Faculty, staff, and administrators at the Palmer Center for Chiropractic Research are dedicated individuals who seek to advance public health by developing knowledge and translating that knowledge to the practice of chiropractic health care.

The faculty and professional staff are the engines of success at the Center. They:

  • identify meaningful research questions.
  • collaborate with investigators within and beyond the College.
  • obtain external research funding, design and execute high-quality research studies.
  • serve as graduate and postdoctoral research mentors.
  • play a key role in teaching clinical research masters students.
  • participate in evidence-based training of chiropractic students.

In addition, in recognition of the growing complexity of the research conducted at Palmer College, the Center holds to the highest ethical standards for the use of human subjects and animals in its research.


  • Christine Goertz, DC, PhD, Vice Chancellor of Research and Health Policy
  • Cynthia Long, PhD, Director of Research, Davenport Campus
  • Liang Zhang, MD, PhD, Director of Research, Florida Campus
  • Robert Cooperstein, MA, DC, Director of Research, West Campus

Research Faculty

Robert Cooperstein, MA, DC
Cynthia Long, PhD

Professor Emeritus
Joel G. Pickar, DC, PhD

Visiting Scholar
William Weeks, MD, MBA

Associate Professors
James W. DeVocht, DC, PhD
Maruti Ram Gudavalli, PhD
Maria A. Hondras, DC, MPH
Stephen M. Onifer, PhD
William Reed, DC, PhD
Robert Vining, DC

Assistant Professors
Ting Xia, PhD

Professional, Technical and Administrative Staff

Animal Care Unit Core
Randall S. Sozio, BS, LATG
Animal Care Manager

Paul Thorpe, BS
Animal Technician

Biomechanics Core
Varun Hariwan, BS
Biomechanics Research Assistant

Cell Biology Lab
Chao Hua Yao, MD
Cell Biology Laboratory Technician

Clinic Core
James Boysen, DC, MS
Research Clinician

Therese Devlin, RT(R), BS
Clinical Research Associate

Jennifer Negron, BA
Office Assistant

Michael Seidman, MSW, DC
Research Clinician

Elissa Twist, DC, MS
Study Coordinator

Clinical Research Fellows
William Alexander, DC
Julie Hartman, DC
Janice Kane, DC
Amy Mathis, DC

Office of Clinical Studies  
Erin Cesario, BA, CCRC
Clinical Project Manager 

Darla Freehardt, BS, LPN, CCRP
Clinical Project Manager

Wendy Freiberger, CCRC, RN, BSN, BA, CRCP
Clinical Project Manager

Bridget Kane, MS, CCRC
Clinical Project Manager II

Abigail Roots, BA
Clinical Project Manager

Stacie Salsbury, RN, PhD
Clinical Project Manager

Office of Data Management & Biostatistics
Greg Boyer, BS
Web Programmer

Lance Corber, MSITM
Data Core Manager

Research Administration
Leah Cafer

Katie Hoyt, MOL
Research Program Manager