Content Advisory Team

The Content Advisory Team at AZHEALTHTXT is comprised of individuals, across disciplines, from the University of Arizona and county representatives who are experts in their field and review our material to ensure we are providing the most up to date and accurate information.
Biographies for each member are listed at the bottom of the page.
Headshot of Lelia Barraza

Leila Barraza, JD, MPH

Associate Professor at Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health, University of Arizona

Director of the Arizona Area Health Education Centers program (AzAHEC)

Headshot of Kayle Skorupski

Kayle Skorupski, PhD, MS, RDN-AP, CNSC, FAND

Associate Professor of Practice, School of Nutritional Sciences and Wellness, University of Arizona

Director of Professional Programs

Director, Graduate Program in Dietetics (PSM Applied Nutrition – Dietetics)

Headshot of Peter Plahmer

Peter Plahmer, RN, BSN, ATCN-F

Trauma Outreach and Injury Prevention Coordinator, Banner University Medical Center–Tucson

Headshot of Mary-Frances O'Connor

Mary-Frances O'Connor, PhD, BA

Associate Professor of Clinical Psychology and Psychiatry, University of Arizona

Headshot of Corrie Hannah

Corrie Hannah, PhD, BA

Research Scientist, AIR International Programs

Headshot of Agnes Attakai

Agnes Attakai, MPA

Director, Health Disparities Outreach & Prevention Education

Faculty, Indigenous Public Health Certificate

Sheryl Nelson Headshot

Sheryl Nelson

Program Management Assistant at AHEAD AZ


Jenna Lynn Teso

Sybil Peters Headshot

Sybil Peters

University of Arizona Cooperative Extension, Pinal County: Community Outreach Supervisor for AZ Health Zone program
View the biographies of our Content Advisory Team members below.

Leila Barraza is an Associate Professor at Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health, University of Arizona. She is the Director of the Arizona Area Health Education Centers program (AzAHEC). She also serves as a Senior Consultant with the Network for Public Health Law – Western Region Office. Barraza received a Master in Public Health from the Zuckerman College of Public Health at the University of Arizona in 2004. She worked for the Center for Rural Health (formerly Rural Health Office) at the Zuckerman College of Public Health following the completion of her master’s degree. Barraza provided assistance to rural and tribal hospitals and clinics regarding new medical designation opportunities, health practitioner recruitment, emergency medical services, and funding opportunities. She received her J.D. with a Certificate in Law, Science, and Technology from the Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law in 2008. Following her graduation from law school, Barraza served as a law clerk for the Arizona Court of Appeals, Division One from 2009-2012. Prior to joining the Zuckerman College of Public Health as an Assistant Professor in 2014, Barraza served as Deputy Director of the Network for Public Health Law – Western Region Office, and a Fellow and Adjunct Professor in the Public Health Law and Policy Program at the Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law, Arizona State University. Barraza has been published in several scholarly journals, including JAMA, AJPH, Public Health Reports, Jurimetrics Journal, Annals of Health Law, and Journal for Law, Medicine, and Ethics. Barraza has also provided numerous presentations at national and local conferences on a variety of critical public health law issues. She instructs a public health law course for public health and law students and has given special lectures in health law and public health law courses. For five years, Barraza co-instructed a rural health service learning course that allowed graduate public health students to immerse themselves in rural communities. Barraza recently served as the Director of the Zuckerman College of Public Health’s Rural Health Professions Program since 2018. Her research interests include studying the impact of laws and policies on population health.

  • MPH
  • J.D.

Mary-Frances O'Connor is an Associate Professor of Clinical Psychology and Psychiatry at the University of Arizona. Her research focuses on the physiological correlates of emotion, in particular the wide range of physical and emotional responses during bereavement, including yearning and isolation. She believes that a clinical science approach toward the experience and mechanisms of grieving can improve interventions for prolonged grief disorder, newly included in the revised DSM-5.

  • BA 
  • Ph.D.

Corrie Hannah is a Research Scientist with AIR’s International Programs initiative that seeks to advance resilience scholarship in global contexts and promote research and educational opportunities related to international development at the University of Arizona. She also works with the Humanitarian Assistance Technical Support (HATS) initiative, where she is mobilizing a collaborative research agenda in coordination with a team of graduate and undergraduate students, the broader HATS network, and the USAID Bureau of Humanitarian Assistance.

Corrie’s current research topics focus on disaster recovery, equity in disaster management, knowledge production of disaster risk management in developing countries, and the institutional and legal dimensions of displacement, migration, and climate change. Her research portfolio incorporates quantitative and qualitative approaches to study a variety of topics related to community-based environmental governance, water resource management, water security, food security, food systems, and global environmental change impacts on rural communities.

  • BA, International Studies, Russian & Slavic Studies, University of Arizona
  • Ph.D., Environmental Social Sciences, Duke University

Agnes Attakai, a member of the Dine (Navajo) Nation, was raised on both the Dine homelands in Arizona and the urban California suburbs. She currently works as the Director of Health Disparities Outreach and Prevention Education for the Center for Rural Health at the University of Arizona Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health. Agnes has a Master of Public Administration degree and a Public Health Training Certificate for American Indian Health Professionals from Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.

Her role is to engage and collaborate with Tribal Nations and underserved communities in Arizona to reduce health disparities and promote health equity. She has a broad background in community health, public health education, health communication, health promotion/disease engagement, and STEM mentoring specifically in rural/frontier American Indian communities.

She has also been a guest lecturer in undergraduate and graduate classes at the College of Medicine and College of Public. She teaches HPS 597Maternal & Child Health Programs in the Rural Southwest Service Learning as part of the Indigenous Public Health Certificate program and FCM 101 Success in Native Health Pathways.

Agnes is a member of the American Indian Science and Engineering Society (AISES), National Rural Health Association (NRHA), Society for Advancement of Chicanos/Hispanics and Native Americans in Science (SACNAS) and American Public Health Association (APHA), with leadership roles on the NRHA Rural Health Equity Council, SACNAS Native American/Indigenous Affairs Committee, and Arizona Rural Womens Health Network.

  • BA, Political Science and American Indian Studies, University of Arizona
  • MPA, Public Administration, University of Arizona

I have over 10+ years’ experience in program coordination, project management, and strategic planning, along with a background of hands-on experience with direct education and trauma informed approaches at my past position and in my current position. In my current role I oversee the implementation of the AZ Health Zone program for Pinal County and La Paz County. This program focuses on supporting communities across Arizona to make healthy changes in homes and neighborhoods. From local community gardens, to working with schools to create healthy environments, AZ Health Zone provides families opportunities to be active and healthy their way!

One of our current projects is the Pinal Healthy & Active app which puts fresh food, delicious recipes, and fun activities within reach. This is a joint project between the Pinal County Public Health Services District and AZ Health Zone, this free health and wellness app brings together numerous community partners throughout the county in one, easy-to-use app.


BA, Early Childhood Education, Northern Arizona University