Senior Scientists

Our team of Senior Scientists can assist investigators with statement of hypotheses or research questions, research design, sampling, enrollment criteria, statistical analysis and power calculations, all required elements of the proposal. This service is provided to all investigators by the Research Program as part of our mission of research excellence. The Senior Scientists are also available for the statistical analysis of projects but this may require compensation; the Senior Scientist can explain further and refer you to our compensation policy.

The Research Program encourages investigators to consult with the Senior Scientists during the initial design of the project and the preparation of the protocol.
More info on Research Protocols >>

Below is a list of some of the things our team of Senior Scientists can help you with:

  • Scientific review of all submitted proposals for scientific methodology
  • Pre-protocol consultations (e.g., design, analysis/power, general guidance)
  • Analyses and data management for approved research projects
  • Analyses and data management for QI/QA projects
  • Manuscript development
  • Teaching/mentoring through formal workshop presentations and 1:1 or small group discussions
  • Perform regulatory/administrative leadership functions, as part of HHC and affiliated committees, including IRB, IACUC, CICATS, Research Committee, etc.
  • Serve as liaison for department Research Councils

Helpful Videos Covering Research Basics and Data Handling and Security

Who We Are

Jyoti Chhabra is a Senior Scientist at Hartford Hospital. She received her Ph.D. in Nutrition from The Pennsylvania State University. Her doctoral research focused on Psychology of Eating Behavior in relation to Obesity. She is a seasoned researcher in the field of community based participatory research aimed at preventing/managing chronic diseases such as type 2 diabetes, hypertension and related comorbidities. Her work incorporates social determinants of health, nutrition, health behaviors, eating and exercise behavior modification, stress management, health disparities research, and assessing the impact of community health workers at improving behavioral and metabolic indicators as mechanisms for improving chronic disease outcomes.

David O'Sullivan is a senior scientist in the Department of Research Administration at Hartford Hospital. He is responsible for conducting or assisting with the design, methodology, analyses and writing of studies undertaken by physician researchers at the hospital. David’s research has included various topics on medical and dental epidemiology, many of which have involved underserved populations and several of which have been done in the Hartford area. He has first-authored half a dozen peer-reviewed manuscripts and co-authored dozens of manuscripts and abstracts. He has presented more than a dozen papers at national and international conferences incorporating topics on medical and dental.

Gregory Panza is a Senior Scientist in the Department of Research Administration at Hartford Hospital. He earned his Master’s and PhD in Kinesiology at the University of Connecticut. Prior to joining the Senior Scientist team, Greg’s independent research over the past 10 years has focused largely on the interactions between exercise, behavior, medications, supplements, and their impact on cardiovascular and brain health. These projects have led to over 40 peer-reviewed published manuscripts, including 12 first-authored manuscripts, and three book chapters, as well as dozens of abstracts.  Greg has also given numerous invited professional presentations at national and international conferences. He has been interviewed about his research on podcasts and by several media outlets such as TIME Magazine, Medical News Today, Today’s Geriatric Medicine, NBC News, Men’s Health, and Reuter’s Health. Greg is committed to helping investigators at Hartford Healthcare develop scientifically sound protocols as well as aid in statistical analyses and manuscript writing.

Ilene Staff has been a Senior Scientist at Hartford Hospital since 2000. She earned her Ph.D. in Social Psychology at Columbia University. She has approximately forty years of experience in applied research in health, social services, education, and government settings. At Hartford Hospital, she has worked primarily with the departments of Surgery, Neurology/Neurosurgery, Urology, Emergency Medicine, and Orthopedics, collaborating with all on proposal design and analysis. Seventy manuscripts resulting from these collaborations have been published in professional journals and presented at professional conferences. Prior to working at Hartford Hospital, she had research experience in the areas of birth to three and child welfare and served as an Assistant Professor at the University of Connecticut Health Center.

Anne Williamson is a senior scientist and grant writer at Hartford Hospital. She received her PhD at the University of Maryland in physiology and was an Associate Professor in the Department of Neurosurgery at Yale University. Her research focused on the cellular electrophysiology of epileptic tissue as well as on the neurometabolism of epilepsy and diabetes. She has been the PI or co-PI on 12 NIH-funded grants, over 10 foundation grants and has authored over 40 publications. She currently works on developing grant-funded research programs across all clinical areas at Hartford HealthCare.

Yolanda Ya-Huei Li is a senior scientist in the Research Administration Program at Hartford Hospital. She earned her doctoral degree in Pharmaceutical Health Outcomes and Policy at the University of Houston. Her research focuses on comparative effectiveness studies using big data, investigations in healthcare utilization, and developing advanced statistical models. She has advanced proficiency in Pharmacoepidemiology, Pharmacoeconomics, psychometrics, and biostatistics and is the first author of various manuscripts published in peer-reviewed journals. Before joining the Research Administration Program, she represented a healthcare institute in participating in the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Partnership program, and she has ample experience assisting internal and external stakeholders in developing research proposals, investigating the effect of interventions using real-world data, and supporting national conference presentations and manuscript publications.