Comparative Effectiveness and Clinical Outcomes Research Center (CECORC)

 EMMEA MATTOX, was appointed Director of Medical Staff Services for the Comparative  Effectiveness and Clinical Outcomes Research Center (CECORC) in April 2023. She works closely with the Research Center Director, Dr. Raul Coimbra, oversees all aspects of the department, and maintains research compliance and regulatory standards.
Emmea has special training in Investigational New Drug (IND)/Investigational Device Exemption(IDE) Monitoring and sponsored drug trials. She is passionate about leading multidisciplinary research teams, study recruitment, and maintaining compliance and regulatory standards.
Before joining CECORC, Emmea was a Core Director at Scripps Research Institute in San Diego and worked at the Cleveland Clinic Hospital for nearly 19 years, serving in various roles ranging from direct patient care to research and compliance.
Emmea is a native of Cleveland, Ohio and in her spare time, she enjoys spending time with her family, traveling, and spoiling her dogs.

  LISA CHAN, is the Coordinator for the Comparative Effectiveness and Clinical Outcomes   Research   Center (CECORC). She joined the County of Riverside in 2016 as a Medical Staff   Coordinator. In July   of 2018, Lisa had the exciting opportunity to be a part of the start-up of   CECORC. A natural extrovert, she truly enjoys interacting with colleagues and assist   prospective researchers. On her days off, Lisa enjoys spending time with her kids, fiancé, traveling, cooking, hiking, and getting together with friends.

 MATT FIREK, is a Research Specialist II at Riverside University Health System Medical Center. After earning   a B.S. in chemical biology from UC Berkeley, he has been working in research for the past 11 years, from bench work to clinical trials to biostatistics. Currently he is focused on mining in sights from national scale databases about the comparative effectiveness of different treatments

BISHOY ZAKHARY, MPH, has expanded his bio-statistical skills for the last three years at CECORC. A graduate with an MPH from Loma Linda University, Bishoy dedicated his studies to Research Epidemiology and Biostatistics. He has extensive experience in data management and statistical analysis. With proficient utilization of Excel, SPSS, and SAS, Bishoy is able to apply his statistical skills in analyzing pilot to large datasets. Such skills include, but are not limited to, univariate analysis using chi-squared, ANOVA, pairwise comparisons hypothesis testing, general linear model, binomial and logistic regression analyses, and complex sample analyses for large survey data.
In his spare time, Bishoy works to expand his statistical skill set through data camp online courses in SQL and R Programming. Bishoy hopes to continue improving and expanding his skill set while assisting in the increase of research efforts within Riverside University Health System as a key research center in Riverside County.

TIMOTHY ALLISON-AIPA, Ph.D., is a Biostatistician who joined the Comparative Effectiveness and Clinical Outcomes Research Center (CECORC) team, by way of Loma Linda University School of Medicine, in June of 2020. In 1999, Tim earned his Ph.D. in Organizational Psychology from Alliant International University. Tim has 28 years of research experience, including 18 as a civilian and 10as an active-duty service member (rank of Major) within the United States Army Reserves as a Research Psychologist. While on active duty, Tim was the first author of two journal articles focused on psychological health of U.S. Army soldiers. Currently, with CECORC, Tim has been a co-investigator primarily examining outcomes related to emergency general surgery using the American College of Surgeon’s National Surgical Quality Improvement Project dataset. In his free time, Tim enjoys travelling with his wife, Debra, and is proud of his three children, Lauren, Matthew, and Micah.



BRANDON TRAN, Ph.D.,(He/Him) is a Research Specialist II with the RUHS Department of Behavioral Health and Comparative Effectiveness and Clinical Outcomes Research Center (CECORC). As a first-generation college student, Dr. Tran earned his PhD and master’s degree in Social-Personality Psychology from the University of California, Riverside (UCR), specializing in Health and Well-Being and certified in Diverse, Equitable, and Inclusive (DEI) graduate pedagogy.
As a researcher, Dr.Tran is fascinated by the complex interplay between biopsychosocial determinants of health and human behavior. During his time at UCR, Brandon worked with RUHS to examine how during pre-operative consultations affected patients’ perception of their clinician and post-operative care outcomes over time, publishing their work in the Annals of Behavioral Medicine (2016) and Health Communication (2020). At CECORC, Dr. Tran uses his expertise to lead multiple projects at the intersection of behavioral and public health – addressing racial-ethnic and LGBTQ+ disparities in care, social determinants of health, and developing quality improvement initiatives to promote high reliability in healthcare. In his spare time, Brandon enjoys challenging himself with Escape Rooms and sharing a meal with family and friends.

KUNIKO CHIJIWA, PhD, is a Research Specialist II (RS II) who joined the CECORC at RUHS–Medical Center in June 2023 after working at RUHS–Behavioral Health, Research Unit as an RS I for the past year. As a PhD in Sociology from the University of Florida, her research focuses on population in equality and racial/ethnic disparity in health and wellbeing using integrated research methods, which she applied over the past decade working in the Epidemiology Department at Virginia Commonwealth University and later in the San Bernardino County Probation Department. She has considerable experience in managing large quantitative data, survey design and implementation, and in conducting advanced statistical modeling. She enjoys using her skills in spatial analysis and mapping when community-level data are available to identify target communities, deprived populations, and health disparities. With a BA in Art, she has also contributed to innovative design elements in visual data presentation.
In her free time, Kuniko loves to spend time with their 20 cats plus various wildlife in Yucaipa and working in her backyard garden.


ALAA BIERMAN, DrPH, Alaa Alabadi-Bierman is a Research Specialist at Riverside University Health System-Behavioral Health (RUHS-BH) and the Comparative Effectiveness and Clinical Outcomes Research Center. She is a compassionate leader with a desire to provide culturally relevant solutions for populations facing an increased risk for health disparities. She is a Certified Health and Wellness populations facing an increased risk for health disparities. She is a Certified Health and Wellness Coach (NBC-HWC) and holds a master's degree (MPH) in Research Epidemiology from Loma Linda University where she also earned her doctoral degree in Preventive Care.  Prior to jointing CECORC, Dr. Alabadi-Bierman was an Epidemiologist at Los Angeles County Department of Public Health (LADPH) with almost four years of experience as a Public Health Practitioner. Her research interest focuses on longevity, lifestyle, and identifying the most effective strategies for promoting healthy behaviors and preventing chronic diseases like heart disease, diabetes, and cancer.


ANA LOPEZ, is a research specialist and has been passionately working for Riverside County for 27 years. She joined the CECORC team in November 2019. She graduated with honors from CSUSB with a BS degree in Health Sciences majoring in Public Health. She works conducting clinical research trials at RUHS Medical Center. She focuses ono enhancing the lives of others by reaching crucial steps in the development of new drugs that can safely be utilized and dispensed worldwide. She is motivated by her dedication to guiding, aiding, and advocating for underserved populations and the belief that there are two types of people in the world: Ones who accept the world as it is and ones who strive to change it. Ana, oin her free time, enjoys spending time with family, crafting and traveling. Additionally, she intends on visiting all the wonders of the world.




XIAOFEI (MICHAEL) ZHANG, MD, PhD, Nicknamed Micael, he has medical and toxicological backgrounds with publications of original research papers, reviews, and a book chapter. Under the title of Research Specialis, he is working as the equivalent role of a clinical research coordinator in the team to conduct the surgical clinical trials for the development of new drugs, devices, and treatment modalities. Michael is also helping with the data collection by chart reviewing for the retrospective clinical studies. He is a volunteer for the Stop the Bleed call free to the public for trauma prevention. Cooking and gardening are his favorite activities outside of work.





SELINA LEE, BSN, RN, is a Registered Nurse with over 27 years of nursing experience in the acute, sub-acute, ambulatory, correctional, and in-home patient care settings. Her vast experience includes Quality Management, Outpatient Clinical Management, Specialty & Ambulatory Clinic Supervision, Infusion Specialist, Critical Care, Urgent Care, Emergency Care Nursing, and Chronic Care Management. Selina earned her Doctor of Ministry degree from Next Dimension University and her Bachelor of Science in Nursing degrees from the University of Phoenix. As EGS Program Manager, Selina is dedicated to managing and coordinating the administrative functions of the program by maintaining a collaborative working relationship with the EGS Medical Director and maintaining a functional system of collaboration for programmatic, data, and quality improvement needs. Selina is passionate about foreign travel, attending music concerts and festivals, and spending quality time with her grandchildren and great-grandchildren.



VENICE RAMOS, LVN, is an Emergency General Surgery Surgical Clinical Reviewer who joined the Comparative Effectiveness and Clinical Outcomes Research Center (CECORC) in December 2020 as a Surgical Clinical Reviewer and Quality Improvement support for the Emergency General Surgery Verification Program. Venice has been and LVN for 26 years and started her journey working various roles at a Skille Nursing/Long Term Care facility before working bedside at an Acute Care hospital in the Telemetry unity. She then continued her nursing journey at Arrowhead Regional Medical Center, working the Quality Management/Performance improvement Department and Regulatory Department. Oner days off she enjoys spending time with her family and eagerly awaits the arrival of her first grandchild in July 2023.




SHIELA GILBERT, LVN, is the SCR/NSQIP Registry Site Manager for CECORC. She obtained her License in Vocational Nursing from Summit Career College in Colton, California Sheila is currently a Surgical Clinical Reviewer and Program Site Manager for the Americal College of Surgeons National Surgical Quality Improvement Program for Riverside University Health System. Sheila has 19 years of nursing experience, 15 at RUHS working in surgical specialties units, medical surgical units, outpatient clinics, Infection Control Department of Research




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