD, MPH
    AG Role: New Physician 
    Assistant Professor at Department of Family Medicine - University of Colorado School of Medicine
    Aurora, CO

    James Stevermer, MD, FAAFP
    AG Role: Commission of the Health of the Public and Science
    Professor - Clinical Family and Community Medicine at the University of Missouri
    Fulton, MO

    Tom Vansaghi, PhD
    AG Role: NAPCRG liaison
    Executive Director – North American Primary Care Research Group )NAPCRG)
    Leawood, KS


    Please feel free to contact us at:
    1-800-274-2237 x6153