University of Nebraska Medical Center
Associate Professor, Health Promotion, Public Health
I am a public health researcher, and I am an Associate Professor in the Department of Health Promotion at the University of Nebraska Medical Center. I am a medical sociologist and have a doctorate in medical sociology and a certificate in medical behavioral science from the University of Kentucky. My research interests include health disparities pertaining to sex trafficking, domestic violence, cancer and healthy aging. I am a mixed-methods researcher (qualitative and quantitative), but very much like qualitative research (e.g., one-on-one in-depth interviews. Like many researchers, I got interested in the field of sex trafficking while working in the field of domestic violence. We realized that some women were sex trafficked by their spouse/partner. This year (2016), my research partner (Ms. Sriyani Tidball) and I completed a project, interviewing 22 sex trafficking survivors in Nebraska. Our report was widely disseminated and helped inform current statewide planning efforts to combat trafficking. One of things that stood out in our study was the need to adopt non-traditional methods to prevent sex trafficking. We believe that reaching out to and partnering with tattoo artists will help prevent sex trafficking through the early detection and identification of survivors so that survivors can get timely assistance and support. We have the necessary skill-set and experience needed to successfully complete this project and have a positive impact on the lives of survivors.