Meet Our Team

Who is Community Impact Solutions?

For over 10 years, we've supported Community-Based Organizations (CBO) and their clinical partners. We help strengthen high-impact prevention through, tailored training and technical assistance in monitoring and evaluation, public health strategies, and evidence-based interventions.

Today we are working to provide CBO’s with even more solutions to meet the HIV prevention and treatment needs of the most impacted communities. To reflect the changing needs of existing partners, and embrace our new partners in HIV prevention, the Tabono team has changed our name to Community Impact Solutions (CIS).

To the existing services offered by Tabono, we have added even more support to enhancing the impact of individuals, organizations and the communities that we serve. In turn, they can become more effective in targeting, delivering and sustaining high-quality, high-impact HIV prevention and services.

Vignetta Charles, PhD

Chief Science Officer


Vignetta Charles, PhD, is Chief Science Officer at ETR. Her research focus is on the design of behavioral health interventions related to the intersection of HIV/AIDS, sexual health and mental health. She comes to ETR from AIDS United, where she served as Senior Vice President, guiding strategic programming for the organization, garnering public and private resources for programs, leading efforts to measure and document program outcomes, and developing an expanded portfolio on the translation of science to community. Prior to her work at AIDS United, Dr. Charles developed and rigorously evaluated innovative, theory- and evidence-based sexual and reproductive health and HIV prevention programs. She has focused her professional work on issues that disproportionately impact politically disenfranchised communities, with a focus on urban sexual and reproductive health and an emphasis on HIV prevention.

Other previous work experience includes serving as the national health educator for the Commonwealth of Dominica, West Indies, initiating a teen pregnancy prevention portfolio for the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, and coordinating HIV and pregnancy prevention programs in both San Francisco and Oakland, California. She is an alumna of the University of California at Berkeley for undergraduate work, the Harvard School of  Public Health for a Masters degree in health and social behavior, and the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health for her PhD in the Department of Population, Family, and Reproductive Health.

She currently serves on the Presidential Advisory Council for HIV/AIDS; and is on the Board of Directors for the Center for Health and Gender Equity (CHANGE) and the Sexuality Information and Education Council of the United States (SIECUS).


Auerbach, J. D., S. Kinsky, G. Brown, V. Charles. 2015. Knowledge, attitudes, and likelihood of pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) use among US women at risk of acquiring HIV. AIDS Patient Care STDS 29 (2):102-110.

Jeeyon, J. K.,  C. Maulsby, R. Zulliger, K. Jain, , V. Charles, M. Riordan, M. Davey-Rothwell, D. R. Holtgrave. 2015. Cost and threshold analysis of Positive Charge, a multi-site linkage to HIV care program in the United States. AIDS and Behavior, Epub 2015 Jul 3.

Coyle, K., P. Anderson, J. Glassman and V. E. Charles. 2014. Romantic relationships: An important context for HIV/STI and pregnancy prevention programs with young people. Sex Education 14 (5).

Kim, J. J., C. Maulsby, S. Kinsky, M. Riordan, V. Charles, Positive Charge Intervention Team, K. Jain and D. R. Holtgrave. 2014. The development and implementation of the national evaluation strategy of Access to Care, a multi-site linkage to care initiative in the United States. AIDS Education and Prevention 26 (5):429-444.

Maulsby, C., V. Charles, S. Kinsky, M. Riordan, K. Jain, D. Holtgrave. 2014. Positive Charge: Filling the gaps in the U.S. HIV continuum of care. AIDS and Behavior, Epub 2015 Feb 12.

Polis, C. B, V. E. Charles, R. W. Blum, W. H. Gates. 2012. Abortion and mental health: Guidelines for proper scientific conduct ignored. British Journal of Psychiatry 200 (1): 76-77.

Charles, V., D. Kirby, G. Lepore, K. Coyle and J. Walker. 2011. Promoting Sexual Health. Scotts Valley, CA: ETR Associates.

Charles, V. E., C. B. Polis, S. K. Sridhara, R. W. Blum. 2008. Abortion and long-term mental health outcomes: A systematic review of the evidence. Contraception 78 (6): 436-450.

Charles, V. E., R. W. Blum. 2008. Core competencies and the prevention of high-risk sexual behavior. New Directions for Child and Adolescent Development 2008 (122): 61-74.

Matt Cherry, BS

Instructional Designer/E-Learning Specialist

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Matt Cherry has worked as a trainer, instructional designer and project manager, and has over 17 years of e-learning design and development experience. He has extensive experience working with Learning Management Systems, course authoring tools and social media to support learning. Prior to joining the ETR team, Mr. Cherry worked for a high-tech company (TCT Technical Training) in the Silicon Valley as a lead instructional designer, and then design manager, where he managed an international team of instructional designers, programmers and graphic artists who built online courses for IT products such as Cisco, NT, Network Associates and UNIX. As an Instructional Designer/Project Coordinator of eLearning at ETR, he is responsible for the design, development, implementation and maintenance of all online learning for the Corporation for National and Community Service. In addition, he contributes to the development of online learning for various other ETR projects. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Instructional Technology.

Current Projects

  • DASH
  • CRC HIV/Continuum

Rebekah Cohen

Research Associate I


Rebekah Cohen has worked at ETR since 2010. She has worked on several school-based evaluation projects with the San Francisco Unified School District, including serving as the main project coordinator for the CHKS and YRBS surveys in 2011 and 2013. She has also worked on the TECC database evaluation project with a group of ETR team members to assist the California Department of Public Health Tobacco Control Program to create a statewide Tobacco Policy database. Ms Cohen’s areas of interest include nutrition and obesity, the role of media in children’s health, and school-based supportive services.

Current Projects

  • TECC –Tobacco Education Clearinghouse of California Database Evaluation Project
  • Working to Institutionalize Sexuality Education (WISE) Initiative
  • SFUSD – School Health Programs Department Evaluation Project


Shields, J. P., Cohen, R., Glassman J. R., Whitaker, K., Franks, H. & Bertolini, I. (2013) Estimating population size and demographic characteristics of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender youth in middle school. Journal of Adolescent Health, 52(2), 248-250.

Michael Everett, MHS

Project Director


I am a Philadelphia native who has spent 15 years in human services most recently serving as the Director of Training & Capacity Building Support with the national NYC based organization, Harm Reduction Coalition (HRC).

As a trainer /educator/ coach/ counselor, I supported hundreds of individuals both in the United States and internationally in navigating sexual health and social health access challenges. Currently I hold a Master in Human Services with a concentration in Counseling and I am working to complete a doctorial degree in education.

I love the visual arts and have come to California with my Husband of two years and our wonderful children: Sweetie (an English Bulldog/boxer mix and Zion (mini Aussie Shepherd).

B.A. Laris, MPH

Research Associate III


B.A. Laris, MPH, has worked as a Research Associate with ETR since October 1999, planning, developing and coordinating evaluation activities in a variety of settings. She has coordinated statewide school-based evaluations in Michigan and Rhode Island in the areas of physical activities and nutrition, and rapid evaluation projects with school districts in Washington (assessing the policies and programs to support Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender students, staff and families) and Colorado (assessing the impact of a price change intervention).

Ms. Laris serves as one of the evaluation liaisons for the teen pregnancy prevention programs funded by the California Office of Family Planning. She also managed several evaluation projects with the San Francisco Unified School District to reduce adolescent health risk behaviors related to out-of-school-time, nutrition, physical activity, violence, pregnancy, HIV/AIDS and comprehensive school health. The projects involve both quantitative and qualitative data collection to assess student, teacher and community improvements in health and safety.

Her previous work experience includes program planning, management, and evaluation in the areas of HIV/AIDS, substance use prevention and treatment, and international health.

Current Projects

  • Training, TA and Evaluation for California Teen Pregnancy Prevention
  • Project AIM (Children's Hospital Los Angeles)
  • TPP Replication of Evidence-Based It's Your Game


Kirby, D., & Laris, B. (2009). Effective curriculum-based sex and STD/HIV education programs for adolescents.Child Development Perspectives, 3(1), 21-29.

Kirby, D., Laris, B., & Rolleri, L. (2007). Sex and HIV Education Programs: Their Impact on Sexual Behaviors of Young People Throughout the World.Journal of Adolescent Health, 40, 206-217.

Kirby, D., Laris, B., & Rolleri, L. (2006).The Characteristics of Effective Curriculum-Based Sex and HIV Education Programs for Adolsecents. Scotts Valley, CA: ETR Associates.

Kirby, D., Laris, B., & Rolleri, L. (2006).Sex and HIV Education Programs for Youth: Their Impact and Important Characteristics. Washington, DC: Family Health International.

Kirby, D., Laris, B., & Rolleri, L. (2006).The Impact of Sex and HIV Education Programs on Youth in Developing Countries. Research Triangle Park, NC: Family Health International.

Kirby, D., Obasi, A., & Laris, B. (2006). The effectiveness of sex education and HIV education interventions in schools in developing countries. In D. Ross, B. Dick, & J. Ferguson (Eds.), Preventing HIV/AIDS in Young People: A Systematic Review of the Evidence from Developing Countries. Geneva: World Health Organization.

Kirby, D., Laris, B., & Rolleri, L. (2005).Impact of Sex & HIV Curriculum-based Education Programs on Sexual Behavior of Youth in Developing Co. Washington, DC: Family Health International.

Tamara R. Neff, MA

E-Learning Curriculum Developer

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Tamara Neff is an Instructional Designer developing and maintaining online learning deliveries and materials in partnership with subject matter experts to enhance the quality and efficacy of blended and e-learning opportunities available to the field.

Working remotely from Athens, Georgia, Ms. Neff has facilitated the development and delivery of over a dozen self-directed online courses, co-coordinated the successful design and development of a new online learning system specifically for the AmeriCorps VISTA program, and contributed to the innovation and improvement of online learning deliverables under the National Service Resources and Training project to expand the e-learning quality and capacity of the Corporation for National and Community Service.

Ms. Neff served two years as an AmeriCorps VISTA volunteer, supporting community leadership development efforts in Baltimore City from 1999-2001. She earned an MA in Instructional Systems Development from the University of Maryland Baltimore County, with a certification in web-based and computer-based training (WBT/CBT), in 2004. She has extensive experience in the field of adult learning as a literacy and ESOL instructor, meeting and process facilitator, and adjunct faculty member at the University of Baltimore. As a military family member, she contributes to the efforts of veterans advocacy organizations through online support networks.

Jacqueline Peters, MA Econ.

Project Coordinator

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Jacqueline Peters, MA Econ. has over 10 years of administrative experienced gained while working at a group health brokerage in the San Jose, CA area. Prior to joining ETR's Community Impact Solutions Project team, Ms. Peters worked as the Benefits Specialist in the HR Department here at ETR. As the Project Coordinator, Ms. Peters’ role is work with the Capacity Building Assistance team to ensure that all training and technical assistance requests are delivered on time. Track and manage CISP's social media channels as well as work with the Materials Review Committee (MRC).

Prior to joining ETR, Ms. Peters worked as a web content writer and social media consultant to local businesses, working with business owners to improve website conversion and grow their business online. Ms. Peters also worked as the Transportation Economist for the Jamaica Transport Authority, where she worked with a team of economists from Bank Leumi, Israel on a project for the World Bank.

An avid sports fan, Ms. Peters' favorite activities include attending home games at the O.Co coliseum in support of the Oakland Athletics, meeting with friends for their monthly 'Supper Club' gatherings, reading, traveling, raising chickens and taking care of her 2 dogs. Ms. Peters holds a Master Degree in Economics from the Poznan School of Economics, Poznan, Poland and speaks and writes Polish fluently.

Janine Saunders, EdD, MPH

Program Manager


Janine Y. Saunders, EdD, MPH, currently serves as a Program Manager in ETR's Oakland office. She supports a variety of school health research and evaluation projects in San Francisco Unified and Oakland Unified School Districts. Dr. Saunders is the lead evaluator for Project Prevent, a federally funded program to provide targeted services to address the needs of students exposed to trauma and violence. She also supports survey administration projects including the bi-annual administration of the Youth Risk Behavior Survey and the California Healthy Kids Survey in Bay Area school districts. In addition, Dr. Saunders serves at the principal investigator for ETR’s Community Impact Solutions, a project designed to strengthen the impact and effectiveness of HIV services and build the capacity of the HIV workforce across the nation.

Dr. Saunders’ professional background includes roles as the Prevention Coordinator for Oakland Unified School District, the Director of School Health and Wellness for the Alameda County Office of Education, and a Senior Project Director for the California School-Based Health Alliance. She has also worked as a consultant on a variety of research and evaluation projects. The through line of her work has been a focus on social justice and equity when working with historically underrepresented communities across a range of health and education issues. Sheearned an undergraduate degree in Psychobiology from the University of California, Los Angeles, and her Master of Public Health with a concentration in health and social behavior from the University of California, Berkeley. She recently completed her Doctorate of Education with an emphasis in equity and social justice at San Francisco State University.

Chris Wilson-Smith

HIV/Sexual Health Trainer / Project Coordinator


Chris Wilson-Smith is a Los Angeles native who has spent more than 10 years working in public health. He currently serves as the HIV/Sexual Health Trainer/Project Coordinator on the Community Impact Solutions team. Mr. Wilson-Smith most recently worked as the Prevention and Care Program Manager at the Black AIDS Institute. Over the last 12 years, he has worked at the Gay-Straight Alliance Network, University of California, Los Angeles, and Los Angeles LGBT Center. He spent several of those years at Children's Hospital Los Angeles, where he served as a health educator and psycho-social case manager to HIV-positive youth.

He graduated from Crenshaw Senior High School in Los Angeles and earned a Bachelor's degree in biology and sociology from Wiley College of Marshall, Texas. He is planning to pursue his MPH next fall.