Tobacco Research Programs Staff

Amanda Anderson

Amanda Anderson is a Community Program Specialist for the University of Minnesota's Tobacco Research Programs. Amanda is a graduate of the University of Minnesota with a BA in Psychology and has been working in the field of nicotine and tobacco dependence since 1994. Amanda has coordinated numerous Smoking Cessation and Harm Reduction Trials and has spent over 25 years treating smokeless tobacco and cigarette users.

Laura Dick, MPH

Laura Dick, MPH, is a Clinical Research Coordinator and has been working with the Tobacco Research Programs through the Masonic Cancer Center since 2014. Laura received a B.S. in psychology with an emphasis in research from the University of Minnesota Twin Cities. She received her Master's degree in Public Health through the University of Minnesota's School of Public Health in 2020. Laura’s roles on the research team include participant and study coordination, processing of biosamples, data entry and analysis. Laura has received basic training for certification in phlebotomy, and provides phlebotomy services for studies within the Tobacco Research Program.

Christine Dittel

Christine Dittel is a Research Coordinator for the University of Minnesota’s Tobacco Research Program. She started her research career at the U of M in 1991 after graduating from the University of Wisconsin- River Falls majoring in Psychology and Criminal Justice. She has worked on numerous preventative and early intervention initiatives for those at risk of addiction.

Andrew Egbert

Andrew Egbert is a Research Coordinator for the University of Minnesota’s Tobacco Research Program. He received a B.A in Psychology in 2013 from Gettysburg College. Prior to joining the Tobacco Research Program, Andy coordinated Screening, Brief Intervention, and Referral to Treatment (SBIRT) research, related to underage drinking in minority communities outside Washington DC.

Mari Gades

Mari Gades is a PhD candidate in Psychology's Cognitive and Brain Sciences program at the University of Minnesota. She earned her BA in Psychology from Colorado College. Mari joined the Tobacco Research Programs to write her dissertation, which focuses on the abuse potential of electronic cigarettes (e-cigs, vapes) and their potential regulation by the FDA. Her career goal is to teach undergraduate psychology and neuroscience courses, and to direct her own research lab to teach undergraduate students research methods and science communication.

Katherine (Kat) Harrison, MPH

Katherine (Kat) Harrison has been working as a study coordinator for Tobacco Research Programs since 2010. Her work at the University of Minnesota has included research related to the use of exercise and relaxation as a smoking cessation tool. She completed her Masters of Public Health 2008. Before working with the University of Minnesota's Tobacco Research Programs, Kat worked as an epidemiologist in both Maine and the City of Baltimore.

Louise Hertsgaard, MA, TTS

Louise Hertsgaard received a M.A. in Developmental Psychology at University of Minnesota, 2007 and was certified as a Tobacco Treatment Specialist, Mayo Clinic Nicotine Dependence Center, 2008. Currently, she is a clinical research coordinator for the Tobacco Research Programs at the University of Minnesota. Since 2005 she has coordinated studies using oral tobacco and reduced nicotine content cigarettes to help people quit smoking.

Joshua Ikuemonisan, MD, MPH

Joshua Ikuemonisan joined the Tobacco Research Programs in July 2018 after completing his masters training in Epidemiology with a focus on clinical trials and Biostatistics at the University of Minnesota. He also has training as a physician form the University of Ibadan School of Medicine. His main projects are a clinical trial looking at oxidative damage and potential carcinogenesis in smoking and e-cigarette use and a Phase I clinical trial evaluating the metabolism of carcinogens in smokeless tobacco using deuterated NNN. His research goals are understanding the mechanisms of tobacco associated carcinogenesis, tobacco control and reduction in cancer incidence and reducing disparity.

Joni Jensen, MPH

Joni Jensen is the Tobacco Research Programs Clinic Manager. She is responsible for the administration of Dr. Dorothy Hatsukami and Dr. Stephen Hecht's research projects and is also responsible for regulatory oversight. She has worked in the tobacco research area for the past 25 years. Please contact her with any questions or concerns about the Tobacco Research Programs projects or staff.

Karen Kelley

Karen Kelley is the Executive Assistant to Dorothy Hatsukami, Director of Tobacco Research Programs. In addition to her many duties as Dr. Hatsukami's assistant, Karen coordinates meetings and seminars for the Tobacco Research Programs and the Prevention and Etiology Program.

Samantha Ky

Samantha Ky is a Clinical Research Coordinator and has been working with the Tobacco Research Programs since 2020. She received a B.S. in Animal Science from the University of Minnesota. Her roles on the research team include participant and study coordination, processing of bio-samples, and data entry.

Jane Schulz, MPH, RN, CNP

Jane Schulz has been working as an adult nurse practitioner in tobacco and cocaine use research since 2008. She has responsibility for the entrance and exit physical exams for study participants where the studies require them. She also assists our medical directors in review of the participants' charts and provides some required skills training and updates for staff. She has a master's degree in public health and has spent most of her career working in public health both clinically, primarily in primary care with under-served and under-insured populations, as well as in other areas of research particularly HIV/AIDS, STIs, and tuberculosis.

Lori Strayer, MPH, MS

Lori Strayer is a Research Fellow, and has been supporting cancer research with faculty in Epidemiology and recently Tobacco Research since 2006. She received degrees and worked in engineering prior to pursuing a Masters Degree in Public Health in Epidemiology. Lori's roles on the research team is to assist with regulatory requirements and data management.

Hanna Vanderloo, RN, MSN

Hanna Vanderloo is the Cancer Prevention and Control Program Manager. She is responsible for the oversight of several research projects including Dr. Irina Stepanov's and Dr. Stephen Hecht’s projects. She has worked in clinical research for over thirteen years, in tobacco research for the past six years and joined the Tobacco Research Programs in 2017.         


Tobacco Research Programs
717 Delaware St SE
Minneapolis, MN 55414

Phone: 612-626-5155
Fax: 612-624-4610