Board of directors
Bradley Dreifuss, MD, FACEP
Chief Executive Officer & Co-Founder
Brad is an Assistant Professor of Emergency Medicine and Public Health at the University of Arizona and has spent significant time working with the Eller College of Management’s McGuire Center for Entrepreneurship. He has spent the better part of two decades blending his medicine and public health interests with global capacity development in emergency care, and serves as the Director of Partnerships and Innovation with Global Emergency Care. He is active on multiple boards of directors and committees for state, national, and international organizations, and enjoys mobilizing collaboration across dynamic interdisciplinary teams of professionals.
He serves on the Econometrics, Messaging, and Leadership teams.
Heather Dreifuss, DrPH, MAT, MPH
Chief Experience Officer & Co-Founder
Heather is the Director of High School Outreach in the Navajo NARCH Partnership between Diné College and Northern Arizona University. She blends her background in anthropology, education, and public health through specializing in curriculum design, experiential teaching strategies, and cultivating learning communities. She is committed to integrating community voice into public health strategies through digital storytelling. Her research interests include building effective community-based public health programs and culturally relevant research capacity. When she’s not working, she loves to be surfing, kayaking, & taking in nature.
She leads the Services team and serves on the Messaging and Leadership teams.
Kate Ellingson, PhD
Epidemiologist & Co-Founder
Kate is an Assistant Professor of Epidemiology with a focus on infectious disease and antimicrobial resistance in healthcare settings. She has played an active role in the COVID-19 response by serving on university re-entry committees, studying infection and reinfection in frontline workers, and building infection prevention and outbreak response capacity through a partnership with Pima County. As an epidemiologic consultant to HCW HOSTED, Inc., she advises on occupational risk for healthcare workers, science communication, and infection prevention in congregate care settings.
She serves on the Epidemiology & Medical Anthropology and Leadership teams.
Patti Haring, MBA, PMP
Chief Operating Officer
Patti is a seasoned operations and project professional, experienced in enabling business through technology. Her strength lies in bringing disparate groups together to achieve common goals. She is a customer-oriented leader and strategist delivering successful technology solutions for a wide variety of businesses.
She leads the Funding, Operations, and Leadership teams and serves on the Messaging and Econometrics teams.
Mark Nichter, PhD, MPH
Engaged Medical Anthropologist & Co-Founder
Mark is Regents Professor Emeritus and former coordinator of the Graduate Medical Anthropology Training Program at UA. In addition to a Ph.D. in anthropology and a M.P.H. in International Health, Mark has postdoctoral training in cultural psychiatry and clinically applied anthropology. He holds joint appointments in the Departments of Family and Community Medicine and the College of Public Health. Mark has over 40 years of experience conducting a broad array of health-related research in Asia, Africa, and North America. He has served on three Institute of Medicine Panels, as a consultant for several International Health Organizations, and as a long term advisor to the International Network of Clinical Epidemiology.
On a lighter note, things that bring him joy are clear thoughts and glassy waves, coral reefs, poetry in motion, and the aesthetics of everyday life.
He leads the Epidemiology & Medical Anthropology team and serves on the Econometrics, Messaging, and Leadership teams.
Paul Barach, MD, MPH
Paul is a practicing anesthesiologist and critical care physician with more than 25 years of experience in academic medical centers and the military. Paul lends his expertise to an impressive list of academic and research organizations including the School of Medicine at Wayne State University, College of Population Health at Thomas Jefferson University, The University of Queensland in Australia, Sigmund Freud University in Austria, and National Cancer Center in Korea. He has published 5 books and more than 300 scientific papers, and his work has been cited over 10,000 times.
He serves on the Leadership and Econometrics teams.
Timothy W. Hsu, MHSA
Timothy thrives at the forefront of healthcare, helping organizations not only shape responses, but set trends and benchmarks for the rest of the industry to follow. His academic training in creative writing, neuroscience, medical didactics, health services administration and artificial intelligence accentuate his life experiences bringing an integrative perspective with wide-ranging critical and analytical thinking, creativity and innovation, problem solving, economic and strategic analysis, and future-casting. Timothy enjoys building bridges across traditionally siloed spaces where integration and translational evolution is necessary. A collaborative worker, Timothy is at his best helping people coalesce around a common goal
by taking intangible skills and quantifying them in a manner that helps build strong teams.
He serves on the Leadership team.
In addition to being a seasoned Real Estate Agent, Liane is heavily involved with the Tucson LGBT Chamber of Commerce; she served as the President for 3 years and is currently the President of the Foundation, providing scholarships for LGBT students at the University of Arizona, and diversity education opportunities to companies and corporations. Liane also serves with the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary and has over 24 years of experience teaching SCUBA all over the world.
She serves on the Operations and Leadership teams.
Tyson Swetnam, PhD
Tyson’s first career was as a wildland firefighter and fire management specialist for the US DOI National Park Service and USDA Forest Service.
His education in natural resource management and dendrochronology came with a strong emphasis on Geographic Information Systems and remote sensing which became the focus of his current work.
Today, he works mostly on spatial data infrastructures as a data scientist for CyVerse. Areas of Interest include Image Analysis, Large Scale Visualization, Data Science Literacy.
He serves on the Leadership team.
Michael is the Vice-President of the Tucson Metro Chamber of Commerce. He has previously served as a Vice President for Sun Corridor Inc.; Executive Director, Metropolitan Pima Alliance; Political Consultant to Retail West/Eastbourne Investments and Garfield Traub; Chief-of-Staff, Tucson City Council Member Fred Ronstadt; Assistant Vice President, Tucson Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce.
He serves on the Leadership team.
Operations & Services
Karin Blasko, MSN RN
Peer Support Team Lead
Jennifer Bunger, BA
Epidemiology & Medical Anthropology
Collin Catalfamo, MPH
Collin Catalfamo, MPH, is a Tucson native doctoral student in Epidemiology at the Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health. Having completed his Master of Public Health in Epidemiology in 2019, he currently maintains roles as a member of The Arizona CoVHORT research team, a Teaching Associate for the College of Public Health, and is a member of the HCW HOSTED Epidemiology Team. As a part of the Epidemiology team, he produces and updates educational materials about COVID-19 to provide the community, healthcare workers, and their families up-to-date information to keep themselves and their communities safe and informed about the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
Joseph Fong, MPH
Joseph recently completed his MPH at the University of Arizona in 2020. In addition to his involvement with HCW HOSTED, he conducts research in dementia and aging at the University of California, Los Angeles. In his free time, Joseph enjoys baking sourdough bread and film photography.
Amy is an MPH in One-Health student at the University of Arizona. In addition to her studies and her work with HCW HOSTED, she assists the University of Arizona Student Aid for Field Epidemiology Response (SAFER) team as a contact tracer. She enjoys knitting, reading, and video games in her spare time.
Kacey Ernst, PhD, MPH
Kacey is an infectious disease epidemiologist. Her primary projects examine the environmental determinants of vector-borne disease transmission and control; primarily dengue and malaria.
She takes an active role in working with the local health departments to examine questions related to vaccine preventable diseases. Her work seeks to understand the reasons behind increasing vaccination exemption rates in Arizona and the development of programs to increase vaccination uptake. She is a core member of AZ COVID TXT.
Mark Willcoxon, MBA, HCM, ACHE, ACHT
Mark has a longstanding passion and vision to return physician autonomy to the way it was when doctors made house calls. In 1984, Mark completed a 650 mile bicycle journey through the canyon lands of Arizona and Utah.
Messaging & Advocacy
Mimi Nichter, PhD
Mimi is Professor Emerita of Anthropology at the University of Arizona, where she holds appointments in the College of Public Health and the Norton School of Consumer Sciences. With a background in health communications, public health, and
education, Mimi has worked in the US and South and Southeast Asia to develop community-based health programs. Mimi is the author of 4 books and numerous articles on health-related topics. She is currently writing a memoir.
When not working, Mimi is a devoted yogi who enjoys long walks in the desert and on the beach.
She serves on the Messaging and Leadership Teams.
Melanie Cooley, MFA
Media & Communications Manager
Melanie has worked in communications, teaching, advocacy, and information technology for over 25 years. She draws on skills from her experience in poetry, technology, dance, community organizing, activism, leadership, and entrepreneurship to engage the public in supporting HCW HOSTED’s mission.
She works also at the Tucson LGBT Chamber of Commerce & Foundation and runs her own business, Fluency Motion 5Rhythms, teaching movement meditation. Her husband is an Emergency Department Registered Nurse.
Robert Garcia, JD
Robert’s legal practice is focused on employment matters with an emphasis on planning and prevention.
Robert regularly practices before the various courts and state and federal administrative agencies whose jurisdiction covers employment matters. He is an accomplished litigator who represents clients not only in employment-related lawsuits, but also in litigation relating to business and commercial matters, partnership disputes, shareholder derivative disputes, personal injury (direct and retained defense) disputes, and probate matters.
Robert is a native of Southern Arizona who enjoys sci-fi (stars, both wars and trek), University of Arizona athletics, and being, working with, and protecting animals/wildlife.
Terri Waldman, MSW
Terri is the Director of Harmony House Tucson, a specialized assisted living home for adults who are 65 and older and are COVID positive in Tucson, AZ. Their mission is to provide a safe, home-like environment for residents to recover and go home healthy. In partnership with the Pima County Health Department, this is a free program for those who qualify. They want to reduce the stigma and isolation felt by this terrible virus.