Our Research Team

Screen Shot 2018-11-22 at 5.59.26 PM.png

Abigail R.A. Aiken, MD, MPH, PhD

is the principal investigator on Project SANA and Assistant Professor at the LBJ School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas at Austin. She combines backgrounds in medicine, public health, and public affairs, having completed her MD at the University of Cambridge, her MPH at Harvard University, and her PhD at the University of Texas at Austin.

20180122LG-JamesScott011.jpeg

James G. Scott, MS, PhD

is a co-investigator on Project SANA and Associate Professor of Statistics in the Department of Statistics and Data Science at the University of Texas at Austin. His research interests are in statistical computation and Bayesian inference and his applied work includes a focus on reproductive health.

Aleta Baldwin, PhD, MPH

is a co-investigator on Project SANA and Assistant Professor at the University of Texas San Antonio. She is a public health researcher specializing in sexual and reproductive health, particularly for marginalized populations including sexual minority women. Much of her research focuses on how clinician-patient interactions structure experiences in, and use of, healthcare.

Broussard_garden.jpg

Kathleen Broussard, MA

is a researcher for Project SANA and NICHD Predoctoral Trainee at the University of Texas at Austin Population Research Center. She received her master’s degree in Sociology from the University of Chicago and is currently pursuing a Ph.D. in Sociology with a specialization in demography. Kathleen’s research interests include sexual and reproductive health, gender, and social policy.

Screen Shot 2018-07-31 at 9.54.35 PM.png

Dana M Johnson, MPA

is a researcher for Project SANA and Ph.D. student at the Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas at Austin. She received a bachelor’s in Sociology and Social Work from the University of Minnesota, and her master’s in Public Affairs from the University of Texas. Her research interests combine health and social policy, with a focus on insurance coverage and reproductive healthcare access in the United States.

IMG_3455.JPG

Dylan Macalinao

is a researcher for Project SANA and an undergraduate in the Plan II Honors Program at the University of Texas at Austin. His current work focuses on analyzing and visualizing big data to improve decision making in clinical healthcare delivery and public health policy.

IMG_1251 2.jpg

Melissa Madera, PhD

is the Senior Project Manager and Research Fellow for Project SANA. Originally from Washington Heights, New York, Melissa is a first generation Dominican-American who holds a B.A. in History from Baruch College (CUNY), a MSc in Social Studies Education from Pace University, and an MA and Ph.D. in Latin American and Caribbean History from The State University of New York at Binghamton. An expert on abortion story-sharing, Melissa works to center the voices of people who have had abortions and end abortion stigma in all facets of her life. Prior to joining Project SANA, her own abortion experience inspired her to create The Abortion Diary, and spend five years traveling around the world listening to and capturing the diverse abortion experiences of over 300 people. She has been featured on the front page of The Washington Post, NPR’s Weekend Edition,Remezcla, Self Magazine, Univision, MSNBC's Breaking Glass series, From A Whisper To A Shout: Abortion Activism and Social Media, and the French documentary film Le choix d'une vie. IG: @theabortiondiarist or @theabortiondiary

11000896_10203743459686535_6730690296654874592_n.jpg

Elisa Padron

is a researcher for Project SANA and an undergraduate student at the University of Texas at Austin, majoring in Biochemistry/Pre-Med. She is also pursuing a Certificate in Social Inequality, Public Health, and Policy with a concentration in Family and Fertility.

Jenn_headshot.jpg

Jennifer Starling, MSc

is a researcher for Project SANA and Ph.D. candidate at The University of Texas at Austin in the Department of Statistics and Data Sciences, working with professors James Scott, Jared Murray, Carlos Carvalho, and Abigail Aiken. Her research interests are in developing flexible Bayesian models for structured data, nonparametric regression, and causal inference, with applications to public health, obstetrics, and personalized medicine. Prior to joining UT Austin, she completed her MS in Statistics at Texas A&M University and her BS in Mathematics at Virginia Tech.

Alejandra_headshot.jpeg

Luisa Alejandra Tello, MGPS

is a Project Manager for Project SANA. She is originally from Colombia, and holds a bachelor in Economics and a MA in Global Policy Studies from the University of Texas at Austin. Her policy interests are international development and capacity building. Before joining project SANA, she worked in a Colombian educational CCT program funded by the World Bank and the Colombian Presidential Office. Alejandra was also part of the team that implemented the Colombian National Statistical System (NSS) to promote Colombia's membership in the OECD. She gained M&E experience during her time working for the Secretary General of UNCTAD in Switzerland. In that role, Alejandra co-authored a policy briefing with the UNDP Evaluation Unit and IIED to promote evidence-based policy towards the SDGs achievement.