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John Hoornbeek Ph.D., Director

Dr. Hoornbeek has served as a policy practitioner at the federal, state, and local levels of government in the United States. His public service work has included appointments with the Milwaukee County Department of Health and Human Services, the Wisconsin State Legislature, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the U.S. Congress, and the National Environmental Services Center at West Virginia University. His work focuses on environmental and public health policy, and it spans issues of local and state concern to issues with international implications. A central theoretical question underlying his research and analytical work is the relationship between institutions of governance and policy outputs, impacts, and outcome.  Curriculum Vitae

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Deric R. Kenne, PhD, MS, BA

PhD, Public Administration, The University of Akron, 2010; MS, Psychology, Mississippi State University, 1998

Dr. Kenne joined Kent State University in 2011 after conducting drug abuse research at Wright State University's School of Medicine for 8 years. He has over 10 years of experience as a researcher and practitioner in the field of substance abuse, and has experience in both academic and nonprofit settings. He has helped secure over $7.6 million in state and federally-funded research and service grants and has authored or co-authored articles on the topic of substance abuse and behavior change. His teaching experience includes courses in general psychology, behavioral statistics, public health policy, grant-writing, program evaluation, and mechanisms of drug abuse. He has interests in substance abuse treatment, community corrections, trans-theoretical model of change, cognitive-behavioral interventions, social-information processing, policy and evaluation. Curriculum Vitae

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Jonathan VanGeest, PhD

PhD, Medical Sociology, University of Illinois at Chicago, 1998; MA, Sociology-Urban Studies (Dual Degrees), Michigan State University, 1991; BS, Sociology, Michigan State University, 1988

Dr. Jonathan VanGeest is Associate Professor and Chair of the Department of Health Policy and Management in the College of Public Health at Kent State University. Prior to his arrival at Kent State, Dr. VanGeest served as a Department Chair in the School of Community Health and Policy at Morgan State University, where he also directed the university’s Center for Health Informatics, Planning and Policy. He also has previous experience working as a Senior Scientist and Program Director in Science, Quality and Public Health at the American Medical Association (AMA) and as a Scientist in the AMA’s Institute for Ethics, an academic research and training center uniquely situated within the nation’s largest medical professional association. Dr. VanGeest's research focuses on racial and ethnic disparities in health care, limited health literacy, and care outcomes associated with structural changes in medicine. Dr. VanGeest has published in leading health and policy journals and co-edited one of the first textbooks on limited health literacy.  He is an Associate Editor for BMC Medical Research Methodology and he is on the Editorial Boards for Evaluation and the Health Professions (EHP), a quarterly journal providing a forum for health professionals interested in health evaluation research and practices, and the Journal of Substance Abuse and Alcoholism. Dr. VanGeest has served on numerous state and national committees, including the Institute of Medicine’s Liaison Panel on Assuring the Health of the Public in the 21st Century and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Panel to Evaluate U.S. Standard Certificates and Reports.  He currently serves as a Section Councilor for the Medical Care Section of the American Public Health Association.  Curriculum Vitae

IMAGE: John Staley

John Staley

PhD, Health Policy and Administration, University of North Carolina at Chapel   Hill, Gillings School of Global Public Health, Minor: Political Science 2008; MS, Environmental Health, East Carolina University, 1997.

Josh Filla, MPA, Outreach Coordinator  -  Mr. Filla received his Master’s of Public Administration from Kent State University’s Political Science Department and earned his undergraduate degree from KSU’s School of Journalism and Mass Communication. He works with the Center’s staff, affiliates, and partners on projects in a variety of subject areas, including intergovernmental collaboration and environmental policy.

Our Affiliates

Matt Stefanak - MPH

Mr. Stefanak received his Master of Public Health degree from Johns Hopkins University and is an alumnus of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and Ohio Public Health Leadership Institutes.  He is a part-time instructor and public health “ambassador” in the College of Public Health at Kent State University and consultant to public health professional associations and local health departments on financial performance improvement and public health ethics.

Matthew Stefanak served as Health Commissioner of the General Health District in Mahoning County, Ohio from 1988 until his retirement in 2012.  While serving as chief executive officer of the county health department, he focused on expanding and improving public health services to the 235,000 residents of Mahoning County.

Mr. Stefanak has received a number of awards, including the 2006 “To Do What is Just Award” from the Alliance for Congregational Transformation Influencing our Neighborhoods in Youngstown for his efforts to eliminate child lead poisoning from Mahoning County, the 2011 Champion for Ohio’s Children Award from Voices for Ohio’s Children, and two Model
Practice Awards from the National Association of County and City Health Officials.  

He volunteers his time for a number of professional and civic organizations, including NACCHO, the Public Health Accreditation Board, the Council on Education for Public Health, the Public Health Foundation, and his township planning commission, which he chairs.

James Tinnin - Ph.D. 

Dr. Tinnin has received his Ph.D. from Syracuse University.  He served as a founding Director of the Center for Public Administration and Public Policy. Under his leadership the Center provided numerous training programs for elected and appointed officials at the local level, including training programs for Municipal Clerks, Mayor’s Court Clerks, Local Government Finance Officers, and newly Elected Officials. 

Dr. Tinnin retired from Kent State in 2004 and currently assists Center staff with the Ohio Municipal Clerks training program.

Our other affiliates: 

Thomas Pascarella Ph.D.

Ken Slenkovich MA

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