Meet the Team

We embrace the ethos, “Nothing About Us, Without Us”. The Project CONNECT team reaches far and wide, including people who use drugs, industry partners, first responders and healthcare workers, community members working in harm reduction and recovery settings, and academics and researchers.

Together, we developed the TxCOPE platform using Community-Engaged research practices, to ensure that TxCOPE will meet the needs of all Texans impacted by substance use and overdose.

Community Advisory Board

The community advisory board (CAB) is comprised of members from harm reduction, recovery, healthcare providers, first responders, and people with lived experience. We began with four county specific CABs in Travis, Bexar, Williamson and El Paso and now have one unified statewide CAB. These CABs explored regional needs and considerations. We have now combined the four CABs into a unified statewide CAB.

Co-Design Partners

Our co-design partners were comprised of organizations that provide harm reduction services within their communities. They have actively worked alongside us to build TxCOPE and learn what best suits the needs of harm reduction groups across the state.

Bexar County Organizations

  • Bexar Area Harm Reduction Coalition
  • Street Medicine San Antonio
  • 210 Street Reach

El Paso County Organizations

  • Punto de Partida
  • Project Vida

Travis County Organizations

  • ASHwell
  • Texas Harm Reduction Alliance
  • Vivent Health

Williamson County Organizations

  • Williamson County EMS, Mobile Outreach Team

Community Artist

Joe Martinez

Executive Team

Kasey Claborn, PhD Principal Investigator, Steve Hicks School of Social Work and Dell Medical School

Ashley Welch, MA, Project Coordinator, Steve Hicks School of Social Work

Andrea Daugherty, Technical Security Lead, Dell Medical School

Scientific Team

Justin Benzer

Justin Benzer, PhD

Dell Medical School

Suzannah Creech

Suzannah Creech, PhD

Dell Medical School

Karl Korinek

Karl Korinek, MPH

Dell Medical School

Elizabeth Lippard

Elizabeth Lippard, PhD

Dell Medical School

Scott Graham, PhD

College of Liberal Arts

Patrick Boswell

Dell Medical School

Fiona Conway

Fiona Conway, PhD

Dell Medical School

Ruben Parra-Cardona

Ruben Parra-Cardona, PhD

Steve Hicks School of Social Work

Research Team

  • Katherine Folse, Research Fellow
  • Katie McCormick, Graduate Research Assistant
  • Katherine Ogle, Research Assistant
  • Tristan Ramos, Research Associate
  • Jake Samora, Research Associate
  • Savannah Shifflet, Research Assistant
  • Adam Wesevich, Research Assistant
  • Quanisha Whittfield, Research Associate

Technology Development Team

Maven Wave LLC is a digital transformation firm, they provide consulting and specialize in digital delivery skills and cloud-powered applications. They are a leading Google Cloud Premier Partner, and are working with Project CONNECT staff to build the overdose reporting and prevention platform.

Project CONNECT Thanks our Funding Partners

This project is supported by Texas Targeted Opioid Response, a public health initiative operated by the Texas Health and Human Services Commission through federal funding from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration grant award number 1H79TI083288.

Google Cloud

The syringe service exchange feature and the ability to track certain harm reduction items is supported by a donation from the San Antonio Nexus Connection (SANC).