Post-Doctoral Fellow / University Scholar

Graduate Student Colleagues

Matt is a fourth-year graduate student in the Performance Management Laboratory at the University of Kansas. After completing his Bachelor's degree at Syracuse University, he joined the Family Behavior Analysis Practice at Upstate Golisano Children’s Hospital in Syracuse, New York. While there, he worked under the supervision of Dr. Henry Roane, and assisted with the assessment and treatment of severe behavior disorders displayed by children with developmental disabilities. His research interests include staff training, performance management,  and the application of behavioral economic principles to organizational behavior management. His long-term goal is to secure a position at an academic research institution.

Matt Novak, BS

The Performance Management Lab includes highly trained and skilled undergraduate students specializing in Organizational Behavior Management. They work as organizational consultants and research assisants under the supervision of Dr. DiGennaro Reed and graduate students. The following students were invited to join the lab after a rigorous interview process involving structured interviews, work sampling, and role plays.


  • Matt Harbison
  • Ryan Gallagher
  • Ali Fowler
  • Alina Usenko
  • Allie Heiner
  • Andrew Widener

Undergraduate Student Teammates

Dr. Azure Pellegrino is a Post-Doctoral Fellow in the Performance Management Laboratory at the University of Kansas. Azure received her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in psychology at California State University, Fresno. After working as a Board Certified Behavior Analyst in Massachusetts, she joined Utah State University’s Disability Disciplines Program under the supervision of Dr. Thomas Higbee. During her time in the program, Azure conducted research on verbal behavior, play, and social skills acquisition in children with Autism Spectrum Disorder. She also worked as a consultant with school districts throughout Utah to create classrooms employing evidence-based treatments for children with developmental disabilities. Azure has published in peer reviewed journals and presented her research in national and regional conferences. She currently oversees applied research with iLink Support Technologies, where her current research interests include staff training, performance management, and telehealth.

Azure Pellegrino, PhD, BCBA

Intern

Sandra Ruby, BA, RBT

Performance Management Laboratory

Abigail Blackman, MS

Abby is a second-year graduate student in the Performance Management Laboratory at the University of Kansas. After receiving her Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Binghamton University, she went on to pursue her Master’s degree in Applied Behavior Analysis and Organizational Behavior Management at Florida Institute of Technology. During her graduate training, under the supervision of Dr. Christopher Podlesnik and Dr. Corina Jimenez-Gomez, she worked on research projects that were both applied and translational in nature. Her current research interests lie in staff training, maximizing feedback effectiveness, and telehealth models for training. Abby hopes to be a research faculty member after completing her degree at KU.

Davis is a post-baccalaureate intern in the Performance Management Laboratory at the University of Kansas and is working as an independent contractor through the Performance Management Center with Community Living Opportunities. He joins the lab after completing his Bachelor of General Studies in Psychology at the University of Kansas in 2018. His research interests at KU include performance management, staff training, and organizational behavior management applied to the human service setting. Davis hopes to discover what he wants to pursue and focus on for graduate school, and one day wants to be a consultant for companies working in Human Services and more. 

Tyler Erath, MA

Davis Simmons, BGS

Tyler is a third-year graduate student in the Performance Management Laboratory at the University of Kansas. He received his Bachelor’s degree in Psychology, as well as his Master’s degree in Experimental Psychology from Appalachian State University. Working under the supervision of Dr. Cynthia Anderson, he completed his Master’s thesis on the topic of performance management, investigating the potential utility of a stress management intervention for direct support staff serving individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Currently, his research interests include performance management, staff training, and organizational behavior management applied to the human service setting.

Sandra is a first-year graduate student in the Performance Management Laboratory at the University of Kansas. Before KU, she received her Bachelor's degree in Psychology and managed Dr. Steven Payne's behavior lab at Fresno State University. Outside of school, she worked as a Registered Behavior Technician at California Autism Center and Learning Group and then as a Clinical Case Associate at Swan Consulting, Inc. Her current interests include navigating graduate school and perusing performance management.