Our Team

Kim A. Eagle, MD
Kim A. Eagle, MD
Albion Walter Hewlett Professor of Internal Medicine,
Director, Samuel and Jean Frankel Cardiovascular Center, Founder, Project Healthy Schools

Read Dr. Eagle’s Bio
The alarming increase of childhood obesity and other preventable Cardiovascular Risk Factors compelled Dr. Kim Eagle to contribute with a solution. Dr. Eagle is the Albion Walter Hewlett Professor of Internal Medicine and director of the of the Samuel and Jean Frankel Cardiovascular Center at the University of Michigan Health System. He graduated from Oregon State University in 1976 and from Tufts University Medical School in 1979. He completed his residency and chief residency in Internal Medicine at Yale-New Haven Hospital from 1979 to 1983 followed by research and clinical fellowships in cardiology and health services research at Harvard Medical School and The Massachusetts General Hospital from 1983 through 1986. From 1986 to 1994, Dr. Eagle served The Massachusetts General Hospital where he was promoted to associate director of Clinical Cardiology and associate professor of Medicine at Harvard.

Since his recruitment to the University of Michigan, he oversees a vigorous outcomes research program focusing on quality, cost-effectiveness, use of practice guidelines in cardiovascular care, evaluation and management of acute coronary syndromes, the evaluation and management of aortic dissection, and the use of modern mathematical models to assess outcomes and risk. He maintains an active inpatient and outpatient practice and is working with colleagues in creating the University of Michigan Cardiovascular Center. His outcomes research team has led quality improvement initiatives across the state of Michigan in acute myocardial infarction, heart failure, and coronary angioplasty.

LaVaughn Palma-Davis
LaVaughn Palma-Davis, MA
Senior Director, University Health and Well-Being Services

Read LaVaughn’s Bio
LaVaughn Palma-Davis is currently the Senior Director for University Health and Well-Being Services at the University of Michigan. In this role, she provides leadership for strategy, business development, program implementation, marketing, operations and evaluation of MHealthy, an ambitious effort to leverage the University’s resources to promote the health and well-being of faculty, staff, dependents and retirees. Palm-Davis provides direction to over 80 employees in numerous programs and services including: wellness and risk reduction services, employee assistance programs, occupational health clinical services, data management and evaluation. MHealthy also provides wellness and risk reduction services to UM Health System patients to support the organization’s population health management goals. Palm-Davis has served on the national Health Enhancement Research Organization's (HERO) Board of Trustees since 2010. She is a frequent speaker at national health promotion conferences and a contributor to national articles and publications on workplace health and well-being services. Palm-Davis has over 30 years of experience in health care administration and health promotion. She served as the administrative director for sports medicine and preventive cardiology programs. She also served as the project director for leadership development strategy for the UM Health System and oversaw the UMHS Child Care Center. Palm-Davis received her Bachelor of Science in health education from the University of Dayton and her Master of Science in public health education from Central Michigan University.

Jean DuRussel-Weston
Jean DuRussel-Weston, RN, MPH
Program Manager, Project Healthy Schools

Read Jean’s Bio
As program manager for Project Healthy Schools at the University of Michigan Health System, Jean DuRussel-Weston is responsible for the overall direction, growth and sustainability of Project Healthy Schools (PHS) in over 60 schools. PHS is a middle-school-based program designed to reduce childhood obesity and its long-term health risks. The program encourages healthy habits through education, environmental change and measurement across the state of Michigan. DuRussel-Weston earned her Bachelor of Science in nursing from Michigan State University and a Master of Science in public health from the University of Michigan. DuRussel-Weston is a registered nurse and certified health education specialist with over 30 years of experience in public health as a public health nurse for Washtenaw County and as a community health educator for Chelsea Community Hospital. She was also on the faculty of Eastern Michigan University's School of Nursing and the University of Michigan-Flint's School of Allied Health Professions and Studies. DuRussel-Weston also served as the director of Patient Education for the University of Michigan Health System. In addition, she is a frequent speaker at national health promotion conferences and a contributor to national articles on childhood obesity and Project Healthy Schools.

Katelin Davis
Katelin Davis
Wellness Coordinator, Project Healthy Schools

Read Katelin's Bio
Katelin Davis joined PHS full-time in August 2014 as a Wellness Coordinator. Davis received her Bachelor of Science in environmental science from the University of Michigan, where she was a member of the Women's Varsity Golf Team. She has ample experience in the implementation and growth of organic farms. Davis gained extensive development knowledge and program management skills through her work at the Ann Arbor Hands-on Museum and the Mathieu Botanical Gardens and Nichols Arboretum. She also teaches a weekly spin class at her community YMCA. When she's not working, you can find Davis in the kitchen or gallivanting outdoors.

Miriam Dineen
Miriam Dineen
Administrative Assistant, Project Healthy Schools

Read Miriam's bio
Miriam Dineen provides administrative support to the program manager and the Project Healthy Schools team. She also provides program support to Ann Arbor, Ypsilanti and Detroit schools. She joined PHS in the fall of 2012. A graduate of Washtenaw Community College, she is a proponent of healthy living and believes in the mission of Project Healthy Schools.

Carole Durgy
Carole Durgy, MSW
Wellness Coordinator, Project Healthy Schools

Read Carole’s Bio
Carole Durgy is a wellness coordinator for Project Healthy Schools. She handles Project Healthy School's Health Ambassador volunteer program in the Ann Arbor Public Schools. She started working for Project Healthy Schools in 2009, serving as a wellness specialist. Durgy received her Bachelor of Science in psychology and social science from Michigan State University and her Masters of Science in social work from the University of Michigan.

Ben Ransier
Ben Ransier, M.Ed
Wellness Coordinator, Project Healthy Schools

Read Ben’s Bio
Ben joined the Project Healthy Schools team in September 2015 and is excited to be working with schools throughout Southeast Michigan. Prior to joining the team, Ben spent the last 10 years working with students to develop healthy habits and achieve academic excellence as a Physical Education teacher and Student Advisor in Arizona and Michigan schools. He is excited to take what he has learned in education and work with each school to implement and sustain a healthy, academic environment where students can learn how to live a healthier lifestyle and achieve higher levels of academic achievement. Ben earned his undergraduate degree in health sciences from Oakland University, a post-baccalaureate degree in Physical/Health Education from Eastern Michigan University, and a master's degree in Educational Leadership from Northern Arizona University.

Nate Saulter
Nathan Saulter
Program Assistant, Project Healthy Schools

Read Nathan’s Bio
Nate began providing program and administrative support for a variety of schools in fall 2015. He has a bachelor of science degree in Health Administration. While he was a student at Eastern Michigan University Nate also worked as a catering supervisor overseeing catered events. Prior to earning his bachelor's degree, Nate received an associate's degree in applied science-occupational studies from Washtenaw Community College. Nathan grew up in Ann Arbor and attended Community High School.


Research Team

Caren Goldberg
Caren Goldberg, MD
Pediatric Cardiologist, C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital

Read Dr. Goldberg’s Bio
Dr. Caren Goldberg is a practicing pediatric cardiologist at C. S. Mott Children’s Hospital at the University of Michigan. Dr. Goldberg’s research work is focused in two areas: 1) improving long term outcomes for children with congenital heart disease and 2) reducing risk of early atherosclerosis in children.

Dr. Goldberg leads the multidisciplinary Pediatric Preventive Cardiology Program where children with risk factors for early atherosclerosis are referred for consultation and treatment. While personal care is needed for some children with increased risk, Dr. Goldberg is so pleased to work with the PHS program, as it provides a means of offering benefit to a large number of children in a more efficient way than typical clinical schedules allow. Through PHS we are able to provide helpful programming to middle school students which can help them to modify their habits and to reduce their risk of early atherosclerosis. Dr. Goldberg graduated from Amherst College in 1986 and the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine in 1990. She completed residency training in Pediatrics in 1993. Her Pediatric Cardiology Fellowship training spanned from 1994-1997 after working as a pediatrician for the Indian Health Service for one year.

Elizabeth Jackson
Elizabeth A. Jackson, MD, MPH
Clinical Assistant Professor, Department of Internal Medicine Cardiovascular Center

Read Dr. Jackson’s Bio
Dr. Elizabeth Jackson is an assistant professor of medicine at the U-M Health Center. Dr. Jackson graduated from Tufts University School of Medicine. After completing her internal medicine residency at Brown University’s Rhode Island Hospital, she completed a fellowship in cardiovascular medicine at New England Medical Center in Boston, Massachusetts and a research fellowship in preventive medicine at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, Massachusetts. During her research fellowship, Dr. Jackson completed a Master’s in public health at Harvard University’s School of Public Health. Dr. Jackson joined the U-M Health Center in 2007 where she serves as an attending cardiologist with emphasis in women’s cardiovascular health and cardiovascular prevention. She has also completed additional training at Harvard University School of Public Health in nutritional epidemiology. Dr. Jackson is board certified in Internal Medicine and Cardiovascular Disease and is a fellow of the American College of Cardiology.

Qingmei Jiang
Qingmei Jiang, MA, MS

Read Qingmei's bio
Qingmei Jiang joined the PHS team in March, 2013 as a statistician. She has a Master of Science degree in computer science and a Master of Arts degree in applied statistics from Eastern Michigan University. She had been working as a research analyst in the department of psychiatry and a senior statistician in Michigan Institute for Clinical & Health Research at the University of Michigan for about eight years. Before she came to United States, she received her bachelor's in mechanical engineering at Peking University and worked in China Metallurgical Standard and Information Institute for11 years as an engineer.

Karen Peterson
Karen E. Peterson, Sc.D.
Director, Human Nutrition Program, Principal Investigator, Children’s Environmental Health Center P20 , School of Public Health, and Co-Director, Michigan Nutrition and Obesity Research Center

Read Dr. Peterson’s Bio
Dr. Peterson is a professor in and director of the Human Nutrition Program at the University of Michigan, School of Public Health (UMSPH). She is the principal investigator of the UMSPH Children’s Environmental Health Center P20 and co-director of the Michigan Nutrition and Obesity Research Center (MNORC). Before moving to Michigan in 2008 to direct the SPH Human Nutrition Program, Karen Peterson directed the Program in Public Health Nutrition in the Department of Nutrition at the Harvard School of Public Health, a program she helped found in 2000. Her research focuses on: 1) bio-social and environmental determinants of intergenerational patterns of growth in mothers and children; 2) the design and evaluation of domestic and international surveillance systems and population-based interventions in low-income, multiethnic populations; and 3) validation of measures of diet and physical activity in diverse populations. While at Harvard, Dr. Peterson helped to pioneer and evaluate Planet Health and Healthy Choices, school-based, obesity-preventive interventions, which educated middle school children about nutrition, physical activity, and screen time practices. Since arriving at Michigan, Dr. Peterson has lent her experience and expertise in school-based interventions and provided input on the evaluation of Project Healthy Schools.

Tom Reischl
Tom M. Reischl, Ph.D.
Associate Research Scientist, Department of Health Behavior and Health Education, School of Public Health

Read Dr. Reischl’s Bio
Dr. Tom Reischl is an associate research scientist in the Department of Health Behavior and Health Education at U-M’s School of Public Health. He received a Doctorate in psychology from the University of Illinois and has held previous faculty appointments at Michigan State University, the University of New Hampshire, and the University of Waikato (New Zealand). In his current position, he serves at the director of evaluation for the Prevention Research Center of Michigan and conducts evaluation research studies of community-based public health programs, childhood obesity prevention programs, violence prevention programs, family support programs, consumer-controlled (self/mutual help) programs, and public-health preparedness programs.

Bruce Rogers
Bruce Rogers, BS in Education
Software Developer/Consultant M-CORRP Research Projects

Read Bruce’s Bio
As a software developer/consultant, Rogers designs, builds and maintains websites, databases and related programs for the M-CORRP research projects. Before starting work as a consultant in 1997, he helped build the Windows release of Procite, a retail bibliographic database product. Prior to that, he spent five years building database design and project management software. Rogers began his career as a teacher, graduating from Central Michigan University in 1979. He acquired another degree in Computer Information Systems and started his programming career in 1984 at Kmart’s World Headquarters where he spent several years as a Senior Programmer.

Rachel Sylvester
Rachel Sylvester, BS
Research Coordinator

Read Rachel’s Bio
Rachel Sylvester is a research coordinator at the Michigan Clinical Outcomes Research and Reporting Program (MCORRP). She graduated from the University of Michigan in 2011 with a Bachelor of Science degree in brain behavior and cognitive science. She began working on Project Healthy Schools research in 2012 as a student intern. Since then, she has contributed to several PHS publications and has presented research findings at national conferences. She also participates in the spring and fall middle school screenings. In addition, Sylvester coordinates the research efforts of the Bridging the Discharge Gap Effectively (BRIDGE) registry at MCORRP.

Our Steering Committee

We appreciate the ongoing support, insight, dedication and experience of our Project Healthy Schools Steering Committee.

Susan Aaronson - U-M School of Public Health
Jenna Bacolor - Ann Arbor Public Schools Recreation & Education
Jeff Bradley - Ann Arbor Pubic Schools Teacher
Patsy Bruenger - Michigan Cardiovascular Outcomes Research and Reporting Program
Diane Carr - Ypsilanti YMCA
Tina Coffman - Memorial FIT Kids
Jennifer Dennis - Memorial FIT Kids
Theresa Han-Markey - U-M School of Public Health
Andrea Highfield - Champions for Charity
Heather Holland - Ann Arbor Public Schools Food Service
Eva Kline-Rogers - Michigan Cardiovascular Outcomes Research and Reporting Program
Joyce Lee, M.D., M.P.H. - UMHS Pediatric Endocrinology, Diabetes & Metabolism
Terra Neukam - UMHS CVC Development Office
Karen Peterson - U-M School of Public Health
Ashish Sarkar - PHS Advisory Board
Sharon Sheldon - Washtenaw County Public Health Department
Maria Thomas - UMHS C.W. Mott Administration
Susan Woolford, M.D., M.P.H. - UMHS Pediatrician
Marc Zimmerman - U-M School of Public Health
and the PHS team