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Former Team Members


Barry M Lester, PhD

Principal Investigator (1985-1989)

Dr. Lester was the original Principal Investigator (PI) of the Infant Development Study located at Women & Infants Hospital in Providence, RI. He led the infancy assessments which many parents will remember included video of infants and recording their cry characteristics. Dr. Lester continues his successful career in research with sustained National Institutes of Health (NIH) funding.  He has been heavily involved in the NIH activities to support research. He is past president of the International Association for Infant Mental Health and the author of more than 250 peer reviewed publications and 100 chapters and books.

He also directs the Brown Center for the Study of Children at Risk in Providence.


Margaret "Peggy" McGrath, DNSc, RN, FAAN

Principal Investigator (1989-2003)

Peggy McGrath was a Professor at the University of Rhode Island, College of Nursing. She was actively engaged in the early years of the Infant Development Study helping with recruitment of the original participants at Women & Infants Hospital. She remembered all the children and families. She also conducted health and developmental assessments during the first years of the project. She became PI with the 4 Year study funded by the National Institutes of Health and successfully continued the project with NIH funding for the 8 Year and 12 Year projects. Dr. McGrath retired in 2003.


Suzy Barcelos Winchester, MA, MSW, LCSW

Research Assistant (1995-1998)

Project Director (2008-2019)

Research Associate (2014-2019)

Suzy began as a research assistant in 1995 when study participants were School Age (8 years old) and became project director in 1998. For over 20 years, she was involved in every aspect of this project – from protocol development and administration, project management, data analysis to presentation of study findings. But the most important role involved interacting and connecting with each study participant and their families. It has been a joy and honor for her to watch participants grow over the years. Suzy is currently at the University of Rhode Island College of Nursing as a social work researcher on a federally funded project and enjoys hearing how wonderfully The RHODE Study is moving along in adulthood. She sends each study participant and collaborator well wishes. 

Michelle Kelly, PhD, CRNP, CNE

Post-Doctoral Fellow 

Matthew Rivard, BA

Research Associate 

Jennifer Valiente, RN

Research Nurse 

Carol Green, MD, MFA

CPCP Coordinator, Research Fellow 

Annie Boldt, Jen Pasquariello, Giavanna Petrone, Bailey Vogt, Emily Shields

Undergraduate Research Fellows 

Manuela Barcelos, MA

Research Assistant

Robin Miller, MS, RN

Research Nurse Coordinator

Katheleen Hawes PhD, PMHCNS

Graduate Research Assistant

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