Front Desk Staff
Tonya joined the PMC front desk staff in November 2011. She assists in patient scheduling and with appointment check-in/check-out. She is currently pursuing her Bachelor’s in Health Care Administration at Pierce College.
Patient Visit Flow Coordinator
Seth joined the Penn Memory Center as part of Dr. Jason Karlawish’s research team in 2013. As Patient Visit Flow Coordinator, he personally assists patients and their families through the various aspects of evaluation and research appointments as well as the informed consent process. He graduated from Villanova University with a BA in Humanities in 2010. He is now attending Saint Joseph’s University in Philadelphia to obtain a Master’s degree in Health Education and Administration.
Hannah has been as psychometrician at the Penn Memory Center since 2004. She administers cognitive testing to patients and other research participants at the PMC, and conducts testing at outreach sites such as the Ann’s Choice Retirement Community in Warminster, PA. Hannah also coordinates the Stress, Cognition, and Resilience Study. She is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania, majoring in History and Philosophy.
Peter joined the Penn Memory Center in 2007 as a psychometrician, following an undergraduate internship here. He administers cognitive testing to patients and research participants, and also screens individuals off-site for recruitment purposes. He is a graduate of the University of the Sciences in Philadelphia’s Health Psychology program, with a concentration in neuropsychology and assessment.
Social Work Interns
Tory joined Penn Memory Center in September 2013 as a master’s level social work (MSW) intern. She graduated from La Salle University with her bachelor’s degree in social work and is currently an advanced standing MSW student at the University of Pennsylvania. During her year-long internship at the Penn Memory Center, Tory will work as a health educator, helping families better understand their diagnosis and provide resources available to them.
Lisa Burkholder joined Penn Memory Center in September 2013 as a master’s level social work (MSW) intern. She graduated from Princeton University in 2010 with her bachelor’s degree in psychology, and subsequently worked in Dr. Murray Grossman’s FTD Center at Penn for 2 years as a research specialist, before deciding to apply to social work programs. She is currently a second-year MSW student at the University of Pennsylvania.
During her year-long internship at the Penn Memory Center, Lisa will work as a health educator, helping families better understand their diagnosis and providing resources and support. She will also participate as a co-facilitator in our psycho-educational group for caregivers, perform individual psychotherapy, and be involved with other PMC programs and services.
Sara Hachey is a Summer 2014 intern with the Penn Memory Center. She is a student at Cornell University studying Human Biology, Health and Society with a minor in Gerontology. She is interested in research within the field of gerontology specifically looking into age-related cognitive decline and Alzheimer’s Disease dementia. Sara is passionate about pursuing a career in medicine in order to serve the aging population as a geriatrician.
Isabella Lopez is a Summer 2014 intern working on our Making Sense of Alzheimer’s project. She is an undergraduate student at the University of Pennsylvania, majoring in Ancient History and is an active volunteer with the Student Hospice Organization of Penn.
Eliza Sankar-Gorton is a Summer 2014 intern working on our Making Sense of Alzheimer’s project. She is a student at Wesleyan University majoring in Science and Society. At Wesleyan she works with the Huffington Post as an editor-at-large and is active as an assistant director for two student-run dance organizations.
Allie joined the Penn Memory Center in May of 2013 as a student research intern. She is an undergraduate student at the University of Pennsylvania, majoring in Health and Societies with a concentration in public health. Allie works on a web-based educational site, Making Sense of Alzheimer’s, that strives to make sense of Alzheimer’s disease by addressing the clinical and ethical challenges surrounding Alzheimer’s disease for patients and clinicians. Allie plans to pursue a career in the public health field after she graduates from Penn.
Research Project Coordination
Shira joined the Penn Memory Center in May 2013 as a Clinical Research Coordinator on Dr. Arnold’s team. She graduated from Drexel University with a bachelor’s degree in Psychology in 2008 and has since been working on various research projects at Penn, including studies in sleep, tobacco use and opiate addiction. In the future, she wishes to pursue a degree as a Physician’s Assistant.
Martha joined the Penn Memory Center in 2010 after working at Sanofi Aventis as a Clinical Project Assistant and elsewhere as a research coordinator on psychiatric studies. Currently, as a Senior Research Coordinator, she works with patients and families completing several studies including IGIV, LFAN and GE005. She also guides the efforts of her assigned research coordinators, and manages interaction between the PMC and the Penn Institutional Review Board (IRB), the body which regulates protocol and conduct of university research studies. Martha has a BS from Boston College and an MS from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI) – Hartford Graduate Center campus.
Jamie, a research coordinator based in the Section of Geriatric Psychiatry, works with PMC patients and families participating in CitAD — the Citalopram in Alzheimer’s Disease study. Previously she was employed as a Therapeutic Recreation Associate for ACTS Retirement-Life Communities. Jamie is a Penn Certified Clinical Research Coordinator. She has a BA from Indiana University of Pennsylvania in Liberal Arts/Art History.
Tigist joined the Penn Memory Center in January 2013 as a Coordinator for Diversity in Research. She graduated from Franklin and Marshall College with a bachelor’s in Public Health Psychology and Africana Studies. She is currently a part time student in the Master of Public Health Program at University of Pennsylvania. As the Coordinator for Diversity in Research, she works to develop, implement and monitor the Penn Memory Center’s multicultural recruitment with a particular focus on increasing participation within the African American community in NACC and other research studies.
Kristin joined Dr. Karlawish’s research team in 2007. She works on the Risk Evaluation and Education for Alzheimer’s Disease (REVEAL) study; the Home Based Assessment/Health Brain Monitoring study; the Way to Walk & Way to Walk II studies; and the Caregiver Experience Study. She graduated from Truman State University with a major in psychology and a minor in statistical methods.
Megan joined Dr. Karlawish’s research team as an intern in summer 2011. After graduating with a BS in Psychology from Saint Joseph’s University in May 2012, she now works as a Research Assistant for Dr. Karlawish, working on the “Quality of Life & Aging” study, the “CAT-GT” study and assisting on the “Way to Walk II” study. Megan plans to attend nursing school in the near future.
Lauren joined the Penn Memory Center in September 2009 as a Research Specialist for Dr. David Wolk. She received a bachelor’s degree in Cognitive Neuroscience in 2009 and a master’s degree in Bioethics in 2013 from the University of Pennsylvania. Lauren currently works on data collection, management, and analysis on studies that use MRI, PET, behavioral data, genetic testing, and lumbar puncture (LP) results to assess cognitive and brain changes associated with Alzheimer’s disease, mild cognitive impairment, and healthy aging.
Ivy joined the Penn Memory Center in 2006, assisting research participants, patients, families, and clinicians as part of the front office team. In 2011, she began a new role, as appointment manager for Latino study participants, and visit scheduler for the more than 400 patients and normal controls active in our NACC research program. Ivy is fully bilingual in English and Spanish.
Jessica began working at the Penn Memory Center part-time while a high school student. She now coordinates studies, currently including ADNI 2 and Pfizer-Bapi; conducts screenings and administers psychometic testing to Spanish-speaking patients and study participants, and assists as needed with patient visit flow. Jessica is fully bilingual in English and Spanish.
Grace joined the Penn Memory Center in June of 2013 as a Research Specialist for Dr. David Wolk. She currently is working on the ASL-PET and EmPCAD studies. She received a BS in Psychology with a minor in Neuroscience from Haverford College in 2013.
Angela joined the Penn Memory Center in January 2014 as a community outreach volunteer and has been assisting Tigist Hailu. Angela is a student in the Penn Alumni Program and received her Bachelor’s degree in Biology and African Studies from the University of Pennsylvania in 2011. She currently works as a research specialist in Dr. Christopher Lengner’s laboratory in the School of Veterinary Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania. She is interested in learning more about Alzheimer’s disease given its rising incidence in the aging population. Specifically, she is working to increase African American participation in the Center’s studies because of her dedication to the improvement of health outcomes for minorities. Angela’s interest in the health of minority communities stems from her college days, when she co-founded the Minority Association of Pre-Health Students (MAPS). In the near future, Angela hopes to attend medical school.
Arun joined the Penn Memory Center in January 2014 as a research volunteer and has been assisting Research Coordinator Shira Blady. Arun is a post-baccalaureate student at Penn and received his Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from William Paterson University in 2012. He has volunteered with other departments, including cardiovascular research and surgical-ortho trauma unit in the past year-and-a-half, and has been mentoring incoming pre-med volunteers since January 2013. Arun plan to attend medical school in the near future.
Project Management & Strategic Support
Scott Reid joined Penn memory center in September 2013 as Coordinator/Facilitator. Mr. Reid has a master’s degree in art therapy from Drexel University and has worked as a program coordinator and manager at the Alzheimer’s Association since 2008 where he created, implemented, and developed social engagement programs including the two pilot program for early-stage dementia, the REC Program, and Peer-to-Peer Outreach Program. Mr. Reid is a skilled group facilitator and will teach Cognitive Fitness classes under the direction of Dr. Mechanic-Hamilton.
Felicia Greenfield joined the Penn Memory Center in 2006. As the Associate Director for Clinical and Research Operations, Felicia manages the day-to-day operations for the Penn Memory Center. She is involved in long-term strategic planning for the Center and oversees PMC program development.
A licensed clinical social worker, Felicia supervises MSW interns who provide counseling and education to patients and their families, she facilitates support groups for individuals (and their care partners) who have been newly diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease, and she is a co-facilitator in the Cognitive Fitness program. Felicia holds an MSW from the University of Pennsylvania.
Dr. Kathryn Jedrziewski, Deputy Director of Penn’s Institute on Aging (IOA) since 2001, also serves as Alzheimer’s Disease Core Center (ADCC) Administrator. In that role, she is active in a nationwide network of fellow Center administrators on issues relating to the administration of NIH/NIA funds.
Dr. Jedrziewski received her PhD from the University of Pennsylvania in 1991. She has worked in gerontology and geriatrics for the past thirty years.
Barbara joined the Penn Memory Center in July 2013. She earned her Bachelor’s of Arts from the University of Pennsylvania and her MA in Communications from Temple University. She writes, edits and designs the Penn Memory Center’s quarterly print newsletter, InSight. She also assists Dr. Karlawish’s team in activities in the Education, Recruitment and Retention Core and helps maintain the Penn Memory Center website.
Business & Administrative Support
Maria joined the Geriatric Psychiatry Section in 2007 as Dr. Arnold’s Administrative Assistant and took on support for Penn Memory Center business matters in 2008. Maria assists Dr. Arnold, Eileen Mergliano, and Felicia Greenfield in all administrative, faculty affairs, and financial activities for the PMC. She has an AS degree in Business Administration from Peirce College.
Eileen joined the Penn Memory Center and the Geriatric Psychiatry Section in June 2013 as the Business Administrator. She handles financial accounts, grant submissions, and general business activity of the PMC and Geriatric Psychiatry. Eileen has worked in business and grant administration at Penn since 2008.
Dina joined the Penn Memory Center in 2012 as a biostatistician after working for four years in the University of Pennsylvania’s Biostatistics Analysis Center (BAC). She provides statistical analysis and assists with data management for a variety of PMC research studies. Dina has a BS in Chemical Engineering from Virginia Tech and an MS in Applied Statistics from West Chester University.
Information Technology & Database Management
Rui Tong joined the Center for Neurodegenerative Disease Research (CNDR) and Penn Center for Bioinformatics (PCBI) as part of Dr. Li-San Wang’s research team in 2012. He took part in developing and using the pipelines to analyze various next-generation sequencing projects. He also participated in developing and maintaining Penn Integrated Neurodegenerative Disease Database (INDD) as well as other informatics projects for the centers. In 2013, he began a new role as the data manager for ADC, PMC, CNDR and several other collaborating centers, managing all IT and database-related infrastructures and operations. He has a BS in computer science from the National University of Singapore.