About + Contact | GRID Team

The GRID team comprises faculty, staff, trainees, and students. We reflect a diverse group of interests, backgrounds, and identities.

Marwa Aly, MS | marwa.aly@duke.edu
Graduate Student and Graduate Research Assistant

Marwa is responsible for helping with data collection and analysis in coordination with the rest of the GRID team.  She has a Bachelor’s degree in Biology and Spanish from Butler University, a Master of Science in Biology from Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis, and is currently pursuing a Master of Science in Global Health at Duke University.


Lynn Fellman | lynn@fellmanstudio.com
Designer and Artist

Lynn is a science communicator and Fulbright Senior Scholar specializing in genomics and human evolution. As a designer, artist, and animator, she guides development of visual and written themes for GRID across multiple media. Lynn’s art exhibits, eBooks and animated videos about genetic ancestry, evolution of human skin color, and genomics in precision health reflect many of GRID’s key concepts. Her work is supported by funders such as the National Science Foundation and Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.


Joseph Graves, Jr., PhD | gravesjl@ncat.edu
Adjunct Professor of Biology, Duke University

Joseph is Associate Dean for Research & Professor of Biological Sciences, Joint School of Nanosciences and Nanoengineering, North Carolina A&T State University and UNC Greensboro. He received his PhD in Environmental, Evolutionary and Systematic Biology from Wayne State University, and a BA in Biology from Oberlin College. He is also an elected Fellow of the Council of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). His research concerns the evolutionary genomics of adaptation and biological concepts of race in humans. His current research involves deep genomics of parallel adaptation, specifically relevant to life history and aging, and the impact of metallic nanoparticles on bacteria.


Jayne O. Ifekwunigwe, PhD | 919-668-4591 | joi@duke.edu
Visiting Associate Professor

Jayne received a Joint PhD in Medical Anthropology from UC Berkeley/UC San Francisco, an MA in Anthropology from UC Berkeley, and both a BA in Anthropology and a BA in Biomedical Ethics from Brown University. She was a former Reader in Anthropology at the University of East London (UK). She is a critical and global ‘mixed race’ studies pioneer, whose current qualitative research analyzes anthropological interpretations of both constructs of race as well as ‘mixed race’ and social interfaces between conceptualizations of biology and culture. Her relevant books include Scattered Belongings: Cultural Paradoxes of ‘Race’, Nation and Gender (1999, Routledge) and ‘Mixed Race’ Studies: A Reader (2004, Routledge).


Rhoda O. Ijekpa, MBA | 919-668-4023 | rhoda.ijekpa@duke.edu
Center Administrator

Rhoda is responsible for the administration of the center, and coordination of projects. Rhoda received an MBA in Oil and Gas Management from the Robert Gordon University in Aberdeen, Scotland. She has a bachelors in Petroleum Engineering from the University of Port Harcourt. Rhoda has vast experience working with multi-national and multi-cultural organizations in various industries, and she is multilingual with proficiency in English, French, and Spanish.


Mary Anne McDonald, DrPH | 919-880-3839 | m.a.mcdonald99@gmail.com
Research Associate

Mary Anne received a DrPH in Health Behavior and Health Education (Medical Anthropology & Qualitative Methods substantive Areas), and an MA in Folklore, both from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Her work has primarily been with marginalized populations in the American South. She uses qualitative methods and a community-engaged research approach to examine public health problems in context and include the voices of those affected. Her research projects include environmental justice projects, the NCAA’s sickle cell trait screening policy, and cardiologists’ perspectives on and use of BiDil.


Simon Outram, PhD | 919-684-1047 | simon.outram@duke.edu
Senior Research Associate

Simon received a PhD in Science and Technology Studies from St George’s Hospital, University of London, an MSc Environmental Epidemiology from London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, an MA in Social and Cultural Anthropology from the University of Manchester, and a BA in History and Sociology with Social Anthropology from the University of Keele, UK. With a background in social anthropology, bioethics, and science & technology studies he brings a variety of academic perspectives to the question of why human racial categories continue to be used within the biological and biomedical sciences and how this use comes to be interpreted within and outside the confines of academia.


Kimberly Perez | 919-684-1047 | kimberly.perez@duke.edu
Undergraduate Research Assistant

Kimberly is currently pursuing a Bachelor of Arts in International Comparative Studies at Duke University with minors in Global Health and Chemistry. She is responsible for social media and website management regarding mixed-race studies and assistance with research in coordination with the rest of the GRID team.


Charmaine DM Royal, PhD | 919-684-5639 | charmaine.royal@duke.edu

Charmaine is Associate Professor of African & African American Studies, Biology, and Community & Family Medicine. She earned her BA in Microbiology, MS in Genetic Counseling, and PhD in Human Genetics from Howard University. She completed postgraduate training in Bioethics and ELSI (ethical, legal, and social implications) research at the National Human Genome Research Institute of the National Institutes of Health, and in Epidemiology and Behavioral Medicine at Howard University Cancer Center. Her research, teaching, and scholarship focus on ethical and social issues in genetics and genomics, particularly the intersection of “race” and genetics, its policy implications and practical interventions.