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Center Staff

Principal Investigators

  • Ed Baker

    Ed Baker, PhD

    Director of the Center for Health Policy, Senior Researcher

    Director of the Center for Health Policy, Senior Researcher and a Professor in the Department of Community and Environmental Health in the College of Health Sciences at Boise State University. He earned his Ph.D. in Educational Psychology from Temple University in 1994. He has over 20 years of experience in healthcare working with hospitals, physicians, integrated delivery systems, biotech pharmaceutical companies and academic institutions. Dr. Baker’s research interests include healthcare policy, rural workforce planning, healthcare financing, and health system performance improvement. Link to CV.

    Director of the Center for Health Policy, Senior Researcher and a Professor in the Department of Community and Environmental Health in the College of Health Sciences at Boise State University. He earned his Ph.D. in Educational Psychology from Temple University in 1994. He has over 20 years of experience in healthcare working with hospitals, physicians, integrated delivery systems, biotech pharmaceutical companies and academic institutions. Dr. Baker’s research interests include healthcare policy, rural workforce planning, healthcare financing, and health system performance improvement. Link to CV.

  • Tedd McDonald

    Tedd McDonald, PhD

    Senior Researcher

    Senior Researcher and a Professor in the Department of Psychological Science in the College of Arts and Sciences at Boise State University. He is a community psychologist with interests in studying access to and delivery of health care services, particularly in the context of mental health. He earned his Ph.D. in Psychology from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee in 1998. Most of his research focuses on mental health, substance abuse, and quality of life issues among members of vulnerable populations, including the homeless, refugees from war-torn countries, at-risk youth, Native Americans, senior citizens, and residents of isolated rural communities. Link to CV.

    Senior Researcher and a Professor in the Department of Psychological Science in the College of Arts and Sciences at Boise State University. He is a community psychologist with interests in studying access to and delivery of health care services, particularly in the context of mental health. He earned his Ph.D. in Psychology from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee in 1998. Most of his research focuses on mental health, substance abuse, and quality of life issues among members of vulnerable populations, including the homeless, refugees from war-torn countries, at-risk youth, Native Americans, senior citizens, and residents of isolated rural communities. Link to CV.

  • Janet Reis

    Janet Reis, PhD

    Research Professor College of Health Sciences, Senior Researcher

    Research Professor at the College of Health Sciences, and Senior Researcher at the Center for Health Policy.  Dr. Reis earned her Ph.D. from State University of New York at Buffalo in Psychology in 1979.  She has over 30 years of experience as a psychologist utilizing her attributes in research and as a professor in the Department of Community Health and School of Nursing.  Dr. Reis has supervised over 80 Master students in their thesis projects and 25 doctoral dissertations.  She has worked extensively with physicians in a community hospital based Family Medicine Residency program in the development of clinical research programs.  Dr. Reis’s research interests include health education interventions primarily for health disparity populations, clinical trial testing, HIV and safe sex strategies, substance abuse, minority health and health promotion.

    Research Professor at the College of Health Sciences, and Senior Researcher at the Center for Health Policy.  Dr. Reis earned her Ph.D. from State University of New York at Buffalo in Psychology in 1979.  She has over 30 years of experience as a psychologist utilizing her attributes in research and as a professor in the Department of Community Health and School of Nursing.  Dr. Reis has supervised over 80 Master students in their thesis projects and 25 doctoral dissertations.  She has worked extensively with physicians in a community hospital based Family Medicine Residency program in the development of clinical research programs.  Dr. Reis’s research interests include health education interventions primarily for health disparity populations, clinical trial testing, HIV and safe sex strategies, substance abuse, minority health and health promotion.

  • Dave Schmitz Portrait

    David Schmitz, MD

    Research Partner, Senior Researcher

    Affiliate Faculty and Senior Researcher at the Center for Health Policy, and chair of the Department of Family and Community Medicine at the University of North Dakota School of Medicine and Health Sciences. He is an internationally known and respected clinician who has extensive research expertise in training and retaining physicians in rural and underserved areas, the development of rural communities’ healthcare resources, and quality improvement in rural healthcare. He has published and presented extensively on his research. He practices as a family physician and teaches at the UND SMHS. He assumed the position in October 2016.

    At the UND SMHS, Dr. Schmitz works collaboratively with the faculty and institutional leaders to build upon the School’s strong nationally recognized rural medicine program. As chair, he works with the SMHS’s clinical partners to innovatively meet the need for education and training of current and future health professionals to effectively serve rural and underserved areas of the state.

    Schmitz earned his medical doctorate from the State University of New York at Buffalo. He completed his residency training at the Family Medicine Residency of Idaho in Boise. Schmitz is a Fellow of the American Academy of Family Physicians. He is board-certified in family medicine by the American Board of Family Medicine, where he has been a diplomate since 1999. He is currently president of the National Rural Health Association. He is the founding chair of the American Academy of Family Physician Member Interest Group on Rural Health. He also serves the academy through its Commission on Quality and Practice, and previously the Commission on Education. Schmitz is an Advisory Council member for the National Rural Health Resource Center, Technical Assistance and Service Center. He is an executive committee member of the Global Association of Family Doctors (WONCA) Working Party on Rural Health.

    Affiliate Faculty and Senior Researcher at the Center for Health Policy, and chair of the Department of Family and Community Medicine at the University of North Dakota School of Medicine and Health Sciences. He is an internationally known and respected clinician who has extensive research expertise in training and retaining physicians in rural and underserved areas, the development of rural communities’ healthcare resources, and quality improvement in rural healthcare. He has published and presented extensively on his research. He practices as a family physician and teaches at the UND SMHS. He assumed the position in October 2016.

    At the UND SMHS, Dr. Schmitz works collaboratively with the faculty and institutional leaders to build upon the School’s strong nationally recognized rural medicine program. As chair, he works with the SMHS’s clinical partners to innovatively meet the need for education and training of current and future health professionals to effectively serve rural and underserved areas of the state.

    Schmitz earned his medical doctorate from the State University of New York at Buffalo. He completed his residency training at the Family Medicine Residency of Idaho in Boise. Schmitz is a Fellow of the American Academy of Family Physicians. He is board-certified in family medicine by the American Board of Family Medicine, where he has been a diplomate since 1999. He is currently president of the National Rural Health Association. He is the founding chair of the American Academy of Family Physician Member Interest Group on Rural Health. He also serves the academy through its Commission on Quality and Practice, and previously the Commission on Education. Schmitz is an Advisory Council member for the National Rural Health Resource Center, Technical Assistance and Service Center. He is an executive committee member of the Global Association of Family Doctors (WONCA) Working Party on Rural Health.

  • Prengaman_Molly_bio_220x250

    Molly Vaughan Prengaman, PhD, RN, MS, FNP-BC

    Associate Professor in School of Nursing, Researcher

    Associate Professor, School of Nursing, College of Health Sciences at Boise State University and Researcher at the Center for Health Policy. She received her Masters in Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP) education at Idaho State University.  She has practiced in a variety of nursing settings for over 20 years, most extensively in public/community health and orthopedics. Currently she volunteers as a FNP at the Garden City Community Clinic serving the indigent population. She is presently enrolled in the doctoral program at University of New Mexico’s College of Nursing with an emphasis on health policy. Her research interests include vulnerable populations and rural nursing workforce challenges. Link to CV.

    Associate Professor, School of Nursing, College of Health Sciences at Boise State University and Researcher at the Center for Health Policy. She received her Masters in Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP) education at Idaho State University.  She has practiced in a variety of nursing settings for over 20 years, most extensively in public/community health and orthopedics. Currently she volunteers as a FNP at the Garden City Community Clinic serving the indigent population. She is presently enrolled in the doctoral program at University of New Mexico’s College of Nursing with an emphasis on health policy. Her research interests include vulnerable populations and rural nursing workforce challenges. Link to CV.

  • Esp_Susan

    Susan Esp, PhD, LCPC

    Associate Professor in School of Social Work, Researcher

    Associate Professor in the School of Social Work, Coordinator of the Prevention and Addiction Studies emphasis in Health Science Studies and Coordinator of the Graduate Certificate in Addiction Studies, at Boise State University, and Researcher at the Center for Health Policy. Esp earned her Ph.D. in Adult and Organizational Learning and Leadership from the University of Idaho in 2007, her M.A. in Counseling Psychology from Northern Arizona University, Flagstaff, AZ, 1991, and her B.S. in Psychology from the University of Wyoming, Laramie, WY in 1986. She is also a Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor and a Certified GAIN Trainer and GAIN Interviewer. She has over 20 years experience in mental health and substance abuse treatment and prevention. Dr. Esp’s research interests include substance abuse and mental health prevention programs, behavioral health as a public health issue and the integration of mental health and substance abuse services. Link to CV.

    Associate Professor in the School of Social Work, Coordinator of the Prevention and Addiction Studies emphasis in Health Science Studies and Coordinator of the Graduate Certificate in Addiction Studies, at Boise State University, and Researcher at the Center for Health Policy. Esp earned her Ph.D. in Adult and Organizational Learning and Leadership from the University of Idaho in 2007, her M.A. in Counseling Psychology from Northern Arizona University, Flagstaff, AZ, 1991, and her B.S. in Psychology from the University of Wyoming, Laramie, WY in 1986. She is also a Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor and a Certified GAIN Trainer and GAIN Interviewer. She has over 20 years experience in mental health and substance abuse treatment and prevention. Dr. Esp’s research interests include substance abuse and mental health prevention programs, behavioral health as a public health issue and the integration of mental health and substance abuse services. Link to CV.

  • Sandina Begic

    Sandina Begic, PhD

    Assistant Research Professor

    Assistant Research Professor, Project Manager at the Center for Health Policy, Adjunct Professor in the Department of Community and Environmental Health in the College of Health Sciences at Boise State University. She earned her Ph.D. in Psychology from Clark University in Massachusetts in 2013. Sandina spent several years conducting fieldwork in Bosnia and Herzegovina, during which time she also worked as a researcher at a local research and policy foundation and supervised research projects conducted by students from several U.S. universities during their semester abroad in the Balkans. Since joining the Center for Health Policy five years ago, she has been involved in a number of research projects focused primarily on mental health and substance abuse in at-risk youth and the effects of home visiting as an early intervention strategy in promoting maternal, infant, and early childhood health and development.

    Assistant Research Professor, Project Manager at the Center for Health Policy, Adjunct Professor in the Department of Community and Environmental Health in the College of Health Sciences at Boise State University. She earned her Ph.D. in Psychology from Clark University in Massachusetts in 2013. Sandina spent several years conducting fieldwork in Bosnia and Herzegovina, during which time she also worked as a researcher at a local research and policy foundation and supervised research projects conducted by students from several U.S. universities during their semester abroad in the Balkans. Since joining the Center for Health Policy five years ago, she has been involved in a number of research projects focused primarily on mental health and substance abuse in at-risk youth and the effects of home visiting as an early intervention strategy in promoting maternal, infant, and early childhood health and development.

Center for Health Policy Staff

  • MacKenzie_Lisa

    Lisa MacKenzie, MHS

    Senior Research Associate, Grant and Project Coordinator

    Senior Research Associate, Grant and Project Coordinator at the Center for Health Policy at Boise State University.  She received her Master of Health Science degree in 2012 from Boise State University.  She has worked at the Center for Health Policy on projects including the Community Apgar Program for physician recruitment and retention at community health centers and critical access hospitals in Alaska, Idaho, Maine, North Dakota, Wisconsin, and Wyoming.  She has also provided support for physician scope of practice workforce assessments and the  Idaho Maternal and Child Health needs assessment project.  Lisa is responsible for data management, report development, technical writing, and student supervision.

    Senior Research Associate, Grant and Project Coordinator at the Center for Health Policy at Boise State University.  She received her Master of Health Science degree in 2012 from Boise State University.  She has worked at the Center for Health Policy on projects including the Community Apgar Program for physician recruitment and retention at community health centers and critical access hospitals in Alaska, Idaho, Maine, North Dakota, Wisconsin, and Wyoming.  She has also provided support for physician scope of practice workforce assessments and the  Idaho Maternal and Child Health needs assessment project.  Lisa is responsible for data management, report development, technical writing, and student supervision.

Graduate & Undergraduate Research Assistants