The College of Health Solutions at Arizona State University announces the appointment of five new faculty members whose diverse backgrounds and areas of expertise will enhance the college’s translational approach to research and teaching.
“Our new faculty share our passion for an interdisciplinary team approach to translational research that addresses critical health issues and improves health outcomes,” said Deborah Helitzer, dean of the College of Health Solutions.
“We’re dedicated to optimizing health for every individual at every stage, from wellness to illness, and our new faculty are immersed in research to do just that.”
These new faculty members will build on a strong foundation of dedicated teachers and accomplished researchers who are working to address some of society’s most pressing health problems in the following areas: behavioral health, biomedical informatics and biomedical diagnostics, kinesiology and exercise and wellness, public and population health, nutrition, the science of health care delivery, and speech and hearing science.
Edward Ofori joins the College of Health Solutions as assistant professor of biomechanics.
He earned a master’s degree in statistics and master’s and doctoral degrees in kinesiology from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
Ofori’s research focuses on identifying early brain markers and connections that predispose older individuals to Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease and other related dementias and movement disorders.
Most recently, Ofori led the Laboratory for Rehabilitation Neuroscience at the University of Florida in Gainesville.
Stavros A. Kavouras is a professor of nutrition with expertise in the effects of water intake on glucose regulation and its implication on children’s hydration and obesity. In addition to teaching nutrition courses, Kavouras directs the Hydration Science Lab at the College of Health Solutions, studying how hydration impacts health and performance.
After earning a bachelor’s degree in exercise science from the University of Athens in his native Greece, Kavouras pursued a master’s degree in human exercise physiology from the University of Colorado and a PhD in kinesiology and exercise science from the University of Connecticut. Before coming to ASU, he was a professor at the University of Arkansas where he continues to serve as an adjunct professor in medicine.
He has authored more than 100 peer-reviewed articles and book chapters and has lectured in 26 countries. He is a section editor of the European Journal of Nutrition and associate editor of Behavioral Medicine and Frontiers in Nutrition. Kavouras is a Fellow of the American College of Sports Medicine and the European College of Sports Science as well as an elected member of the American Society of Nutrition, the Obesity Society and the American Physiological Society.
Chinedum Ojinnaka is assistant professor of biomedical informatics. Her research leverages health databases, such as the cancer registry and public-assistance program data, to identify social factors that affect outcomes and equality in health care.
As a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Missouri, her team evaluated data from Missouri’s Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) and Medicaid to determine the relationship between the timing of SNAP benefit distribution and emergency room visits. She will continue research on the determinants of clinical, health outcomes and health care utilization and teach courses in public health informatics.
Before earning her PhD in health services research from Texas A&M University, Ojinnaka was a practicing physician in her native country of Nigeria.
Yunro (Roy) Chung joins the College of Health Solutions as assistant professor with joint appointments in biomedical informatics and the Virginia G. Piper Center for Personalized Diagnostics in ASU’s Biodesign Institute. His research uses statistical analysis to discover and validate biomarkers that lead to better screening and early diagnosis of disease.
Some of his previous work includes research as a postdoctoral research fellow at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle, where he developed statistical methods for evaluating biomarkers and diagnostic tests for prostate cancer detection.
Chung earned his PhD in biostatistics at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and his master’s in statistics in his hometown of Seoul, Korea.
Wonsuk Yoo is an associate research professor and director of the Biostatistics Core which provides biostatistics expertise and analytical support for ASU faculty. After completing his bachelor’s degree at Yonsei University in Seoul, South Korea, Yoo earned a master’s degree in statistics at the University of Florida and a PhD in Biostatistics at Medical University of South Carolina in Charleston.
His research focuses on developing biostatistics and informatics tools and methodologies that use large health data sets to predict the risk of complex human diseases and reduce health disparities.
Yoo has authored more than 50 articles for peer-reviewed publications in health, medicine, epigenetics and biostatistics and has served as an Institutional Review Board member and national grant panel reviewer for the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute and the National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities.