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Meet the Check It Team


Gérard Gomes | (504) 495-8102 |

Gérard Gomes joined Check It in 2016. Raised in Trinidad and Tobago, his first experience in New Orleans was Xavier University’s move in day 2005 while dropping his cousin off to college. He kept coming back and is now proud to call New Orleans home. Before working with Check it, he served in the U.S Peace Corps as a community health volunteer in Burkina Faso. Gérard holds a B.A in Biochemistry from the University of Richmond.

Glenis Scott, Jr., MPH | (504) 256-6703 |

Glenis Scott, Jr. is a NOLA native. He received a B.S. in Public Health from Dillard University and an MPH in Global Community Health and Behavioral Sciences from Tulane University School of Public Health & Tropical Medicine. He enjoys smoothies, fish, and group activities.


Breon Wise, M.S. | (504)-988-2345|

Breon was born and raised in New Orleans. She received a B.S. in Biology from  Howard University and an M.S. in Physiology and Biophysics from Georgetown University. In her spare time, she enjoys rollerblading, listening to true crime podcasts, and kickboxing.


 Research Assistants


Mary Beth Campbell |

Mary Beth is currently pursuing her Master’s degree in Epidemiology at Tulane University. She received her B.S. in Biology from Seattle University, a MSPH Tropical Medicine from Tulane University, and has an interest in harm reduction, HIV & Hep C prevention and linkage to care, as well as infectious disease surveillance. She is also our resident boxing champion and she trains at New Orleans Boxing Club (hit her up if you want to spar!).


Michelle Palomares|

Michelle Palomares is currently pursuing her master’s degree in the Epidemiology Department at Tulane University. She received her BA in Integrative Biology from UC Berkeley and is interested in infectious diseases and social determinants of health. In her free time, Michelle enjoys reading and biking around the city.

Austin Jones, MPHTM |

Austin Jones is a fifth-year MD PhD student at Tulane University studying infectious disease epidemiology. An aspiring emergency medicine physician-scientist, Austin aims to deliver healthcare in low-resource settings and integrate public health interventions with emergency services. Outside of New Orleans, he was worked in public health and clinical capacities in Panama, Congo, and South Sudan. Austin is an outdoor enthusiast and enjoys making hot sauce from his home-grown peppers.

Mom (Nini) TatahMentan |

Nini is a doctoral student at Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine. She has experience in and is passionate about monitoring and evaluation, maternal and child health, sexual and reproductive health, and health communication. She is also very excited about this opportunity to work with Check It!

 Cedric Ntambwe |

CedricNtambwe, born and raised in the Congo. I am currently pursuing my Masters in Epidemiology at Tulane with an interest in infectious diseases. I had my MD degree in 2015 and I have decided to look at infectious diseases through the eye of an epidemiologist rather than as a clinician. I still believe that the best way to tackle public health issues is through community outreach. Otherwise, I am a freak fan of soccer and martial arts. I spend most of my weekends playing pool’


                                               Aneeka Ratnayake |

Aneeka is a PhD student at Tulane University, studying infectious disease epidemiology.  Prior to moving to New Orleans, she completed her MSPH at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, where she explored social network characteristics in relation to the use of injection drugs and Hepatitis C and HIV risks. More broadly, Aneeka has worked in public health domestically and internationally, and taken on projects in several different areas, ranging from infectious diseases to nutrition. She is especially interested in the use of interdisciplinary methods to understand and drive harm-reduction, as it relates to sexual health and injection drug use for people at risk of or living with HIV. In her free time, she enjoys hiking, is a certified ski instructor, and is working on her personal trainer certification.




Data Manager

Megan Clare Craig-Kuhn |

Megan Clare Craig-Kuhn is a second year doctoral student in Epidemiology at Tulane University. She completed a BA at Oberlin College and MPH coursework at the University of Minnesota School of Public Health.


                                     Senior Program Manager

Norine Schmidt, MPH  | 

Norine Schmidt moved to New Orleans 30 years ago and has been working in sexual and reproductive health for more than 20 of those years. Check it is one of her favorite projects because of the amazing Check it team, community partners and participants.


Principal Investigator

Patricia Kissinger, Ph.D. |  

Dr. Patty Kissinger is an infectious disease epidemiologist and a nurse.  She has worked both nationally and internationally for more than three decades in the field of HIV, sexually transmitted diseases, and women’s reproductive health in Africa, Haiti, and the US. She has published extensively on many topics about STIs and has been the lead researcher in numerous research studies.


Medical Investigator

David H. Martin, M.D. |

David H. Martin, M.D. is Professor Emeritus at Louisiana State University School of Medicine and Adjunct Professor of Epidemiology at Tulane SPHTM. He served as Chief of Infectious Diseases at LSU for nearly 20 years.