Postdoctoral Fellows

Anindita Dasgupta, Ph.D.


Dr. Dasgupta received her Doctorate in Public Health (Global Health track) in 2015 from the University of California San Diego, and San Diego State University (‘15), where she was a NIDA T32 pre-doctoral fellow on HIV, and substance use at UCSD (PI: Steffanie Strathdee), and pre-doctoral fellow at the Center on Gender Equity and Health. Prior to this, Dr.Dasgupta received her Master of Public Health from Boston University (‘10), and her Bachelors of Arts from Mount Holyoke College (‘08). Dr. Dasgupta’s dissertation research examined the intersection of gender based violence, contraception use, and risk for unintended pregnancy among married women in Maharashtra, India. Since 2009, Dr. Dasgupta has worked as a project manager on multiple NIMH-funded HIV risk-reduction interventions in India (married women) and Boston, Massachusetts (unemployed/homeless black men), as well as an NICHD-funded family planning intervention for couples in India (PI: Anita Raj). Dr. Dasgupta’s current research interests involve understanding how women who are engaged with the criminal justice system contend with HIV risk (via unsafe sex and drug use), and gender-based violence.

Yves Jeanty, Ph.D., MPH

unnamed (1)Dr. Jeanty received his Doctorate in Epidemiology (’11), Master of Public Health (’99), and Baccalaureate (’96) from the University of Miami. He was responsible for the direction of several multidisciplinary research studies focused on the prevention of new HIV infections among at-risk populations and improving the health status of the medically underserved, including persons living with HIV/AIDS (PLWHA), persons  dually-diagnosed with mental illness and drug use disorders and incarcerated populations. Most recently, Dr. Jeanty served as an Associate Director with Gilead Sciences, Inc. in Government Affairs where he established and funded collaborative partnerships with healthcare organizations to routinize HIV testing in Miami-Dade County, FL in alignment with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s expanded HIV testing policy. Prior to this position, he was responsible for the oversight of a multi-site, longitudinal, clinical drug trial assessing the efficacy of HIV pre-exposure prophylaxis to prevent new HIV infection among high-risk, men who have sex with men. Dr. Jeanty’s current research interests include how policies in the criminal justice system impact the prevention and/or treatment of HIV and HCV infection among incarcerated and recently paroled populations.

Seth J. Prins, Ph.D. MPH

SethPrinsDr. Prins received his doctorate in epidemiology (2016) and master in public health (2010) from Columbia University. He received a bachelor of arts from McGill University (2004). Dr. Prins is a psychiatric and social epidemiologist who studies the medicalization of crime, the criminalization of mental illness, and the effects of relational social processes such as class, race, and gender on mood disorders. His dissertation tested the methodological and conceptual assumptions of criminogenic risk assessment in the criminal justice system. Prior to his doctoral training, Dr. Prins was a senior policy analyst at the Council of State Governments Justice Center, where he worked on local, state, and national projects to improve collaboration between criminal justice and mental health systems.

Ciara A. Torres, Ph.D.

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Dr. Torres received her B.S. in Biology (’07) from the Universidad de Puerto Rico, followed by an M.A. (’09) and M.Phil. (’10) in Cellular, Molecular and Biomedical Studies, and a Ph.D. (’14) in the area of Neuropharmacology from Columbia University. Dr. Torres’ previous research focused on understanding the molecular effects of recreational drugs in laboratory animals. She now aims to expand her knowledge by studying women who use drugs and the contextual factors (e.g., HIV and socioeconomic status, culture, and race) that mediate consequences related to drug use.





Alexandra Wimberly, Ph.D.

Dr. Wimberly’s research focuses on the development of interventions that support the health and well-being of people with substance use problems in the criminal justice system. Most recently she conducted a yoga intervention study for people with HIV who are in reentry from prison or jail and have substance use problems, funded by a NIDA F31 grant. Alexandra has her Ph.D. in social welfare from the University of Pennsylvania School of Social Policy & Practice. She received her master’s in public health from Harvard, her master’s in social work from Simmons, and her bachelor’s in art studio from UCLA.



Pre-Doctoral Fellows

Phillip Marotta

Screen Shot 2014-07-15 at 2.06.54 PMPhil Marotta holds a Master of Public Health (Population and Family Health) and a Master of Science in Social Work from Columbia University. After graduating from Columbia University, he completed a post-MSW clinical training fellowship through Yale University School of Medicine, Department of Psychiatry where he worked with persons with serious mental illness in acute psychiatric crises. He has worked on research projects for the Center for Latino and Adolescent Family Health at New York University, the Department of Population and Family Health at Mailman School of Public Health, Rutgers University School of Criminal Justice, the Urban Justice Center, the Mayors Office to Combat Domestic Violence, and the Yale University Violence and Health Group. His most recent position was interim director for two juvenile justice programs through the Center for Court Innovation on Staten Island, NY. Phil Marotta is interested in developing and evaluating programs that incorporate law enforcement officers into public health interventions for vulnerable populations. As a trained Crisis Intervention Team Clinician, this includes research into encounters between law enforcement officers and persons with severe mental illness, substance use disorders and dual diagnosis. Broadly, his research is situated at the intersection of stigma, mental illness, substance abuse and HIV-risk among incarcerated and justice-involved populations.

Karen Shiu-Yee

bioKaren is a PhD student in the Department of Sociomedical Sciences (Sociology concentration) at the Mailman School of Public Health. Karen holds a Masters of Public Health (Infectious Disease and Vaccinology, 2011) from the University of California Berkeley School of Public Health and a Bachelor of Science (Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, 2009) and a Bachelor of Arts (Economics, 2009) from the University of California Davis. Karen’s research interest focuses on the impact of patient-physician relationships on the level of engagement and retention in care among HIV-infected substance users. Specifically, Karen’s research uses a sociological frame to better understand how physicians’ dispositions influence their practices towards the clinical management of HIV-infected substance users. Karen has over 8 years of experience in HIV prevention and care research, which began with an undergraduate honors thesis on the economic impacts of HIV-related orphan-hood in sub-Saharan Africa and a Master’s thesis on the impact of HIV-related stigma on HIV prevention service utilization among Asian and Pacific Islander communities in the California Bay Area. Karen has also conducted monitoring and evaluation research for local health departments and non-profit organizations on various reproductive health, sexually transmitted disease, and HIV prevention projects.

 Kimberly Levin

kimberlyKimberly holds an MSW from the University of Pennsylvania. Her research interests include women’s health, specifically surrounding sexual assault and violence. Kimberly’s previous research includes a study on the intersections of substance abuse, intimate partner violence and the presence of children in the home, as well as a study on pressure for graduate students.




Tracy Pugh


Tracy is interested in understanding the intersections of policy, punishment, and stigma. Prior to Columbia, she worked to advance a public health approach to drug policy for New York at the Drug Policy Alliance and, before that, at the New York Academy of Medicine. She has extensive experience engaging in policy research and advocacy related to health disparities and social justice in partnership with nonprofits, government agencies, community stakeholders, advocates, and policy makers. Tracy received her MHS in Health Policy from Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and her BA from Cornell University.