Travis Tatum, Ph.D.
“My experiences have prepared me well to offer my expertise as a researcher. For me, each new client provides an opportunity for me to engage the wide range of skills and depth of knowledge I have developed toward pursuing my vision of helping individuals, institutions, and communities reach their highest potential.”
—Travis Tatum, Ph.D.
As President of Creative Research Solutions, Dr. Travis Tatum is dedicated to helping individuals, institutions, and communities improve their performance through high quality research and deliverables. With his unique combination of excellent academic preparation, research training, and communication skills, Dr. Tatum is able to provide outstanding value to your organization.
Dr. Tatum earned his Ph.D. in Social Psychology at the University of Michigan, and currently resides in Atlanta, GA. As a social psychologist, Dr. Tatum is skilled in finding ways to measure seemingly “unmeasurable” outcomes. For example, his 2009 co-authored article in Group Processes and Intergroup Relations, “Teachers and Learners: Roles Adopted in Interracial Discussions,” examined the extent to which White and Black discussion participants felt that they were in “teacher” and “learner” roles while talking about race. Likewise, Dr. Tatum’s dissertation, Directed Attention and Stereotype Threat in Interracial Interactions examined White participants’ experience of stereotype threat in the context of talking about race. Each of these projects demonstrated Dr. Tatum’s ability to effectively measure social outcomes even when dealing with challenging issues or situations.
In addition to his academic experience, he has also developed strong facilitation skills through the CommonGround program at the University of Michigan. Facilitation differs from other communication skills in that it focuses on helping others bring forward their ideas to the benefit of the group, especially where either situational factors or individual differences in communication style might otherwise interfere with communication. When applied to interviews and focus groups, Dr. Tatum’s ability to thoughtfully engage with participants will greatly enhance the depth and quality of the data collected.
Dr. Tatum has previously served as President of the Atlanta-Area Evaluation Association.
Shanesha Brooks-Tatum, Ph.D.
“I am passionate about helping others become better at what they do. Seeing organizations and institutions in many different sectors provide high quality services and programming enables me as an evaluator to support impactful work in so many areas.”
—Shanesha R. F. Brooks-Tatum, Ph.D.
Dr. Shanesha Brooks-Tatum is Executive Vice President of Creative Research Solutions. As an award-winning evaluator, facilitator and thought leader, she strategizes with organizations to improve their programmatic design, program implementation, grantmaking strategy, and community partnerships. In her role as Founder and CEO of the Life Balance and Wellness Institute, Dr. Brooks-Tatum partners with an extensive network of organizations working to address disparities in educational funding opportunities and health policy issues for women and girls of color. Her results-driven approach measures and documents her clients’ impact, maximizes client resources, and enables them to tap into new markets. Dr. Brooks-Tatum is a Certified Results-Based Accountability (RBA) facilitator and trainer, having used the RBA framework to help nonprofits, foundations and the communities that they serve co-create collaborative, shared evaluation outcomes.
She currently serves as a strategist and consultant to a major, international, private foundation in the domains health and human rights philanthropy, where she collaborated on a rigorous strategy review of their global grantmaking portfolio for the last 4 years. While serving as the Project Lead on an international STEAM curriculum development project for middle school girls of color, Dr. Brooks-Tatum also served as the Lead Evaluator on the United Nations Foundation’s Retrospective Impact Evaluation of their Girl Up Campaign. She evaluated the five-year outcomes of this international campaign that raised $7.2 million for UN programs with more than 2,000 global partners and affiliates in health, education and civic engagement (2010 to 2015). These programs help girls in developing countries have the opportunity to see a doctor, attend school, and stay protected from violence.
Dr. Brooks-Tatum is trained in a variety of research methods and is also a skilled and sensitive facilitator. As a facilitator and evaluator for the United Way of Greater Atlanta (UWGA), Dr. Brooks-Tatum co-facilitated a series of ongoing training workshops (now numbering more than 25) with UWGA grantees and prospective partners to develop a new, shared framework for improving child well-being in the Greater Atlanta area. She then worked with UWGA staff, grantees, and community members to create shared action plans and evaluation frameworks for addressing racial, gender, and socioeconomic disparities at the child, family and community levels in the state of Georgia for each of the 14 strategies of the Child Well-Being Index. Her consultancy also provided key strategy and program development insights that helped Spelman College secure a 5-year, $2.7-million grant from the U.S. Department of Education in 2015 to test a metacognitive curriculum intervention, for which she serves as Lead Evaluator (2015 to 2020). This project is being considered for the highly-rigorous national registry in education, What Works Clearinghouse. In addition, Dr. Brooks-Tatum worked with the DeKalb County Office of Youth Services to assess the impact of six youth programs, each with a health or education focus.
Dr. Brooks-Tatum has been fortunate to receive several prestigious national and international fellowships and has served as Arts of Citizenship Fellow; the Institute for Research on Women and Gender (IRWG) Fellow; National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) Fellow; and U.S. Department of Education Fulbright-Hays Fellow (Brazil). Dr. Brooks-Tatum has won national and international awards for her work, including a recent National Association for Women-Owned Businesses Shining Star Award (2017). She also received an international honor, the 2016 Rising Star Award from the International Journal of Ethnic College Health for her work with the Life Balance and Wellness Institute in addressing health disparities among youth and college students of color. She serves on the Board of Directors for the DeKalb Chamber of Commerce and is a also member of their Education and Workforce Committee.
She earned her Ph.D. from the University of Michigan (American Studies, social science and humanities concentrations), and her Bachelor’s Degree from UC Berkeley (Interdisciplinary Studies and English), summa cum laude. Currently serving as Program Co-Chair for the American Evaluation Association’s Nonprofits and Foundations Topical Interest Group (AEA NPFTIG), Dr. Brooks-Tatum has also held visiting professor and visiting scholar appointments at several colleges and universities. An invited radio and television guest and featured writer at news and media outlets, Dr. Brooks-Tatum is the author of several print and media publications in the fields of educational and community research, evaluation, and self-care.
Nivedita Ranade, Ph.D.
Senior Evaluation Associate & Project Manager
Nivedita Ranade, Ph.D., has more than 9 years of professional experience in program evaluation, research design and measurement, data collection and analysis, dissemination, grant writing, and project management. She is skilled in providing technical assistance on evaluation, performance measurement, and continuous quality improvement. Her areas of program and policy expertise include child and family development in cultural contexts, early childhood and K-12 education, afterschool programs, and family risk and adversity—with an emphasis on evaluating home visiting programs.
As an Extension Services Consultant for National Center for Women and Informational Technology (NCWIT), Nivedita has served as a change leader for broadening minority populations’ (e.g., women, students with disabilities) participation in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) STEM fields. She has also worked as a child development specialist in Mumbai, India where she provided clinical support and designed prevention and intervention program to promote mental health and child and family welfare.
Nivedita earned her Ph.D. in Human Development and Family Studies from University of Connecticut. She also holds a certificate in Culture, Health, and Human Development from the University of Connecticut where she studied the cultural construction of children’s environments of daily life, and how these promote various aspects of development. She received her Masters of Science in Human Development from the University of Mumbai, India, and her undergraduate Bachelors of Science degree in Psychology from University of Mumbai, India.
Molly Matthews-Ewald, Ph.D., MS
Senior Evaluation Associate
Molly Matthews-Ewald, Ph.D., M.S., has over 12 years of experience in research and evaluation across an array of content areas. She is experienced in identifying and working with community stakeholders and leaders to develop, implement, and evaluate interventions and programs. She has experience in quantitative, qualitative, and mixed methods designs and analyses. Dr. Matthews-Ewald has expertise in developing and using a variety of data collection methodologies, including but not limited to, secondary data (e.g., administrative data, large federal datasets), performance measures/key performance indicators, surveys, observation tools, interviews, and focus groups. She has previously served as Project Director, Principal Investigator, Task Lead, Advisor, and Quality Assurance Officer across many projects for several Federal agencies (e.g., US Department of Health and Human Services/Office of Planning, Research & Evaluation; Centers for Medicaid & Medicare Services; Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services). Her collective professional experience has resulted in working with diverse populations. Dr. Matthews-Ewald’s content areas of expertise include primary, secondary, and tertiary obesity prevention; disordered eating; and school climate — much of which has focused on underserved populations. She has led or coauthored 20 peer-reviewed publications, 3 book chapters, over 35 presentations, several technical reports, and has extensive experience translating and presenting findings to a variety of technical and lay audiences.
Examples of her prior experience include working as part of the evaluation team to evaluate public health efforts to reduce obesity, increase physical activity, and improve nutrition through social marketing campaigns and policy initiatives in schools, hospitals, and communities throughout the Mid-Ohio Valley region in West Virginia as part of the CDC-funded Communities Putting Prevention to Work (CPPW). While a Research Associate at the University of Houston, she supported the implementation and evaluation of a family-based intervention (BOUNCE – Behavioral Opportunities Uniting Nutrition Counseling and Exercise) to reduce obesity-related conditions among underserved communities through the empowering Hispanic and African American youth (and their families) to establish healthy lifestyles (focused on nutritious eating, physical activity, and positive body image). Most recently, she served as the Performance Measures and Monitoring Task Lead of a Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) project evaluating the Zika Health Care Services Program (HCSP) which supports the prevention activities and treatment services for women, men, and children who were impacted or may be potentially impacted by the Zika virus. In this role, she updated and reported the performance measures quarterly and also provided technical assistance to grantees to report quarterly progress in implementing Zika-related activities. At her prior organization, she also oversaw the development of the final mixed-methods evaluation plan, development and revisions to the final data collection tools and protocols, including pilot testing, for the Health Resources & Services Administration (HRSA)/Maternal and Child Health Bureau’s (MCHB) Autism CARES Initiative. At her prior organization, she served as Project Director for the Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) study which determined whether it was feasible for FNS to develop a nutrition paraprofessional training program for Food Distribution Program on Indian Reservation (FDPIR) staff. This project included a series of telephone interviews with Indian Tribal Organization (ITO) directors, ITO staff, and stakeholders. Findings from this study were used to inform the development of a pilot training program.
Dr. Matthews-Ewald holds a Ph.D. in Public Health Sciences, concentration in Social and Behavioral Health, from West Virginia University. She earned her Master of Science in Exercise and Health Studies, concentration in Health Promotion, from Miami University. She also holds a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology, Leadership minor, from Christopher Newport University.
Anane Olatunji, Ph.D.
Senior Evaluation Consultant
With more than 30 years of experience as both educator and researcher, Dr. Olatunji brings a special blend of knowledge and expertise to Creative Research Solutions. He has spearheaded external evaluations of federal grant programs funded at more than $65 million dollars, which has included projects in K-12 education as well as higher education. Moreover, by providing technical assistance as well, his work has enhanced the development of educational programs of both state and local agencies nationwide.
A native of New Orleans, Dr. Olatunji is on a mission to inspire the aspirations and achievement of youth everywhere. He believes this goal can best be achieved by helping educational systems, programs, and schools to address the emotional as well as academic needs of young people. Accordingly, his expertise and interests focus on how the social context of education influences student engagement, well-being, and achievement. In addition to making numerous presentations on this topic at professional meetings nationwide and abroad, his research has been published in the Harvard Educational Review.
Dr. Olatunji is an alumnus of Harvard University, where he was graduated with a bachelor’s degree in sociology. Later, he earned a master’s degree from Teacher’s College-Columbia University, and then a doctorate in the sociology of mental health from Tulane University. He asserts that the social environments at these institutions were oftentimes more challenging than their curricula. These experiences continue to inform his research interests as well as his understanding of how the social context of education can have powerful impacts on outcomes not only in school but also in life.
Prior to working as an independent consultant, Dr. Olatunji served admirably in a variety of leadership roles in both researcher and educator. He was selected the first Director of Educational Research and Evaluation of College Summit in Washington, DC. He improved the quality of information used in decision making, enhancing both rigor and accuracy of college enrollment and persistence studies involving more than 150 high schools across the United States. In addition, he chaired the agency’s Research Council, an interdisciplinary committee of advisors.
As Educational Program Evaluator in Fairfax County Public Schools. Dr. Olatunji led an investigation of the system’s grading policy, then one of the most controversial concerns on educational access and equity in the Washington, DC area. In addition to addressing the school board, the superintendent’s leadership team, and the community, Dr. Olatunji and colleagues published a 120-page report of the findings. Subsequently, after one year in Fairfax, he received the superintendent’s Outstanding Performance Award.
As Assistant Professor of Education and Director of Public and Private School Initiatives at Dillard University, Dr. Olatunji forged partnerships with two of the lowest performing public schools in New Orleans. The result was a two-year grant awarded by the Louisiana Board of Regents to implement the Professional Development School model for teacher training. Further, he received the distinguished Verret Teaching Prize after his first year with the faculty. The award was based largely on peer reviews and presented by the assistant provost, who described Dr. Olatunji’s performance as “exceptional.”
Haly Hicks, MPA
Evaluation Associate & Assistant Project Manager
Haly Hicks is Evaluation Associate and Assistant Project Manager at Creative Research Solutions. Haly has deep experience providing services for a number of grant-funded K-12, STEM, teacher training and preparation, out-of-school time, and specialty court programs. She holds a Certificate in the Advanced Study of Program Evaluation from Claremont Graduate University and is an alumna of Georgia College having earned both a Masters of Public Administration (2010) and Bachelors of Arts in Political Science (2008). She also earned an Associates of Liberal Arts from Young Harris College (2006). Haly is passionate about improving outcomes in the lives of children through education, or community-based approaches, and the improvement of organizations and programs through data-informed decision-making and collaboration. She is an active member of the American Evaluation Association.
Mariah Laird, MPH
Mariah’s desire to create a culture that prioritizes health prevention instead of reactionary treatment is why she chose to pursue a public health career. She has put this mission to practice through prevention research, program implementation and evaluation, and project management. Mariah has experience working within state agencies with the goal of providing improved resources and programming options for local providers. As an independent contractor, she has worked extensively on creating and evaluating a socioemotional youth development program for a national organization. She has contributed to research on smoking cessation programs specifically designed for socioeconomically disadvantaged individuals. In addition, she has participated in the evaluation of community-based nutrition programs. Mariah’s skill sets include qualitative data collection and analysis, program proposals and development, survey development, process and outcome evaluations, and training development. Mariah’s professional and educational experiences are a source of strength as an advocate for health prevention strategies.
Mariah received her Masters in Public Health from Emory University’s Rollins School of Public Health with a concentration in Behavioral Science and Health Education and has also obtained certification as a Health Education Specialist. She received her B.A in Organizational Studies (OS) with a minor in Business Administration from the University of Michigan. Her OS education helps her understand businesses and organizations from a psychological and sociological perspective.
Adrian Glover, MDP
As an evaluator, Adrian believes in using transformative mixed-methods approaches that strive for equity and social justice. He has experience helping organizations working in the areas of community development, food justice, refugee health, and gender justice to reflect and learn about what they do and the change they want to create.
Adrian worked with Global Growers Network’s community development program, funded by the National Institute of Food and Agriculture to support local food systems, to develop an evaluation system grounded in equitable, developmental, and empowerment evaluation approaches. With Worldreader India, he led an endline evaluation of the Read to Kids early childhood literacy program in New Delhi. At CARE USA, Adrian worked with the Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning staff of CARE’s Tipping Point project supporting girl-driven movement building and community-level action to challenge and shift social norms perpetuating child marriage. He developed dashboards to visually track and manage monthly monitoring data, analyzed longitudinal qualitative data on changing social norms, and supported the creation of the project’s monitoring framework. Adrian has also done program management and evaluative work for organizations serving refugees in the US and Greece, coordinated volunteers working on various community development projects, and co-authored peer-reviewed publications on the federally-funded School Breakfast Program.
Adrian received his Masters in Development Practice from Emory University, where he earned concentrations in Monitoring and Evaluation and Statistical Analysis. During his graduate education, he was trained in qualitative data collection and analysis, community-based participatory methods, intersectional approaches, survey methods, design and analysis of complex samples, and statistical modeling. Adrian received his Bachelors of Science degree from Brigham Young University, where he studied public health and international development and was 2017 Health Science Student of the Year.
Gabriel Carter, MPP
Gabriel Edward Carter is an evaluation associate at Creative Research Solutions. He has a deep passion for using evaluation and public policy analysis as an advocacy tool for underrepresented and marginalized communities. He has experience in the areas of social policy; social welfare programs; political economy; legislative and regulatory affairs; and social and global justice.
Prior to his time at Creative Research Solutions, he was a research assistant and the Georgia Institute of Technology, where he addressed sex-trafficking in Atlanta Georgia; performed a program evaluation for the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation; and evaluated the Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) and Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) federal programs for the U.S. Department of Energy. He also served as a research assistant at the World Affairs Council of Atlanta, where he helped conduct research that informed and challenged new ways of thinking about global social, economic, political, and public health issues.
Gabriel also has political and policy experience at the federal and state level. During the 2018 Georgia Legislative Session, he served as chief of staff to State Representative Dar’shun Kendrick. In this role, he assisted Rep. Kendrick with research and evaluation of general legislation and budget appropriation legislation. His role also involved managing strategic partnerships, special projects, and staff. Additionally, from 2016-2017 he served as an HBCU Ambassador to the White House Initiative on Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs). In this role, he represented the interest of HBCUs to the White House and U.S. Department of Education. Furthermore, in 2015 Gabriel interned in the office of Congressman John Lewis through the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation.
Gabriel received his Masters of Science in Public Policy from the Georgia Institute of Technology (Georgia Tech) with a concentration in Policy Analysis and Policy Evaluation. During his time at Georgia Tech, he received training in quantitative data analysis, research design, microeconomics, public finance, policy implementation, and organizational theory and management. He received his B.A. in English Literature with a minor in Political Science from Oakwood University.
Patryce Turner serves as an Evaluation Consultant for Creative Research Solutions. She is a public health and evaluation professional who strives for excellence in client deliverables, satisfaction, and responsiveness. She has worked in the field of evaluation for 7 years. Her professional experience has granted her the opportunity to work with federal, state, and local agencies to provide evidence based program evaluation. Her past work experience spans an even more diverse background of projects and fields which includes: breast cancer, HIV/AIDS, obesity prevention, whole school, whole community, whole child initiatives, vaccines for children, K-12 health education curriculum, school policy/system/environmental change initiatives, and worksite wellness. She is proficient in program development and implementation, needs assessments, logic models, survey design, mixed methods data collection, data management, analyses, and reporting. Her current role with Creative Research Solutions allows her to maximize her strengths while providing the highest quality of deliverables to current and future clients.
In addition, Ms. Turner has served as Strategic Plan Evaluation Team Lead where she was able to bring her expertise, knowledge, and foresight to improve and align organizational development and goals. She is a highly skilled and motivated professional dedicated to evaluation integrity and support, and prides herself in providing high quality services to ensure increased program effectiveness and efficiency
Ms. Turner is currently a Public Health Analyst contractor with the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention where she supports the National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Disease (NCIRD) on the Immunization Information Systems team providing data analysis and reports. She received her Masters of Public Health from Mercer University with a certificate in Program Evaluation and her undergraduate Bachelors of Science in Exercise Science/Kinesiology from Auburn University.
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