Our Team

Bethany Barone Gibbs, PhD

Email: bbarone@pitt.edu Phone: 412-383-4002 Curriculum Vitae (CV)

Dr. Bethany Barone Gibbs is an Associate Professor in the Department of Health and Human Development, and Clinical and Translational Science at the University of Pittsburgh. She trained in cardiovascular epidemiology and studies the prevention and treatment of obesity and cardiometabolic disease through healthy lifestyle behaviors. Her interests include population and intervention studies of physical activity, sedentary behavior, and eating habits as they related to hypertension, subclinical cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and obesity. Most recently, her research has focused on sedentary behavior as a risk factor, independent from moderate-to-vigorous intensity physical activity. These sedentary behavior studies have evaluated measurement and methods, longitudinal associations in cohort studies, and intervention methods to decrease sedentary behavior.    

STAFF

Kimberly Huber, MPH CCRC

Email: kah31@pitt.edu Phone: 412-383-4750

Kimberly Huber is a Clinical Research Coordinator in the Department of Health and Human Development at the University of Pittsburgh. She completed her graduate education at the University of Pittsburgh’s Graduate School of Public Health in the Behavioral and Community Health Sciences program. She has over 25 years of progressive experience managing and coordinating federal and industry-sponsored clinical trials at UPMC and within a variety of divisions in the Department of Medicine at the University of Pittsburgh. Selected studies that she coordinated involved the pharmacological treatment of behavioral disturbances in hospitalized patients with dementia, testing for methods of identifying mild cognitive impairment in the primary care setting, exploring the use of an anti-malaria drug for the prevention of type-II diabetes in pre-diabetic patients, and comparing two online methods of weight maintenance in primary care patients. In addition, she is certified as a Clinical Research Coordinator with the Association of Clinical Research Professionals. Currently, Kimberly is coordinating a study exploring how reducing sedentary behavior using sit-stand desks, activity prompters and health coaching can improve blood pressure outcomes in sedentary desk-workers. Kimberly was born and raised in the South Hills of Pittsburgh. After living in Ohio and the Washington D.C. area, she returned to the South Hills where she currently lives with her husband and two children. In her free time, she enjoys supporting her kids’ sports and music interests, doing anything outdoors, going to concerts, traveling, and trying out the many new restaurants in and around the city.  

Josh Paley, MPH

Email: jop78@pitt.edu Phone: 412-383-0567

Joshua Paley is a research assistant in the Department of Health and Human Development at the University of Pittsburgh. He obtained his bachelors of science at Binghamton University with a major in Molecular Integrated Neuroscience and a minor in Hebrew language. He then completed his graduate studies at the University of Pittsburgh’s graduate school of public health in the epidemiology program with a focus on neurological epidemiology. His graduate research included neurological aging and its effects on mobility in older adults. Previous research areas in which he explored includes the kappa opioid system, body composition, mobility in an aging population and engendering healthy masculinity in adolescents. Currently, Joshua is assisting in exploring and managing data of a study that is investigating the effects on blood pressure and arterial stiffness by reducing sedentary behavior in adults funded by the National Heart Lung and Blood Institutes. Joshua is originally from New Jersey and enjoys being outdoors and reading.  

Shannon McAdoo, BS

Email: snm59@pitt.edu Phone: 412-383-4047

Shannon serves as an interventionist on the RESET BP study in the Department of Health and Human Development. Through the use of sit-stand desks, strategic problem solving, and behavioral theories, she assists participants in discovering strategies and motivation to increase movement throughout the day. Shannon graduated from Boston University where she earned a Bachelor of Science in Behavior and Health. She is excited to continue to learn about movement and activity within sedentary populations and, specifically, she is interested in exploring accessibility of outdoor recreation for individuals who are differently abled.

Sabera Rahman, BS

Email: sar261@pitt.edu

Sabera Rahman is a Research Associate within the Health and Human Development Department at the University of Pittsburgh and will be working directly with the Pregnancy 24/7 Study! She received her bachelor’s degree in Public Health from Slippery Rock University and currently pursuing her Master’s in Public Health also from Slippery Rock University. She is from New York City but currently lives with her husband in Pittsburgh. Prior to working at University of Pittsburgh, Sabera worked as a Project Coordinator for The Prediabetes Trial at UPMC Health Plan. She began her role in UPMC as an intern for The Prediabetes trial, but later moved in to a casual position. At UPMC, Sabera worked for The Clinical Training and Development team to help facilitate group health coaching, data tracking and data management. She engaged participants in lifestyle related topics, motivated people from various age groups to live a healthy lifestyle by making simple choices such as exercising more, eating healthy and having a good night of sleep. A fun fact about Sabera: She is fluent in 4 languages!

STUDENTS

Anthony Holmes, MS

Email: ajh202@pitt.edu

Anthony is a PhD student in the Department of Health and Human Development, working under Dr. Bethany Gibbs. Originally from Glasgow, Scotland, he received his Bachelor’s degree in Sport and Physical Activity at Strathclyde University, and his Master’s degree in Sport and Exercise Science & Medicine from the University of Glasgow, both based in Glasgow, Scotland. His research interests lie in the area of Physical Activity for Health and the impact of Sedentary Behavior on overall health outcomes. Specifically, he is interested in how 24-hour movement patterns, incorporating Physical Activity, Sedentary Behavior and Sleep, interact with physiological and psychological health over the entire day. His previous research experience has involved analysis of Health-Related Quality of Life in office-based workers and 24-hour movement patterns in pre-school aged children. In his free time, Anthony has a passion for both playing and watching Football (Soccer) and enjoys the occasional scotch whisky.

Andrea Kozai, MS

Email: ack72@pitt.edu; Curriculum Vitae (CV)

Andrea Kozai is a Ph.D. student in Exercise Physiology in the Department of Health and Human Development under the mentorship of Dr. Bethany Barone Gibbs. Her research interests include: 1) how physical activity supports maternal physical and mental health during pregnancy and postpartum; 2) how the principles of exercise science can be used to improve health and performance in dancers; and 3) how dance can be used as a mode of physical activity for the general population. Andrea grew up outside Boulder, CO before completing her B.S. degree at Skidmore College in Saratoga Springs, NY with a double major in Exercise Science and Dance. She spent the next 7 years living in New York City, where she performed as a professional dancer and served on various committees of the International Association for Dance Medicine & Science. She moved to Pittsburgh with her husband in 2011, where she continued her performance career. She obtained her M.Sc. degree in Dance Science from the University of Wolverhampton in the United Kingdom in 2014, and began her Ph.D. studies in 2019.

Lexi Thrower, BS

Email: ANT145@pitt.edu

Lexi is currently a master’s student at the University of Pittsburgh in the Department of Health and Human Development. She received her bachelor’s degree in exercise science in 2020 from Slippery Rock University. Currently, Lexi is working with the Pregnancy 24/7 Study as a student researcher. She is also in the process of a thesis focusing on yoga intervention’s effect on heart rate variability. Lexi’s interest in yoga is demonstrated by her earning two 200-hour yoga certifications.

Former Graduate Students

Tyler Quinn, PhD

Email: yhh7@cdc.gov & Curriculum Vitae (CV)

Tyler received his PhD in exercise physiology at the University of Pittsburgh (Pittsburgh, US) in April 2020 working under Dr. Bethany Barone Gibbs. His dissertation research focused on occupational health promotion and cardiovascular health among workings with high amounts of occupational physical activity. He is currently working as a ORISE fellow at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (CDC/NIOSH). Tyler has worked on more than 6 major projects and has published over 20 peer reviewed publications in the areas of workplace health promotion, occupational thermal physiology, occupational physical activity, and cardiovascular health.    

Melissa Jones, PhD

Email: melissa-jones-1@uiowa.edu & Curriculum Vitae (CV)

Melissa received her PhD from the University of Pittsburgh in December 2020. Her dissertation research assessed the relationship between maternal behaviors during pregnancy with their child’s growth and motor development. Currently, Melissa is a postdoctoral research scholar at the University of Iowa in the Department of Health and Human physiology. Her research aims to improve maternal-child health across the lifespan by better understanding the impact of perinatal health behaviors and social determinants of health on the long-term cardiovascular health of the offspring.  

Abdullah Alansare, PhD

Email: aba79@pitt.edu Phone: 412-383-4022 Curriculum Vitae (CV)

Abdullah Alansare is a faculty member in the exercise physiology department at King Saud University. Luckily, he was granted a full-scholarship to pursue his graduate degrees. He holds a Master of Science in Applied Exercise Science. Currently, he is a PhD student at University of Pittsburgh in Health and Physical Activity department. He works under Dr. Bethany Gibbs’ supervision. He is interested in understanding cardiovascular physiology and the effects of exercise and sedentary behavior changes on cardiovascular health. Specifically, he is interested in understanding the association between blood pressure changes and heart rate variability (HRV) following physical activity and sedentary interventions in hypertensive patients. He believes that understanding these cardiovascular biomarkers (blood pressure and HRV) would help to create strategies that can prevent the development and complications of cardiovascular events especially the silent killer (hypertension).  

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