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Oral History Project Staff

Research Investigators

Norman L. Foster, M.D. Norman L. Foster, M.D.

Professor of Neurology
Senior Research Scientist

Institute of Gerontology
University of Michigan

Norman L. Foster, M.D., Associate Professor of Neurology and Senior Research Scientist at the Institute of Gerontology, University of Michigan, has a clinical and research interest in dementing neurological diseases. As Associate Director of the Michigan Alzheimer's Disease Research Center at the University, he helped to develop the Center's Satellite Diagnostic and Treatment Centers to provide access to dementia care and research to underserved populations. In the process of developing one such clinic in Detroit, he became aware of the many barriers to dementia care for African-Americans. Although in part due to barriers experienced by all individuals with dementing disorders, he recognized that elderly African-Americans faced barriers due, in part, to attitudes about health care for chronic illnesses stemming from past health care experiences. This led to his involvement and then leadership of this oral history project.

In addition to his clinical research on brain chemistry and drug therapy, Dr. Foster has been committed to improve dementia care for patients in Michigan. He has been active in educational outreach to bring research advances to clinical practice and works with voluntary and state agencies to evaluate the role of health services in dementia care.

Dr. Neighbors Dr. Neighbors

Associate Professor of Health
Behavior and Health Education

School of Public Health
University of Michigan

Dr. Neighbors is Associate Professor of Health Behavior and Health Education in the School of Public Health at the University of Michigan. He is also an Adjunct Research Scientist at the Institute for Social Research where he is Associate Director of the Program for Research on Black Americans. Dr. Neighbors received his Ph.D. in Social Psychology from The University of Michigan in 1982. Dr. Neighbors did postdoctoral work at the Institute for Social Research where he was supported by the Rockefeller Foundation and the National Institute of Mental Health (New Investigator Research Award).

Dr. Neighbors' current research interests and areas of publication include psychiatric epidemiologic field methods, cultural influences on the diagnosis of mental disorder, and the utilization of informal and professional services by African Americans. He has directed both community and institutional surveys of African American mental health and was recently the recipient of a Research Scientist Development Award from the National Institute of Mental Health, where he studied ethnic differences in the social epidemiology of mental disorder. He is currently Principal Investigator of a study on the diagnosis of depression and schizophrenia among African American inpatients. Dr. Neighbors is Director of the Measurement Core section of the Michigan Center for Urban African American Aging Research. He is also Co-Principal Investigator of a recently-funded project using qualitative methods to investigate black and white clinician perceptions of how ethnicity and culture affect the diagnosis, rapport, and treatment of African American mental patients. He is currently writing manuscripts on the role of African American ministers as a primary help source among blacks seeking help for emotional problems, and the role of African American churches as an organizational base for delivering health education/promotion programs to African Americans with diabetes and other chronic health conditions.

Research Staff

Mvc-020f.jpg (169169 bytes) Dr. Myers

Research Investigator
Project Coordinator

George Myers III, Ph.D., is a Research Investigator and the Project Coordinator for this project. His major responsibilities included: supervising the day-to-day operation of the project; enlisting the cooperation of the African American community in the project; designing procedures for and conducting oral interviews; and coordinating the preservation, processing, analysis, and disseminating of the information collected. Dr. Myers has a doctorate in Urban and Regional Planning with a concentration in community organizing and participation from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. He has taught in the College of Engineering at the University of Michigan and has worked as an executive for a major insurance company for many years. In addition, Dr. Myers has extensive administrative and research experience in public health, health statistics, minority health, survey research, technical writing, and working with diverse groups.
Ron Amos Ron Amos

Research Associate

Institute for Social Research
University of Michigan

Ron Amos is a Research Associate and has sixteen years of experience working as a research support staff at the Institute for Social Research at the University. Ron has long had an interest in the delivery of health care and social services to underserved community populations. He has been particularly interested in and personally committed to providing for the social, health, and recreational services needs of pre-teenage and teenage economically disadvantaged youth. In addition, his prior work experience gave him a first-hand look at the social and health services utilization patterns of substance abusing adults. With academic training in psycholinguistics, psychology, and social science research methods, Mr. Amos brings to the Kellogg African American Health Care Project a diverse background in research and community involvement.

Support Staff

 Christopher Bacchus Christopher Bacchus

Christopher Bacchus provided staff support to the project as a student research assistant during his senior year at the university. He is graduating with a B.S. degree in psychology from the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor in May 1998. Mr. Bacchus has an interest in health policy administration.



Amy K. Hawkins Amy K. Hawkins

Amy K. Hawkins is a Research Assistant and her academic interests include American Studies, Women's Studies, Popular Culture, Composition, Ethnographic Theory and Methodology, and Anthropological Perspective and Contemporary Literature. Ms. Hawkins is currently a Ph.D. candidate in English with a cognate in Anthropology at Wayne State University in Detroit, Michigan. Her dissertation explores the cultural story of The Woman's (Hutzel) Hospital in Detroit, Michigan from 1929-1954.


Sehnita Joshua Sehnita Joshua

Sehnita Joshua provided staff support for the project as a student research assistant during her senior year at the University. She graduated from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor in May 1997 with a B.S. degree in biopsychology.


D. Lahti D. Lahti

D. Lahti is a community volunteer that has provided staff support for the project. She has a Master's degree in Public Administration and a graduate certificate in gerontology from Eastern Michigan University in Ypsilanti, Michigan. Ms. Lahti is currently an Associate Chief Technologist in Pediatrics at the University of Michigan Hospitals in Ann Arbor, Michigan.


Kristin Myers

Kristin Myers worked as a student intern during the summer of 1997. She will be graduating from Huron High School in Ann Arbor in June 1998. She will be attending the James Madison College at Michigan State University with an emphasis in political science and history.


Kyle Perry Kyle Perry

Kyle Perry is graduating with a B.A. degree in Psychology from the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor in May 1998. He has worked on the Kellogg Project as a research assistant for the past year. Kyle plans to attend the Temple University School of Medicine in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in August 1998.


Tylitha Stewart Tylitha Stewart

Tylitha Stewart is a graduate of Cass Technical High School in Detroit, Michigan. She has provided staff support to the project as a research assistant under the Undergraduate Research Opportunity Program at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. Ms. Stewart is currently a first year student at the university in the College of Engineering.


Carlos Weiss Carlos Weiss

Carlos Weiss provided staff support to the project as a student research assistant. He is currently a second year medical student at the University of Michigan Medical School.

Kellogg African American Health Care Project
Sponsored by the W.K. Kellogg Foundation of Michigan