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MEET THE GYRL LAB

Left to Right: Kat Dillane, Ellen Garrison, Genevieve Roth, Gabby Ashenafi, Maggie Schroer, Dr. Kevin Hellman (PhD), Dr. Frank Tu (MD)

 
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KATLYN DILLANE

Research Coordinator

Kat is the Research Study Coordinator for the Gynecology Research Lab. Kat received her Bachelor of Science in Psychology with minors in Biology and Neuroscience from Loyola University Chicago and began working for the GyRL Lab as a Research Assistant. Kat was initially hired to collect and analyze the lab’s EEG data, but began to recognize the barriers that many women and gender non-conforming patients face when seeking equitable care. She developed a passion for public health and is currently pursuing her Master’s in Public Health at DePaul University. Kat is interested in mixed-methods approaches towards Reproductive Health and Reproductive Justice, and believes in the value of storytelling to elevate patient-centered care. Kat hopes to combine her GyRL Lab experiences and education to assess and improve both community and individual well-being.

 
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ELLEN GARRISON

Research Nurse

Ellen is from the Chicago suburbs and received her BS in Biology from the University of Michigan. She worked for a few years as a pharmaceutical rep and decided to go back to school to pursue her Bachelor of Science in Nursing at Rush. After 10 years as a Labor and Delivery nurse and Assistant Unit Director of a post-partum unit, she changed course and discovered her passion for research.


Ellen enjoys working in women’s health because it is so understudied.  For too long women with menstrual pain have been with limited options for therapies and treatments.  The research we are doing is taking steps forward in understanding the basic mechanisms behind the pain and she enjoys figuring out the “why”.

 
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GENEVIEVE ROTH

Research Coordinator

Gen is originally from the Chicago suburbs and she graduated from Loyola University Chicago in 2017 with a BS in Psychology and minors in Women's & Gender Studies and French Language & Literature. She enjoys working in women's health because she believes in educating women about their bodies and is passionate about supporting gynecological research. In the fall of 2020, she will begin pursuing her PhD in Clinical Psychology where she hopes to combine her interests in women's health, psychology, and neuroscience.

 
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GABRIELA ASHENAFI

Research Assistant

Gabby is from San Diego, CA and she graduated from Northwestern University in 2019 with a BA in Religious Studies. As a Research Assistant in our lab, she has been exposed to the intricacies of pelvic pain that many people silently endure. She hopes to pursue a career in medicine and help eradicate misconceptions regarding menstrual pain as well as advocate for more research regarding underrepresented populations.

 
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MARGARET SCHROER

Research Assistant

Maggie Schroer is a Research Assistant for the GyRL at NorthShore Evanston Hospital. She received her BA in psychology with minors in Biology and Women’s and Gender Studies from Loyola University Chicago in 2019. During her time at Loyola, her studies, involvement in research, and personal passions allowed her to flourish into a role as an empowered female leader with a desire to support women’s healthcare.  During her time with the GyRL, Maggie has begun her journey to eradicate gender gaps within society and health care. Her next step in her career is to receive her Masters of Science in Nursing and eventually become a Nurse Midwife. Overall, her vocation in life is to compassionately heal and support women in order to improve their overall quality of life and develop a more just social order

 
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SARAH DARNELL

Research Assistant

Sarah is originally from St. Louis, MO and she graduated from Loyola University Chicago in 2020 with her BS in Behavioral and Cognitive Neuroscience & Psychology. She has a strong research background in sensory modalities and is interested in how menstrual pain may influence these mechanisms. She is also passionate about advocating for women’s independent access to health care and pain management related to pelvic disorders. She aims to pursue a PhD in Clinical Psychology and hopes to make positive change for women not only in healthcare but in science and education too.

 
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DR. MATT KMIECIK

Post Doctoral Research Fellow

Matt earned a BS in Psychology: Natural Sciences from Loyola University Chicago (2013) and a PhD in Cognition and Neuroscience from The University of Texas at Dallas (2019). As a postdoctoral research fellow, he studies mechanisms of menstrual pain using EEG and MRI related techniques. His goal is to optimally identify mechanistic pathways of neurocognitive pain sources to better identify, treat, and prevent maladaptive pain.

 

ALUMNI

CODY SAIN

2019-

MD candidate, Pritzker School of Medicine

FOLABOMI OLADOSU, PHD

2016-2019

Medical Writer HealthVizion

NICOLE STEINER

2015-2019

Senior Research Coordinator SCL Health

OMAR NELSON, PHD

2018-

Research Assistant Professor, University of Chicago

RICHARD COCKRUM, MD

2018-

Fellowship in Minimally Invasive Surgery and Gynecology, NorthShore

REBECCA ZUCKERMAN, MD

2014-2018

Ob/Gyn Resident, University of Vermont

AVISEK DATTA

2017-

PhD candidate, University of Illinois

JULIA KANE MORLOCK

2013-2016

Educational Psychologist

CAROLYN KUHN, MD

2015-

Ob/Gyn Resident, University of Chicago

INSIYYAH PATANWALA, MD

2013-2015

Assistant Professor, Indiana University

KELLY POLNAZSEK, PHD

2015-

PhD candidate Loyola University Chicago, Dept. of Psychology

NITA PADAVIL, MD

2013-2015

Psychiatry Resident Northwestern Memorial

ADAM GAFNI-KANE, MD

2012-2014

Clinical Assistant Professor, University of Chicago

NATHAN SHLOBIN

2014-

MD candidate, Northwestern University

SAANIYA FARHAN

2014

MD candidate, Thomas Jefferson University

ALICE HAN, MD

2012-2013

MD Candidate, University of Illinois

CHRISTINE KANG

2013

MD candidate, University of Illinois Chicago

ALLYSON WESTLING, MD

2011-2012

Resident Physician, University of Colorado

PETER YU, MD

2010-2012

Resident Physician, Ohio State University

JAKE CARROW, PHD

2010-2011

Postdoctoral Researcher at Northwestern University