San Francisco Bay Area: Cancer Prevention Institute of California

Dr. Esther John, Principal Investigator

Dr. John received both her PhD (in 1990) and MSPH (in 1987) in Epidemiology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Her research program is focused on identifying the causes of breast cancer and prostate cancer, with a special interest in the role of potentially modifiable lifestyle factors (physical activity, obesity, vitamin D, dietary factors), early life exposures, and genetic susceptibility. Many of her research studies are focused on Latina and African American populations and investigate racial/ethnic differences in risk factors and their contribution to cancer disparities.  

Dr. John is a Senior Research Scientist at the Cancer Prevention Institute of California in Fremont, CA, Consulting Professor at the Stanford University School of Medicine (Department of Health Research and Policy), and member of the Stanford Cancer Institute.

 

Dr. Theresa Keegan, Co-Principal Investigator

Dr. Keegan received her PhD in Epidemiology from Stanford University in 2003, after receiving her MS in Wellness Management from Ball State University in 1999.

Dr. Keegan is particularly interested in modifiable factors and health behaviors that influence the occurrence of cancer and survival after cancer, and was funded to assess the relationship of life-time body size and physical activity to risk of Hodgkin lymphoma, and to assess the impact of the neighborhood built environment on the risk of breast cancer and survival after breast cancer. Dr. Keegan’s research also focuses on the surveillance of cancer using SEER cancer registry data.

Dr. Keegan is a Research Scientist at the Cancer Prevention Institute of California, Consulting Assistant Professor at the Stanford University School of Medicine (Department of Health Research and Policy) and member of the Stanford Cancer Institute.

  

  

Judy Goldstein, Project Manager

Judy Goldstein is the Project Manager for the LEGACY Girls Study in California. She joined the Cancer Prevention Institute of California in 1997 after conducting health research studies for 10 years at the Public Health Institute in Oakland. Prior to her career in public health, Judy worked in policy and social science research in the area of program evaluation. Judy has a Bachelor’s Degree from the University of California at Berkeley and has a Cancer Data Systems Certificate from UCSF. She finds the LEGACY Girls Study one of the most satisfying and interesting projects she has ever worked on because the study focuses on health as well as psychosocial aspects of everyday life that affect girls today.  Judy would love to meet every LEGACY girl and mom in the study to learn and record their reasons for joining and continuing to participate in this very important study.

 

 

Maria Talosig-Garcia, MPH, Project Coordinator

Maria Talosig-Garcia is the Project Coordinator for the LEGACY Girls Study in California. She has been coordinating the pilot LEGACY Study since 2009 and will  continue to supervise the full LEGACY field work. Maria has an MPH in health promotion from San Diego State University. She began her public health career in 1992 coordinating tobacco prevention programs with youth in Silicon Valley. Off work, she is kept busy by her two daughters, ages 9 and 7, taking them to karate classes,   soccer games and choir practice. Maria also loves to read, recently burying herself in the Hunger Games trilogy in a week span.

 

 

  

Jenny Nguyen, MPH, Research Assistant

Jenny Nguyen is a Research Assistant for the LEGACY Girls Study in California. She supports a variety of research activities including monitoring the flow of questionnaire mailings, tracking follow-up activities, preparing reports, and maintaining quality control of data. She joined LEGACY in the summer of 2012 while pursuing her graduate degree. Since then, she has earned her Master of Public Health degree from the University of San Francisco in the Fall of 2014 and wishes to continue on to pursue a doctorate degree. Outside of work, Jenny enjoys exploring new hiking trails, going to concerts, reading books, traveling, and spending time with her family and friends.

 

 

Debbie Serva, Interviewer/Phlebotomist

Debbie Serva is an Interviewer/Phlebotomist for the LEGACY Girls Study in the Bay Area. She is responsible for recruiting and interviewing participants, as well as, collecting and processing bio specimens. Debbie has been with LEGACY since 2008, when pilot work began. She has over 10 years phlebotomy experience working in various Bay Area hospitals where she worked with people from all walks of life and ages. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Health Science from San Jose State University and completed a Clinical Trials Design and Management Certificate program from UC Santa Cruz Extension. Outside of work Debbie enjoys gardening, fishing and playing golf. Throughout the years, she and her husband have enjoyed hosting exchange students from Japan.

 

 

 

Ritela Zendejas-Brewer, Spanish Bilingual Interviewer/Phlebotomist

Ritela Zendejas-Brewer is the Spanish Bilingual Interviewer/Phlebotomist for the LEGACY Girl Study in the Bay Area. She is responsible for recruiting and interviewing participants, as well as, collecting and processing bio specimens. She has been recruiting families for the study since October 2011. Ritela is also a Lab Technician, receiving her degree through MTD College in 1982. She has a background in nutrition and has worked as a Teen Advocate. Off work she keeps busy by attending baseball games with her 6 grandsons. Ritela also loves to read and spend time in the garden.

  

 

 

Shanika Anderson, Interviewer/Phlebotomist

Shanika Anderson is an Interviewer/Phlebotomist for the Legacy Girls Study in the Bay Area. She joined the LEGACY team in November 2011. She is responsible for recruiting and interviewing participants, as well as, collecting and processing bio specimens. Shanika has been a phlebotomist since January 2007 and is currently working on obtaining her Vocational Nursing License. Shanika started off as a Pre-K teacher in 2001 where she had 24 four-year olds in her class. She then moved on to working in public health, obtaining her CNA license and moving on to phlebotomy. Off work, Shanika enjoys watching sci-fi movies, trying different foods and taking her pit bull Star to the beach.

 

 

Zinnia Loya, Spanish Bilingual Interviewer

Zinnia Loya is an Interviewer for the LEGACY Girls Study in the Bay Area. She is responsible for interviewing participants and collecting and processing some biospecimens. Zinnia has been with the Cancer Prevention Institute of California for 9 years and has worked on numerous cancer research studies interviewing participants, moderating focus groups, being a bi-lingual translator, and abstracting medical records. Outside of work, Zinnia enjoys following a holistic lifestyle, gardening, traveling, cooking, and spending time with her family and two sons.

 

 

 

 

  • What the study is
  • Why they should participate
  • Resources
  • What do I have to do?