JSI Research & Training Institute operates the Healthy Start EPIC Center. JSI’s mission is to improve the health of underserved people and communities and to provide a place where people of passion and commitment can pursue this cause. For 35 years, JSI staff in its eight U.S. offices have provided high-quality technical and managerial assistance to public health programs across the nation. Learn more about the services JSI provides to the Healthy Start grantees.


SuzsmallSusan Friedrich, MBA, PMP, is a senior manager at JSI with nearly 30 years of experience working with healthcare and public health organizations. She serves as Project Director for MCHB’s Healthy Start EPIC Center. Ms. Friedrich has expertise in the areas of health services delivery, public health, information for decision-making, and program evaluation. Since joining JSI in 1985, she has consulted with federally funded programs at the federal, state, and local levels and worked on a number of national policy initiatives. Ms. Friedrich holds an MBA in Health Care Administration from Boston University and a BA from Amherst College. Ms. Friedrich received her Project Management Professional (PMP) certification in 2010.


Jan_Shepherd,_MDsmallJan Shepherd, MD, FACOG, serves as Maternal Health Technical Advisor for MCHB’s Healthy Start EPIC Center. Dr. Shepherd received her MD from Northwestern University and completed a residency in Obstetrics and Gynecology at the University of Cincinnati. Current appointments include Associate Clinical Professor in Obstetrics and Gynecology at the University of Colorado School of Medicine, Medical Advisor for the Women’s Wellness Connection at the Colorado Department of Public Health & Environment, and consultant for two women’s health clinics in the Denver area. Dr. Shepherd also has a continuing appointment as Adjunct Associate Professor at Florida State University College of Medicine, where she was the founding Education Director for Obstetrics and Gynecology. In that role, she participated regularly in the Panhandle Fetal and Infant Mortality Review sponsored by the Healthy Pregnancy Network at Capital Area Healthy Start Coalition, giving her significant insight into the Healthy Start program.


Kim BradleyKimberly Bradley, MPH, MNM, serves as the Community Engagement Technical Advisor for MCHB’s Healthy Start EPIC Center. Ms. Bradley is a Senior Technical Assistance Specialist with ZERO TO THREE (ZTT). In this role, Ms. Bradley contributes to the design and provision of technical assistance to Maternal Infant Early Childhood Home Visiting (MIECHV) and Federal Healthy Start grantees. Ms. Bradley serves as the lead for the Healthy Start EPIC Center’s technical assistance design and provision efforts related to “Partnering for Collective Impact.” Ms. Bradley’s previous experience includes serving as the Director of Health Programs at the Health Council of Southeast Florida where she led the HIV/AIDS system redesign efforts, which increased system integration and access to care, and oversaw the community engagement and consortium development activities. Ms. Bradley also previously served as the Project Director for the Women’s Health Initiative (WHIN), a Federal Healthy Start Project awarded to the Children’s Services Council of Palm Beach County. Ms. Bradley holds an MPH from Virginia Commonwealth University’s Medical College of Virginia and a Master of Nonprofit Management from Florida Atlantic University.


Lea Ayers LaFaveLea Ayers LaFave, PhD, RN, is a senior consultant at JSI with 32 years of experience as a registered nurse working with health care and public health organizations. She serves as Quality Improvement Technical Advisor for MCHB’s Healthy Start EPIC Center. Dr. LaFave has expertise in systems change and development, including quality improvement, action learning collaboratives, and social network analysis. Since joining JSI in 2008, she has provided consultation at local, regional, state, national, and international levels. Dr. LaFave holds a PhD from the University of Massachusetts, Worcester, School of Nursing, an MSN from Yale University School of Nursing, and a BA from Smith College.



Naomi ClemmonsNaomi Clemmons, MPH, is a senior consultant with 20 years of experience in the field of Maternal and Child Health. She serves as the Technical Assistance Coordinator for MCHB’s Healthy Start EPIC Center. Ms. Clemmons has worked on maternal and child health initiatives at the federal, state, and local levels engaging Title V, health care, mental health, and social services to strengthen systems to improve maternal and child health outcomes. She has expertise in needs assessments, strategic planning, systems integration, quality improvement, monitoring, and evaluation. Ms. Clemmons holds an MPH from University of Massachusetts School of Public Health, Amherst and a BA from American University.



Deborah DeanDeborah Dean, MSPH, is a technical specialist with over 25 years of experience in health communications, materials development, and curriculum design. She serves as Materials Development Coordinator for MCHB’s Healthy Start EPIC Center. With expertise in adult learning theory, health behavior change principles, and health literacy, Ms. Dean specializes in the translation of state-of-the-art science and health information into forms that can be applied in the real world by providers, consumers, and policy makers. Ms. Dean has many years of experience in the development of health education materials for lay audiences, including consumers with limited reading skills. Ms. Dean holds an MSPH in Health Policy and Management from the Harvard School of Public Health and a BA from Harvard University.


Yvonne HambyYvonne Hamby, MPH, has worked with JSI for 16 years and has worked extensively with federal Health and Human Services agencies, as well as state and local health departments, for 18 years. She serves as the CoIIN Coordinator for MCHB’s Healthy Start EPIC Center. Ms. Hamby is particularly experienced in the development of quality improvement and assurance assessment plans. At JSI, she directed a project to develop one set of criteria to evaluate the quality of care provided at family planning clinics for the Regional Office of PHS Region VIII. Ms. Hamby has her MPH in Maternal Child Health from the University of South Florida, where she was the recipient of the Maternal Child Health Traineeship.



Megan Hiltner

Megan Lane Hiltner, MPH, serves as a Training Coordinator for the Healthy Start EPIC Center. Ms. Hiltner has 12 years of health services program experience related to training, technical assistance, and maternal and child health. In addition to her role on the Healthy Start EPIC Center, Ms. Hiltner is a project manager with JSI’s National Training Center for Management and Systems Improvement funded by the Office of Population  Affairs. On this project, she works on a team of seven to support Title X Family Planning Grantees incorporate the Affordable Care Act (ACA) into their programming, specifically outreach and enrollment. In addition, Ms. Hiltner has served as a TA Coordinator for JSI’s Early Childhood Comprehensive Systems (ECCS) project, supporting 12 ECCS grantees in the Midwest and Western states to build statewide systems and collaborations in early childhood. She also directed JSI’s Family and Youth Services Bureau Training and Technical Assistance project. She oversaw a team of TA providers in their support of Personal Responsibility Education Program grantees with planning and implementation of evidence-based pregnancy prevention programs and led the roll-out of a Communities of Practice website. Ms. Hiltner has a MPH from Boston University with a Maternal Child Health concentration and a BA from Colorado State University.


JSI Naima CozierNaima Morales Cozier, MSPH, is a senior consultant at JSI with 13 years of experience in behavioral and implementation sciences. She serves as a Training Coordinator for MCHB’s Healthy Start EPIC Center. Ms. Cozier’s expertise includes training and technical assistance design and delivery that is based in adult learning theory. She is adept in group facilitation, critical thinking, and complex problem-solving. During her 9 years at JSI, she has coordinated and led national capacity building assistance initiatives dedicated to the integration of evidence-based interventions in public health organizations, program monitoring and evaluation, social marketing campaigns, and social media strategy. Ms. Cozier holds an MSPH from Tulane School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine and a BS from Xavier University of Louisiana.


IMG_0612-KDKatie DeAngelis, MPH, has expertise in program evaluation, nutrition and health promotion, and health reform. As Evaluation Coordinator for MCHB’s Healthy Start EPIC Center, she will evaluate the Center’s effectiveness in enabling grantees to achieve the desired Healthy Start outcomes. Ms. DeAngelis similarly supports the evaluation of the Family Planning National Training Centers as part of the National Training Center for Quality Assurance, Quality Improvement, and Evaluation. Her prior work has included an analysis of gaps in outreach and enrollment assistance for the New Hampshire health insurance marketplace, established under the ACA. This included an extensive review of best practices and promising strategies for outreach to key target populations. Her past nutrition work includes evaluation of a SNAP-education program, food safety net policies, and school nutrition requirements. Ms. DeAngelis received both her MPH and BA in Community Health  from Brown University.


Aisha MooreAisha Moore, MPH, is the Online Technology Coordinator for MCHB’s Healthy Start EPIC Center. She has 15 years of public health experience, including seven years with JSI assisting local, state, and federal organizations with health communications, social media management, social marketing, public health programming, and workforce development. She is a subject matter expert in adolescent, school, sexual, and reproductive health. She has an MPH in Health Behavior and Health Education from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and a BA from the University of California at Berkeley.