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The Kennedy-Satcher Center for Mental Health Equity

Staff & Faculty

Glenda Wrenn, MD, MSHP | Director

Dr. Wrenn is Director of the Kennedy Satcher Center for Mental Health Equity in the Satcher Health Leadership Institute (SHLI) at Morehouse School of Medicine. Dr. Wrenn, an Associate Professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, previously served as the Associate Residency Training Director in the Department of Psychiatry. She completed undergraduate education at the United States Military Academy at West Point; earned her medical degree from Jefferson Medical College, and completed psychiatry residency at the University of Pennsylvania where she was Chief Resident. Dr. Wrenn earned a Master of Science in Health Policy Research from the University of Pennsylvania during her tenure as a Robert Wood Johnson Clinical Scholar. Dr. Wrenn has worked to develop integrated primary and behavioral health care demonstration sites in safety net systems of care and educational curriculum for the integrated, interprofessional Veteran’s Administration, Women’s Center of Excellence for Specialty Care in Atlanta. She currently oversees the Smart and Secure Children Quality Parenting Program and Integrated Care Leadership Program and their related research initiatives. Her other research interests include strengthening resilience in vulnerable populations, addressing the disparity in help seeking for post-traumatic stress disorder among African Americans, and culturally sensitive collaborative care models.


 

Sharon Rachel, MA, MPH | Deputy Director

Sharon Rachel, MA, MPH is Deputy Director of the Kennedy Satcher Center for Mental Health Equity in the Satcher Health Leadership Institute. Ms. Rachel has extensive experience in collaborative public health program development and evaluation within diverse partnerships. She has worked on curriculum development, event planning for meetings and conferences, grant-writing, and manuscript development. She served as a liaison between SHLI and the NFL and NFL Player Care Foundation to work with former players and their families as well as communities across the country to address mental health challenges related to sports injuries, transitions, and stigma as a barrier to help-seeking. Out of that work, Ms. Rachel helped to establish initiatives that address youth sports safety.

Ms. Rachel earned her BA in Women’s Studies and Sociology from the University of South Carolina, her MA in Women’s Studies from The Ohio State University, and her MPH in Health Education from the Emory University Rollins School of Public Health. She is trained in peer-to-peer counseling, has supported and advocated for sexual assault survivors, led women’s support groups, and coordinated resources at women’s community and crisis centers. Ms. Rachel has co-authored several publications, created a number of teaching aids and tools, and conducted education and training sessions across the United States.

Ms. Rachel is a native of Cleveland, Ohio. She enjoys running and has completed 5K, 8K, 10K, 15K, half marathon, full marathon, and obstacle races. She also enjoys live music, travelling, and attending cultural events.


 

LeRoy Reese, PhD

LeRoy Reese, PhD is an Associate Professor in the Department of Community Health and Preventive Medicine at Morehouse School of Medicine. Prior to joining MSM he was a senior scientist and team leader at the CDC’s National Center for Injury Control. Dr. Reese conducts community-based health research focused on the development of healthy lifestyles and the reduction of risky behavior among youth and their families. He was a member of the task force of the American Psychological Association that produced the report Resilience and Strength in African American Children and Adolescents. Dr. Reese co-edited Realizing Social Justice: The Challenge of Preventive Interventions. He has served as a consultant to the NIMH, NICHD, OJJDP and the CDC. Previously he served on the White House Council on Youth Violence. Current research projects Dr. Reese is involved include identifying and removing access and knowledge based barriers to the uptake of the HPV vaccine in African American and Hispanic adolescent males and females. Additionally he is involved in a study that examines the effects of second smoke on cardiovascular functioning among low income African American youth.


 

Brian McGregor, PhD | Associate Director for Research

Dr. McGregor is Associate Director for Research in the Kennedy Satcher Center for Mental Health Equity and Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychiatry & Behavioral Medicine at the Morehouse School of Medicine. He earned his bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Morehouse College and completed his master’s and doctorate degrees in Clinical/Community Psychology from the University of South Carolina. He is a past fellow of the American Psychological Association, specializing in the treatment and prevention of substance abuse among ethnic/racial minorities. He was an inaugural Health Policy Leadership Fellow at the Satcher Health Leadership Institute in 2009 – 2010, where his focus was on mental health policy and practices and health disparities affecting African American boys and men of color. Dr. McGregor has also served as a clinician and supervisor of mental health services at medium and maximum security correctional facilities in the state of Alabama and as a researcher for Community Voices: Healthcare for the Underserved in the Satcher Health Leadership Institute.

Dr. McGregor’s work in SHLI has focused on developing community partnerships and collaborations intersecting the areas of mental health, substance abuse, and criminal justice to support policies and programs that reduce recidivism and improve behavioral health outcomes. He is also involved in the implementation and evaluation of innovative health care strategies designed to improve health care access, quality and outcomes among underserved and disenfranchised populations. Dr. McGregor is committed to developing effective leadership strategies, policies, and practices designed to reduce disparities and advance equity in health and mental health.


 

Megan Douglas, JD | Associate Director for Policy

Megan Douglas, JD is Associate Director for Policy in the Kennedy Satcher Center for Mental Health Equity and Interim Director and alumna (2012 – 2013) of the SHLI Health Policy Leadership Fellowship. She is a licensed attorney and focuses on health policy and its impact on individuals from underserved communities. Megan has worked on health policy issues related to neurodevelopmental disabilities, HIV and AIDS discrimination, racial and ethnic health disparities, and individuals identifying as LGBT. With the TCC, she is studying the impact of Health Information Technology (HIT) policies on health disparities and is identifying ways to improve these policies to advance health equity.


 

Sayon Cooper, MPH, Program Manager

Mr. Sayon Cooper is Program Manager for the Integrated Care Leadership Program in the Kennedy Satcher Center for Mental Health Equity. Mr. Cooper’s job duties consist of facilitating implementation of integrated care models in primary care centers within Georgia, as well as regionally and nationally.

Prior to joining SHLI, Mr. Cooper worked at Grady Memorial Hospital for almost 10 years as a mental health social worker and other job titles such as data management specialist and discharge planner. He obtained his Master of Public Health at Walden University and undergraduate degree in Industrial Technology at Abilene Christian University. At Abilene Christian, Mr. Cooper was an All American track star who was a NCAA champion in the 55m, 100m, and 200m in 1997. He also is a 2-time Olympian (1996, 2000) who ran for his native Country, Liberia.

Mr. Cooper was raised in Germantown, Maryland most of his life. His great-uncle was the 19th President of Liberia, serving from 1944 – 1971. Due to family history in politics, Mr. Cooper’s long-term goals consist of being involved in health policy and becoming a politician. Mr. Cooper regularly attends the Berean Christian Church in Decatur, Georgia. He has three beautiful daughters who mean the world to him.


 

Shemeka Dawson, Parent Liaison, Smart and Secure Children (SSC) Parent Leadership Program

Shemeka Dawson pursued her passion and obtained an Associates Degree in culinary arts. As Parent Liaison for the Smart and Secure Children (SSC) Parent Leadership Program at Morehouse School of Medicine, she uses her skills as a chef and her personal experience to connect with parents and children throughout the community. Ms. Dawson first got involved with troubled  teenagers because of her own personal experience with child sexual exploitation and sex trafficking. She is the founder of Women with Fire, a ministry for hurting women. Shemeka is continuing to pursue her passion of leadership to support healthy parents as they work to produce smart and secure children.


 

Victor Ede, MBBS, MSCR, Research Associate

 


 

Ayanna Smith, MBA, Administrative Assistant

Ayanna Smith is an Administrative Assistant in the Kennedy Satcher Center for Mental Health Equity. Mrs. Smith has been employed with SHLI/MSM since 2009. Ayanna is a native of Atlanta, Georgia and enjoys reading and spending time with her family & friends.

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