Internal Advisory

The Internal Advisory Board (IAB) assists the Director in leading SWEHSC activities and functions in oversight, evaluation, management, and direction roles. The constitution of the IAB includes Directors of the various Facility Cores, the Research Focus Group Directors, the Director and Co-Director of the Community Engagement Core, and the Pilot Project Coordinator. The IAB assists the Center Director in making scientific and administrative decisions and in the allocation of resources. The IAB is responsible for funding decisions following the peer review of Pilot Project applications. The IAB reviews activities, discusses strengths and weaknesses, and sets the direction for future activities. Key changes that have resulted from such oversight include the reorganization of the RFGs and FCs, the appointment and retention of SWEHSC investigators, small-scale flexible funding levels for Pilot Projects, and ultimately a redefinition of the role of the IAB. Additionally, the IAB evaluates SWEHSC investigators on an annual basis for continued appointment.

Paloma Beamer (RFG1 Co-Director, HPER Resource Director, CEC Director). Paloma Beamer, Ph.D., has benefited directly from the SWEHSC Career Development and serves in the IHSFC, RFGs, and CEC. She also serves as a co-I for the UA component of the NIH Environmental influences on Child Health Outcomes (ECHO) and is a lifetime member of the Society for Hispanic Professional Engineers (SHPE) and the Society for the Advancement of Chicanos and Native Americans in Science (SACNAS). Dr. Beamer participates in the bi-monthly Administrative meetings to ensure a direct line of communication with the CEC.

Dean Billheimer (Deputy Director, Data Science FC Director, Pilot Project Coordinator). Dean Billheimer, PhD, is Director of the UA Statistics Consulting Laboratory and has over 20 years of experience in statistical consulting and scientific collaboration spanning laboratory, translational, clinical, and public health studies. In addition to collaborative research, he has been a key investigator in NIH funded projects aimed at developing new statistical methods in proteomics measurement, the analysis of high-dimensional ‘omics’ data, and evaluating the predictive properties of novel biomarkers.

Jefferey Burgess (RFG1 Director, IHSFC Human Resources Director). Dr. Burgess is the Associate Dean for Research at MEZCOPH. Dr. Burgess has worked effectively to bring more public health researchers into SWEHSC and has extended the work of SWEHSC to address the health effects of environmental exposures in American Indian and Alaska Native populations in the Center for Indigenous Environmental Health Research (CIEHR), funded by the NIEHS and EPA.

Zelieann Craig (RFG3 Director). Dr. Craig has also benefited directly from the SWEHSC Career Development Core. Dr. Craig joined the faculty at the University of Arizona in 2013.  During her postdoctoral work at the University of Illinois, Dr. Craig was awarded a National Institute for Environmental Health Sciences Career Development Award (K99) which was organized in two phases: a postdoctoral phase that was completed at the University of Illinois, and an independent phase which began at the University of Arizona in 2013.

Xinxin Ding (RFG2 Director, IHSFC Research Intensive Resources Director). Dr. Ding is Department Head of Pharmacology and Toxicology. He is the author of nearly 200 peer-reviewed papers, book chapters, and articles. He holds grants from NCI and NIEHS.

Julie Ledford (RFG2 Director). Dr. Ledford is an associate professor in Cellular and Molecular Medicine, and a subject expert in immunobiology and respiratory diseases. Dr. Ledford is also a SWEHSC career development success after being supported to study genetic and molecular mechanisms of allergic airway diseases in children.

Ben Richmond, MPH (CEC Associate Director, TPR Resource Director). Mr. Richmond collaborates with SWEHSC members to integrate environmental public health outreach, translational opportunities, and environmental health literacy for youth, educators, and tribal audiences and builds bridges between groups and cultures. Mr. Richmond participates in the weekly administrative staff meetings with Dr. Cherrington to ensure a direct line of communication between the AC and CEC.

Georg Wondrak (RFG3 Co-Director). Georg Wondrak, Ph.D. is a SWEHSC career development success and is now a tenured Associate Professor and the elected president of the American Society for Photobiology, the world's leading scientific organization representing the photochemical, photobiological, and photomedical sciences.