Meet the HEART Team

Darrell Coleman headshot

Darrell Coleman (Coleman), a veteran, earned his Master of Arts in English from Cleveland State University and a Master of Science in Social Administration from Case Western Reserve University. Coleman works for Ohioguidestone as an outpatient community-based services licensed social worker in the Cleveland urban school district. Based on this work, Coleman became more curious about a trauma-informed approach. Coleman’s research interest includes understanding the impact of the connection between intergenerational trauma, stress regulation, and forms of resiliency in underserved minority communities.

Hyunjune Lee headshot

Hyunjune Lee is a PhD candidate in social work at the Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel School of Applied Social Sciences. As a student intern throughout his MSW program, he contributed to managing educational services for children from low-income families, developing countywide suicide prevention strategies for middle and high school students, research on anti-bullying strategies, education advocacy, and program evaluation. As a PhD student, his primary academic interests cover understanding the impact of childhood violence exposure on the youth's violent and aggressive behaviors such as bullying. Taking an intersectional perspective, he is also interested in examining the roles that race, socioeconomic status and stereotypical gender ideologies such as hegemonic masculinity have in the relationship between childhood violence exposure and youth violence perpetration.

Sherise McKinney headshot

Sherise McKinney, MSSA, is a Joint PhD student in Social Work and Sociology at the University of Michigan. She is broadly interested in exploring how trauma may impact long term social mobility, particularly within historically marginalized communities. She also aims to further understanding of how community, neighborhood, and systemic factors may promote resilience or conversely exacerbate the impact of trauma.

Previously, Sherise worked as a Research Associate at the National Initiative on Mixed-Income Communities at Case Western Reserve University where she contributed to research on social dynamics within racially and economically diverse urban communities. 

Katie Russell headshot

Katie Russell is a PhD candidate at the Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel School of Applied Social Sciences. She earned her BA in Psychology at Wayne State University and her MSSA from Case Western Reserve University. As an intern in her master’s program, Katie worked with child and adolescent victims of trauma and maltreatment, as well as military service members who suffered a traumatic brain injury in combat. As a PhD student, Katie’s primary research and academic interests focus on the impact of childhood trauma, as well as prevention and intervention programming focused on those potential outcomes. Katie is also a licensed social worker and applies trauma-informed practices to her work with foster youth and families.

Ashley Withrow headshot

Ashley Withrow earned her Bachelor in Psychology from Miami University and a Master of Science in Social Administration from Case Western Reserve University. Ashley has been practicing in social work for over a decade with a focus in trauma-informed victim advocacy for survivors of sexual and domestic violence. She is an independently licensed social worker and a registered advocate with senior standing. Ashley's research interests include effectiveness of victim advocacy in minimizing secondary victimization, exploring the role of healthcare in responding to domestic violence as a social determinant of health and workplace violence.

Tian Xia headshot

Tian Xia obtained her BA in Communication and Master of Management Sciences in Social Security from Beijing Normal University in China. Before beginning her Ph.D. program, Tian was a co-facilitator of a 24- hour helpline for battered women and worked for a nonprofit legal aid agency in China, with over seven years of policy advocacy, practitioners training, and research experience in the field of gender-based violence prevention and intervention. She has spent most of her career researching how judicial practice responds to violence in intimate relationships, the development of anti-domestic violence social organizations in China, and the help-seeking behaviors of battered women in different generations. With her partners, she has completed a series of monitoring reports on implementing the Chinese Anti-Domestic Violence Law. In the future, she hopes to grasp quantitative research methods better, learn more about the causes of abusive behavior in intimate relationships,and develop more effective batterer intervention programs.

Past Members

Jasine King headshot

Jasmine King completed her BA in Chemistry and a MA in Bioethics and Medical Humanities with concentrations in research ethics and medicine, society, and culture at Case Western Reserve University. During that time, Jasmine served as a research assistant on the HEART, and participated in several research projects in the Liang Lab of the Department of Chemistry and under Dr. Insoo Hyun in the Department of Bioethics. Currently, Jasmine is a medical student at The Ohio State University College of Medicine. Her future plans entail pursuing a fulfilling career in medicine (specialty pending) that centers around elevating the interests of underserved populations. She continues to support the research activities of the HEART when possible. 

Carmen Vernon headshot

Carmen Vernon graduated from the Mandel School of Applied Social Sciences in 2022 with a Masters of Social Work. As a student, Carmen was selected to become a Mandel Leadership Fellow. She also participated in the HRSA Opioid Workforce Expansion Training Program. She served as a Graduate Assistant on the Healing, Empowerment, & Antiviolence Research Team as well as a Student Ambassador for the admissions department.

Prior to Carmen's introduction to social work, she graduated from Indiana University in 2017 with a Bachelor of Arts in English and Gender Studies as well as a Certificate in Political and Civic Engagement (PACE). On campus, she trained students in democratic deliberation and organized rallies against gender-based violence. Carmen started her career at Global Impact, a nonprofit philanthropic consulting firm in Washington, DC, where she worked with over 20 nonprofit organizations. Concurrently, she became the Chief Editor of The Niche Movement.

Now, Carmen is a clinical social worker at the Nord Center in Lorain, Ohio. With a background in nonprofit work, Carmen prefers to spend her time in community mental health spaces. Carmen's role at the Nord Center includes providing outpatient therapy services as well as home-based hoarding disorder treatment.