Our Team

Sophia Hussen, MD, MPH

Principal Investigator

Sophia is a public health researcher and infectious diseases physician focused on HIV among adolescents and young adults, with a focus on young Black gay and bisexual men. In her work, she aims to always incorporate community and youth perspectives at every stage, in order to develop research that is strengths-focused and relevant. Her favorite part of her job is working with the EmPOWER team and watching everybody grow in their lives and careers.

Marxavian Jones, MPA

Manager of Research Projects

Growing up in MS presented Jones with a clear illustration of the impact of institutionalized racism and poor healthcare accessibility on the health outcomes of black people. He noticed that his community was being negatively impacted by health disparities and inequalities. As a response, he has been an advocate for social justice and the end of discrimination against marginalized populations, such as people of color and the LGBT community, for numerous years. He collaborates with local Community-Based & AIDS Service Organizations to raise community consciousness as it pertains to the impact of the HIV epidemic in the Deep South. Jones aspires to continue aiding the fight against epidemic and poverty, improve capacity-building among key populations, and build young black leaders across the globe.

Kamini Doraivelu, MPH

Public Health Program Associate

Kamini has been a member of the EmPOWER team since she was an MPH student at Rollins. After graduation, she stayed on with the team and now coordinates the CHIMES, VOT+, and iTransition studies. Her favorite thing about the EmPOWER team is that we’re like a family and support each other. When Kamini is not working, you can probably find her snuggling Sconnie (her dog). She’s a proud Wisconsin alumna and never misses a Badger/Packer game day. Kamini plans to attend medical school in the future.

Antonio Newman Jr., MBA

Research Administrative Coordinator

Tony coordinates several studies including VOT+, OpenMind, and MobiliTy. His favorite thing about being a part of our the team is the balance between work and fun. We laugh and uplift one another, but we know how to get the job done. We take ‘work hard, play hard’ to the next level. Even when it is done virtually. Prior to COVID, you could catch Tony bowling or at the movies…he’s a sucker for a good Marvel movie. Now, he plays it safe and binge watches everything on Netflix and HBO Max. Tony plans to further his education and receive a PhD in Clinical Social Work.

Ariana Pather, MPH

Public Health Program Associate

Ariana grew up in South Africa, which has driven her interest in HIV research and health advocacy. After graduating with her MPH from Brown University, she worked at the HIV Center for Clinical and Behavioral Studies in New York. Her research has focused on adolescents and young adults living with HIV in both South Africa and the United States; including their experiences with mental health, adherence to HIV medication and family dynamics. As a new member of the EmPOWER team, Ariana is joining the iTransition, Open Mind, Mobility and CHIMES studies. She loves the team’s collaborative energy and is excited to be joining the EmPOWER family! 

Darian R. West

Research Administrative Coordinator

Darian is a native of Atlanta and has been involved with public health policy most of his life. Darian has been with Emory University for over 10 years; he has worked on several research projects, including groundbreaking HIV vaccine studies as well as new treatments for PLWH. He has previously worked with the Emory-CDC HIV/AIDS Clinical Trials Unit where he conducted research studies under the Aids Clinical Trials Group, HIV Vaccine Trials Network, and HIV Prevention Trials Network. When not working Darian never misses an opportunity for karaoke! 

Madeline Goldstein, DO, MPH

Pediatric Infectious Disease Fellow, PGY-5

Madeline (Maddie) is currently pursuing a pediatric infectious diseases fellowship at Emory and conducts research under the mentorship of Dr. Hussen. Her research aims to improve HIV-related outcomes associated with stigma through innovative intervention design and implementation among children and adolescents, particularly during transition from pediatric to adult care. Atlanta has quickly become a second home and when she is not working, you can find her in the pool, cooking a new recipe, exploring a botanical garden, or traveling somewhere new!

Rosalind Byrd

MD Candidate

Growing up with family on the Southside of Chicago and rural Mississippi, Rosalind became acutely aware of the disparities in quality and access to care.  Her interest in public health was incited by an internship in college during which she worked with a community based organization working to reduce incidence of HIV within the Black community. Working with the EmPOWER team has broadened her understanding of how academic research can help community members build capacity and self-efficacy. In her free time, Rosalind enjoys gathering with friends, listening to podcasts, and challenging herself physically on aerial hoop and aerial sling.

Eniola Lawal, MPH

Graduate Research Assistant

Eniola Lawal is a recent graduate of the Rollins School fo Public Health at Emory University. Eniola’s interests include improving HIV-related outcomes in marginalized communities, mental health promotion, and preventive care interventions through policy. His favorite part of being a member of EmPOWER is the collaborative spirit, and how we support and educate each other to constantly improve. He plans to pursue a career in medicine with the use of his public health background.

Munira Mohamed

Undergraduate Research Assistant

Munira is currently a fourth-year student at the Emory College of Arts and Sciences studying Anthropology and Human Biology.  She hopes to one day work in the public health sphere, specifically in epidemiological research and community advocacy work. Her research interests include the promotion of mental health, HIV/AIDS awareness, as well as improving maternal and child health. When she isn’t studying, Munira enjoys strumming her ukelele and scrolling through Tik-Tok for a lengthy amount of time.

Kiran Lalani

Graduate Research Assistant

Kiran is currently a second-year student at the Rollins School for Public Health at Emory University in the Global Epidemiology concentration. Her interests lie in improving HIV-related outcomes associated with stigma in the global community, mental health awareness, and preventive care through a mixed method approach. In her spare time, Kiran loves to go hiking, try a new recipe, and go on food adventures with family and friends. 

Chloe Chaudhury

Graduate Research Assistant

Chloe is currently a fourth year medical student at NYU School of Medicine taking a year to do an Masters of Public Health at Emory University.  She worked on a community based study in Northeast D.C. where she sparked interests in the social, emotional, and systemic injustices that intersect with infectious diseases, substance use, and unique needs of LGBTQ+ populations. Chloe hopes to pursue a career in adolescent medicine, as she is passionate about health education, serving her community of LGBTQ+ and Southern folks, and conducting research to improve the lives of historically oppressed populations. She loves to choreograph, practice, and perform all forms of dance, enjoy nature, engage in community activism, and travel. 

Quasheba Allen

Graduate Research Assistant

Quasheba is a first-year student in the Department of Behavioral, Social, and Health Education Sciences. Quasheba’s interests include Black immigrant health, LGBTQ+ health, and sexual and reproductive health. They also have interest in the use of storytelling as a public health intervention and for developing trauma-informed care for Black Queer communities and violence survivors. Outside of their studies, they love to travel and dance; Quasheba is an artist and currently engages in digital painting.