Our Team

OUR TEAM


LEADERSHIP

Craig J. Bryan, PsyD, ABPP

Executive Director

Craig J. Bryan, PsyD, ABPP

Executive Director
Dr. Craig J. Bryan, is a board-certified clinical psychologist in cognitive behavioral psychology, and is currently the Executive Director of the National Center for Veterans Studies at The University of Utah. Dr. Bryan received his PsyD in clinical psychology in 2006 from Baylor University, and completed his clinical psychology residency at the Wilford Hall Medical Center, Lackland Air Force Base, TX. He was retained as faculty in the Department of Psychology at Wilford Hall Medical Center, where he was Chief of the Primary Care Psychology Service, as well as the Suicide Prevention Program Manager for Lackland AFB. Dr. Bryan deployed to Balad, Iraq, in 2009, where he served as the Director of the Traumatic Brain Injury Clinic at the Air Force Theater Hospital. Dr. Bryan separated from active duty service shortly after his deployment, and currently researches suicidal behaviors and suicide prevention strategies, and psychological health and resiliency. He currently manages numerous federally-funded projects in excess of $10 million, to include studies testing cognitive behavioral treatments for suicidal service members, developing innovative methods to identify and detect high-risk military personnel and veterans, and disseminating effective treatments to health care providers and the public. Dr. Bryan has published over 120 scientific articles and several books including Managing Suicide Risk in Primary Care, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Preventing Suicide Attempts: A Guide to Brief Treatments Across Clinical Settings, and the Handbook of Psychosocial Interventions for Veterans and Service Members: A Guide for the Non-Military Mental Health Clinician. He is the lead risk management consultant for the $25 million STRONG STAR Research Consortium and the $45 million Consortium to Alleviate PTSD, which investigates treatments for combat-related PTSD among military personnel, and has served on the Board of Directors of the American Association for Suicidology. He is considered a leading national expert on military and veteran suicide. For his contributions to military mental health and suicide prevention, Dr. Bryan has received numerous awards and recognitions including the Arthur W. Melton Award for Early Career Achievement, the Peter J.N. Linnerooth National Service Award, and the Charles S. Gersoni Military Psychology Award from the American Psychological Association; and the Edwin S Shneidman Award for outstanding contributions to research in suicide from the American Association of Suicidology.

AnnaBelle O. Bryan, MS

Operations Director

AnnaBelle O. Bryan, MS

Operations Director
AnnaBelle Bryan is the Director of Operations for the National Center for Veterans Studies at the University of Utah. AnnaBelle served on active duty in the U.S. Air Force for 20 years as a public health technician and executive officer at several military installations worldwide, to include a deployment to Iraq in 2009, where she was responsible for disease monitoring and health surveillance for over 25,000 military personnel and civilian contractors. Since her retirement from active duty service in 2012, AnnaBelle has been conducting research focused on military and veteran suicide prevention, PTSD (combat & MST), moral injury, and performance in these populations. She has written about athletic performance and risk for burnout in Air Force Special Forces. She is the project coordinator of two Department of Defense-funded studies aimed at identifying indicators of emerging suicide risk on social media networks, and currently serves as the Co-Investigator of a DOD-funded study to identify optimal methods for enacting firearm safety procedures to prevent military suicide. A certified peer specialist trainer, AnnaBelle provides training and supervision to veteran peer specialists across the state of Utah and helps service members and veterans struggling with mental health conditions to find and obtain empirically-supported treatment. AnnaBelle holds a degree in public health from the American Military University, and a master’s degree in Exercise & Sports Psychology from The University of Utah.

Angela Brink, MBA

Executive Assistant

Angela Brink, MBA

Executive Assistant

Feea Leifker, PhD, MPH

Director of Clinical Services

Feea Leifker, PhD, MPH

Director of Clinical Services
Dr. Feea Leifker, Ph.D., M.P.H, is a licensed clinical psychologist and Research Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychology. She serves as the Director of Clinical Services for the NCVS. She received her doctorate from The Pennsylvania State University and earned a master’s degree in public health from Emory University. She completed her predoctoral internship at the University of California, San Diego/San Diego Veterans Affairs Medical Center, where she provided couple therapy and evidence-based treatments for anxiety disorders and PTSD to veterans. Her research has focused on understanding how mental health problems, particularly PTSD, impact relationships, and how social support and other relationship factors can be used to enhance recovery from mental health conditions.

AnnaBelle Bryan, MS

Director of Engagement and Peer Support

AnnaBelle Bryan, MS

Director of Engagement and Peer Support

Craig Bryan, PsyD, ABPP

Director of Research

Craig Bryan, PsyD, ABPP

Director of Research

Justin C. Baker, PhD

Director of Training Institute

Justin C. Baker, PhD

Director of Training Institute
Dr. Justin C. Baker, is a licensed clinical psychologist and Research Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychology. He serves as the Director of Training for the National Center for Veterans Studies (NCVS) Training Institute. He completed his graduate studies at Biola University in Los Angeles, California and his predoctoral internship at the Charles George VA Medical Center in Asheville, North Carolina. Following internship, he commissioned as an officer in the United States Navy completing his postdoctoral fellowship at Naval Medical Center Portsmouth in military mental health. From there he was stationed at Camp Lejeune in Jacksonville, North Carolina, where he primarily treated active duty Marines with combat related injuries of posttraumatic stress disorder and traumatic brain injury. In his current role as Director of Training within NCVS he oversees scheduling and coordination of NCVS training workshops and presentations; provides clinical services within the context of approved research studies; conducts clinical supervision with graduate psychology and social work students; and submits proposals for extramural funding. His research interests are focused on applied interventions and treatments for trauma disorders and novel approaches of reducing suicide risk in active duty military and veteran populations.
Research Staff

David Rozek, PhD

David Rozek, PhD

Sean Williams, LCSW

Evaluator

Sean Williams, LCSW

Evaluator

Kim Arne, LCSW

Evaluator

Kim Arne, LCSW

Evaluator

Tyler Cheney, LCSW

Research Staff

Tyler Cheney, LCSW

Research Staff

Hilary A. Smith, MA

Clinical Evaluator

Hilary A. Smith, MA

Clinical Evaluator

Johnnie Young, BS

Research Associate, Project Coordinator

Johnnie Young, BS

Research Associate, Project Coordinator

Shelby Nicole Baker

Research Associate, Administrative Assistant

Shelby Nicole Baker

Research Associate, Administrative Assistant

Ifrah Majeed

Research Associate, Research Manager

Ifrah Majeed

Research Associate, Research Manager

Emma Fulbright

Research Associate, Clinical Assistant

Emma Fulbright

Research Associate, Clinical Assistant

Lauren Khazem, PhD

Post-Doctoral Fellow

Lauren Khazem, PhD

Post-Doctoral Fellow

Jeffrey Tabares, PhD

Postdoctoral Fellow

Jeffrey Tabares, PhD

Postdoctoral Fellow

Erika Roberge, MS

Graduate Student

Erika Roberge, MS

Graduate Student

Julia Harris, MS

Graduate Student

Julia Harris, MS

Graduate Student

Kent Hinkson, MS

Graduate Student

Kent Hinkson, MS

Graduate Student

Kelsi Rugo, MA

Graduate Student

Kelsi Rugo, MA

Graduate Student

Analyse Vazquez, BS

Graduate Student

Analyse Vazquez, BS

Graduate Student

Malisa Brooks, LCSW

Graduate Student

Malisa Brooks, LCSW

Graduate Student

William Russell, MSW

Graduate Student

William Russell, MSW

Graduate Student

Dillon Ely

Graduate Student

Dillon Ely

Graduate Student

Jill Amdt

Research Assistant

Jill Amdt

Research Assistant

Rae Kovrick

Research Assistant

Rae Kovrick

Research Assistant
Research FELLOWS

Brian Baucom, PhD

Research Fellow

Eric Garland, PhD, LCSW

Research Fellow

Eric Garland, PhD, LCSW

Research Fellow

James Griffith, PhD

Research Fellow

James Griffith, PhD

Research Fellow

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