I’m never really sure what to put in sections about me. They seem so trite. So, I’ll borrow from what others tell me about me.

I’m a dedicated workaholic who truly loves her job and hopes to make the life of at least one person a little better. I’ve worked in public health for almost more than 20 years now, first as a budding medical anthropology undergraduate and graduate student involved in multidisciplinary research teams and then as an applied researcher working with various experts in the Eastern United States and then in Moscow, Russia and other parts of Eastern Europe and Central Asia.

My true passion lies in helping women and children, particularly those who are otherwise forgotten or whose voices are not heard for whatever reason. I began my career looking at issues surrounding family planning, then tackled pregnancy and childbirth, and ended up focusing on HIV (along with tuberculosis and drug use) in Eastern Europe and Central Asia. After working for years as a consultant for various nongovernmental and multilateral agencies with a particular emphasis on development aid specifically as it relates to HIV, tuberculosis and drug use, I am also an instructor and reviser at the University of Helsinki working with Language Services. At the university, I work with PhD students and post-doctorates primarily assisting them on how to become better researchers and professionals by improving their skills as communicators, both within and beyond the halls of the academy.

The most significant parts of me and my life belong to an amazing man who has changed me and my perspective on the world around me in profound ways. He is simply known as ‘The Cuban’. We met in Moscow, moved to Helsinki together, and claim the silliest of all cats as our own: Squeaky Pollito Pito Frito Fu. The politics and practicalities of an American and Cuban building a life together aside, we live simply and we like it that way. The journey has not always be easy, nor do we expect it to be all rainbows and kittens. But, together, we can conquer just about anything.

Thanks for reading. Comments are most welcome and encouraged. My only request is that any discussions should be respectful and all attempts are made to refrain from bashing, stereotyping, and acrimony. I shall endeavour to follow these basic rules myself.

Peace out and be kind.

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