About PRHE Faculty and Staff
UCSF's Program on Reproductive Health & the Environment

Program Faculty

Linda Giudice, MD, PhD founded the Program on Reproductive Health and the Environment in 2007 and is a Professor and the Former Chair of the Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Sciences at the University of California, San Francisco. Dr. Giudice is a biochemist, an obstetrician, gynecologist and reproductive endocrinologist whose research has focused on endometrial biology, placental-uterine interactions and environmental impacts on reproductive health. For more information on Dr. Giudice, see her UC profile page.


Tracey Woodruff, PhD, MPH is Professor in the Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology, and Reproductive Sciences and Philip R Lee Institute for Health Policy Studies at the University of California, San Francisco and the Director of the Program on Reproductive Health and the Environment.  She has done extensive research and policy development on environmental health issues, with a particular emphasis on early-life development.  Her research include evaluating prenatal exposures to environmental chemicals and related adverse pregnancy outcomes, and characterizing developmental risks.  She has authored numerous scientific publications and book chapters, and has been quoted widely in the press, including USAToday, the San Francisco Chronicle, and WebMD.  She was previously at the US EPA, where she was a senior scientist and policy advisor in the Office of Policy, and author of numerous government documents.  She is an Associate Editor of Environmental Health Perspectives. She was appointed by the governor of California in 2012 to the Science Advisory Board of the Developmental and Reproductive Toxicant (DART) Identification Committee.


Robert Gould, MD graduated from Albert Einstein College of Medicine, and from 1981 until 2012 worked as a Pathologist at Kaiser Hospital in San Jose. In 2012 Bob was appointed as an Associate Adjunct Professor in the Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Sciences at the UCSF School of Medicine, to serve as Director of Health Professional Outreach and Education for the Program on Reproductive Health and the Environment.  Since 1989, he has been President of the SF-Bay Area Chapter of Physicians for Social Responsibility (PSR), and in 2003 and 2014 was President of National PSR. Since 1986, Bob has been a leading member of the Peace Caucus of the American Public Health Association, for which he has been Chairperson for numerous years, and in 2009 APHA awarded Bob the prestigious Sidel-Levy Peace Award. Bob has been recognized as a leading expert on the environmental and public health impacts of nuclear weapons, and has been a contributing author to chapters on health impacts of nuclear weapons and nuclear terrorism in “War and Public Health” (2008) and “Terrorism and Public Health” (2011) published by Oxford University Press.


Juleen Lam, MH, MHS, PhD is an Associate Research Scientist at the Program on Reproductive Health and the Environment. She has been involved with the Navigation Guide and systematic review methodology since 2011, and has been an author on four completed case studies applying the Navigation Guide methodology to answering environmental health policy-relevant questions. She is currently leading the sixth case study to address the association between formaldehyde exposure and asthma health outcomes. Prior to her position at UCSF, she completed two postdocs at the US Environmental Protection Agency and the Johns Hopkins University.


Amy Padula, PhD, MSc. is our newest faculty member with the Program for Reproductive Health and the Environment, joining us in 2016 as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Sciences.  Dr. Padula received her Ph.D. in Epidemiology from the University of California Berkeley and comes to us from Stanford University. Her expertise is in air pollution, social disparities and adverse pregnancy outcomes.


Veena Singla, PhD, is Director of Research Translation at the Program for Reproductive Health and the Environment. Her research focuses on indoor environmental quality and how exposure to multiple chemicals affects health outcomes, especially for vulnerable populations such as workers, pregnant women and young children. She specializes in the communication of complex scientific information at the intersection of research and policy, and has led work on groundbreaking policies which attempt to establish frameworks for safer chemical evaluation and substitution. She worked as a postdoctoral teaching fellow at Stanford University and as an adjunct faculty member at the University of San Francisco. She holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of California, Berkeley, and a PhD in cell biology from the University of California, San Francisco.


Patrice Sutton, MPH, is a Research Scientist at the Program on Reproductive Health and the Environment. Patrice has worked at UCSF/PRHE since 2007 to advance evidence-based, health protective action on environmental health science in clinical and policy arenas. Patrice has over 30 years of experience in occupational and environmental health research, industrial hygiene, public health practice, policy development and community-based advocacy. As a contractor to California's state health department from 1987 to 2006, she was responsible for conducting research investigations spanning a disparate range of issues, including lead poisoning, tuberculosis, asthma, and pesticide-illness. Patrice has extensive experience collaborating with governmental and non-governmental organizations in the development of research methodologies, i.e., the Navigation Guide systematic review method; health professional society statements, i.e., the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists and the International Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics; research strategies; and policy recommendations. She has published over forty peer-reviewed scientific articles and government technical reports.

Program Staff

Cynthia Melgoza Canchola manages PRHE’s research lab at San Francisco General Hospital. She is also a bilingual Spanish and English health educator for the Children's Environmental Health Promotion Program of the San Francisco Department Public Health. Prior to her roles as health educator and research assistant, Cynthia worked to promote safer ergonomic work practices for day laborers; she was involved in the educational campaign to inform the public about lead in Mexican candy; and she conducted a pilot project to promote disinfectants that are safer for asthma in child care settings. Cynthia graduated from San Francisco State University with a BA in Raza Studies and a BS in Health Science.

Annemarie Charlesworth, MA is the Director of the Environmental Health Initiative and Director of the Clinical Outreach and Translation team of the UCSF Program on Reproductive Health and the Environment (PRHE).  She brings over 15 years of program evaluation, design and implementation expertise to the EHI.

Natalyn Daniels is a Research Assistant working with PRHE. Natalyn received a B.A. from UC Berkeley in 2011. She became interested in reproduction and environmental health through her work as an ambulance emergency medical technician and her previous Research Analyst appointment in the Division of Adolescent and Young Adult Medicine at UCSF.

Erin DeMicco, MPH, CCRC is Senior Clinical Research Coordinator responsible for managing PRHE’s clinical research portfolio at San Francisco General Hospital and the UCSF Betty Irene Moore Women’s Hospital. Erin earned her MPH at San Francisco State University where she focused her academic work in maternal and child health. Erin has over 12 years of study coordination and project management experience.

Cheryl Godwin de Medina joined PRHE as an Assistant Clinical Research Coordinator in April, 2014.  Cheryl currently works on two different projects under the PEEC Study, which are located at Zuckerberg San Francisco General and Mission Bay Hospital.  The studies are examining the effects of BPA and PBDE exposure on fetal development during pregnancy, and whether or not environmental chemicals affect the health outcome in pregnant women and their newborn babies.  Prior to her role here at PRHE, she worked on The HPV Teen Study through the Division of Adolescent and Young Adult Medicine at UCSF, which looked at HPV and its’ effect on the immune system in adolescents and young women.  Cheryl has her B.A. in Microbiology and Immunology from UC Berkeley.

Hongtai Huang, PhD is a postdoctoral scholar at the Program on Reproductive Health and the Environment, Dept. of OB/GYN & Reproductive Sciences, and jointly affiliated with the Institute for Computational Health Sciences, at the University of California, San Francisco. His main research interest lies in the interface between statistical analyses and health/environmental decision makings. He is currently involved in the California Preterm Birth Initiative (PTBi-CA) utilizing health and environmental data to assess and understand potential associations between adverse pregnancy and environmental/chemical exposures. Prior to joining UCSF, he was a postdoctoral data scientist at the U.S. EPA. He received his PhD in Environmental Health Engineering and Master’s degree in Environmental Economics and Management from the Johns Hopkins University.  

Trish Koman, MPP, PhD is a contractor to UCSF’s Program on Reproductive Health and the Environment who is leading the Rapid Response Network. She is a scientist at the University of Michigan where she leads community-engaged research and learning to create healthier communities. Prior to joining the University of Michigan Trish was an environmental scientist at U.S. Environmental Protection Agency where as part of EPA’s National Clean Diesel Campaign, she initiated a partnership to reduce diesel emissions at U.S. marine ports, which in 5 years grew to a $100 million EPA grant program with projects on every coast, featuring significant private investment. Overcoming previous adversarial relationships, she forged key alignments with port authorities, the maritime industry and other federal and state partners.  She developed a strategy focusing on shared interests in tune with each group’s business model and she supported top Agency executives’ development of a multi-media strategic plan that forms the basis of current federal action. The success of this strategic alliance revolutionized the technology used in major sectors of the economy, contributed to the establishment of standards for ocean going vessels under an international treaty, achieved top EPA executive buy-in to strategies spanning two presidential administrations, and led to quantifiable public health benefits that continue to grow today.  Additional highlights of Dr. Koman’s policy achievements include that her air quality and policy analyses formed the rationale for setting landmark national ambient air quality standards for fine particulate matter, which survived a challenge to the U.S. Supreme Court and became the top research and management priority for the Agency over the ensuing decade. As a charter member of Clean School Bus USA team, she developed a public-private partnership to provide clean transportation to children across the nation and communicate environmental exposure and risk information to community partners. Dr. Koman’s work was recognized with the EPA Administrator’s Award for Excellence and four EPA Gold Medals for Exceptional Service.

Anne Sausser is a Translation Administrative Analyst at PRHE and the wrangler of all things administrative for the Research Translation Team. She is also the webmaster and blogmaster for PRHE.  She comes to PRHE with a background in events coordination and almost 20 years assisting higher education and sponsored research programs in administration.

Jackie Schwartz, MPH is a Research Scientist and focuses on PRHE's research activities and communications, authoring PRHE's recent report, Shaping Our Legacy. Prior to joining PRHE, Jackie was a research associate at the Center for Children's Environmental Health Research at U.C. Berkeley, and served as a public health assessor and epidemiologist for the Environmental Health Investigations Branch of the California Department of Health Services. Her research has focused on evaluating the association between environmental exposures and health outcomes in both adults and children, including identifying risk factors for exposure to pesticides and other endocrine disrupting chemicals.

Kristin Shiplet is PRHE’S Operations Manager. She is responsible for overall organizational management and developing systems to assist with PRHE’s wide variety of projects. Her background is in Social Work and before joining the PRHE team, she worked at the Boys & Girls Clubs where she oversaw the creation and implementation of afterschool programs for low income youth.

Brittany Tadwilliams is an Assistant Clinical Research Coordinator with PRHE focusing on the Chemicals in Our Bodies 2 study which examines the effects of chemicals like BDE’s and Perfluorinated chemicals in the bodies of pregnant women and their babies at Zuckerberg San Francisco General and UCSF’s Mission Bay location. Brittany volunteered with the Environmental and Biological Department at the University of California Santa Barbara where she also graduated in 2013 with a B.A.

Aolin Wang joined PRHE as a postdoc in February 2016. Aolin comes to PRHE from UCLA where she earned her PhD in Epidemiology.  She has extensive training in epidemiologic methods and biostatistical modeling. Her research interests lie in developing computational approaches to study the role of the environment in pregnancy outcomes.