Smith Child Health Catalyst

The Smith Child Health Catalyst provides activation energy to advance community and population health, outcomes research, and evaluation focused on children and families within Lurie Children's and beyond. Catalyst is a service center that strengthens interdisciplinary collaboration, academic competitiveness, and scientific rigor of qualitative, quantitative, and mixed-methods research within Stanley Manne Children’s Research Institute. Catalyst is made up of faculty scientific leads and a dedicated team of project management, statistician, and research coordinator staff, who team up with investigators and community partners to develop proposals and carry out funded work. Catalyst also provides consultation and education to build capacity in these approaches and serve as a resource. Catalyst faculty and staff hold expertise in digital-engagement, user-centered design, practiced-based research, community engagement, implementation science, and program evaluation. Catalyst also has extensive experience recruiting, working with, and retaining research participants from historically marginalized groups.

If you are looking to begin or enhance your research or evaluation efforts with the Catalyst team, please complete the form below.

For questions or more information, contact

Catalyst Request Form

We ask that clients seeking to include Catalyst services in a grant proposal submit a request form at least two weeks in advance of any submission deadlines. Internal investigators must account for the 10-day grant processing window required by Lurie Children's OSP. If you are developing a submission for a Special Funding Opportunity with a short turn-around, please feel free to reach out and we will do our best to accommodate a quicker timeframe.

Type of Requests (Three Levels of Engagement)

  • Consultation: Request for a 30- to 60-minute consultation with a Catalyst staff member. This free service can include learning more about our services or brainstorming to clarify your needs.  
  • Service provision: Request to utilize Catalyst services or Catalyst staff/expertise to complete project activities.  
  • Team science: Request to include Catalyst faculty and/or staff on a project at the grant proposal or planning stage.  

Type of Services   

Consultations, service provisions, and collaboration/team science requests are available for the following services:  

  • Program evaluation  
  • Scientific and evaluation contributions to proposal development  
  • Developing survey, interview, and focus group questions and protocols  
  • Use of the Voices of Child Health in Chicago Parent Panel (VOCHIC) 
  • Patient, family, and community-engaged research 
  • Research in the primary care community practice setting 
  • Identifying, recruiting, engaging, and retaining participants 
  • Data collection (survey, needs assessment, interviews, focus groups) 
  • Quantitative and qualitative analysis 
  • Dissemination of results   
  • And so much more 

2023 Service Bundles and Rates

Catalyst services are grouped into five separate bundles and rates. View details here.


Meet Our Team

Michelle Macy, MD, MS

Scientific Director

Emily R. Golbeck, MBA, CCRP

Director of Operations

Adam Becker, PhD, MPH

Scientific Lead, Evaluation and Community Engaged Research

Marie E. Heffernan, PhD

Scientific Lead, Survey Methods

Michael S. Carroll, PhD

Scientific Lead, Quantitative Methods

Adolfo J. Ariza, MD

Scientific Lead, Practice Engaged Research

Seema K. Shah, JD

Scientific Lead, Research Ethics

Carolyn C. Foster, MD, MS

Scientific Lead, User Centered Design

Sara Huston, MS

Scientific Lead, Perspectives Research and Participant Partnership

MicKayla Jones, MPH

Manager of Research Operations

Callie Kaplan, PhD, MPH

Senior Research Scientist

Leo Barrera, MPH

Research Scientist

Anna Bowie, MPH

Research Program Manager

Leah Hoelscher, MS, CCLS

Research Program Manager

Bethany Pollock, MPH

Research Program Manager

Carolyn Sutter, PhD

Research Program Manager

Carly Menker, MS

Behavioral Research Coordinator II

Diana Madden, MA

Behavioral Research Coordinator III

Emily Barnes, MPH

Behavioral Research Coordinator II

Linda Martinez, MPH

Behavioral Research Coordinator II

Liana Massey

Behavioral Research Coordinator II

Zecilly Guzman

Behavioral Research Coordinator II

Cameron Cooper, MPH

Behavioral Research Coordinator II

Leo Castillo

Behavioral Research Coordinator II

Ashley Hayes

Behavioral Research Coordinator II

Peter Walsh

Behavioral Research Coordinator II

Abigail Guillaume

Behavioral Research Coordinator I

Roman Gomez

Program Coordinator