Indigenous Wellness Research Institute

INSPIRE - Scientific and Community Leadership Council


August 15, 2017

Nancy Rumbaugh Whitesell, PhD

Dr. Whitesell’s work focuses on child and adolescent development within the contexts of American Indian and Alaska Native (AIAN) communities. Her research projects apply developmental science to inform preventive interventions to improve outcomes for both young children (birth to five years) and young adolescents (10 to 14 years). Through her leadership role in the Tribal…


Roberto E. Orellana, PhD

Dr. Roberto Orellana is Associate Professor of Social Work at Portland State University (PSU), where he is also affiliate faculty in the School of Community Health and the Department of Indigenous Nations Studies. Throughout his doctoral program and early scholarly activities, Dr. Orellana has gained experience in global health research, especially on the science of…


August 3, 2017

Melissa L. Walls PhD (Bois Forte and Couchiching First Nations Anishinabe)

Melissa L. Walls Ph.D. (Bois Forte and Couchiching First Nations Anishinabe) is a social scientist committed to collaborative research and has over a decade of experience working with tribal communities in the United States and Canada. Her involvement in community-based participatory research (CBPR) projects to date includes mental health epidemiology; culturally-relevant, family-based substance use prevention…


July 28, 2017

John Lowe, PhD (Cherokee)


Michelle Johnson-Jennings, PhD (Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma)


Geri Donenberg, PhD


July 26, 2017

Myra Parker, JD, PhD (Mandan & Hidatsa)


Julie Baldwin, PhD


April 5, 2017

Bonnie Duran, DrPH (Opelousas/Coushatta)

Bonnie Duran has worked in public health education, evaluation, program planning and research with Native Americans and other communities of color for 35 years. For the past 10 years, she has been studying the prevalence of mental disorders, victimization risk factors and treatment of Native American women who use Indian Health Service primary care facilities…