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Staff Profiles

PCH has three core staff and a faithful dog in New York. Staff in New York includes Dr. Mitchell Cohen, Ms. Lucia Orellana, Mr. Bacilio Reyes Jr. (Basil), and Macy. PCH has part-time staff in Houston, Texas and Portland, Oregon. In addition, PCH regularly uses consultants and has an active internship program. PCH has a technology partner, Dataccount, that installs and support systems. PCH has a multi-cultural staff and many of our projects involve working with the gay and lesbian, Latino, and African American communities.

Mitchell Cohen, Ph.D., Executive Director Top of Page

Dr. Cohen brings a wide range of managerial and technical skills to PCH. He received his Ph.D. in Mass Communication Research from the University of Michigan and has utilized his research and managerial skills in both the corporate and non-profit sectors. His work within the non-profit sector focusing on underserved communities started with his involvement in the worldwide struggle against AIDS. Initially most of his work was with the World Health Organization, UNICEF and the International HIV/AIDS Alliance. From 1987 to1994, Dr. Cohen worked extensively in Africa, Asia and Eastern Europe designing, managing, and evaluating prevention and health care programs.

He developed several widely published strategies for risk behavior change during a fellowship at the National Institute of Health and Medicine in Paris. During a fellowship sponsored by the European Commission in Brussels, he edited the book Social Interactions and HIV Risk that describes some of the latest thinking on prevention of HIV infection and the importance of strategies targeting the interaction between partners and among community members (in contrast to strategies targeted to increasing individual knowledge and making individual decisions).

Currently, Dr. Cohen is the team leader in developing a demonstration project to measure unmet needs for HIV/AIDS services for HRSA. In the past year, he was the team leader in the Epidemiological Review, Needs Assessment and Comprehensive Plan for the Dallas, Austin, Houston and Portland EMAs, and for the Dallas and Houston HIV Care Consortium and State of Oregon.

Recently he was involved in developing the Interim HIV/AIDS Strategic Plan for New York, and he designed and led the project "Assessing Outcomes of Technical Assistance Received by Ryan White Title I Recipients" in New York. He also designed and led a project that measured quality of life for people living with HIV/AIDS that was subsequently presented at the International AIDS Conference. He was a crucial member of the team that completed the Statewide Coordinated Statement of Needs (SCSN) - a comprehensive review of Ryan White Care services, needs, gaps and barriers in New York State.

Dr. Cohen has worked with several non-profit organizations to implement automated client tracking and assessment systems. He is currently involved in working with PCH's technology partners in implementing systems to collect data and evaluate performance.

Prior to his work in AIDS and the nonprofit sector, Dr. Cohen was Director of the Corporate Marketing Research and Development Department at a leading Wall Street financial services corporation and past president of a microcomputer consulting Company.

Lucia Orellana, Director of Research and Assessment Top of Page

Ms. Lucia Orellana, PCH's Director of Research and Assessment, has worked in community-focused research for over ten years. Ms. Orellana obtained her undergraduate degree in Sociology at the University of Pennsylvania. Throughout her undergraduate years, Ms. Orellana worked as a research assistant on a variety of patient-focused studies such as training young doctors to consider the patient as a whole, and breast and uterine cancer studies. In 1987, Ms. Orellana returned to New York to continue her studies at Columbia University, School of Public Health. While directing the data collection activities of an Asthma self-management project, Ms. Orellana pursued higher studies in Epidemiology and Biostatistics.

In 1992, Ms. Orellana joined the Center for AIDS Drugs and Community Health at Hunter College. She worked with numerous community-based agencies and developed excellent field research, analytic, communication, and presentation skills. She joined PCH in 1997 where she contributes her awareness of community-based health and analytic skills to the development and implementation of program assessments and client intake systems for a number of NYC, Texas, and Oregon community-based and AIDS service organizations. She is a gifted focus group moderator and field supervisor and is an expert in qualitative and quantitative analysis.

Since 1988, Ms Orellana has also directed and facilitated groups for battered women and their children. Ms. Orellana's community involvement has been both as a researcher and a hands-on program person. She is interested in assisting organizations to assess their performance and assuring clients have a voice in addressing their service needs and barriers. Her objectives are to make research and assessment of programs accessible and comprehensible to the communities and to use them to develop and implement programs with a positive impact on communities.

Ms. Orellana is a native Honduran raised in Bronx, NY. She is bi-cultural and bilingual with strong ties to her community. Her commitment remains to make information and technology practical and appropriate for underserved communities.


Basil Reyes, Junior Analyst and Office Manager Top of Page

Mr. Reyes brings considerable organizational and financial management experience to PCH. He graduated the University of Texas at Austin with a BA in English and moved to New York in 1997 to pursue a master degree in Public Health. His career goal is to work in preventative healthcare for underserved communities.

Mr. Reyes has supplemented his BA education with intensive field experience while working at PCH. Mr. Reyes has successfully coordinated the fieldwork in Indiana, Dallas, Nevada, and San Francisco for their needs assessments. Through extensive

experience in administering face to face or phone surveys/interviews, Mr. Reyes is able to assure client confidentiality and develop the trust of the participant. Through his fieldwork, he has comfortably worked closely with PLWH/A of diverse backgrounds including the current and recently incarcerated, homeless, and substance users. He has shown considerable skill in working with providers to help draw representative samples while maintaining client confidentiality. Mr. Reyes has demonstrated his ability to train, supervise, and galvanize teams of interviewers to efficiently and successfully complete the fieldwork.

During his tenure at PCH, Mr. Reyes has become a skilled focus group moderator, and he will be trained to conduct some of the in-depth interviews. His commitment to assuring PLWH/A receive care and his research skills makes him a valued member of the team.

Basil currently volunteers 100 hours of his time to various health and educational organizations including East Harlem Tutorial Program and Gay Men's Health Crisis.

Macy Top of Page

At 13 years old, Macy is semi-retired. Still, she comes to work daily and continues to protect the office against intruding delivery men. Over the years she and the mailman, Saul, have become friends, and his daily treat to Macy assures their continued relationship.

Macy has reached all her goals in life and provides mature guidance, persistent reminders for reinforcing treats, and daily walks for the staff.

1999 Partnership for Community Health, Inc. All rights reserved.