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Editorial Board

Current Editorial Board

Grace Bellinger

Grace Bellinger, Co-Editor-In-Chief

Grace Bellinger is a PhD student in the Northwestern University Interdepartmental Neuroscience (NUIN) graduate program. She obtained her B.S. in kinesiology from the University of Wisconsin – Madison and also has a Master’s in motor control and behavior from UW-Madison. She enjoys singing, engaging the community, and playing trivia.

Margaret Walker, Co-Editor-In-Chief

Margaret Walker, Co-Editor-In-Chief

Margaret Walker is a dual MD/MPH student at Northwestern University and is interested in interpreting complex medical information for the general public. She obtained her BS in computer science and molecular biology from MIT and developed an interest in blogging. Beyond science, she enjoys reading (anything and everything), exploring Chicago, and biking along Lake Michigan.

Virginia Nowakowski

Virginia Nowakowski, Blog Contributor and Journal Editor

Virginia is a full-time MPH student in the generalist concentration at Northwestern University. She graduated from the Medill School of Journalism in 2018, and is excited about all things at the intersection of health and communication. When she’s not in class, working, writing or meal-prepping, she enjoys running outdoors, social dance and baking.

Joo-Young Lee, Design Editor

Joo-Young Lee, Design Editor

Joo-Young Lee is a medical student at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine. She obtained her B.A. in Neuroscience from Northwestern University while taking design courses with the Segal Design Institute. She is interested in helping raise the health literacy levels of the public through simple and effective visual communication. You can find her exploring cafes all around Chicago.

Jannie Bolotnikov

Jannie Bolotnikov, Journal Contributor

Jannie Bolotnikov is a recent graduate of the MPH program at Northwestern with a concentration in community health research. She is currently working on a manuscript with the Pediatric Practice Research Group at Lurie Children’s Hospital. She hopes to use her public health experience in the future as she pursues her dream of becoming a physician. Outside of her scholarly pursuits, Jannie enjoys weightlifting, drinking coffee and painting.

Makda Zewde

Makda Zewde, Blog Contributor - Big Data Corner

Makda is an M.S. student in the Biostatistics program at Northwestern University. For the past two years, she has been working as a technician in the Nakamura Lab at the University of Chicago, where she became interested in personalized medicine and the role of big data analytics in improving public health. Outside the lab, she enjoys museums, watching live music and discovering new coffee shops around the city.

Osefame Ewaleifoh, Advisor and Contributor

Osefame Ewaleifoh is a Ph.D./MPH student studying HSV neuroinvasion in Gregg Smith’s lab. His public health interest focus primarily on disparities in mental health access. His favorite past time: “playing chess against myself.”


Arvin Akhavan

During his time with the NPHR, Arvin Akhavan was studying toward his MD at Northwestern’s Feinberg School of Medicine. As a member of the Class of 2015, he hoped to continue his medical education as an Emergency Medicine physician. He enjoyed exploring Chicago, writing, staying active, and watching the Texas Longhorns win football games.

Brian Cheng

During his time with the NPHR, Brian Cheng was in the NU undergraduate Honors Program in Medical Education. In his spare time, he conducted research with Dr. Andrew Hoel at Northwestern Memorial Hospital and worked with the Institute for Student Business Education group, which provides pro-bono consulting services to non-profits in the greater Chicago area.

Michelle de Oliveira Fernandes

During her time with the NPHR, Michelle de Oliveira Fernandes was a Ph.D. student in the Driskill Graduate Program, with a strong interest in scientific writing and editing. She was often found exploring fountains, bakeries and gardens off the beaten path—in Chicago and beyond—when not tinkering with genetics/neuroscience in the lab. Michelle is known to succumb to all things chocolate and is also easily won over by a cupcake or madeleine.

Sofia Jouravel

During her time with the NPHR, Sofia Jouravel was an NU MPH student. She is passionate about locally grown, organic food and strived to improve food institutions that ease access to and promote healthy behaviors. She was also a project manager at AbbVie in the Regulatory Affairs department. Outside of work and school, she loved to eat her way through Chicago and plan busy weekends exploring the city and other states/countries.

Kate Klein

During her time with the NPHR, Kate Klein was an ASPPH/CDC Allan Rosenfield Global Health Fellow at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in the Center for Global Health, Division of Global Health Protection. At CDC she worked with the National Public Health Institutes project working to improve health infrastructure in 10 countries in Africa, Latin and South America. As an MPH student at Northwestern University (class of 2014) she was interested in infectious disease prevention, healthy systems, and maternal and child health in the global context. She loves urban hiking in Chicago, Wes Anderson movies, and Trivial Pursuit.

Celeste Mallama

During her time with the NPHR, Celeste Mallama was a Ph.D./MPH student in the Driskill Graduate Program. She studied the interaction between Legionella and the innate immune system in the Cianciotto laboratory. Her public health interests included the epidemiology and control of infectious diseases. In her free time, Celeste was on a long, winding tour of America with 9 states to go. She welcomed any and all advice about the Dakotas.

Maureen McNulty

During her time with the NPHR, Mo McNulty was a PhD student in the Driskill Graduate Program at Northwestern University, where she worked in John Crispino’s lab studying the genetic underpinnings of leukemia. Mo loves writing and reading about anything science related, wouldn’t be caught dead not watching Buckeye football on game days, and plays trombone in the psychedelic street band Environmental Encroachment.

Caitlin Pegg

During her time with the NPHR, Caitlin Pegg was a PhD student in the NU Driskill Graduate Program and an NSF Graduate Research Fellow. In the laboratory of Prof. Gregory Smith, she studies neuroinvasive properties of herpesviruses relating to efficient viral propagation and host dissemination. Caitlin received her B.S. in biology from the University of Tulsa. There she worked to identify phylogenetic similarities in diverse algal species and was the co-inventor of a nanofibrous material that is useful in wound healing. Outside the lab, Caitlin has many passions including antiquing, power walking, meme-ing, napping, French bulldogs, and loving life.

Sarah Jane Quillin

During her time with the NPHR, Sarah Jane Quillin was an NU dual-degree Ph.D./MPH student in microbiology. Her interests included infectious disease epidemiology, antibiotic resistance, and how laboratory research informs public health policy. Sarah loves Chicago, post-punk music, and science fiction. She discovered books at a young age and has been a nerd ever since.

Elaine Shen

Elaine Shen is a dual MD/MPH student at Northwestern University and is interested in design, multimedia storytelling, and public health communication. She enjoys photography, eating baked goods, and learning about the wonderful intersections of art and science. Her favorite organ is the pancreas.

Derek Tam

During his time with the NPHR, Derek Tam was an MD/MPH candidate at Northwestern. His academic interests included mental health, neuroscience, and psychology. His other interests included drumming, photography, and tennis. He was probably a bit too interested in coffee and believed perfection in life can only be attained when arriving at a movie theater just as the previews are ending.

Kristen Unti

During her time with the NPHR, Kristen Unti was a MD/MPH student. As NPHR’s Viewpoint Editor, Kristen was constantly seeking all different types of views. Besides loving to meet people and hear their opinions, she would travel to a new location with every break from school in search of some of the world’s greatest views. Once she found these views, she enjoyed throwing herself off of the mountains, bridges, and planes – ideally attached to a parachute or bungee cord to break her fall.

Claire Vernon

Claire Vernon completed her PhD in the Driskill Graduate Program. She studied pain signaling among other neuroscience complexities in Dr. Geoffrey Swanson’s laboratory. Claire is passionate about mental health, women’s health, literacy for all ages, and good coffee.

Stephanie Villa

During her time with the NPHR, Stephanie Villa was a Ph.D. student in the Driskill Graduate Program. She studied the role of novel G protein-coupled receptors in regulating insulin secretion and as potential therapeutic targets for Type 2 Diabetes in the Layden laboratory. In her free time, Stephanie was rediscovering the fine art of toddler cuisine and silly dance with her husband and daughter.

Simona Morochnik

During her time with NPHR, Simona Morochnik was a Ph.D. student in the IBiS program studying biomaterials in the labs of Dr. Guillermo Ameer and Dr. Igal Szleifer. She enjoys adventure-seeking, lying on sunny patches of grass, overpopulating her Goodreads to-read shelf, and singing with the NUtones, Northwestern’s graduate a cappella group.

Nelly Papalambros

During her time, Nelly Papalambros was a PhD/MPH student in the Interdepartmental Neuroscience Program at Northwestern University. She studied mechanisms of sleep and memory. Nelly is interested in using science to advocate for evidence based health policy.

Jackie Patterson

Jackie Patterson is a Neuroscience PhD student investigating movement rehabilitation in stroke patients with a keen passion for translational research, conveying insights from the lab to the clinic. She earned her B.S. in Biology from Penn State University and is a professional at eating snacks

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