The Liaisons

Community Engagement in Research Liaisons Program

The Community Engagement in Research Liaisons Program (CERLP) is a new opportunity provided in CCaTS. CERLP community liaisons will help to support the OCER mission to enhance the value of clinical and translational science by prompting engagement with pertinent stakeholder communities through education, practice and research.

CERLP liaisons assist with stakeholder community identification, help researchers in the use of appropriate community engagement approaches to help build sustainable partnerships, and assist CCaTS in the development of educational programs to support this effort and of evaluation approaches.

Specifically, our liaisons assist with the following:

  • They serve as a visible and articulate leader in community engagement in research at Mayo Clinic.
  • They advocate for community engagement in all phases of research.
  • They identify pertinent stakeholders.
  • They identify gaps in knowledge and create educational opportunities for researchers and other interested research partners.
  • Assist with the execution of the three main priorities of CCaTS Community Engagement Program: (a) education for stakeholders and researchers; (b) use of social media to promote and advocate for stakeholder community engagement in research; and (c) support ongoing demonstration projects that illustrate the power of engaging pertinent stakeholders in research.

Meet Our Liaisons

Joan Griffin, PhD joan-griffin-16074971.ashx

Joan M. Griffin, Ph.D., studies social and behavioral determinants of health, especially as they affect women, family caregivers and underserved populations. Her work includes both qualitative and quantitative research to promote health care practices that can improve patient and family health and quality of life. Dr. Griffin also directs a research program that aims to develop, test and share transformative strategies that can optimize patient experiences and outcomes by improving how health care is delivered. With an aging U.S. population, families are now expected to undertake responsibilities and health care tasks for the chronically ill or disabled that historically have been done by health care professionals in clinics and hospitals. Dr. Griffin's research examines strategies to train and support families to provide high-quality care without compromising caregiver health, and to integrate families and caregivers into patient care teams to improve the overall coordination and quality of care.

Karen HartmanKarenCapture

Karen Hartman is the Research Compliance Officer at Mayo Clinic. In this role she provides operational direction for activities and functions related to regulatory topics and research compliance issues. She serves as the administrator for the IRB Regulatory and Compliance Unit and the Office of Research Regulatory Support. Resources provided by these staff include regulatory consultation and education; support for regulatory submissions to FDA; for-cause audits and proactive monitoring; oversight for clinical trials disclosure (registration and results reporting); and coordination of FDA audits.

Ms. Hartman began her career as a nurse and officer in the US Navy, and has over 22 years of experience in health care and research. She has been an invited speaker at national conferences on various clinical research topics. She recently served as co-chair of the national CTSA Consortium Regulatory Knowledge Key Function Committee and Membership co-chair for the Minnesota Chapter of the Association for Clinical Research Professionals. Ms. Hartman received her MSN in Clinical Research Management from Duke University and her BSN from Winona State University.

Jennifer McCormick, PhD Mccormick

Jennifer B McCormick, PhD, MPP joined the departments of Medicine and Health Sciences Research at Mayo Clinic in 2008.She was recruited to Mayo Clinic to assist with the development and enhancement of the CTSA research ethics resource, including educational offerings in research ethics, and science and public policy. In this capacity she directs Mayo Clinic’s Responsible Conduct of Research course and provide lectures on research ethics, social responsibility, and policy in other courses.  Dr McCormick is also a consultant on the Mayo Clinic’s Research Ethics Consultation Service, working closely with the IRB and the Research Subject Advocate to consider human participant research issues, including how best to protect participant privacy and confidentiality in this age of genomic medicine. Much of her work focuses on empirical studies aimed at enhancing human participation in research, and operationalizing the concepts of professionalism and social responsibility in biomedical research. Dr McCormick has had a continued interest in genetic research and biobanking, the policy implications of data sharing, the challenges to protecting participants’ privacy and confidentiality, and the ethical complexities presented by translating genomic research findings into clinical and public health domains. She currently leads some of the biomedical ethics activities for the Mayo Clinic Center for Individualized Medicine (CIM), serving as a discussion moderator for the CIM’s Community Advisory Board and working with CIM leaders in the planning and implementation processes for the Mayo Clinic Individualized Medicine Clinic.  Dr McCormick received her doctorate in molecular cellular biology and masters in public policy from the University of Michigan. She was a Center for Excellence in ELSI research training fellow at the Stanford Center for Biomedical Ethics prior to joining the Mayo Clinic.

Onelis Quirindongo-Cedeno, MD onelis-quirindongo-cedeno-12342637.ashx

Dr. Onelis Quirindongo-Cedeno is a consultant in the Division of Primary Care Internal Medicine at Mayo Clinic Rochester.  She was born in Ponce, Puerto Rico where she completed her undergraduate and medical school education.  She completed her Internal Medicine Residency training at Mayo in 2000.  Currently she is the physician leader for community engagement activities for practice for the section of Employee and Community Health at Mayo Clinic Rochester. In 2007, she was selected to participate in the 2007-2008 Cultural Competence Leadership Fellowship program sponsored by the Health Research and Education Trust. In 2011 completed the Collaborative Leadership Fellow Program that us community-based leadership development program focused on a specific collaborative skill set, multi-sector networking, and learning applied to complex community issues. Dr. Quirindongo-Cedeno research interest is to improve the care of minorities and immigrant populations within the primary care setting.

Steven Smith, MD steven-smith-10346201.ashx

Steven Smith, MD, has been an active collaborator across several disciplines (patients, communities, students and graduate students, primary and specialty medicine, information systems, health economics, and biostatistics).  More specifically, his major research focus has been in health systems and healthcare delivery, telemedicine strategies in communication across the continuum of patient care, relationships between patient/health care team/generalists/specialists, information systems, information modeling, and point-of-care assessment of patient ecological, knowledge, and self-management support.  In addition to clinical projects demonstrating effectiveness of health service re-design in the care of people with diabetes, he serves as Medical Director for Patient Education at the Mayo Clinic and works with other collaborators to explore basic questions regarding the development and efficacy of clinical decision support tools, adherence to treatment regimens, the impact of health literacy/plain language and optimization modeling in the use of medications.  Completing the full spectrum of translational research, Dr. Smith has engaged in macro modeling of effective health outcomes designed to influence national health-policy questions.  Specifically, his leadership role as the co-chair of the data analytic group, Minnesota Collective Impact , is helping to extend efforts across the states of Minnesota, Wisconsin, Iowa, and the Dakotas.  As a past medical director for the Decade of Discovery, a partnership between the University of Minnesota and Mayo Clinic, Dr. Smith has advocated to lower the incidence of disease and increase healthy outcomes for communities.  Finally, his leadership at a national level (e.g., Advisory Council for the Diabetes Quality Improvement Project, Co-Chair of the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services project Doctors Office Quality, past chair of the American Diabetes Association Council on Clinical Endocrinology, Health Care Delivery, and Public Health, and member of the National Leadership Council and National Board of Directors for the American Diabetes Association) positions him to promote, assist, and advocate for this form of high-impact research network.

For more information and to meet with a Liaison contact us.



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