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Yale Team


  • Executive Director

    Hilary Hahn, EdM, MPH, is the Executive Director of Elevate Policy Lab in the Office of Public Health Practice at the Yale School of Public Health. Ms. Hahn comes to the Elevate team from the Childhood Violent Trauma Center at Yale, where she was the Project Director for Yale’s site of the National Child Traumatic Stress Network. Dedicated to early intervention and a strong believer in building innovative forms of social support, Ms. Hahn has led training initiatives in trauma-informed policing and supported national dissemination of the Child and Family Traumatic Stress Intervention (CFTSI). Ms. Hahn holds a Master’s in Educational Administration and Social Policy from Harvard and a Master’s in Public Health.
  • Senior Research Scientist

    B. Suzi Ruhl, JD, MPH, is a Senior Research Scientist at Elevate Policy Lab and an Assistant Clinical Professor at the Yale Child Study Center. Ms. Ruhl joins Elevate from her previous position, Senior Counsel for the US EPA Office of Environmental Justice, where she served as Co-Chair of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) Committee of the Federal Interagency Working Group on Environmental Justice (EJIWG), Co-Chair of the Rural Communities Committee of the EJIWG, and as Chair of the Subcommittee on Place Based Efforts for the EJIWG. Her work has focused on advancing triple bottom line (i.e. environmental, health and economic) justice by integrating environmental justice in agency decision-making, supporting community-based action, and fostering administration wide action that promotes healthy, equitable, resilient, and sustainable communities for overburdened and underserved populations. Ms. Ruhl co-founded Brownfields to Healthfields (B2H), a community driven, multi-stakeholder approach to transform contaminated properties into community spaces that meet essential needs (e.g. health care, food security, physical activity).  She also co-produced an analytical methodology for advancing consideration of environmental justice, including the human environment, in environmental reviews under the National Environmental Policy Act. See Promising Practices for EJ Methodologies in NEPA Reviews.  Suzi brings her expertise on triple bottom line and community driven approaches to the Elevate team with a focus on centering environmental justice in the lab’s mission to promoting social and economic mobility for families living in poverty.     In addition to her law degree, Ms. Ruhl has a master’s degree in Public Health (Epidemiology). She is admitted to the bars of the Northern District of Florida and the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals.

Core Staff

  • Research Manager

    Laura Callinan, MPH, is the Research Manger at Elevate. Ms. Callinan comes to the Elevate team after supporting the MOMS Partnership’s® work in New Haven through data collection, organization, management and analysis. Ms. Callinan earned a Master of Public Health from Emory University where she worked with the Centers for Disease Control in infectious disease research. She is excited to continue her work with the MOMS Partnership as Elevate expands programming.
  • Operations Manager

    Kari Cifarelli, MPH, is the Operations Manager for Elevate Policy Lab and the New Haven MOMS Partnership℠. Kari has worked in the research field for the past 12 years focusing on women’s mental health. Kari manages the overall operations of the office, and is responsible for supporting organizational processes, and to assist with the quality, productivity and efficiency of Dr. Megan Smith’s programs. Kari also supervises the research mission of the New Haven MOMS Partnership and works to provide the utmost of leadership to research staff. Kari is passionate about this work because she believes that mental health is critical at every stage of life, from childhood and adolescence, through adulthood.
  • Special Assistant

    Annie Du, BA, is a Special Assistant at Elevate, where she supports operations across implementation & scaling, evaluation, policy, and communications. Annie earned her undergraduate degree from Case Western Reserve University in Nutritional Biochemistry and Metabolism. In seeking a niche in the expansive field of public health, Annie has engaged in multiple leadership roles through the American Public Health Association Student Assembly. She has also served in internship roles in adolescent health and surveillance, and more recently, in environmental testing for SARS-CoV-2 and other pathogens at a biotechnology company. Annie’s research experience prior to Elevate includes laboratory work in elucidating the pathogenesis of primary open-angle glaucoma as well as support of a project pertaining to interprofessional education amongst health professions and social work students. Annie’s involvement in mental health care began with her volunteer experience providing crisis prevention and intervention to texters through Crisis Text Line, and her interest in this field continues to grow and intersect with her passion for health equity and women’s health.
  • Project Specialist

    Devon McCormick, MACP, MARLSC, is the Implementation Project Specialist at Elevate. In this role, Devon supports activities related to the implementation of MOMS programming including program planning, training and technical assistance, research and evaluation, and planning for expansion and sustainability. Devon first earned her M.A. in Religious Leadership for Social Change from Starr King School for the Ministry, where she focused on countering racial injustice and poverty amelioration from an interfaith lens, worked for the non-profit Youth Spirit Artworks, an interfaith art jobs and job training program, and interned for the Anti-Racist Alliance of New York City. More recently, Devon earned her M.A. in Community Psychology from the University of New Haven, with a concentration in Program Development. While at the University of New Haven, Devon also served as the Prevention Programs and Training Director for the Tow Youth Justice Institute, a research and policy organization committed to youth justice reform, having also completed a Georgetown University Center for Juvenile Justice Reform certificate program in School-Justice Partnership and Diversion Pathways. Devon is an International Institute of Restorative Practices licensed Restorative Practices trainer and has expertise in the theory and implementation of Restorative Justice at large. Previously, Devon earned her B.A. in Psychology from Roger Williams University. Devon is a strong advocate for social justice, with particular interest in systems of social stratification, alternative justice pathways, community care models, and resourcing parents. Devon is a survivor of an acute Perinatal Mood and Anxiety Disorder (PMAD) herself and hopes to imbue her work at Elevate with the learnings from her lived experience.
  • MOMS Partnership® Research and Evaluation Administrator

    Caroline Posner, BA, is an Administrator of Research & Evaluation for MOMS Partnership® Scaling at Elevate, coordinating research and evaluation work for scaling MOMS to new sites. Previously Caroline served as a Special Assistant at Elevate, contributing to research, communications, and administrative activities. She earned her undergraduate degree in psychology with a concentration in neuroscience at Yale. Prior to Elevate, her research experience included laboratory work in the neuroscience of decision-making as well as adolescent cognitive development, in addition to work on the comparative history of the brain sciences in the United States and Soviet Union. Caroline is interested in the relationships between social exclusion, mental health, and the social reproduction of inequality, and is passionate about community-driven approaches to research and evaluation. In addition to her work with Elevate, Caroline is also a student in the Master of Arts Program in Social Work, Social Policy, and Social Administration at the University of Chicago.
  • Special Assistant

    Seeyashree (Seeya) Sodani, BS, is a Special Assistant at Elevate, where she supports operations across implementation & scaling, evaluation, policy, and communications. Seeya earned her undergraduate degree from the University of Connecticut in Finance and with a minor in Analytics. Outside of her work at Elevate, she serves as the Executive Officer & Founding Board Member for Medical Minds Matter, Inc., a volunteer-led startup nonprofit organization that seeks to transform the narrative of mental health in the medical field through storytelling, community-building, and grassroots advocacy efforts. In addition to her health advocacy experience, she brings a strong business acumen through prior internships across multiple industries and her first post-graduate role at Liberty Mutual. Seeya is passionate about challenging cultural stigmas surrounding mental health specifically in marginalized communities while driving equity and transparency across mental health systems.
  • Program Manager

    Maria Sperduto, MPH, is the Implementation Program Manager at Elevate. In this role, Maria leads the Elevate implementation team as they work with government and community partners to tailor, implement, and sustain the MOMS Partnership® model in their local context. Maria earned her MPH in Social and Behavioral Sciences from the Yale School of Public Health, during which she also worked for the Yale Center for Emotional Intelligence to develop and conduct research on an app-based program for young adults. Previously, Maria was a Presidential Fellow at Dartmouth College, where she helped launch The Student Wellness Center to advance campus-wide, research-based, wellbeing interventions. She became the first Wellness Program Coordinator there. Maria is also a Program Consultant to the Good Life Center at Yale. She is interested in interventions to nudge psychosocial and democratic wellbeing, build social capital across identity divides, and transform population level trends in mental health. Maria holds a certificate in Political Psychology from Stanford University and a BA in Sociology modified with Global Health from Dartmouth College.
  • Associate Research Scientist

    Keitra Thompson, DNP, MSN, MHS, APRN, is an Associate Research Scientist at Elevate, contributing to the lab’s scaling and evaluation of the MOMS Partnership. She joins Elevate after completing a two-year post-doctoral fellowship as a VA scholar in the National Clinician Scholars Program at Yale School of Medicine. During her fellowship, Keitra served as an affiliated post-doctoral fellow with Elevate, leading efforts to qualitatively evaluate the MOMS Partnership at scaling sites across three different states. In her current role, she will primarily lead Elevate’s efforts to scale the MOMS Partnership to serve the needs of mothers and children impacted by the U.S. criminal legal system. As a dually board-certified family and psychiatric nurse practitioner, Keitra brings her insights providing community-based clinical care to the work of Elevate. She holds a Doctor of Nursing Practice in Executive Nursing Leadership from Johns Hopkins School of Nursing and a Master of Health Science in Health Services Research from Yale School of Medicine.
  • Project Manager

    Chandni Vasisht, MPH, is a Project Manager at Elevate. Prior to joining Elevate, Chandni served as a Project Manager for the Center for Outcomes Research and Evaluation (CORE) at Yale. At CORE, she specialized in Medicare policy implementation, education and outreach to hospitals and patients. She has several years of research experience and is also working with collaborators in the Child Study Center and the Department of Economics on the 123MOMS Study. Chandni has a Master of Public Health degree from Tulane University’s School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine. She is dedicated to continuing her work in the healthcare space, specializing in health equity, and illuminating disparities. In her spare time, she enjoys gardening, performing improv, and taking long walks in East Rock.
  • MOMS Partnership® Research and Evaluation Administrator

    Elizabeth Yeh, PhD, is a MOMS Partnership® Research and Evaluation Administrator at Elevate, where she helps drive the research and evaluation work of scaling MOMS outside of New Haven. She is a developmental psychologist with deep experience in research, assessment and program evaluation. During her career, Elizabeth has evaluated publicly funded programs for low-income populations in both the academic and private sectors. She earned a Ph.D. in Child Psychology at the Institute for Child Development at the University of Minnesota. She has co-authored several articles in peer-reviewed journals such as Child Development and Social Development. Elizabeth has a passion for using data to better the lives of parents and children in underserved populations.

Elevate-Affiliated Researchers

  • Elevate-Affiliated Researcher

    Maria Ciarleglio, PhD, is an associate professor at the Yale School of Public. An expert in design, analysis and monitoring of clinical trials, she worked with the Cooperative Studies Program Coordinating Center at the Department of Veterans Affairs in West Haven, Connecticut for several years after completing her PhD at Yale. Her current research is focused on hybrid Bayesian-frequentist clinical trial design.
  • Elevate-Affiliated Researcher

    Nandini Deo, BS, is a second-year Master of Public Health student in Social andBehavioral Sciences at the Yale School of Public Health and an affiliated researcher at Elevate. As a member of Elevate’s qualitative evaluation team, Nandini currently conducts research on the MOMS Partnership Stress Management intervention at scaling sites in VT, DC, and KY. Nandini’s experience in research includes work focusing on air pollution reduction in the Salt Lake City valley and in infectious diseases epidemiology studying the transmission dynamics of healthcare associated infections in ICUs. Prior to Elevate, Nandini completed a 2-year fellowship focused on HIV, STI, and TB prevention with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Portland, Oregon. More recently, she worked with the Utah Department of Health to expand technology-based STI services across the State of Utah. Nandini is broadly interested in the impacts of social identity (e.g., sexuality, gender, motherhood, HIV status) on psychosocial health outcomes.
  • Elevate-Affiliated Researcher

    Rachel Ebling, Ph.D., is the Director of Research and Evaluation for the Parent & Family Development Program within Yale Child Study Center—a program that supports the intersection between adult mental health/wellness and the parenting role. A licensed clinical psychologist in Connecticut, Dr. Ebling has expertise in the development, delivery, and evaluation of intervention programs for parents, including programs that target maternal mental health, the parent-child relationship, co-parenting, CBT, and emotion regulation. Dr. Ebling has led the development and adaptation of many manualized interventions for MOMS Partnership®, including adaptations for specific populations of mothers and specific community contexts. She has expertise in treatment fidelity assessment, program evaluation, and observational and qualitative research methods. She has over two decades of experience designing such measures for interventional research studies and programs, and she enjoys training students and others in these approaches.
  • Elevate-Affiliated Researcher

    Samantha C. Holmes, PhD, is an Assistant Professor of Psychology at City University of New York, College of Staten Island. Her research is focused on women’s experiences of trauma, particularly identifying protective and risk factors of mental health outcomes, developing and disseminating interventions for survivors with complex clinical presentations, and expanding the conceptualization of trauma to explicitly include oppression as a potentially traumatizing event. Through her continued affiliation with Elevate, Dr. Holmes works on projects that examine material hardship, trauma exposure, posttraumatic stress disorder, and other clinical outcomes among racially and ethnically diverse low-income mothers.