Research & Innovation

Meet our Team

Clinical Trials

Jennifer Sisler, BSN, RN
Sr. Network Director, Clinical Trials and Research

Jennifer Sisler, BSN, RN Jennifer is a registered nurse by training and earned her Bachelor of Science in Nursing from the Pennsylvania College of Health Sciences. She is working toward earning her Master’s in Clinical Research Management, Organization, and Administration through Drexel University’s College of Medicine. Most recently, Jennifer served as the Manager of Scientific and Clinical Affairs at Aesculap, where she led clinical research teams in the areas of devices and biologics. Additionally, she was instrumental in the establishment of the Medical Scientific Affairs Department and the Investigator Initiated Study Program at Aesculap. She is an award recipient of the Lehigh Valley Business 2018 Woman of Influence award and is a graduate of the Leadership Lehigh Valley community leadership immersion program.

In her current role, Jennifer serves as Senior Network Director of Clinical Trials and Research, where she is responsible for the leadership and oversight of the overall network strategy, operations and optimizations for the Clinical Trials and Research teams.

Jennifer currently resides in Bethlehem, PA with her husband Aaron, son Ethan, and daughter Cara. In her free time, she enjoys spending time with family and friends, playing piano, and collecting vinyl.

Barbara Reynolds
Clinical Research Assistant

team Barbara Reynolds started her career at St. Luke’s in 1996 at the Visiting Nurse Association working in the Human Resources Department as an H.R. Assistant. In 2001, Barbara transferred to Allentown as the Administrative Coordinator for the President; and, also, the Vice President for Medical Affairs at that campus. As Barbara’s journey continued through SLUHN, she then transferred to Clinical Trials and Research in January of 2012. She enjoys working with a first-rate team that is involved in groundbreaking work in patient care. Prior to working at St. Luke’s, Barbara had an 18 year career at Bethlehem Steel Corporation working in the Transportation Department. Barbara received the prestigious St. Luke’s PCRAFT Award in 2010 which exemplifies the Network values of Pride, Caring, Respect, Accountability, Flexibility and Teamwork. She lives in Hanover Township with her husband Frank. On weekends, they love getting in the car and ending up at a spur of the moment destination. They have two grown children who are proud graduates of Temple University.

Elana Pessin, BS, MPA, CCRP 
Study Start-up Project Coordinator II

team Elana Pessin joined the Clinical Trials Office at St. Luke’s in January 2015 as the Study Start-up Project Coordinator. She served as the primary point of contact for investigators and sponsors interested in opening a clinical trial at St. Luke’s. In January 2018 she was promoted to Study Start-up Project Coordinator II, focusing on Oncology start-up and serving as a mentor and lead to others on the team. Her responsibilities include coordinating all study start-up activities from inception through trial activation. Elana has found clinical research administration to be her passion and previously worked for over 10 years as a research program coordinator at Mount Sinai Medical Center in New York City. She obtained a Bachelor degree in Rehabilitation services from Penn State and a Master degree in Healthcare Administration from Long Island University.  Originally from New York, Elana really enjoys living and working in the beautiful Lehigh Valley.

Danielle D’Haiti, BA 
Regulatory Coordinator I

Danielle joined the team from Lehigh Valley Health Network where she gained her experience in Oncology Clinical Trials through their alliance with Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center and St. Joseph Mercy Ann Arbor. She will serve as a Regulatory Coordinator I for Oncology Trials here at St. Luke’s. Danielle will take charge of the Cooperative Groups, managing study start up and regulatory needs.

Danielle completed her undergrad at Kutztown University of Pennsylvania. During her time there, she worked at the Volunteer Office and led the initiative to start a University- wide Relay for Life program through the American Cancer Society which continues to thrive today! In her spare time, Danielle enjoys spending time with family, reading and attempting crafts from Pinterest. She also appreciates “FunFacts” and random trivia.

Justine DeLong
Research Finance Coordinator I

Justine DeLong Justine DeLong joined the Clinical Trials Office at St. Luke’s in October 2016 as the Research Finance Coordinator I. Her duties include creating and maintaining study folders, databases, invoice preparation, Accounts Receivable, Collections and Sponsor liaison for billing inquiries for all clinical trials run through SLUHN. Prior working at St. Luke’s, Justine embraced a 16 year career at ClearChannel Airports division as the Accounts Payable Manager and Team Accountant for 200+ Airports in the United States, Canada, Caribbean Islands, Guam, Australia and New Zealand.

Justine lives with her husband and one very spoiled kitty named Zelda in Lehigh County where she considers herself an experienced home DIY’er. When not working on home projects, she maintains a large flower garden for all the birds, bees and butterflies in the neighborhood.

Jillian Timer, BSN, RN 
Oncology Research Nurse II

Jillian Timer Jillian Timer earned her Bachelors of Science in Nursing from Cedar Crest College in January 2013. She began her nursing career caring for pediatric patients in various roles, both in the hospital care setting as well as in home care.  During this time, Jillian became a Certified Pediatric Hematology and Oncology Nurse and developed a passion for working with Oncology patients as well as a strong interest in clinical research.  Jillian joined the Clinical Trials team in November 2016 as an Oncology Research Nurse and was quickly promoted to an Oncology Research Nurse II. She primarily serves as coordinator for head, neck and renal cancer studies. Jillian is proud to be working with an expert team that provides exceptional and innovative care to the patients of St. Luke’s University Health Network.

Vanessa Shaw, BS, RN 
Oncology Research Nurse I

Vanessa Shaw joined the Clinical Trials team in July 2018, as an Oncology Research Nurse I.  Vanessa earned her Bachelors of Science degree in Health Policy and Administration from Pennsylvania State University in 1996.  She managed a cardiology practice in New York, for Cornell Cardiology Associates, for five years before finding her passion for clinical research.  Vanessa became a Clinical Research Coordinator in 2001 and began working in an Oncology practice in Summit, NJ.  Vanessa stayed with that practice until 2005 when she decided to stay home to raise her three children.  In 2015, with the support of her husband, Vanessa went back to school for nursing.  She earned her RN from St. Luke’s School of Nursing in 2017 and was hired by St. Luke’s to work on the inpatient oncology unit.  Always knowing that she wanted to pursue a career in research again, Vanessa was thrilled to accept the opportunity to work with the St. Luke’s Clinical Trials team.  She will primarily serve as coordinator for the Lung and GI cancer studies.

Carolyn Seith, MSPH, CCRP 
Oncology Clinical Research Coordinator II

team Carolyn Seith is an Oncology Clinical Research Coordinator II at St. Luke’s. She coordinates registry trials for: chronic lymphocytic leukemia, melanoma, multiple myeloma, and solid tumor molecular biology. Prior to this, she was a part time professor at a local Community College and taught biology, anatomy and physiology. She received her B.S. from Cornell University in Nutritional Biochemistry and her MSPH from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, School of Public Health. She finds working in cancer clinical trials rewarding because the field of oncology clinical research is full of advances in immunotherapies and targeted treatments. It’s exciting to be part of the St. Luke’s oncology research team who cares for these clinical trial patients.

Lauren Downing, BS, CCRP 
Oncology Clinical Research Coordinator II

Lauren Downing Lauren received her Bachelor’s Degree in Bio-Behavioral Health from the Pennsylvania State University with a minor in Psychology in 2012. She began her career at Lehigh Valley Health Network in the Technical Partner role on a Medical Surgical Unit at the Cedar Crest site. She later transitioned into the role of a Pre-Engagement Specialist working outside of the hospital at One City Center on Hamilton Street in Allentown. She started working at St. Luke’s University Health Network in November of 2016, joining the Clinical Trials team as a Oncology Clinical Research Coordinator I.

Lauren’s interest in research began as she worked in 2010, under the supervision of Dr. Tricia Kelly at Breast Care Specialists, LLC in Allentown, as a research assistant to facilitate a clinical research project examining the re-excision rates of lumpectomy sites in breast cancer patients. Additionally, Lauren worked as a Front Desk Attendant at Advanced Imaging for Breast and Body LLC, in 2011.

When she is not working, Lauren enjoys traveling, cooking/baking, spending time with family and friends but most of all spending time with her Golden Retriever, Jager.

Lauren is very excited to join the St. Luke’s team and to begin this new role as a Clinical Research Coordinator. She is looking forward to all the growth and learning opportunities this position will bring in the future.

Megan Gavinski, BS 
Clinical Research Coordinator I

Megan earned her Bachelor’s of Science degree in biology from Ursinus College in 2012. Before joining the St. Luke’s community as a Clinical Research Coordinator I, Megan first began her passion in the medical field as a veterinary technician. She then transitioned over to work as a dialysis technician which helped to instill her desire to work with people in health care. In the clinical trials team, Megan will be working primarily on brain, GU, and head/neck trials. She is extremely proud to have been welcomed into this department and she is looking forward to all of the opportunities ahead. Megan currently resides in the Slate Belt area with her husband Nate. They both enjoy gardening, traveling, and cooking together.

Jessicca Rosario, BS
Clinical Research Coordinator I

Jessicca received her Bachelor of Science degree in Pharmaceutical Product Development from West Chester University of Pennsylvania in 2017. During her time at West Chester University, Jessicca completed an internship at a pharmaceutical packaging company in Allentown, where her interests in research and the opportunity to engage with patients grew.

Jessicca began her introduction into clinical research while working as a Clinical Research Assistant in a private practice setting in Bethlehem, PA. She was then promoted to the role of Clinical Research Coordinator, where she was responsible for the oversight and coordination of patient recruitment and clinical visits.

In August of 2018, Jessicca joined the St. Luke’s Clinical Trials team as a Clinical Research Coordinator I where she will specialize in Lung & GI Oncology Trials. She is very excited to take on her new responsibilities and have the opportunity to connect with her patients.

In her free time, Jessicca enjoys exercising, spending time with family and friends, baking, and going to concerts.

Luz Herrera
Oncology Clinical Research Associate II

team Luz graduated from Star Technical Institute in 1993 as a Medical Assistant & ECG Technician. After completing her internship, she was hired as a Medical Assistant and was able to use her skills to provide excellent patient care. Luz has been employed with St. Luke’s’ University Health Network since 1999 and began working in the Clinical Laboratory / Pathology Department prior to Clinical Trials.

As a Oncology Clinical Research Associate II she processes and coordinates laboratory samples and receives the resulting data from the central laboratory facilities. Luz also participates in global conferences calls and meetings to review clinical trial progress, and also tracks completed CRFs and sets up systems for rapid CRF entry into databases.

Luz enjoys working at St. Luke’s, and believes her job is very rewarding. She loves being part of the Clinical Trials Office, and always strives to provide the best care for our patients.

In her free time she enjoys reading and spending time with her family and friends.

Kimberly Brooks
Oncology Clinical Research Associate II

team Kim Brooks has lived in the Bethlehem area almost her entire life. She graduated from Northampton Community College with an Associates Degree in Applied Science. She began her career at St. Luke’s in 2009, working with the Cancer Care Associates surgical oncology team, and then the medical oncology team. Working with Cancer Care Associates helped her to obtain the knowledge needed to work as a clinical research associate. Kim joined the clinical trials team in November 2015. Her main role in the department is Data Manager, but also helps to process lab specimens as needed. When she is not working, she enjoys spending time with her husband Mike, daughter Riley, son Logan, and their dog Bailey, and cat Lucky. They enjoy taking trips together to the beach, swimming in the pool and building snowmen in the snow. Kim also teaches a class for Sunday school at her church, and helps co-direct with her children’s soccer league. She also enjoys decorating and gardening.

Grace Choo
Oncology Clinical Research Associate II

Grace Choo Grace graduated from Municipal Training Center in New York in 1995 as a Certified Medical Assistant , Phlebotomist and EKG Technician. She began her career in Vento Medical Center in New York, where she gained extensive experience working for very busy medical office.

After moving to Pennsylvania in 2009, Grace joined the St. Luke’s Family Practice in Palmer, and later decided to stay within the St. Luke’s family joining the St. Luke’s Hematology and Oncology group in 2013.

Working for Hematology and Oncology was a very rewarding experience which initially sparked her interest in clinical trials and research, and ultimately steered her into her new career. In December 2016 Grace began this new career when she joined the Clinical Trials Office as a Oncology Clinical Research Associate II, focused on Data Management and Lab/Pathology processes.

Grace is also a recipient of the prestigious St. Luke’s PCRAFT Award – an honor that embodies the Network values of pride, caring respect, accountability, flexibility and teamwork.

Kayla Vides
Oncology Clinical Research Associate I

Kayla graduated from Everest Institute in 2012 and earned a Medical Assistant diploma. Since graduating, Kayla began her career as a lead Medical Assistant in a Dermatology office for 3 years in NJ. She gained experience working with biopsies, treatment for skin cancers and pre cancers.

Through her experience with cancer in dermatology, and past experience with her mother’s cancer, Kayla decided she wanted to pursue a career in Oncology. In June 2015 she started working in Medical oncology. Kayla fulfilled 3 years of experience in the medical oncology field and had a desire to learn more of the clinical trial aspect.

In June 2018, Kayla joined the Clinical trials department as a Clinical Research Associate I. Her roles will include, processing and collecting lab specimens, and focusing on data management. In her free time she enjoys spending time with her two son’s Christopher and Hunter, hanging out with friends and family, and vacationing at the beach.

Thomas F. Parsons, RN, CCRP
Med-Surg Clinical Trials Manager

team Tom Parsons is a graduate of the Abington Hospital School of Nursing, ('92). and began his career in research as a research coordinator in 1997 after being an Operating Room nurse at the Medical College of Pennsylvania Hospital for 5 years . He obtained his certification as a research coordinator in 2001 through the ACRP and then in 2012 through SOCRA. Prior to coming to work at St. Luke's Health System, Tom has served as a Research Manager at the Drexel University College of Medicine in Philadelphia, a Director of the Cooper Research Institute at Cooper University Hospital in Camden New Jersey, and as a Research Manager at the Temple Cancer Center in Philadelphia. He is also a certified CPR instructor for the American Heart Association since 1988. Tom has served in the U.S. Army from 1976-1987 as a cryptographic communications repairman, and as a medical aidman.

In his spare time while not working, Tom enjoys traveling, fishing, swimming and watching the Eagles and Steelers football games.


Aaron Calhoun, BS, RN
Clinical Research Nurse I

Aaron Calhoun Aaron graduated with his Associates Degree in Nursing from Northampton Community College in 2015. He started his nursing career working in open heart surgery at St. Luke’s hospital, focusing on thoracic, cardiac, and vascular surgery patients. While Aaron loved the challenges and rewards of bedside nursing, he found he had a desire to explore ways to have a larger impact in healthcare. After pioneering the Nurse Navigator role with Vascular Surgery, developing patient education and emergent care protocols for St. Luke’s University Health Network, Aaron joined the Clinical Trails team in 2019. As a Clinical Research Nurse, he is excited to be working with a positive, passionate group of professionals exploring the future options in medicine. He is currently pursing his Bachelors of Science degree.

Aaron lives in Emmaus and in his free time he loves volunteer work, spending time with his wife Laura, family, & friends, working out, traveling, and music.


Susan Hahn, CCRP 
Med-Surg Clinical Research Coordinator II

Susan Hahn Susan joined the St. Luke’s Clinical Trials team in December of 2016 as a Med-Surg Clinical Research Coordinator I division of the ever-growing and ever-exciting field of clinical research.

Susan started her career in the clinical research field more than 20 years ago working in an Allergy/Asthma/Immunology private practice where she participated in all aspects of clinical research and a variety of clinical trials. On a personal level, Susan believes that working as a Clinical Research Coordinator provides a sense of reassurance and education to a patient that cannot be provided on any other health-related platform.

While not working, Susan enjoys spending time with her children and helping family members who own a local produce farm. Additionally, Susan is very active with her church where she is a parish board member and is the Chairperson of the Altar Guild. Additionally, Susan enjoys volunteering with her local country fair.

Margaret Clement, CNA 
Clinical Research Associate

Margaret graduated From Lehigh Career & Technical Institute in 2014 as a Certified Nursing Assistant. She worked for 4 years proving quality care to the elderly in Allentown, PA.  In 2018, she joined St. Luke’s Bethlehem as a Clinical Research Associate I. Margaret is going to Lehigh Carbon Community College to achieve her certificate as a Register Nurse. In her free time she likes to spend time with her family and plan getaways with her husband.