NIH Program Officers

Wen-Ying Sylvia Chou

Program Director
Health Communication and Informatics Research Branch (HCIRB)Behavioral Research Program (BRP)
National Cancer Institute

Wen-Ying Sylvia Chou, Ph.D., M.P.H., is a Program Director in the Health Communication and Informatics Research Branch (HCIRB) of the Behavioral Research Program (BRP) at NCI. Her research interests include social media and health, health literacy, patient-provider communication for patients diagnosed with advanced cancer, and mixed methods research. Trained as a sociolinguist, she has expertise in qualitative analyses of health care interactions. She has led a number of NIH initiatives on the role of technology and social media in various areas of health, including funding initiatives on the impact of the changing communication landscape on substance use and addiction as well as cancer prevention and control. Dr. Chou has more than 50 scientific publications, many of which have documented health-related internet use, the impact of social media use, and the utility of qualitative and mixed methods approaches to clinical communication about cancer prognosis and goals of care.

Dr. Chou came to the HCIRB from the NCI Cancer Prevention Fellowship Program. Prior to joining NCI, she obtained her M.S. and Ph.D. in Linguistics from Georgetown University. Her doctoral dissertation examined end-of-life discourse through an ethnographic and linguistic analysis of interactions between seriously-ill cancer patients and caregivers. She holds a bachelor’s degree in Music (piano performance) from Santa Clara University in California and a master’s degree in Public Health from the Interdisciplinary M.P.H. program at University of California, Berkeley.

Aria Crump

Health Scientist Administrator
National Institute on Drug Abuse

Dr. Crump joined the Prevention Research Branch in September of 2001. She received a Doctor of Science in Behavioral Sciences from the Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health. She completed a postdoctoral fellowship at the National Institute for Child Health and Human Development where she participated in community- and school-based prevention research. Dr. Crump worked as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Public and Community Health, University of Maryland at College Park, where she instructed students in health communications and minority health and conducted research as a part of a community-university health partnership. Her research interests include family-focused preventive interventions and prevention in racial/ethnic minority populations.  Her current program areas at NIDA focus on the prevention of drug abuse and HIV infection during late adolescence and the transition to adulthood, the prevention of prescription drug misuse, and on community-centered approaches to drug abuse risk-reduction in American Indian and Alaska Native populations.

Elizabeth M. Ginexi, Ph.D.

Health Scientist Administrator
Office of Behavioral and Social Sciences Research
National Institutes of Health

Dr. Elizabeth Ginexi joined the Office of Behavioral and Social Sciences Research (OBSSR) at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in November 2016 to focus on the application of innovative research methodologies, measurement, and analytic approaches to advance behavioral and social sciences research. Dr. Ginexi is an Applied Social Psychologist with expertise in family- and community-based etiology, prevention, and treatment research; policy interventions to target population-level health behavior; and quantitative analysis methods including: statistical methods for analyzing longitudinal, multi-level, and randomized intervention trial data, and computational modeling. Prior to joining OBSSR she served as a Program Director in the Tobacco Control Research Branch (TCRB) at the National Cancer Institute (NCI) from 2010-2016 and as a Health Scientist Administrator in the Prevention Research Branch (PRB) at the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) from 2003-2010. At NCI Dr. Ginexi was the Project Coordinator for the State and Community Tobacco Control (SCTC) Research initiative which was designed to address understudied aspects of tobacco control policy and media interventions. At NIDA, she directed the Transdisciplinary Prevention Research program portfolio along with prevention grant portfolios involving health communications research and methodology and measurement innovations. Prior to NIH Dr. Ginexi was a Senior Study Director at Westat, where she participated in the development and implementation of community-based drug abuse treatment and prevention evaluations funded by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) and the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). She began her career as a Research Scientist and Lecturer at the George Washington University, where she played a key role in data collection, data management, and analysis for longitudinal field studies involving family based mental health etiology studies and preventive interventions. She received her masters and doctoral degrees in Applied Social Psychology from the George Washington University and she completed postdoctoral training under two Public Health Service Grant National Research Service Awards, one through Children’s National Medical Center, and the other at the Center for Mental Health Policy at Vanderbilt University.

Liam O’Fallon, M.A. 

Health Specialist
National Institute on Environmental Health Sciences

Since O’Fallon joined the Division of Extramural Research and Training in 1999, he has been actively involved in research programs at NIEHS that involve community participation. O’Fallon is the coordinator for the Partnerships for Environmental Public Health program at NIEHS, which integrates new and existing initiatives that involve communities and scientists working together on contemporary issues in environmental public health research. He administers the ARRA programs focused on capacity building, science education, and community-linked infrastructure. He coordinates the Community Outreach and Engagement Program (COEP), comprised of 20 Community Outreach and Engagement Cores across the country. He also is a member of the HHS Environmental Justice working group. Before coming to NIEHS in 1999, O’Fallon worked at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, in the Office of International and Refugee Health, where he coordinated an interagency, binational working group addressing environmental health issues along the U.S.-Mexico border.

O’Fallon received his master’s degree in Latin American studies, specializing in medical anthropology and international health, from Tulane University in 1997.

Areas of Specialty:

Dr. Karen Sirocco joined the Behavioral and Brain Development Branch at the National Institute on Drug Abuse in October 2005.  Her research program interests include typical and atypical development, the consequences of drugs on brain and behavioral development and co-occurring drug abuse and mental health. Dr. Sirocco completed her doctoral studies in applied developmental psychology, including a master’s degree in school psychology, at George Mason University.  Dr. Sirocco came to NIDA from the National Institute of Health (NIH), Center for Scientific Review (CSR) where she was chief of the Biobehavioral and Behavioral Processes (BBBP) integrated review group and Scientific Review Administrator for the Child Psychopathologies and Developmental Disabilities (CPDD) study section which assesses applications related to developmental, psychopathological and substance-use disorders in children and the effects of developmental disorders in adults.  Prior to joining CSR, Dr. Sirocco spent 10 years in the Laboratory of Clinical Studies, National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA), where she was involved in basic and clinical biobehavioral research into the causes, prevention, and treatment of alcoholism. She has spent the last 25 years working at various Institutes and Centers that comprise the National Institutes of Health.

Derrick C. Tabor, Ph.D.

Division of Scientific Programs
Integrative Biological and Behavioral Sciences

Derrick C. TaborDr. Derrick C. Tabor manages a diverse portfolio of research, capacity building, and training grants. He is the scientific contact for funding opportunity announcements related to racism, discrimination, minority men, medical adherence, nutrition, and food insecurity. Dr. Tabor is also the division point-of-contact for NIMHD Small Business Programs. He is the program director for the Research Centers at Minority Institutions (RCMI) and is a project scientist on several NIMHD cooperative agreement awards. He also represents NIMHD on NIH-wide working groups.

Prior to joining NIMHD, Dr. Tabor was a program director in the Minority Opportunity Research Division at the National Institute of General Medical Sciences (NIGMS). Before joining NIH, he conducted independent research on the synthesis and characterization of novel cationic cyanine dyes as a faculty member and department chair at Johnson C. Smith University in Charlotte, North Carolina. He has also served as a research chemist at Eastman Kodak Research Laboratories, Eastman Kodak Company, Rochester, New York, and co-authored two U.S. patents.

Dr. Tabor earned his B.S. in chemistry from Saginaw Valley College (now Saginaw Valley State University) in Saginaw, Michigan, in 1974 and a Ph.D. in organic chemistry from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (UNC-CH), Chapel Hill, North Carolina, in 1979. While obtaining his Ph.D. degree, he studied novel synthetic methods under Dr. Slayton A. Evans, Jr., UNC-CH Department of Chemistry. Dr. Tabor completed his postdoctoral training at UNC-CH, studying the synthesis and characterization of novel cationic organometallic complexes, and at the Loker Hydrocarbon Institute, University of Southern California, researching the conversion of methane and its derivatives to gasoline hydrocarbons. At the Loker Hydrocarbon Institute, he studied under Dr. George Olah, 1994 Chemistry Nobel Laureate.