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Hector Arciniega, Ph.D.

Postdoctoral Research Fellow
Brigham and Women’s Hospital Harvard Medical School

Dr. Hector Arciniega is a Postdoctoral Research fellow in the Psychiatry Neuroimaging Laboratory at Brigham and Women’s Hospital/Harvard Medical School. His research is focused on understanding better the long-term consequences of repetitive head impacts in former American football players.

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Tahlia Bragg, Ph.D.

Postdoctoral Fellow in Clinical Neuropsychology at The CTE Center 

Boston University Chobanian & Avedisian School of Medicine 

Tahlia Bragg uses pronouns she/her in English and Spanish. She is passionate about Black mental health disparities in clinical practice and research, similarly in neuropsychology, reducing corporate psychopathy in workplaces, and creating pro-Black, anti-racist cultures in communties and spaces not cultivated for individuals with marginalized identities. After completing her postdoctoral training, she plans to adapt her training and clinical expertise to global mental health and neuropsychology international settings.

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Anthony Briggs, Ph.D.

NYU Grossman School of Medicine

Anthony Briggs’ work as a T32 Postdoctoral research fellow and ADRC REC Scholar has allowed him to recieve training in longitudional epidemiologic cohort studies of insufficent sleep, aging, genetic, behavioral, enviormental, and psychological determintants of insufficent sleep, memory loss and AD among Blacks in the greater New York City and/or Tri State area.

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Joshua Gills, Ph.D.

Postdoctoral Fellow
Rutgers University - Newark

Joshua Gills is currently a Postdoctoral fellow in Aging and Brain Health Alliance Neuroscience Lab at Rutgers, the State University New Jersey. He previously recieved his doctoral training in Exercise Phsiology from the University of Arkansas. He plans to pursue a career in academia at a research-focused institution, where he plans to extend his research, to examine the effects of resistance training, high-intensity exercise and diet on brain health in African Americans.

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Jeremy Grant, Ph.D.

Clinical and Health Psychology Postdoctoral Fellow University of Florida

Jeremy Grant is a Postdoctoral fellow in clinical neuropsychology at the University of Florida. His research interests are studying modifiable risk factors of cognitive decline (cognitive reserve/ resilience, aerobic exercise, metabolic syndrome) and promoting healthy cognitive aging among individuals with neurodegenerative disorders, particularly among Black older adults.

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Cesar Higgins Tejera, M.D., MPH, MS

Ph.D. Candidate

University of Michigan

Cesar Higgins Tejera is a current PhD candidate in Epidemiologic Sciences at the University of Michigan. His research work focuses on the use of biomarkers such as cytokines, and epigenetic markers, to understand physiological pathways implicated in racial disparities in prevalent and incident dementia in the United States. In his research, he emphasizes the use of casual interference methods to identify proximal mechanisms related to racialized disparities in cognitive aging.

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Candidus Nwakasi, Ph.D., MS

Health Sciences Assistant Professor
Providence College

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Edward Ofori, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor College of Health Solutions Arizona State University

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Joshua Owens

Clinical Neuropsychology Ph.D. Student
University of Florida

Dr Candi Nwakasi was a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Southern Indiana School of Nursing and Health Professions, where he worked on dementia workforce improvement. With a PhD in Social Gerontology and MS in Public Health, Candi’s research is broadly focused on understanding and examining several factors that influence the health and wellbeing of disad- vantaged people as they age. He is currently leading a study on evaluating cancer survivorship experiences of Black and Latinx cancer survivors in Rhode Island funded through the NIH-RI-IN- BRE.

Edward Ofori’s training is in motor neuroscience and biomechanics. His research interests revolve around understanding how chronic inflammation impacts on the brain, mechanisms of motor variability, and social determinants of health for dementia.

Joshua Owens is currently a 4th year Ph.D. student in clinical psychology concentrating in neuropsychology at the University of Florida. His interests and research have sought to identify and quantify the role of social determinants of health in cognitive and neuronal disparities. More recently, he has developed an interest in understanding how social determinants of health interact with recovery following mild traumatic brain injury.

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Deva Reign

Clinical Neuropsychology Ph.D. Student
University of Arizona

Deva Reign is a Ph.D. student in Clinical Neuropsychology under the Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience (SCAN) Lab at the University of Arizona. His research focuses on traumatic brain injury (TBI), neuropsychological functioning, sustaining neural efficiency with Blue Light Mechanisms and its effects on the brain. Deva is particularly interested in working with Black Men with traumatic brain injury (TBI), concussion, chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE), and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

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Sean Upshaw, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor Health Disparity Research
The University of Texas at Austin

Sean Upshaw’s research interest consists of health disparities and communication in the context of visual information and persuasion in health communication. Along with health disparities research, Dr. Upshaw has expertise involving health message design, media studies, illness identity, and visual health communication. The primary focus of Dr. Upshaw’s research is to investigate and explain what/how/why historically underserved and marginalized popula- tions in the United States engage with health messages involving health/racial disparities.

Faculty Mentors

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Alyssa Arentoft, Ph.D. - Associate Professor

California State University, Northridge

Alyssa Arentoft, Ph.D. is a licensed Clinical Neuropsychologist and an Associate Professor at California State University, Northridge (CSUN). She is co-director of the CSUN Clinical Psychology MA program and director of the ACENT research lab. Her NIH-funded work investigates neuropsychological functioning, health disparities, and health risk behaviors using a biopsychosociocultural framework.


Reuben Robbins, Ph.D. - Associate Professor Clinical Medical Psychology

Columbia University Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons

Dr. Reuben Robbins is an Assistant Professor of Clinical Medical Psychology (in Psychiatry) at Columbia University. He is interested in developing and testing technology-based interventions that can promote positive health outcomes among those living with HIV. Dr. Robbins also studies smartphone app interventions to screen for HIV-associated neurocognitive impairment. He is also actively involved in the NY & NJ AIDS Training and Education Center and the Columbia University HIV Mental Health Training Project.


Charles Senteio, PhD, LCSW, MBA - Associate Professor

Rutgers University School of Communication and Information

Dr. Charles Senteio is an Associate Professor in the Department of Library and Information Science at the Rutgers School of Communication and Information. Dr. Senteio is a health informatics researcher focused on improving chronic disease outcomes for underserved populations. He is a licensed clinical social worker and his community-based research addresses persistent healthcare disparities. He is interested in using both existing and emerging technology to support underserved populations. He is an affiliate faculty member of the Rutgers Global Health Institute. He has led research projects in Flint and Detroit, Michigan; Dallas, Texas; central New Jersey, Rio De Janeiro, and Mexico City. Dr. Senteio also has international health research collaborations in Ghana and Senegal.


Edward Vargas Ph.D - Associate Professor in the School of Transborder Studies

Arizona State University 

Dr. Edward Vargas is an Associate Professor in the School of Transborder Studies at Arizona State University. His research focuses on the effects of poverty and inequality on the quality of life, focusing specifically on health, immigration status and social policy, and how these factors contribute to the well-being of vulnerable families. He is also interested in the methodological issues involved in the quantitative study of race and ethnicity. He is currently Co-PI on the 2016 & 2020 Collaborative Multiracial Post-Election Survey funded by the National Science Foundation. He also serves as Co-PI on a Robert W. Johnson Foundation funded project focused on how federal agencies and the Office of Management and Budget collect and utilize race and ethnicity data.

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