Community Research Liaisons and Coalitions

The OCTRI Community Research Hub has adopted an innovative approach to build capacity for community engaged research across the state of Oregon through the support and dissemination of the role of Community Research Liaisons,  and the development of regional Research Coalitions.  Community Research Liaisons live and work in their communities and work side by side with community leaders and health and wellness stakeholders to improve health in the region.

 A Community Research Liaison is a key player in the research process who helps bridge the gap between OHSU and the geographical area of interest.

The liaison’s key roles include

  • Assisting with and helping enhance research projects
  • Ensuring that the Project Assistance Program is available to their region
  • Supporting their regional Community Research Coalition

  • Engages and understands the community to identify opportunities that can benefit from collaboration with academic partners, other experts and/or research and evaluation support. 
  • Facilitates community engaged research, connecting community members with academic collaborators and research resources or services within and beyond the region. 
  • Strengthens bidirectional communication between OHSU and rural communities, to help ensure an informed and unified OHSU presence
  • Delivers educational materials and workshops to help develop research best practices and skills that remain in the community.
  • Shares information about important, community oriented funding opportunities.
  • Conducts ongoing assessments to evaluate local needs, resources and capacity.

Steven Blakesley - is located in the North Coast Region and his region includes Clatsop, Tilamook and Columbia counties.

Chelsea Ruder - is located in the Columbia River Gorge Region and her region includes Hood River, Wasco, Sherman and Gilliam counties

C. Oregon Liaison - is located in the Hub office in the Central Oregon Region and their region includes Deschutes, Crook and Jefferson counties.

S. Coast Liaison - is located in the South Coast Region and their region includes Coos, Curry and Douglas counties.

Lynda Daniel - is located in the Southern Oregon Region and her region includes Klamath and Lake counties.

Headshot of Steven Blakesley North Coast Liaison
Steven Blakesley
Headshot of Chelsea Ruder Columbia River Gorge liaison
Chelsea Ruder
Headshot of Lynda Crocker Daniel Southern OR Liaison
Lynda Daniel

A Community Research Coalition is a community-academic partnership organized to develop opportunities that support data-driven decision making and research best practices to improve overall community health. Each coalition has a slightly different structure to meet the unique needs and priorities of the community.  All the coalitions include  an advisory group that is comprised of community members that represent the diversity and interests in each region. The model of engagement is based on collaboration and shared leadership and ensure the community is an active part of the research process. 

The purpose of developing a research coalition is to bring local and regional stakeholders together with academic partners to collaborate, network and build local capacity for improving health and wellness in the community. Community assessments are conducted to identify gaps and opportunities where projects and organizations can be best supported by resources including; academic expertise, research services, funding opportunities, and training. 

The  OCTRI Community Research Hub (Hub), located in Central Oregon is directed by Jackilen Shannon, PhD, MPH. Kim Brown, MBA, and the Hub staff support the team of five regional Community Research Liaisons and their associated community-driven research "coalitions."  The Hub houses a Project Assistance Program, Research Navigators and provides expertise in the areas Human Subjects' Protection, Project Design and Implementation. The Community Research Liaisons meet weekly with the Hub team to share and learn about other regional projects and successes and to leverage other research opportunities for broader impact.

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Get in touch with a liaison in your area today!

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