Faculty Affiliates

Caroline Bettinger-López

Caroline Bettinger-López is a Professor of Law and Director of the Human Rights Clinic at the University of Miami School of Law, which she founded in 2010. She also serves as an Adjunct Senior Fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations. From 2015-2017, she served in the Obama Administration as the White House Advisor on Violence Against Women, a senior advisor to Vice President Joe Biden, and a member of the White House Council on Women and Girls. She is lead counsel on Jessica Lenahan (Gonzales) v. U.S.(Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, 2011), the first international human rights case brought by a domestic violence victim against the U.S. Prior to joining Miami Law, Caroline taught at University of Chicago School of Law and Columbia Law School; and was a Skadden Fellow at the ACLU Women’s Rights Project and law clerk in the Eastern District of New York. Recently, she received a Roddenberry Fellowship for herCOURAGE (Community Oriented and United Responses to Address Gender Violence and Equality) in Policing Project and a funding from the TIME’S UP Legal Defense Fund to start (with local community partners) the Voces Unidas/Vwa Ini Project, to support low-wage immigrant women workers experiencing workplace sexual misconduct or retaliation.

Alberto Cairo

Alberto Cairo is the Knight Chair at the School of Communication of the University of Miami, and director of visualization at UM's Institute for Data Science and Computing. Cairo is a journalist with more than a decade of experience in news media in Spain, Brazil, and the U.S., and currently consults with companies such as Google and several branches of the U.S. government. He's the author of books such as 'How Charts Lie: Getting Smarter About Visual Information' (2019) and 'The Truthful Art: Data, Charts, and Maps for Communication' (2016).

Xavier Cortada

Xavier Cortada, Miami’s pioneer eco-artist, uses art’s elasticity to work across disciplines to engage communities in problem solving. Particularly environmentally focused, his work intends to generate awareness and action around climate change, sea level rise, and biodiversity loss.

Over the past three decades, the Cuban-American artist has created art at the North and South poles and across 6 continents, including more than 150 public artworks, installations, collaborative murals and socially engaged projects. He has been commissioned to create art for CERN, the White House, the World Bank, the Frost Art Museum, and Miami City Hall, among many other art, science, and government venues.

Cortada, who serves as the inaugural Artist-in-Residence for Miami-Dade County, received the Environmental Law Institute’s 2021 National Wetlands Award and was included in the 2022 GRIST 50. Other accolades include winning a Creative Capital Award (2022) and delivering a TED Talk on the intersection of art and climate.

Cortada, who was born in Albany, New York, grew up and lives in Miami, Florida. He received bachelors, masters and law degrees from the University of Miami, where he currently serves as professor of practice at the University of Miami Department of Art and Art History with secondary appointments in the School of Law and Miller School of Medicine Department of Pediatrics. Learn more at www.cortada.com

Gilberto de Lima Lopes, Jr.

Gilberto Lopes, a medical oncologist, is the medical director for international programs and associate director for Global Oncology at the University of Miami Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center and associate professor at the Miller School of Medicine; and associate editor for ASCO University and for the society’s Journal of Global Oncology; he previously worked at the Johns Hopkins University and was chief medical and scientific officer for the Oncoclinicas Group, the largest oncology provider in Latin America with 35 clinics and more than 300 oncologists in nine states in Brazil.

Dr. Lopes has published more than 100 papers in journals such as the Journal of Clinical Oncology, Cancer, Nature Reviews, Lancet, Lancet Oncology and Health Affairs. In addition to delivering lectures around the world, he has been principal, co-Principal Investigator or steering committee member in more than 100 studies and clinical trials covering breast, gastrointestinal, genitourinary and thoracic cancers. His other main areas of research interest are health economics, value, policy and access to cancer drugs and treatment in low and middle income countries.

Dr. Lopes is currently a committee member for the International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer (IASLC), a member of the European Society of Medical Oncology expensive, innovative Medicines working group and the chair for the international clinical trials workshop working group and track leader for global health at the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO), as well as an executive board member for the Latin American Cooperative Oncology Group (LACOG).

He has also served as an expert for the International Atomic Energy Agency, the World Health Organization and the Pan-American Health Organization and advised governments, professional societies and industry on issues related to cancer control and treatment in low- and middle-income countries.

Tamar Ezer

Tamar Ezer is the Associate Director and Lecturer in Law with the Human Rights Clinic at the University of Miami School of Law. Before coming to Miami, Tamar taught and supervised projects at Yale Law School as a Lecturer in Law, Visiting Scholar with the Schell Center for International Human Rights, and Executive Director of the Solomon Center for Health Law and Policy. Prior to that, as Deputy Director of the Law and Health Initiative of the Open Society Public Health Program, she focused on legal advocacy to advance health and human rights in Eastern and Southern Africa, Eastern Europe, and Central Asia. She also taught International Women’s Rights at Tulane Law School’s summer program and was a teaching fellow with the Georgetown University Law Center’s International Women’s Human Rights Clinic, where she supervised test cases challenging discriminatory laws and oversaw fact-finding and legislative projects in Nigeria, Swaziland, Tanzania, Uganda, and the Philippines. Additionally, Tamar clerked for Judge Robert Sweet at the Southern District of New York and Justice Dorit Beinisch at the Supreme Court of Israel.

Tamar received her B.A. from Stanford University, J.D. from Harvard Law School, and LL.M. in Advocacy from the Georgetown University Law Center. At Harvard, she served as editor-in-chief of the Harvard Human Rights Journal. Her research focuses on the intersection of health and human rights, access to justice, women’s rights, children’s rights, and human rights pedagogy.

Erin Kobetz

Dr. Erin Kobetz is a Tenured Professor in the Departments of Medicine, Public Health Sciences, Biochemistry, and Obstetrics and Gynecology at the University of Miami (UM) Miller School of Medicine. She is the School’s inaugural Senior Associate Dean for Health Disparities, and the Associate Director for Population Science and Cancer Disparity for the University of Miami Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center. Additionally, Dr. Kobetz serves as the Program Director for the Community Engagement and Multidisciplinary Team Science Components of the University of Miami’s Clinical Translational Science Institute (CTSA).

Dr. Kobetz earned a Master's in Public Health from Rollins School of Public Health at Emory University (1999), and joined UM in September 2004 after completing her Ph.D. at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Gillings School of Public Health.

Soon after, Dr. Kobetz established Patnè en Aksyon (Partners in Action), the first campus-community partnership between the University of Miami and community-based organizations in Little Haiti, the largest enclave of Haitian settlement.  Dr. Kobetz serves as the Principal Investigator of multiple grants from the National Cancer Institute (NCI) and National Institute of Minority Health and Health Disparity (NIHMD) to support collaborative science with Patnè en Aksyon.  Collectively, they have garnered over 30 million dollars in extramural funding and serve as the University’s model for stakeholder engagement. Dr. Kobetz now collaborates with a number of other South Florida communities, similarly characterized by health disparity and lack of access to the formal healthcare system to develop new community-based models for cancer prevention.  She also leads University wide, interdisciplinary initiatives to address disparity from “bench” to “bedside” to “community.” Such efforts have been locally and nationally recognized and serve as an important strategy for working collaboratively with underserved communities to achieve sustainable health and social change.

Nicholas Metheny

Nicholas Metheny, PhD, MPH, RN is a tenure-track Assistant Professor at the University of Miami School of Nursing and Health Studies. He is also an Affiliate Scientist at the MAP Centre for Urban Health Solutions at St. Michael’s Hospital, University of Toronto. His research focuses on addressing the multilevel correlates of intimate partner violence (IPV) and developing interventions to mitigate its negative health impacts in sexual minority populations and women globally. He currently serves on the Secretariat of the Lancet Commission on Gender Based Violence and the Maltreatment of Young People and the World Health Organization Working Group on Brief Interventions for Sexual and Reproductive Health. He is Principal Investigator on an NIH-funded pilot study to develop the first dyadic IPV-related intervention for young adult, Latino male couples, and co-PI of Promoting Safety in Emergencies (PROMiSE), the only mHealth intervention designed for women experiencing IPV during COVID-19.  

Dr. Metheny holds a bachelor’s degree from the College of William and Mary, a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from the University of Pennsylvania, Master of Public Health in Global Health Policy from the George Washington University Milken Institute School of Public Health, and a PhD in Nursing Science from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.   

Alex R. Piquero

Alex R. Piquero is Chair and Professor of the Department of Sociology and Arts & Sciences Distinguished Scholar at the University of Miami and Professor of Criminology at Monash University in Melbourne Australia. He is also editor of Justice Evaluation Journal. His research interests include criminal careers, criminological theory, crime policy, evidence-based crime prevention, and quantitative research methods. He has received several research, teaching, and service awards, is fellow of both the American Society of Criminology and the Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences. In 2019 he received the Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences Bruce Smith, Sr. Award for outstanding contributions to criminal justice and in 2020 he was awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Division of Developmental and Life Course Criminology, a division within the American Society of Criminology.

Jyotika Ramaprasad

Jyotika Ramaprasad is Professor in the Department of Journalism & Media Management, School of Communication, University of Miami. Her major teaching, research, and outreach interests are global in scope and centered on communication and social change as well as journalism studies. Her work has addressed social justice issues in health and the environment, working with marginalized communities and non-profits in local settings to conduct research and develop culturally relevant communication interventions, followed, when possible, by evaluation. Ramaprasad’s recent interest is focused on Indigenous Peoples, their epistemologies, and their cultures of gratitude and reciprocity to learn about environmental stewardship within the framework of decolonizing theory and research. Ramaprasad has published her research in various journals and has edited two research books on the global study of journalists. She has implemented projects in Vietnam, Uganda, and Macedonia. Her recent project in Florida was about reducing wave strength by implementing hybrid reefs.

Hansel Tookes

Hansel Tookes, MD, MPH is Assistant Professor in the Department of Medicine at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine. He joined the faculty in the Division of Infectious Diseases after completing his residency in Internal Medicine at Jackson Memorial Hospital. He is the Principal Investigator of the UM Harm Reduction Research Group which houses the IDEA Exchange, Miami’s pilot syringe access program. His research interests include behavioral interventions and innovative approaches to HIV prevention. He has received numerous honors including Starbucks Upstander, Miami Chamber of Commerce Healthcare Hero, and SAVE Champion of Equality. He is a member of the Board of Governors of the Florida Medical Association and is a delegate to the American Medical Association. Prior to medical school, Dr. Tookes worked in public health. He graduated from Yale University with a B.S. in Molecular, Cellular and Developmental Biology.

Kim-Phuong Truong-Vu

Kim-Phuong Truong-Vu is an assistant professor in the Department of Sociology at the University of Miami and an affiliate of the Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center (CCC) Caner Control Program. As a medical sociologist taking on an intersectional, multimethod approach, Kim employs nationally representative survey data and qualitative interviewing to explore racial and ethnic differences in HPV vaccinations—particularly at the intersections of gender, age, and nativity—and, in turn, how inequalities are reproduced. Kim is a first-generation scholar and is originally from Long Beach, CA. She earned her B.A. in Sociology and B.A. in Asian American Studies from the University of California at Santa Barbara (UCSB) and her M.A. and Ph.D. in Sociology from the University of Colorado Boulder. Kim has received several research and teaching awards. Prior to graduate school, Kim worked as a manager at an educational company for underserved youth and as a Family Advocate at the Center for the Pacific Asian Family (CPAF), the first multi-lingual and multi-cultural domestic violence shelter in the nation.