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Community Engagement Experts

Mehdi Amouei Torkmahalleh Heading link

Expert on: citizen science, community engagement in research, population exposure assessment.

Mehdi Amouei Torkmahalleh has extensive experience in exposure science. He is interested in training public citizens and the community to understand the sources of air pollution in the community neighborhood and to take proper actions to improve the quality of the air they breathe. He gets engaged with the community through various methods, including the community’s involvement in his research, workshops, and conducting lives and stories on Instagram. (aerosol_science_en).

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Susan Buchanan Heading link

Expert on: occupational medicine, environmental health, children’s exposures, community engagement, reproductive environmental health.

Susan Buchanan’s research and outreach activities focus on community level exposures to environmental and occupational hazards. As director of the Great Lakes Center for Reproductive and Children’s Environmental Health, she has collaborated with community organizers in Benton Harbor, Michigan around environmental triggers of asthma to create the on-going A for Asthma campaign. Current and past research includes surveillance for community exposure to methyl mercury in fish, PFAS in fish from Lake Michigan, ethylene oxide from nearby emitting facilities, and occupational hazards among streetcorner day laborers. This work has included close engagement with community leaders to develop methods, collect data, and inform interventions.

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Jeni Hebert-Beirne Heading link

Expert on:  community-based participatory research, community engaged scholarship, citizen science.

Jeni Hebert-Beirne is a community-based participatory researcher with a strong public health practice and non profit management background. She partners with community residents and representatives of community-based organizations in community driven research to explore social processes related to structural drivers of health inequities.  She leads the sole research study of NIOSH-funded UIC’s Center for Healthy Work exploring how work operates as a social determinant of health in North Lawndale and Little Village and identifying community driven solutions. She also co-chairs the Community Engagement Subcommittee for the NIH NIDDK Prevention of Lower Urinary Tract Symptoms national research consortium. Hebert-Beirne is a member of the Partnership for Healthy Chicago, which oversees Healthy Chicago 3.0, the community health assessment for the city of Chicago.

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Yamilé Molina Heading link

Expert on:  community health workers, community advisory boards.

Yamilé Molina leverages continuous and multi-sectoral stakeholder engagement to develop, implement, and evaluate cancer health equity programs and associated research.  These programs incorporate community health workers, community advisory boards and direct contact with patients.  In particular, she is researching the effectiveness of patient navigation programs and health promotion for Latinos non-adhering to breast cancer screening guidelines.

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Yuan Shao Heading link

Expert on: mobile monitoring of community air quality,  indoor/outdoor air quality monitoring

To address the environmental justice issues in the Chicago area, Dr. Shao has been proposing research ideas (emissions of railyards on community air quality, poor indoor air quality on sleep quality, mobile monitoring of community air quality, etc.) and providing technical assistance (air monitoring) to local communities.

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Fanta Waterman Heading link

Expert on: health systems and services, Caribbean health  

Fanta Waterman is a health services researcher and community health educator investigating economic, clinical and humanistic outcomes related to healthcare access, policy and behavior. Her specialization focuses on how communities perceive, access and leverage resources in their health system.  

Faculty Profile