Personnel

Uniformed Services University

Personnel

Laboratory Director
Principal Investigator

Marjan G. Holloway, Ph.D.

Marjan Holloway

Dr. Holloway is an Associate Professor of Medical and Clinical Psychology and Psychiatry at Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences. She earned her doctorate in Clinical Psychology from Fairleigh Dickinson University in New Jersey. She completed her postdoctoral training at the Center for the Treatment and Prevention of Suicide and the Center for Cognitive Thearpy at the University of Pennsylvania under the mentorship of Aaron T. Beck. In addition, she completed two consecutive University of Rochester Summer Institute Fellowships on Suicide Prevention in 2004 and 2005 as well as a National Institutes of Health (NIH) Summer Institute Fellowship on Randomized Controlled Trials for behavioral interventions. Since 2006, Dr. Holloway has served as the Director and Principal Investigator of the Laboratory for the Treatment of Suicide-Related Ideation and Behavior at Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences.

Email: marjan.holloway@usuhs.edu

 

Laboratory Manager, Research Operations
Research Psychologist and Co-Principal Investigator

Jessica LaCroix, Ph.D.

 Jessica LaCroix

Dr. LaCroix earned her doctorate in Social Psychology from the University of Connecticut with certifications in Health Psychology and Quantitative Research Methods. Prior to joining the lab, Dr. LaCroix worked extensively with researchers at the Institute for Collaboration on Health, Intervention, and Policy (formerly the Center for Health, Intervention, and Prevention) on National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) funded meta-analyses pertaining to risk reduction and health promotion. Prior projects include meta-analyses of HIV prevention mass media campaigns, HIV interventions targeting couples, mediated health communication interventions, and the efficacy of exercise interventions for reducing depression among cancer survivors. Dr. LaCroix's additional research interests include social determinants of health, with an emphasis on group-based power inequalities, and media representations of women. As the Manager of Research Operations for the lab, Dr. LaCroix provides oversight for all research-related activities from conception to termination and supervises bachelor's, master's, and doctoral level staff members. As a co-investigator, Dr. LaCroix works collaboratively with Dr. Holloway to design and to implement a number of programmatic studies to advance the science and clinical practice of suicide prevention, intervention, and postvention. Dr. LaCroix is currently conducting a comprehensive meta-analysis of suicide-related interventions for outpatient and inpatient clinical settings in order to identify gaps in psychosocial interventions for the prevention of suicide.

Email: jessica.lacroix.ctr@usuhs.edu

 

Laboratory Manager, Clinical Research Operations
Postdoctoral Fellow

Danielle Worthington, Ph.D.

Danielle Worthington

Dr. Worthington earned her doctorate in Clinical Psychology with an emphasis in Behavioral Medicine from Virginia Commonwealth University. Prior to joining the lab, Dr. Worthington completed an APA-accredited pre-doctoral internship at the VA Maryland Health Care System - University of Maryland Internship Consortium in Baltimore. Dr. Worthington's research and clinical interests focus on empirically supported integrative and collaborative mental health care. Her current projects include a proposal to incorporate suicide prevention efforts into integrated military primary care settings. Dr. Worthington is currently completing a postdoctoral fellowship in the lab and in this capacity, she serves as a study baseline assessor and therapist for Post Admission Cognitive Therapy (PACT) which is a cognitive behavioral program for military service members and dependents admitted for psychiatric care following a suicidal crisis. Dr. Worthington provides clinical supervision for all study case managers, monitors all adverse event reportings, and serves as the lab's on-site clinical research manager performing suicide risk management in consultation with Dr. Holloway and our team, as needed. To view Dr. Worthington's recent discussion of suicide prevention among military service members and veterans, visit the following site of the Association for Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies: http://www.abct.org/Help/

Email: danielle.worthington.ctr@usuhs.edu

 

Laboratory Biostatistician
Data Manager

Kanchana Perera, M.Sc

Marcus is an alumnus of the Clinical Psychology (Military Track) program at USUHS and the Laboratory for the Treatment of Suicide-Related Ideation and Behavior. He is currently serving as an active-duty Navy Psychologist and research collaborator with the lab. Prior to entering the program at USUHS, Marcus spent several  years as a U.S. Marine serving in a variety of billets at home and overseas, concluding with his final assignment as a Marine Enlisted Commissioning Education Program student and ultimate transfer to the Navy Medical Service Coprs. Marcus received his B.A. in Psychology from the University of Illinois at Chicago. For his master's thesis, Marcus analyzed data collected from non-commissioned officers within the Marine Corps on suicide opinions and perceived barriers to care. For his dissertation study, Marcus designed and empirically validated a military-focused psychological measure of attitudes towards suicide - the Military Suicide Attitudes Questionnaire (MSAQ). He currently completed his pre-doctorate APA-approved psychology internship at the Porstmouth Naval Medical Center. Marcus is currently working on further assessment, intervention, and validation of the MSAQ in active duty military populations.

Email: marcus.r.vansickle.mil@mail.mil

 

Navy Psychologist
Research Collaborator

Graham Sterling, Ph.D., LT, Medical Service Corps, United States Navy

Sterling Graham

Graham is an alumnus of the Clinical Psychology (Military Track) program at USUHS and the Laboratory for the Treatment of Suicide-Related Ideation and Behavior. He is currently serving as an active-duty Navy Psychologist and research collaborator with the lab. Prior to entering the program at USUHS, Graham had earned a Bachelor's degree in Gerontology (Minor in French) from Ithaca College. For his master's study, Graham focused on military suicide survivors' views on their loved ones' sources of stress including male gender role strain prior to death. For his dissertation study, Graham designed and empirically validated an instrument titled, Male Gender Role Stress Inventory (MGRSI). He has completed his pre-doctorate APA-approved psychology internship at the Porstmouth Naval Medical Center and clinical work at Twentynine Palms. Graham is currently leading the lab's efforts in designing and implementing a universal suicide prevention program for military basic trainees.

Email: arlie.g.sterling.mil@mail.mil

 

Research Associate

Joy Browne, MPH

Joy Browne

Joy earned her Masters of Public Health (MPH) degree with a concentration in Epidemiology from Drexel University in Philadelphia, PA. During her Master's program, she worked as a Research Intern at the A.J. Drexel Autism Institute, where she studied the influence of sociocultural and environmental factors on the disciplinary treatment of students with Autism Spectrum Disorder. Since joining the lab as a Research Associate in early 2015, Joy has assisted with the implementation of a number of studies, including the on-going design and development of a suicide prevention workbook for military chaplains. She further provides methodological and statistical assistance for a number of independent research projects being conducted in the lab and provides oversight for the regulatory reviews of all lab-related studies. Most recently, Joy has initiated a program of research on stigma and suicide prevention. 

Email: joy.browne.ctr@usuhs.edu

 

Research Associate

Samantha Daruwala, MPS 

Samantha Daruwala

Samantha received her Bachelor of Science in Psychology from the University of Maryland, College Park. During her undergraduate years, she was a Project Coordinator for a lab that investigated informant discrepanices in adolescents' social anxiety symptoms and parent-teen interactions. She became familiarized with analayzing psychophysiological data to better understand the discrepanicies between behavioral and self-report measures. In late 2014, Samantha received her Master's in Professional Studies in Clinical Psychological Science from the University of Maryland, College Park. She joined the lab in early 2015 first as a volunteer and subsequently as a paid employee. Samantha currently oversees the data entry and cleanup for the PACT study and organizes the transcription efforts in the lab. She contributes to the day to day research activities in the lab. In recent months, she has focused on a project involving a new measure in the field of suicidology, the Self-Efficacy to Avoid Suicidal Action (SEASA) and is investigating the association between this type of self-efficacy and emotional regulation among high risk suicidal patients.

Email: samantha.daruwala.ctr@usuhs.edu

 

Research Associate

Margaret Baer, B.A.

Margaret Baer

While obtaining her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from the Catholic University of America, Margaret worked in two psychology laboratories. In the Applied Memory Lab, she facilitated participant recruitment for an affective forecasting study and worked extensively with the International Affective Picture System. In the Suicide Prevention Lab (where she remains an active contributor), she assisted with coding qualitative data and coordinating data entry for a randomized controlled trial testing the effectiveness of the Collaborative Assessment and Management of Suicidality (CAMS, under the guidance of Dr. David Jobes) in a military sample. She has also worked as a an intern for the American Association of Suicidology. Margaret joined the lab at USUHS initially as a volunteer and subsequently as a paid employee. In this capacity, she oversees the recruitment of patients for the Post Admission Cognitive Therapy (PACT) multi-site randomized controlled trial and serves as a study case manager, providing follow-up services to all participants for a 12-month timeframe. Margaret's current research interests include cognitive and emotional aspects of suicidality and the differentiation of suicide-related behaviors from ideation. She is the recipient of the 2015 American Association of Suicidology 1st Place Poster Award for her contributions to advancing knowledge on military suicide survivors and their perceptions on missed opportunities for prevention of suicide among their family members. 

Email: margaret.baer.ctr@usuhs.edu

 

Research Associate

Helena Hassen, B.A.

Helena Hassen

Helena received her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from Smith College in Northampton, MA. As an undergraduate, she served as a Research Assistant with Dr. Benita Jackson, where she helped with a meta-analysis on trends in the self-objectification literature over time and conducted an independent project investigating self-objectification, ruminative coping, and basic psychological needs fulfillment in young adult women. She also worked as a Research Assistant at the Center for the Study of Traumatic Stress at USUHS, supporting studies on suicide risk and resilience, and traumatic stress and biomarkers, both among military personnel. Since joining the lab in early 2015, Helena has assisted with the efforts on the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) Research Task Group on Military Suicide, and serves as a Research Case Manager for the PACT study. She is currently collaborating on an independent project investigating the association between sleep quality and social problem solving among individuals hospitalized for suicide ideation or behavior.

Email: helena.hassen.ctr@usuhs.edu

 

Research Associate

George Ponce, M.A.

George Ponce

George recently received his M.A. in General Psychology from the Catholic University of America where he conducted research at the Suicide Prevention Lab, under the mentorship of Dr. David Jobes. While at the lab, George developed an interest in suicide prevention interventions as well as the development and implementation of evidence-based practices. George contributed to several research projects and headed his own investigation into clinical reactions to a suicide-specific intervention training, which he presented at the 2016 Annual Conference of the American Association of Suicidology. George currently serves as as an Assistant Shift Manager for the DoD's Safe Helpline for military sexual assault survivors. George joined the USUHS lab in 2016 and is contributing as a Research Case Manager for the PACT study. Additionally, he is currently assisting with the implementation of a project that aims to advance chaplaincy care in suicide prevention. 

Email: jorge.ponce.ctr@usuhs.edu

 

Research Associate

Kaitlyn Schuler, M.A.

Kaitlyn Schuler

Kaitlyn has earned her M.A. in General Psychology from Catholic University where she was an active member of Dr. David Jobes' suicide prevention laboratory. Her research examined the relationship between entrapment and suicidality in members of the military, incarcerated youth, and college students as well as the impact of military culture on patient perspectives of successful treatment of suicide risk. Kaitlyn joined the USUHS lab in 2016 and is contributing as a Research Case Manager for the PACT study. She is interested in military's culture and its impact on evidence-based practices and the relationship between the following constructs: reasons for living, existential well-being, and suicide risk / protective factors. Additionally, she is currently assisting with the implementation of a project that aims to advance chaplaincy care in suicide prevention.

Email: kaitlyn.schuler.ctr@usuhs.edu

 

Research Associate

Amber Fox, B.S.

Amber Fox

Amber has earned her Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Maryland, College Park. She has previously served as a Research Assistant for Dr. Andres Los Reyes' Comprehensive Assessment and Intervention Program as well as Dr. Michele Gelfand's Culture Lab. In this capacity, she has conducted research on social aniety, parent-adolescent relationships, as well as cultural frames of social issues. Amber joined the USUHS lab in 2016 and is contributing as a Research Case Manager for the PACT study. Additionally, she is currently assisting with the implementation of two primary suicide prevention programs - one focusing on the unique needs of basic trainees in military and the second focusing on the unique needs of special operations members and families.

Email: amber.fox.ctr@usuhs.edu