Our Staff

Michele Ybarra MPH PhD, President and Research Director.
Dr. Ybarra is a recognized researcher in technology-related health issues for young people. She has published extensively in the areas of Internet harassment and other types of online victimization, health information seeking, and research methods as they relate to technology. She also has developed and tested multiple technology-based behavior change programs both domestically and internationally. Current projects include a national longitudinal survey of youth that aims to identify youth characteristics related to the emergence of sexual violence over time (R01 CE001543; R01 HD083072); the development and testing of a text messaging-based teen pregnancy prevention program for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and other sexual minority teen women (TP2AH000035); and the development and testing of an HIV prevention program for young adults across Uganda (R34 MH109296).

Past projects include the development and testing of Guy2Guy, a text messaging-based HIV prevention program for gay, bisexual, and queer teen men in the United States (R01MH096660); CyberSenga, an Internet-based HIV prevention program for adolescents in Mbarara, Uganda (R01 MH080662); a national survey that endeavored to better understand the positive and negative experiences of LGBT and non-LGBT youth online via a national survey (R01HD057191); the development and testing of a text messaging-based smoking cessation program among young adults in the United States (R21CA135669) and adult smokers in Turkey (R01TW007918); as well as a longitudinal study to examine the associations between exposure to violent new media and seriously violent behavior (U49 CE000206).

Dr. Ybarra holds a doctorate in child mental health services research and evaluation from the department of mental health at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. She was a pre-doctoral fellow of the National Institutes of Mental Health and was a joint fellow of the American Schools of Public Health / Centers for Disease Control.

Joseph R. Schwab, CTO / Interactive Creative Director.
With ten years of professional experience in Interactive Design, Development and Advertising, Joseph Schwab has been at the forefront of online advertising and website development since the Internet gained prominence in the late 1990’s. Mr. Schwab has accumulated invaluable experience with world class brands like: Apple, MTV, Pepsi One, Sony Playstation, Nissan, Infiniti, Acura, Samsung, Olympus America, Experian, Kyocera, Namco, working with top advertising agencies including: TBWA/Chiat/Day, The Designory, Deutsch LA, Genex, Truth Agency and most recently heading Orange County based Interactive Design Firm, Open Interactive, Inc.

Trevor Slocum, Web Developer.
Trevor Slocum is a self-taught developer, with his roots in writing web applications and web-based games.  He has launched multiple open source projects: After successfully monetizing an idea of a web-based game at the age of 15, Trevor expanded his programming ventures to include the cloning of another popular web-based game, emulating a popular image board and sharing the code worldwide, contributing his own code to other open source projects, and writing a successful Android application.

Tonya Prescott BA, Project Manager.
Ms. Prescott, CiPHR’s Project Manager, is one of the few researchers with experience developing and executing online recruitment outreach efforts, particularly reaching “hard-to-reach” populations (e.g., LGBT populations; youth under the age of 18 years). Primarily using Facebook, she has been responsible for reaching, enrolling, and following people in several national mHealth randomized controlled trials (Guy2Guy, SMS USA). Ms. Prescott also has experience writing the control group content for adolescent-focused text messaging-based behavior change interventions (Guy2Guy, BullyDown).

Her past research experience includes providing various supports as a study coordinator on CyberSenga, an Internet-based HIV prevention program in Uganda, and as a research assistant helping with panel retention in the Growing up with Media study. Ms. Prescott also has served as a study interviewer on a longitudinal study based on a national sample of US law enforcement agencies which examined the number of arrests and characteristics of juvenile online victimization cases, including child pornography and child sexual exploitation; and a research assistant for a longitudinal study examining youth internet use and experiences, including unwanted sexual solicitations, online harassment, and exposure to pornography.  She also has relevant experience at a community mental health center, which serves a variety of populations, including children, adolescents, families, and those with severe and persistent mental illness.

Ms. Prescott graduated with high distinction from the University of New Hampshire with a B.A. in Psychology and a minor in Criminal Justice.

Emilie Chen BA, Research Assistant.
Ms. Chen’s career with non-profit organizations began during her internship with environmental advocacy group, Orange County Coastkeeper. She transferred this experience to research institutes at the University of California, Irvine, as a Special Projects Assistant at the UCI Environment Institute and as the Communications Coordinator for both the Center for Unconventional Security Affairs and Blum Center for Poverty Alleviation. Ms. Chen has expressed her wide-ranging interest in health and the environment through her passion for wildlife photography, time spent volunteering on a farm in Costa Rica, and the completion of a 200-hour yoga teacher training. Her understanding of global wellness continues to evolve through her work at CiPHR. She provides support to the final steps of manuscript publication, grant writing, research recruitment, and contributes to CiPHR’s blog on Psychology Today. Ms. Chen completed her B.A. in Environmental Science and minor in Global Sustainability at the University of California, Irvine.

Charlotte Moore, Field Intern.
Ms. Moore has spent the last three years facilitating media literacy girl groups with teen girls in Boston, MA to understand the psychosocial impact media is having on youth today. She believes that establishing a foundation of change among youth can be supported by creating spaces where youth are taught to think critically about the messages they receive from the media on a daily basis. Ms. Moore’s passion for proactive activism continues to develop at CiPHR as she has been introduced to our mission and what tools technology-related research can bring to the ever changing world. Ms. Moore is currently pursuing a degree in Human Services at Lesley University.