Recognizing extraordinary accomplishments early in their career
The Mohammad R. Torabi Early Career Outstanding Alumni Award is presented annually to a graduate of the School of Public Health-Bloomington and its prior incarnation as Health, Physical Education, and Recreation who has demonstrated notable achievement in public health community outreach and engagement. Community engagement is the framework within which individuals, groups and organizations work together with community members to bring about positive health impact. The overarching goal is to improve community health through collaboration across and within various communities. Recipients of this award are limited to those individuals who have received their most recent School of Public Health-Bloomington degree within the past ten years.
Dr. Jon Agley is the recipient of the 2019 Mohammad R. Torabi Early Career Outstanding Alumni Award.
Past award recipients
Dr. Johnathon Shaffer earned his bachelor’s degree in kinesiology from the Indiana University School of Public Health in 2011. He went on to attend the University of Queensland -Ochsner Clinical School, completing two years of medical school in Brisbane, Australia, followed by two years of clinical training in New Orleans, Louisiana, at the Ochsner Clinic Foundation.
Throughout his career he has been a major proponent of exercise for the maintenance of neurological, cognitive, and overall health. He was a member of Indiana Collegiate Emergency Medical Services while at IU, covering a vast array of events including the Little 500. He helped organize and facilitate several outreach programs, including one through the New Orleans Saints NFL Trainer’s Symposium for Youth. He is currently advocating for more athletic training support in Baltimore County, for which he has submitted a proposal for a highly competitive Palatucci Grant from the American Academy of Neurology.
Most recently, he was awarded a fellowship in Sports Neurology, Neuromodulation, and Interventional Pain at the Cedars-Sinai Kerlan-Jobe Institute in Los Angeles for 2020. There he will be a consulting physician or team physician to the Los Angeles area professional sports teams, colleges and other area teams, including Team HEAL high schools in inner city Los Angeles.
Dr. David Pierce is an Associate Professor of Sports Management in the Department of Tourism, Events, and Sport Management at IUPUI. He is an expert in the area of sport sales, having published the ground-breaking textbook to teach students how to sell (Selling in the Sport Industry, 2017). He is also the Director of the Sports Innovation Institute where he offers high achieving students engaged learning opportunities to conduct research for sport industry partners. In addition, he serves on the Executive Board for the Sport Marketing Association, and is also a member of the editorial board of the Sport Management Education Journal.
Dr. Pierce spent six years as an Associate Professor at Ball State University prior to his appointment with IUPUI. During that same time, he was the play-by-play radio voice of the Marian University Knights football team. Throughout his career, he has been awarded several honors including Indiana AHPERD's Sport Management Educator of the Year in 2015 and Young Professional of the Year in 2011. On the IUPUI campus, Dr. Pierce leads the Capstone Community of Practice for the Institute for Engaged Learning.
Dr. Pierce currently lives in Fishers, Indiana with his wife and two children. He stays involved with his community by volunteering at cross-country events produced by Hilltop Sports Ministry at Northview Church Carmel and Summer Play events produced by Brookside Community Development at Brookside Park in Indianapolis.
Kristen Jozkowski, M.S. '07, Ph.D. '11 is currently a tenure-track, assistant professor of Public Health, affiliate faculty member in Gender Studies, and the director of the Sexuality Research Lab at the University of Arkansas where she teaches both undergraduate and graduate courses. She is also a Research Fellow at the Kinsey Institute for Research in Sex, Gender, and Reproduction at Indiana University.
In her first year as faculty at the University of Arkansas, Dr. Jozkowski was awarded her department's Outstanding Research Award. In 2014, she was awarded the Outstanding Young Professional Award from the Population, Reproductive and Sexual Health Section of the American Public Health Association and the Rising STAR Award for excellence in service, teaching and research by the College of Education and Health Professions at the University of Arkansas.
Dr. Jozkowski's research on sexual consent and sexual assault prevention is not only important, but timely given recent national attention on sexual assault prevention. She is one of the leading researchers on sexual consent and clearly remains committed to reducing rates of sexual assault on college campuses through her research and advocacy.
Dr. Jozkowski has authored or co-authored over 50 peer-reviewed articles and over 85 presentations at national and international conferences. Her work has been cited by mainstream media including the New York Times, Chronicle of Higher Education, the Daily Beast, and Cosmopolitan Magazine demonstrating the importance and impact of her work.
She is committed to student growth both inside and outside the classroom.
Kalen Irsay graduated from Indiana University in 2010 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Sports Management and Marketing from the School of Public Health-Bloomington. Like her sisters Carlie and Casey, shegrew up with the Colts organization as a significant part of her life. Ms. Irsay joined the team in June of 2010 as vice president and, along with her sisters, she represents the next generation of Colts ownership. She is currently entering her third season as Vice Chair and Owner of the Indianapolis Colts.
Ms. Irsay is involved in corporate sales and community outreach programs and currently serves on the board of the United Way of Central Indiana. She is president of the Indianapolis Colts Women's Organization, an organization comprised of Colts female staff as well as wives of staff, coaches and players, which plans monthly service projects during the season and supports a variety of charities including School on Wheels and United Way of Central Indiana.
A native of Fishers, Indiana, Brittany Hollingsworth received her bachelor's degree in Kinesiology in 2011. As a student at Indiana University, she served as team manager for the women's basketball team. Prior to the completion of her senior year, Brittany, and a handful of generous donors, established a first-ever endowed scholarship for women's basketball managers at Indiana University.
Upon graduation, she spent the 2011–2012 season as the equipment manager for the Indiana Fever of the WNBA. She worked under the Women's Basketball Hall of Fame coach, Lin Dunn, and was part of the first-ever championship in franchise history during the 2012 season. Ms. Hollingsworth is now entering her second season as Director of Women's Basketball Operations at the University at Albany-State University of New York. She is involved with daily operations including administrative duties, travel and logistics, community service and outreach, and assisting the needs of staff and players on and off the court.
Allison Chopra is the owner of Urban Fitness Studio, LLC, a private personal training studio in Bloomington. Her business opened in August 2008 and has experienced growth each year since that time during a period of a challenging economy.
The vision for Urban Fitness Studio is to connect with non-exercisers in an inviting, non-intimidating environment, with a focus on exercise as a means to physical and mental health. Currently, she and four other staff trainers (all of which are IU School of Public Health graduates) work with clients to find health and longevity through fitness. She also opened Urban Cycle Studio in the fall of 2011—a dedicated spinning studio.
Both Urban Cycle and Urban Fitness are involved with the City of Bloomington's Adopt-a-Trail program aimed at maintaining the B-Line trail. The studios are sponsors in the Little 500, Mag 7 Race Series Event, and the IU Mini Marathon. In addition to being an entrepreneur, Allison is a board member on the City of Bloomington's Urban Enterprise Association and an avid IU Varsity Club supporter.
In her spare time, she enjoys racing in 5K road races and spending time with her husband, Christopher, and two young sons. Her ability to combine entrepreneurial drive with her passion toward exercise and fitness, makes her a fitting recipient of the School of Public Health's first ever Early Career Outstanding Alumni Award.
Lieutenant Colonel Sarah Beth Goldman came to Indiana University for her Ph.D. in Kinesiology in 2008 and has since continued her successes by having an extraordinary early career, holding a myriad of prestigious positions.
She has worked as chief of rehabilitation research for the U.S. Army Research Institute of Environmental Medicine, as a senior scientist for the Joint Combat Casualty Research Team in Iraq, as director of the Traumatic Brain Injury Program for the Office of the Surgeon General of the U.S. Army, as the deputy director for Neurotrauma Research for the U.S. Army Medical Research and Materiel Command, as a congressional analyst for the Office of the Surgeon General, and presently a legislative liaison for the Medical Portfolio Appropriations Committees for the Pentagon as well as an adjunct faculty member at Baylor University.
LTC Goldman has received several awards for her outstanding work, including the Iron Major Award for the Army Medical Specialist Corps, the Outstanding Research Committee Member Award for the American Society of Hand Therapists, and the U.S. Navy Occupational Therapist of the Year Award.
Due to her research findings, in recent years, she joined the Army Chief of Staff General Raymond Odierno and NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell in a joint initiative to promote cultural change regarding traumatic brain injury, solider-athlete awareness and reducing the stigma caused by seeking treatment for concussions and other brain-related injuries.