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Research Team

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Kanwaljeet J. S. Anand, MBBS, D. Phil

Professor of Pediatrics, Anesthesiology, Perioperative & Pain Medicine


Dr. K.J.S. (“Sunny”) Anand received his medical degree from India and D.Phil. from University of Oxford as a Rhodes Scholar, followed by post-doctoral training at Harvard Medical School.  His research on pain and stress in children has been recognized with many professional awards including the highest international award in the field of Pediatrics: the Nils Rosén von Rosenstein Award from Swedish Academy of Medicine (2009).  His community service activities included founding the Harmony Health Clinic in Little Rock (AR) – providing free medical and dental care since 2008.  He received the Father Joseph Biltz Award from National Conference for Community & Justice (2007) and the Dr. Martin Luther King “Salute to Greatness” Individual Award (2008) from the Governor of Arkansas.  He has authored >300 peer-reviewed articles and other monographs, 9 books/journal issues, and 60+ book chapters.  He is currently Professor of Pediatrics, Anesthesiology Perioperative & Pain Medicine at Stanford University School of Medicine, Editor of Pediatric Research – a leading medical journal, and Co-Chair of the Ideal Village Conferences at Stanford University.

Cynthia Rovnaghi, MS

Life Science Research Professional Manager


Cynthia's roles have changed over three decades, first as an Executive Director of an emergency placement facility serving youth in crisis in rural Arkansas providing hands-on service to children and their families under the venues of child protective services, court advocacy, professional counseling, and emergency placement and then as a scientist to investigate, develop, and publish novel methodologies advancing neurology. Cynthia’s specialty was in treating children exposed to maltreatment, sexual abuse, sexual and physical assault, and neglect.  Her technological skills and expertise in evaluating environmental, biological, physiological, psychosocial, and socioeconomic factors influencing brain development through the life-course has enabled Cynthia to develop methodologies measuring markers of brain function under conditions of typical development compared to adverse/traumatic brain injury/dysregulation, neurodegeneration, risk-taking behavior, and factors promoting resiliency.  A deep passion for understanding these conditions and faith based underpinnings of healing and restoration in survivors of abuse and neglect and of children in poverty drove her to participate in legislation establishing governmental policies concerning poverty, social and welfare reform, family and domestic violence interventions, and restructuring of child protective services.

Zoie Carter

Clinical Research Coordinator

Zoie Carter, holding both a BA and a master's degree in Public Health from Brown University, has been an impactful contributor to research endeavors dedicated to enhancing the health and well-being of adolescents. Her collaborative research work with psychiatric hospitals in Rhode Island and non-profit organizations in Hartford, Connecticut, exposed her to the vital intersection of health and community dynamics. Through these experiences, Zoie discovered the power of mindfulness and subsequently focused her research on mindfulness-based interventions for improving the physical and mental health of Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) communities. For her graduate thesis, she developed a psychometric scale to measure mindfulness levels within the Black community, contributing to a broader study on chronic stress and stress mitigation among urban youth from marginalized backgrounds. Committed to advancing equitable healthcare initiatives, Zoie is a passionate advocate for the health and well-being of vulnerable populations, particularly young children who lack the means to advocate for themselves verbally.