IPRCE Steering Committee


The Steering Committee meets on a regular basis to plan, gives guidance to the director, and coordinates and monitors overall IPRCE functioning.  This includes all programs and activities, progress towards goals and objectives, consistency between IPRCE’s mission/aims, and integration of research, outreach, education and training, and funding stream opportunities.  The Steering Committee is comprised of IPRCE leaders and staff, and is chaired by the IPRCE Director.  The committee members are comprised of the IPRCE Director, Executive Associate Director, Associate Program Director, Administrative Assistant, Director of Education and Training, Associate Director of Research, Associate Director of Community Outreach, and the Certificate Program Director. 

Committee Members

David Wright, MD

IPRCE Co-Director

David Wright, MD is the Vice Chair for Research and an Associate Professor of Emergency Medicine and the principal investigator for several NIH funded projects, including ProTECT III, a clinical trial designed to assess progesterone as a neuroprotectant following acute traumatic brain injury (TBI). In addition, he is conducting collaborative research with the Georgia Institute of Technology to develop new technologies for detecting mild TBI. Dr. Wright has won several awards for research excellence from the Society for Academic Emergency Medicine.

Dr. Jonathan Rupp, PhD

IPRCE Co-Director

Dr. Jonathan Rupp, PhD also serves as the Associate Director of Research for Emory University’s School of Medicine, Department of Emergency Medicine. Dr. Rupp’s research focuses on reducing death and injury from physical trauma, particularly in civilian and military motor-vehicle crashes and in under body blast events to military vehicles. His research areas include collecting and using transportation and health data to characterize the factors that influence injury causation and the type of pre-hospital triage care needed by people injured in crashes; conducting laboratory testing and performing computational simulations that quantify human mechanical responses and tissue tolerances to dynamic loading; developing criteria and tools for assessing the risk of injury; and applying these tools and criteria, as well as transportation data-analysis methods, to assess the performance of injury prevention technologies such as seat belts and crash-avoidance systems.

Sharon Nieb, PhD

Associate Program Director

Sharon Nieb, PhD currently serves as the Associate Program Director.  Sharon has 20 years of experience directing teams through the full spectrum of project/program planning and leadership activities. Sharon has served as an adviser to senior executives and is a strategic problem solver on a range of program areas, including Healthcare, Academia, and Public Health with an emphasis in Program Development and Evaluation, Research, Grants Management, Training, Education, Fiscal Management, and Board Governance.

Vickie Howard

Administrative Assistant

Vickie Howard is the Administrative Assistant for IPRCE & Emory Emergency Medical Research. She has been employed with the Department of Emergency Medicine-Research since March 2004. She provides administrative support to IPRCE and other key faculty and staff personnel through activities by managing office operations. She also develops and supports the operation of office systems, administration information systems, and databases. Additionally, she manages financial/accounting records, coordinates and executes programming and meeting logistical planning, and prepares and updates reports with appropriate documentation.

Monica Swahn, PhD

Associate Director of Research

Monica Swahn, PhD is a professor in the Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics in the School of Public Health and the Partnership for Urban Health Research at Georgia State University. She was previously the Associate Vice President for Research for the University (2011-2014) and also the Associate Dean for Research for the College of Health and Human Sciences, 2008-2011. Her research interests pertain to health risk behaviors among adolescents and young adults, primarily focusing on alcohol, violence, and injuries in the United States and internationally. She is a consultant to the World Health Organization’s Africa Office on alcohol marketing in Sub-Saharan Africa and on gender-based violence to the Pan American Health Organization in Guyana. She is also the Associate Director for Research for the IPRCE, a regional consortium of researchers and practitioners in injury prevention. Prior to joining the School, Dr. Swahn worked for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) for more than 9 years. Initially, she served as a violence/injury epidemiologist in the Division of Violence Prevention and then as the Deputy Associate Director for Science in the Office on Smoking and Health. She also served as the scientific officer (consultant) for many CDC funded cooperative agreements and grants including three Academic Centers of Excellence in Youth Violence Prevention, a longitudinal study of detained youth and a longitudinal study of delinquent boys. 

Sheryl Heron, MD, MPH

Associate Director of Education and Training

Sheryl Heron, MD, MPH is a Professor and Vice Chair of Administrative Affairs in the Department of Emergency Medicine, the Assistant Dean for Medical Education and Student Affairs on the Grady Campus and Associate Director of Education and Training for IPRCE at Emory University. She is Board Certified in Emergency Medicine. She was a Board member for the Women’s Resource Center to End Domestic Violence, a member of the Domestic Violence Task Force in Dekalb County, and a member of the Public Health Committee of the American College of Emergency Physician’s (ACEP). She is a past Chair of the Emergency Medicine Section of the National Medical Association. She has received several awards including the Partnership Against Domestic Violence’s HOPE Award, the Woman in Medicine Award from the Council of Concerned Women of the National Medical Association, the Gender Justice Award from the Commission on Family Violence and in was named a hero of Emergency Medicine by ACEP. In 2012, she was named the inaugural President of the Academy for Diversity & Inclusion in Emergency Medicine (ADIEM) of the Society for Academic Emergency Medicine. Dr. Heron has lectured extensively on the medical response to Intimate Partner Violence, as well as Wellness/Work-Life Balance and Diversity/Disparate Care in Emergency Medicine.

Lisa Dawson, MPH

Associate Director of Community Outreach

Lisa Dawson, MPH is Director of the Office of Injury Prevention within the Georgia Department of Public Health, Maternal and Child Health Program. Lisa has worked in public health and the injury prevention field for more than 17 years. Her roles at the state level include active participation in the Child Fatality Review, active participation in both NHTSA sponsored activities, the Traffic Records Coordinating Committee and Georgia CODES project, she holds a gubernatorial appointment as a Commissioner to the Brain and Spinal Cord Injury Trust Fund, is an Advisory Member for Domestic Violence Prevention Project Connect Program, a former member of the Suicide Prevention Coalition of Georgia and member of SAFE KIDS Georgia. She was among the first certified child passenger safety technician instructors in Georgia.

Dorian Lamis, PhD

IPRCE Certificate Program Director

Dorian Lamis, PhD is an Assistant Professor in Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Emory University School of Medicine.  Dr. Lamis is also a licensed clinical psychologist, completing both his internship and postdoctoral training at the Emory University School of Medicine.  His research focuses on mood disorders, substance use, and suicidal behaviors in a variety of populations including adolescents, young adults (e.g., college students), and African Americans. Dr. Lamis has published over 100 peer reviewed articles and book chapters on these topics. In addition, he is the senior editor of two books on suicide titled Understanding and Preventing College Student Suicide (2011) and Advancing the Science of Suicidal Behavior: Understanding and Intervention (2015). He serves as the president of the Board of Directors of the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention Atlanta Chapter.