About

People

Project Leads & Researchers

kbk@umn.edu
Katy Kozhimannil, PhD, MPA, Director

Dr. Kozhimannil is Director of the RHRC and a Professor in the Division of Health Policy and Management, University of Minnesota School of Public Health.

Education

  • PhD, Health Policy, Harvard University, 2009
  • MPA., Public Policy and Administration, Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, Princeton University, 2003
  • BA, Spanish and International Relations and Spanish (summa cum laude), University of Minnesota, 1999

Experience

Dr. Kozhimannil conducts research to inform the development, implementation, and evaluation of health policy that impacts health care delivery, quality, and outcomes during critical times in the lifecourse, including pregnancy and childbirth. The goal of her scholarly work is to contribute to the evidence base for clinical and policy strategies to advance racial, gender, and geographic equity and to collaborate with stakeholders in making policy change to address social determinants and structural injustice in order to facilitate improved health and well-being.

Dr. Kozhimannil’s research, published in major journals such as Science, the New England Journal of Medicine, JAMA, Health Affairs, American Journal of Public HealthMedical Care, and the American Journal of Managed Care, has been widely cited.  Media coverage of her research, including feature stories by the New York Times, Washington Post, National Public Radio, Wall Street Journal, US News & World Report, and the Huffington Post, has generated dialogue, interest and policy action at local, state, and national levels. In addition to conducting research, Dr. Kozhimannil teaches courses that build skills for effective engagement in the policy process, and works extensively with community organizations and state and federal policy makers on efforts to improve the health and well-being of individuals, families, and communities, starting at birth.

Prior to starting her academic career, Dr. Kozhimannil worked on HIV/AIDS prevention and policy as well as education and youth development both domestically and abroad. She served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in rural Mozambique and has worked for Ibis Reproductive Health, the World Bank, Population Services International, the American Red Cross, and the YMCA.

Research Interests

  • Health care policy
  • Quality of care
  • Maternal and child health
  • Health equity
  • Analysis of administrative/claims data
  • Longitudinal analysis

Awards

  • Alice S. Hersh New Investigator Award, AcademyHealth (2016)
  • National guest scholar at the Stanford Clinical Excellence Research Center (2015-2016)
  • Labelle Lectureship in Health Services Research, McMaster University (2015)
  • Public Health Impact Award, University of Minnesota School of Public Health (2015)
  • Health Affairs Top 15 Most-Read Articles in 2013 “Cesarean delivery rates vary 10-fold among US hospitals; reducing variation may address quality and cost issues.” (2014)
  • Minnesota Population Center’s IHIS Research Award “National Trends in Health Insurance
  • Coverage of Pregnant and Reproductive-Age Women, 2000-2009″ (2013)
  • Elected and inducted into the Pi Chapter of Delta Omega Honorary Society in Public Health (2013)
  • University of Minnesota Institute for Diversity, Equity and Advocacy (IDEA) Multicultural Research Award (2011)
henn0329@umn.edu
Carrie Henning-Smith, PhD, MPH, MSW, Deputy Director

Dr. Henning-Smith is Deputy Director of the University of Minnesota Rural Health Research Center and an Associate Professor in the Division of Health Policy and Management, University of Minnesota School of Public Health. She has been with the RHRC since 2015.

Education

  • PhD, Health Services Research, Policy, and Administration, University of Minnesota, 2015
  • MS, Health Services Research, Policy, and Administration, University of Minnesota, 2015
  • MPH, Health Behavior and Health Education, University of Michigan, 2006
  • MSW, Social Work Interpersonal Practice and Mental Health, University of Michigan, 2006
  • BA, International Relations, Claremont McKenna College, 2003

Experience

Dr. Henning-Smith applies her interdisciplinary training in health services research, public health, social work, gerontology, and demography to study policy-relevant issues for rural populations. She has led multiple research projects at the Rural Health Research Center, with a wide range of topics including the social determinants of health, access to and quality of care, and aging and long-term care. She was chosen as a 2017 Rural Health Fellow by the National Rural Health Association and serves as the current editorial board chair for the Journal of Rural Health.

Research Interests

  • Social determinants of health
  • Demography
  • Aging and long-term care
  • Disability policy
  • Housing and transportation issues
  • Access to care

Recent Fellowships and Awards

  • Rural Health Fellow, National Rural Health Association (2017-2018)
  • Heath Equity Leadership & Mentoring Program Fellow, University of Minnesota (2016-2017)
  • Interdisciplinary Doctoral Fellowship, University of Minnesota (2014-2015)
  • Hearst Fellowship in Public Health and Aging (2013-2014)
  • RAND Summer Institute Fellowship (2013)
lahrx074@umn.edu
Megan Lahr, MPH

Megan is a Research Fellow at the Rural Health Research Center, hired in September of 2017.

Education

  • MPH, Public Health Administration and Policy, University of Minnesota, 2017
  • BA, Sociology, Kenyon College, 2010

Experience

Prior to coming to the Rural Health Research Center, Ms. Lahr worked at the State Health Access Data Assistance Center (SHADAC) on a variety of projects related to access, cost, quality, and health outcomes. Ms. Lahr also spent several years working in federal policy for U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar. While working in the Senate in Washington, D.C. and Minneapolis, MN, she held several positions focusing on operations, policy development, health reform, and healthcare outreach and casework.

Research Interests

  • Health policy and systems
  • Access to care
  • Health equity
tuttl090@umn.edu
Mariana Story Tuttle, MPH

Mariana is a Research & Communications Fellow. She began full-time work at RHRC in June of 2019.

Education

  • MPH, Public Health Administration & Policy, University of Minnesota, 2019
  • BA Biology, BA Spanish, University of Arkansas, 2012

Experience

Throughout graduate school, Ms. Tuttle worked on health policy-relevant research, analysis, and dissemination efforts at the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), the MN Department of Human Services, and the University of Minnesota School of Public Health. She brings experiences effectively writing about and presenting health-related data to impact policy that drives population health. These experiences combine with substantive skills in both quantitative and qualitative data analysis from her MPH. Prior to pursuing her MPH, she worked for several years in market research and technology, where she designed projects for clients, managed communication, and coordinated business development efforts. This work further built on her natural understanding of innovative and creative ways to disseminate important information.

Research Interests

  • Health equity
  • Health care policy
  • Maternal and child health
  • Quality improvement
  • Access to care
basil045@umn.edu
Bridget Basile Ibrahim, PhD
Bridget Basile Ibrahim is a Postdoctoral Associate with the Rural Health Equity Postdoctoral Fellowship. 

Education

  • PhD, Nursing, Yale University, 2020
  • MS, Family Nurse Practitioner, University of California Los Angeles, 2010
  • BS, Nursing, The Johns Hopkins University, 2005
  • MA, Anthropology, Boston University, 2002
  • BA, Anthropology, Boston University, 2002

Experience

Dr. Basile Ibrahim is a clinician scientist with expertise in maternal child health. Her research focuses on ways to improve health equity in maternity care. She has research experience designing and implementing mixed methods studies. Prior to starting her academic career, Dr. Basile Ibrahim worked as a family nurse practitioner providing primary care in federally qualified health centers in the United States and Canada and as an anthropologist in international development.
 

Research Interests

  • Maternal and child health
  • Health equity
  • Respectful maternity care
  • Health policy
  • Mixed methods research

Awards

  • Milton and Anne Sidney Dissertation Prize, Yale University, 2020
  • Heilbrunn Family Center for Nursing Research Scholar, Rockefeller University, 2018
  • Parson’s Fellowship, University of California Los Angeles, 2009  
reedx472@umn.edu
Katie Rydberg, MPH
Katie is a Program Manager at the Rural Health Research Center. She began in October 2020.
 

Education

  • MPH, Community Health Sciences, University of Illinois at Chicago, 2017
  • BA, Psychology and Sociology/Anthropology, St. Olaf College, 2015

Experience

Prior to joining the Rural Health Research Center, Ms. Rydberg coordinated the Rice County Chemical and Mental Health Coalition where she collaborated with community partners on programs related to substance use prevention and mental wellness. During graduate school, she worked as a Research Assistant at the Center for Research on Women and Gender on an initiative focused on increasing physical activity for African American men in rural Southern Illinois. Prior to graduate school, she served as a Health Navigator in the National Health Corps Chicago. 
 

Research Interests

  • Health outcomes for Indigenous communities
  • Health equity
  • Access to care
  • Social determinants of health
  • Maternal and child health
lindskb@med.umich.edu
Lindsay Admon, MD, MS

Dr. Lindsay Admon is an obstetrician-gynecologist and health services researcher at the University of Michigan’s Institute of Healthcare Policy and Innovation. She is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at the University of Michigan.

Education

  • MS, Health and Healthcare Research, National Clinician Scholars Program, University of Michigan, 2018
  • Residency, Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Michigan, 2016
  • MD, University of Michigan Medical School, 2012
  • BA, Public Health Studies, Johns Hopkins University, 2008

Experience

Dr. Admon’s applies her interdisciplinary training in obstetrics, health services research, and public health to study policy relevant-issues for the childbearing population. Her overarching goal is to advance maternal health equity through rigorous health policy evaluation. Dr. Admon’s clinical practice is based in Flint, MI.

Research Interests

  • Maternal health policy
  • Maternal insurance coverage
  • Maternal health disparities
  • Health equity
  • Survey and administrative data methodology

Awards

  • VA Scholar, National Clinician Scholar’s Program, 2016-2018
  • Consultant Physician of the Year, University of Michigan Certified Nurse Midwives, 2016
  • Dean’s Merit Scholarship, University of Michigan Medical School, 2008-2012
  • Outstanding Senior Graduating in Public Health Studies, Johns Hopkins University, 2008

 

jps@umn.edu
Jonathan Schroeder, PhD

Dr. Schroeder is a Research Scientist at the University of Minnesota’s Institute for Social Research and Data Innovation. He began contributing to RHRC projects in September 2019.

Education

  • PhD, Geography, University of Minnesota, 2009
  • MA, Geography, University of Minnesota, 2004
  • BA, Computer Sciences + English, University of Wisconsin–Madison, 1998

Experience

Dr. Schroeder has worked at the Minnesota Population Center and the IPUMS Center for Data Integration at the Institute for Social Research and Data Innovation (ISRDI) since 2009. His primary role is as a project manager for the IPUMS National Historical Geographic Information System (NHGIS), a website that provides free online access to summary statistics and GIS files for U.S. censuses and other nationwide surveys from 1790 through the present. Schroeder leads the development and documentation of new NHGIS data products, including NHGIS time series tables, which link together census summary data from multiple years using harmonized categories and geographic units. He also leads the development of integrated geographic variables for IPUMS USA census microdata. As an RHRC contributor, he provides expertise in U.S. population geography, map design, and geographic data analysis, with deep knowledge of U.S. census data resources for studying rural populations.

Research Interests

  • Geographic harmonization of census data
  • U.S. population geography
  • Spatial models and analysis
  • Map design

Students

gilbe756@umn.edu
Mary Gilbertson, BA

Mary is a research assistant on maternity care projects at the RHRC.

Education

  • BA Global Business Leadership, Psychology, College of Saint Benedict, 2015

Experience

Mary Gilbertson began working as a graduate research assistant at the University of Minnesota Rural Health Research Center in August, 2019. She is also a MPH student in the Public Health Administration and Policy division. She has previously worked for the Minnesota Attorney General’s Office, U.S. Senate, Minnesota State Senate and the Department of Human Services.

Research interests

  • Medicaid and Medicare finance
  • Health policy
  • Health equity
  • Maternal and child health
inter014@umn.edu
Julia Interrante, MPH

Julia Interrante is a graduate research assistant with the University of Minnesota Rural Health Research Center and a Health Services Research, Policy, and Administration Ph.D. student in the Division of Health Policy and Management, University of Minnesota School of Public Health. She began working at the RHRC in August 2018.

Education

  • MPH, Epidemiology, Emory University, 2014
  • BA, Studies in Women and Gender, Foreign Affairs, University of Virginia, 2009

Experience

Prior to coming to the RHRC, Ms. Interrante worked as an epidemiologist at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in a variety of areas including birth defect research, maternal medication use, and fertility, as well as domestic and global tuberculosis and HIV surveillance and prevention. While working at the CDC, Ms. Interrante developed data quality assessment protocols and tools, conducted data use trainings, and provided policy guidance and technical assistance to foreign Ministries of Health and domestic Departments of Health. She also worked as an HIV tester and counselor in Washington, DC and in rural South Africa.

Research Interests

  • Reproductive health policy
  • Maternal and child health
  • Social epidemiology
  • Health equity
  • Access to care
krist106@umn.edu
Alexandria Kristiansen Cabrera, BS
Alexandria Kristensen Cabrera is a graduate student working on rural maternity care projects with the University of Minnesota Rural Health Research Center. She is also an MD-PhD candidate in Health Services Research, Policy, and Administration.
mulca068@umn.edu
John Mulcahy, MSPH

John began working at the Rural Health Research Center as graduate research assistant in September 2020.

Education

  • MSPH, Health Policy, Johns Hopkins University, 2016
  • BS, Biology, University of Minnesota, 2014

Experience

Mr. Mulcahy is a current PhD student in the Health Service Research, Policy, and Administration program at the UMN School of Public Health. Prior to joining the Rural Health Research Center, he worked as a data analyst with the National Health and Aging Trends Study (NHATS) at the Johns Hopkins School of Public Health. While working with NHATS he used longitudinal interviews with older Americans along with linked Medicare claims and Census tract data to understand how aging related disability and caregiving circumstances impact healthcare outcomes in older adults.

Interests

  • Care delivery research
  • Gerontology
  • Emergency medicine
  • Critical Access Hospitals
tanem006@umn.edu
Jill Tanem, BS

Jill Tanem is a graduate research assistant at the University of Minnesota Rural Health Research Center, hired in January 2020.

Education

  • BS, Finance, Marketing, DePaul University

Experience

In addition to working at RHRC, Jill is an MPH candidate in Public Health Administration and Policy specializing in Issues Related to Work and Pay. She previously worked in wellness access and education with The Health Trust, in training and development in the yoga and fitness industry, and in new store operations with Athleta.

Research Interests

  • Health policy
  • Health equity
  • Aging and chronic conditions
  • Income and poverty
  • Social insurance programs and policy

Subscribe

Sign up to receive email notifications when we publish new research.