KL2 Training Program

Current & Past Scholars

The following are brief biographies of the scholars selected for each award year. As you can see, they represent broad disciplinary diversity and bring impressive and relevant training and experience to the CASE/Cleveland Clinic CTSC KL2.

Cohort 1 (2005) | Cohort 2 (2006) | Cohort 3 (2007) | Cohort 4 (2008) | Cohort 5 (2009)
| Cohort 6 (2010) | Cohort 7 (2011) | Cohort 8 (2012) | Cohort 9 (2013) | Cohort 10 (2014) | Cohort 11 (2015) | Cohort 12 (2016)

Cohort 12 (2016)

Kavita Shah Arora, MD
Kavita Arora, MDDr. Arora received her BS with a minor in Philosophy from the Pennsylvania State University. She subsequently earned her MD from Jefferson Medical College as well as a Masters in Bioethics from the University of Pennsylvania. She completed her residency in obstetrics and gynecology at McGaw Medical Center of Northwestern University. She joined MetroHealth's Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology and Case Western's Department of Bioethics in 2013 as an assistant professor. She also joined the Louis Stokes Cleveland VA in 2014. She has served on the national ethics committees of both the American Medical Association and the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. Her research is focused on reproductive ethics and women's health policy with a specific interest in increasing equitable access to long-acting reversible contraception and sterilization services.

Paul Bakaki, MD, PhD
Paul Bakaki, MD, PhDDr. Bakaki holds a foreign MD of Makerere University, Kampala, Uganda, and a PhD in Epidemiology & Biostatistics of Case Western Reserve University (CWRU), Cleveland, Ohio. Before coming for graduate school at CWRU, he practiced pediatrics, conducted collaborative research in mother-to-child transmission of HIV, and the epidemiology of some cancer causing viruses. As a graduate student and research scientist at CWRU, he has conducted methodological outcomes research in cancer and epilepsy using large administrative databases. He is a recipient of several scholarship awards including the Fogarty AIDS International Training and Research Program, the American Epilepsy Society Young Investigator Award, and the American College of Epidemiology Outstanding Research Award. Through this KL2 award, Dr. Bakaki will reinforce his knowledge base with pharmacoepidemiology methods, conduct collaborative research in childhood chronic multi-morbidity and long term polypharmacy with emphasis on antiepileptic medications, expanding this growing research area to children.

Jessica Cooke Bailey, PhD
Jessica Cooke Bailey, PhDDr. Cooke Bailey earned her BS in Biology from Winthrop University and her PhD in Molecular Medicine and Translational Science from Wake Forest University. She is a postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Epidemiology & Biostatistics at Case Western Reserve University. For the past several years, her research has focused on using statistical methods to understand the genetic basis of glaucoma and age-related macular degeneration in European Americans including the Amish. With her KL2 project, Dr. Cooke Bailey seeks to expand her research program to harness the power of electronic health record (EHR) data coupled with genomics and other 'omic data to understand why African Americans are at increased risk for glaucoma compared with other populations. The recent adoption of EHRs by healthcare provider organizations offers an unprecedented opportunity to capture the patient's real-time clinical phenome for big data mining opportunities for research related to diagnosis, treatment, and prevention. Dr. Cooke Bailey plans to work within the Cleveland area EHR network to identify the genetic and non-genetic contributors to glaucoma across multiple racial/ethnic groups. Understanding glaucoma risk factors using these approaches will begin to address crucial health disparities with the goal of informing better disease treatments applicable to diverse populations.

Nathan Makowski, PhD
Nathan Makowski, PhDNathaniel Makowski received a BS in engineering from Hope College. He completed his graduate studies at Case Western Reserve University in biomedical engineering, where his research focused on determining the feasibility of a poststroke neuroprosthesis for arm and hand function. Experiments evaluated the interaction of voluntary effort and functional electrical stimulation (FES) and how effectively stroke patients can use residual motion to control reaching assistance. After completing his PhD in biomedical engineering, he joined the Louis Stokes Cleveland VA Medical Center for a post-doctoral fellowship to study multi-joint FES interventions to improve walking after stroke. As a KL2 Scholar, he will join the faculty at MetroHealth Medical Center in the department of physical medicine and rehabilitation. Dr. Makowski’s Kl2 research will focus on the combination of spasticity management and multi-joint FES to restore walking after stroke.

Sarah Ronis, MD
Sarah Ronis, MDDr. Ronis received her BA in Biological Anthropology from Harvard University and earned her MD at Case Western Reserve University. After residency training in Pediatrics at UH Rainbow Babies and Children’s Hospital, Dr. Ronis completed a fellowship in Academic General Pediatrics at the University of Rochester where she also earned a master’s degree in public health sciences. She joined the faculty of CWRU School of Medicine in 2014 with appointments in the Division of General Academic Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine at UH Rainbow Babies and Children’s Hospital, and in the Center for Child Health and Policy at RBC. Her research focuses on medical home interventions for children with special health care needs (CSHCN). She is particularly interested in strategies to optimize communication among caregivers of low-income CSHCN and their clinicians in ambulatory settings. As a KL2 scholar, Dr. Ronis aims to identify effective approaches to promote shared decision making by families of CSHCN and their clinicians. In collaboration with caregivers of CSHCN, she will develop and pilot an intervention to meet caregivers’ decision-making needs and preferences during critical stressful periods in their child’s illness course. Her hope is that by facilitating effective dialogue between caregivers and clinicians, such interventions will improve satisfaction with decisions, improve adherence to plans of care, and improve clinical outcomes for this vulnerable population.