Meet The Team


Stephen Sheinkopf, PhD

Director & Principal Investigator
[email protected]

Dr. Stephen Sheinkopf serves as director and principal investigator for RI-CART. In addition he serves as Assistant Professor of Psychiatry and Pediatrics at Brown University.  

Dr. Sheinkopf’s primary research interests include the identification of very early signs of autism in infancy, the development of social communication abilities in young children with autism, and neurodevelopmental outcomes in children exposed to drugs prenatally. In addition, Dr. Sheinkopf has an active clinical practice with an emphasis on early diagnosis of and clinical management for children with autism. Throughout his career, he has served on scientific grant review panels for National Institutes of Health, Autism Speaks and the Autism Research Program through the Department of Defense. 

Stephen J. Sheinkopf holds a PhD from University of Miami, completed his postdoctoral training at Brown Medical School under an NRSA fellowship, and is a graduate of Tufts University.

Eric Morrow, MD, PhD

[email protected]

Dr. Eric M. Morrow serves as a consultant for RI-CART.

Dr. Morrow received his PhD in genetics and neurodevelopment at Harvard University. He received his MD degree from the Health Science Training Program at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and Harvard Medical School. During this medical training, Morrow developed a strong interest in the scientific challenges posed by childhood neuropsychiatric disorders. He conducted further clinical and scientific training in neurology and psychiatry at Harvard Medical School. Morrow was Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) Rappaport Neuroscience Scholar and Assistant Professor at Harvard Medical School prior to coming to Brown. His research focuses on normal molecular mechanisms of brain development, and genetic perturbations that underlie disorders of human cognitive development. At Brown, Morrow's research bridges between the Department of Molecular Biology, Cell Biology & Biochemistry and the Department of Psychiatry & Human Behavior, where he directs the Developmental Disorders Genetics Research Program (DDGRP).

Thomas F. Anders, MD

Senior Research Scientist & Volunteer Senior Consultant
[email protected] 

A retired, academic child and adolescent psychiatrist, Dr. Anders draws on his extensive experience in autism research and community building in his work with RI-CART.

Prior to helping launch RI-CART in 2009 and returning to Brown University as an adjunct professor, Dr. Anders co-founded the M.I.N.D. Institute at University of California, Davis – a premier research institute for people on the ASD spectrum. Dr. Anders is also past president of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry (AACAP.)

Dr. Anders is a graduate of Stanford University School of Medicine. His career includes heading the Divisions of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry at Stanford University (1974-1984) and at Brown University (1985-1992). At UC Davis, his multiple posts also included Chair of the Department of Psychiatry (1992-1998), Executive Associate Dean of the School of Medicine (1998-2002) and after retiring, as a professor emeritus of psychiatry and behavioral sciences.

Giulia Righi, PhD

Co-Investigator & Staff Psychologist
[email protected]

Dr. Giulia Righi is a staff psychologist at the Center for Autism and Developmental Disabilities at E. P. Bradley Hospital and an Assistant Professor of Psychiatry and Human Behavior at the Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University.

Dr. Righi is focused on understanding ASD through both research and clinical services, with a primary focus on the assessment and study of those who require significant levels of psychiatric care. Her research interests are in the study of the phenotypic and psychophysiological characteristics of children and adolescents with ASD and co-morbid psychopathologies, as well as on improving diagnostic accuracy and identifying factors relevant to treatment outcomes.

Prior to joining RI-CART, Giulia completed a postdoctoral fellowship at Children’s Hospital Boston where she conducted research surrounding early markers of ASD using electroencephalography (EEG) and behavioral measures. Giulia received her PhD in cognitive sciences from Brown University and completed her clinical internship at the Alpert Medical School of Brown University.


Carrie Best, MPH

Project Coordinator
[email protected]

Carrie joined the RI-CART team in June 2015 as Project Coordinator and oversees the day-to-day operations of the project, as well as the overall progress of RI-CART.

Carrie brings more than 10 years of research experience, primarily working on studies focused on pregnancy and infants, to her work at RI-CART. As the mother of a child with ASD, Carrie offers a unique perspective to this program and finds her position with RI-CART particularly meaningful.

Carrie holds a Master of Public Health degree in Health Behavior and Health Education from the University of Michigan School of Public Health, as well as undergraduate degrees in Sociology and Music Performance.

Natalie Noonan, PsyD

Neuropsychology Fellow                                                      [email protected]

 Dr. Noonan is a second year neuropsychology fellow doing primarily clinical work in Bradley Hospital’s inpatient and outpatient clinics. Her clinical work focuses on neuropsychological assessment of autism, learning disabilities, and other neurodevelopmental disorders. Dr. Noonan's research interests include assessment and diagnosis in inpatient settings.

Lauren DeMoss, MS, OTR/L

Outreach & Recruitment Coordinator

[email protected]

As Outreach & Recruitment Coordinator for the Rhode Island Consortium for Autism Research and Treatment, Lauren is the initial point of contact for families interested in joining the research registry. She coordinates many of the Consortium’s events and outreach efforts. Lauren also conducts assessments with RI-CART participants.

Prior to joining RI-CART, Lauren worked as a project coordinator at the Duke Center for Autism and Brain Development under Dr. Geraldine Dawson and as a school-based occupational therapist in North Carolina.

Lauren holds an MS in occupational therapy from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and a BS in psychology from James Madison University.


Elaine Bucknam

Data Management Specialist
[email protected]

Elaine Buckname joined the RI-CART team in 2017. She oversees the RI-CART database, facilitates data analysis for RI-CART research projects, and supports recruitment of families and providers at community events.

Elaine graduated summa cum laude from St. Mary's College of Maryland, where she earned a B.A. in Psychology and Studio Art. During her time at college, Elaine completed research on social motivation and social cognition in high-functioning boys with autism. Prior to joining RI-CART, Elaine worked as a Research Assistant at the National Institutes of Health and Yale Cognition and Development Laboratory. She plans to pursue a career in child clinical psychology.


Kayla Perkins 

Senior Clinical Research Assistant
[email protected]

Kayla Perkins joined to RI-CART team in 2015 and supports families through the enrollment process, helps maintain the RI-CART database and supports recruitment of families for the study at community events.

Kayla is graduate of the University of Connecticut where she earned a BA with honors in Psychology and worked on a study investigating a measure designed for the early detection of autism and related disorders. 

Monica Treviño

Clinical Research Assistant
[email protected]

Monica Treviño joined the RI-CART team in 2017. She supports families through the enrollment process, assists in the management of the RI-CART database, and supports recruitment of families and providers at community events.

Monica graduated from Brown University with a BA in Psychology. During her time at Brown, she worked as a Research Assistant on a study focusing on environmental factors in language development, as well as a lab looking at Cognitive Bias Modification as a treatment for Anxiety and Mood Disorders.

Families looking for more information in Spanish can reach Monica directly at 401.432.1624, or ask for her at our main line 401.432.1200. 


Rebecca Bradley

Clinical Research Assistant
[email protected]

Rebecca joined the RI-CART team in 2017. She currently supports RI-CART recruitment and enrollment efforts, and she also helps collect and manage data for the Hassenfeld Autism Initiative.

Rebecca graduated from the University of Maryland in College Park with a BS in Psychology. At UMD, she worked in the Child Development Lab and used EEG to study cognitive functioning as a potential biomarker for the development of anxiety disorders.

Robin Evans

(401) 432-1101
[email protected] 

Robin Evans received her certificate in phlebotomy in 1999 from Community College of Rhode Island’s phlebotomy program.  She has over 15 years of experience, including working in the RI Blood Center, The Miriam Hospital, and a pediatric practice. She is excited to be a part of the RI-CART team!

Sue Baylis

Family and Resource Specialist
(401) 785-2666 ext 1021
[email protected]

Sue Baylis serves as RI-CART’s liaison with The Autism Project and is available as a resource to every family within RI-CART. As the parent of two daughters with autism, Susan understands the joys and challenges of raising a child with special needs, as well as the fear and confusion that follows a diagnosis. Sue has worked at The Autism Project as a Parent Consultant/Resource Specialist since March 2005 offering support and assistance to families and community partners.  She facilitates support groups and teaches Parent to Parent, a 5-week class, which helps new families learn about ASD and how it impacts their child. 

Elena Tenenbaum, PhD

Postdoctoral Fellow

[email protected] 

Dr. Elena Tenenbaum is a Postdoctoral Fellow whose research focuses on social attention and language learning in typically developing, language delayed, and autistic children. She works with Dr. Stephen Sheinkopf at the Brown Center for the Study of Children at Risk at Women and Infants Hospital where she uses eye tracking to explore how children look at the world when they learn new words. She focuses on identifying interventions for autistic and minimally verbal children.

Prior to joining RI-CART, Elena worked for a number of years at the Autism Project of Rhode Island.

Elena Tenenbaum holds a PhD in Cognitive Science and Psychology from Brown University.