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Community Board

The CTSI-CN Community Board is a diverse group of individuals that meets regularly throughout the year with the purpose of advising and guiding the CTSI-CN Steering Committee, Principal Investigator, and CTSI Cores on community engagement issues.
A major goal of the Community Board is to collaboratively involve community partners in the research process in a bi-directional, co-learning environment. The Community Board facilitates linkages between community members and researchers at CTSI-CN and GWU at all stages of the investigative process, from identifying research topics, to participant recruitment, and dissemination. Importantly, the Community Board provides guidance to ensure that CTSI-CN researchers become more aware and respectful of the needs and interests of our local communities throughout the research process.
Community engagement for the CTSI-CN is defined as working collaboratively with and through groups who may be affected by translational research. Thus, CTSI Community Board members are experienced with and dedicated to improving child and adolescent health in the Washington, DC Metropolitan Area. Community Board members provide input on the CTSI-CN’s work based on their diverse professional and personal backgrounds, and serve as the voice of different stakeholder perspectives, including service providers, the private sector, advocacy groups, special populations, and parents.
Ultimately, the CTSI-CN Community Board strives to encourage, support, and conduct collaborative work that contributes to reducing health disparities and increasing health equity among the most vulnerable populations in our region.


CTSI-CN Community Board Members

Iden Campbell McCollum, CPRP
Iden Campbell McCollum, CPRP, CPS is the Founder and Executive Director of The Campbell Center, a peer-run agency in Washington DC for individuals living with mental health challenges. Mr. Campbell McCollum has worked in the nonprofit sector in Washington DC, Maryland, and North Carolina, including positions as Project Manager of the McClendon Center Best Health Project (a DC-based center to improve the quality of life of individuals recovering from mental illness), Chairperson of the federally funded DC PAIMI Advisory Council (promoting the Protection and Advocacy for Individuals with Mental Illness), and Chairperson of the DC State Vocational Rehabilitation Commission (facilitating employment among individuals with physical or mental impairments). He has also served as a board member of the DC State Independent Living Council (promoting independent living among individuals with disabilities), University Legal Services (promoting advocacy and protection for individuals with disabilities), and Cornerstone Investments (promoting housing for individuals with mental illness). Mr. Campbell McCollum is a certified peer specialist (CPS) in both DC and North Carolina. He was  awarded the 2013 National LGBT Leadership Award at the Alternatives Conference, awarded the 1999 Direct  Care Professional of the Year by Arc of Maryland (advocacy for individuals with intellectual and developmental  disabilities) and 1999 Direct Care Professional of the Year by the Maryland Association of Community Services (supporting individuals with developmental disabilities and their families). He has also served in an advisory capacity to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA).
Jennafer Kwait, PhD, MHS
Jennafer Kwait is the LGBT and Adolescent Research Manager at the Whitman-Walker Clinic (WWC) in Washington, DC.  Dr. Kwait has been working in the area of public health since 1989, and has been at the WWC since 2015. 
Andres Márquez-Lara
Andres Marquez-Lara is the Founder and Passion Catalyst at Promethean Community LLC, a social enterprise that supports leaders by increasing their capacity to drive social innovation. His company designs interactive workshops to help leaders in Latin America and the Caribbean to approach complex social problems in new ways that are more inclusive, participatory and systemic. This involves shifting the way leaders think, feel and interact within their organizations and communities. Andres is Faculty at the Executive Masters in Policy Leadership at the Georgetown University McCourt School of Public Policy, and a Guest Lecturer on leadership at Georgetown University Institute for Transformative Leadership. He is also a Senior Fellow at the George Washington University Center for Excellence in Public Leadership. He has collaborated with multiple national and international organizations that include the Inter-American Development Bank, Global Giving, the Organization of American States, Feedback Labs, Carlos Slim Scholars at GWU, Root Change, the INCAE Business School in Costa Rica, the US Office of Personnel Management, and the DC Department of Mental Health. In 2014, he was named one of the emerging social innovators of the year in North America by Ashoka and American Express. In 2011, he received the George C. Askew Award from the American Academy of Certified Public Managers for his exceptional curriculum.
Ivory McMillian, PsyD, Med
Dr. Ivory M. McMillian is the Health Services Program Manager for the Department of Youth Rehabilitation Services, where she oversees the behavioral health services provided to detained youth in the Washington, DC area. She is also employed as an Adjunct Professor at the Chicago School for Professional Psychology, where she teaches in the Forensic and Counseling Psychology Departments. She has extensive experience working with youth and families, specifically those with a history of child maltreatment, sexual offending and other legal issues. Dr. McMillian is a Licensed Professional Counselor in the District of Columbia and Virginia and a Nationally Certified Counselor. In addition, she is a Certified Correctional Healthcare – Mental Health provider. Her education includes a Doctorate in Clinical Psychology, Master’s in Clinical Psychology and Community Agency Counseling, and Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology. Dr. McMillian has spoken at various events to include Seoul, South Korea regarding establishing a structured foster care system and the Alabama Social Worker’s Conference. With 20 years in the field, Dr. McMillian has shown commitment to serving youth and families involved in the legal and child welfare systems with the goal of assisting them with having a better quality of life and uses her experience and knowledge to groom future leaders in the fields of Counseling and Psychology.
Whitney Ortiz, MA
Ms. Ortiz is the founder of Eliana’s Light, a non-profit organization that supports integrative care services for children with complex medical conditions and their caregivers. Eliana’s Light was established in loving memory of one of her twin daughters, Eliana, who passed away from a heart condition in March 2016. She has expertise in partnership building, outreach, program management, and youth development from professional roles that she has played in diverse sectors for over 20 years. Ms. Ortiz is dedicated to improving the well-being of children with complex medical needs through leveraging partnerships that use systems- and family-based approaches. With her expertise, dedication to child health, and as a parent who has interacted extensively with CNMC care providers, she offers valuable input to the CTSI.
Emily Putzer, MA
Emily Putzer has over 10 years of both domestic and international experience working directly with communities in the public health field. After serving for three years as a Health and Sanitation Volunteer with Peace Corps in El Salvador, Ms. Putzer moved to the DC metropolitan area, where she has served immigrant Latino youth, families, and communities, as well as individuals living with and at risk for HIV. She currently works to set heath priorities to improve population health in the District. Ms. Putzer appreciates the opportunity to advocate for community perspectives in clinical and translational research through her involvement in the CTSI Community Board.
Maria Ivonne Rivera, MPH
Ms. Rivera is the President of Rivera Group, LLC, a DC-based organization that focuses on conducting community-engaged research. She has been conducting mixed methods research with hard-to-reach populations for over 25 years, with a focus on hard-to-reach Latino populations. She has extensive experience collecting health assessment data, conducting formative research, developing and implementing health promotion interventions, implementing media campaigns, providing interpretation and translation services, and recruiting Latinos for broader participation in research and community development. Previously, she worked at CNHS for 13 years, where she led the creation of a Language Services Program to provide medical interpretation for children and parents. As a native of El Salvador, a long-time DC resident, an advocate for Latino health and a community-based researcher with extensive networks, Ms. Rivera is an asset to the CTSI Community Board.
She has extensive experience leading the Rivera Group to collect health assessment data, conduct formative research, develop and implement health promotion interventions, implement media campaigns, provide interpretation and translation services, and in recruiting Latinos for broader participation in research and community development. I am highly experienced in the bilingual conduct of interviews and focus group facilitation, including the provision of logistical services with respect to coordinating research locations, participant recruitment, recording and transcription services, language translation, editing, oral interpretation services, and drafting of research reports.
Charneta Scott, PhD 
Dr. Scott is a Senior Associate with Francis and Associates, PC where she works in the capacity of a Licensed Psychologist and Certified Group Psychotherapist. Additionally, she is a Diplomate with the Academy of Experts in Traumatic Stress in collaboration with the National Center for Crisis Management. She has been involved in the human and social services field for over 31 years providing social and psychological services to children and families. Dr. Scott has dedication and expertise in the application of a systems approach to promoting collaboration and learning within group process and group dynamics. Dr. Scott’s clinical experience and training in group relations offer an important contribution to the CTSI Community Board.
Maurice Smith, MEd
Maurice Smith, is a higher education professional and community advocate with over 11 years of demonstrated leadership and success in establishing programs focused on community engagement, civic engagement, faculty training and support for engaged teaching, student leadership engagement in service/philanthropic initiatives, developing diverse and inclusive communities, workforce development, non-profit management, community collaborations as well as restructuring community focused projects to yield optimal results. He currently works for the Louisiana State University School of Medicine (LSU-SOM) located at the Health Sciences Center in New Orleans (LSUHSC). At LSU-SOM he plans and coordinates all student related milestone events to include but not limited to: White Coat Ceremony, Family Day, Match Day, Residency Planning Day, as well academically coordinates a 4th year course along with credentialing and clinical rotations. He also works with student leaders in the medical school to develop community engagement initiatives along with helping to coordinate one of the longest standing community programs called Camp Tiger a week long summer camp for students in the community with disabilities that would normally not allow them to participate in summer camp.
Mr. Smith also does consultation work on Educational Programs and Community Outreach for The Rodham Institute, where he has helped to lead the development of the Pathways to Healthcare Careers (PATH-C) initiative, the Health Education Leadership Academy, and provided assistance in creating programming for Rodham's work with Graduate Medical Education and Health Equity initiatives. With this expertise and his track record of building community-academic relationships, community advocacy initiatives, and diversity and inclusion programming, Mr. Smith offers an important perspective to the CTSI-CN Community Board.

CTSI Community Engagement module Members

Katy Roche, PhD
George Washington University
Director, CTSI-CN Community Engagement Module
Chaya Merrill, DrPH
Children’s National Hospital
Co-Director, CTSI-CN Community Engagement Module
Elizabeth Andrade, DrPH, MPH
George Washington University
CTSI-CN Community Engagement Module
Danielle Dooley, MD
CTSI-CN Community Engagement Module