Antonio Olmos, Ph.D.
Executive Director

Antonio has over 20 years of experience working in the field of program evaluation and research methods. As many others, Antonio became an accidental evaluator back in Mexico when working in the statistical analysis of a program offering education services to very small communities. He is passionate about demonstrating the effectiveness of programs and for many years he has worked around the idea of program effectiveness using research designs and research methods. Antonio has presented at National and International conferences about topics such as Propensity scores, meta-analysis, instrument equivalence, and experimental and quasi-experimental designs. Although specializing in quantitative methods, Antonio recognizes the importance of qualitative methods, and has extensive experience in mixed methods. Antonio has strong ties to Colorado, where he has worked as Director of Evaluation and Research (Mental Health Center of Denver), Associate professor (University of Denver), Board President (Colorado Evaluation Network), and local chair (American Evaluation Association).

Key Expertise: Experimental designs | Program evaluation methods and theory | Psychometrics | Quantitative methods | Quasi-experimental designs

Personal Interests: The outdoors | Endurance sports | Art | Photography | Music

Adam Soberay, Ph.D.
Research Associate

Within his role at ARI, Dr. Soberay has been a lead evaluator for a variety of programs across multiple community-based agencies. He is currently working on evaluations for the Aurora Mental Health Center, the Colorado Refugee Wellness Center, and the Asian Pacific Development Center. He is also currently providing data and evaluation support for the National Council for Behavioral Health. His current work focuses on evaluating programs targeting health disparities, primarily those experienced by individuals with mental illness and/or refugee and immigrant populations. At ARI, Adam is also responsible for the training of master’s and doctoral level evaluation interns. He also provides evaluation and research support for pre-doctoral psychology interns at the Aurora Mental Health Center. Adam is also currently an adjunct faculty at the University of Denver in the department of Research Methods and Statistics, as well as the department of Business Information and Analytics. He is also currently an adjunct faculty of the Math department at the Johnson and Wales University. His prior experience includes serving as the Program Manager and Research Coordinator for the University of Denver’s Problem Gambling Treatment and Research Center. He also contributed to a year-long assessment of the implementation of expanded learning opportunities targeting educational disparities within Colorado Public Schools. Dr. Soberay has published in peer-reviewed journals and presented at professional conferences on topics across research and program evaluation.

Key Expertise: Advanced Statistical Analysis | Evaluation | Program Management | Research Methods | Teaching

Personal Interests: Mountain Biking

Crystal Luce, M.A.
Research Associate

Crystal Luce is working on research and evaluation projects involving Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services, the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, Caring for Colorado, and the Denver Foundation. From a research and evaluation perspective, Crystal has experience with grant writing, focus groups, strategic planning, Microsoft Access database building, and data reporting. Crystal comes to us with over 15 years of work experience in the non-profit field. Prior to working at Aurora Research Institute, she worked at Aurora Mental Health as a Case Manager, The GLBT Community Center of Colorado as a Program Manager for their youth programming, and Case Manager for the Colorado AIDS Project. Crystal’s employment has provided her expertise with: integrated health (over 10 years), HIV care and prevention, cultural inclusivity, LGBT youth, community rights, refugee health, youth mentoring, youth in school and justice settings, family supervision, criminal justice and substance use. Crystal has also completed side projects with the Grand Valley Living Wage Campaign, Mesa County Meth Task Force, Western Equality, Butterflies and Dolphins (local mental health organization), and local Speech and Debate Teams. Crystal has presented her work at the Western Social Science Conference and the Boston College School of Social Work and HIV Conference. Crystal received her Bachelor of Arts in Political Science with a minor in Cultural Anthropology from Mesa State University and her Masters of Arts in Political Science with a focus on International Politics and Nation theory from the University of Colorado-Denver. Crystal’s work is driven by her experience growing up around the world due to her father’s work in the Navy.

Key Expertise: Cultural inclusivity | Integrated health | HIV care and prevention | LGBT rights | Strategic planning | Substance Use

Personal Interests: I enjoy spending time with my fiancé | Dance and other physical activities | Reading

Leonardo Flores, MSW
Junior Research Associate

Leonardo has over ten years of experience working with nonprofits to develop and implement evaluation and monitoring systems, including process/outcomes evaluations, quality assurance mechanisms, and performance management systems. His work spans workforce development, childcare subsidy, grant-giving programs, and hospice social work. With a focus on social justice, critical thinking, and participatory approaches to planning/implementation, Leonardo’s work aims to increase organizational and individual evaluation capacity for building sustainable practices. Leonardo has also worked in the technology sector, translating organizational procedures and federal compliance policies into software logic and system requirements. His skills include using SQL for report creation, database layout, workflow designs, and maximizing technological resources. Leonardo received his Bachelor of Arts from Pitzer College, double majoring in Psychology and Gender/Feminist studies. He also received a Master of Social Work with a concentration in Community Organizing, Planning, and Administration from the University of Southern California (USC). While at ARI, Leonardo hopes to promote sustainable, culturally responsive evaluation practices to institutionalize ongoing program development that addresses client and community needs.

Key Expertise: Stakeholder Involved Approaches to Evaluation | Evaluation Capacity Building | Quantitative and Qualitative Analysis | Critical Theory | Non-Western Research Methods

Personal Interests: Stand Up and Improv | Concerts | Hiking | Philosophy | Eating

Rachel Carlson, B.A.
Research Assistant

Rachel graduated summa cum laude from Metropolitan State University of Denver in 2019, with a bachelor's degree in Psychology. During her time at MSU, Rachel specialized in research, taking courses such as statistical research methods for social and behavioral sciences, advanced research methods, and multiple semesters as a research assistant. These courses not only gave Rachel a fundamental knowledge of research protocols, but also allowed her to independently design and run her own research study from conceptualization to presentation. As a research assistant, Rachel helped design and run studies, including data collection and analysis, literature reviews, and conference presentations. This experience further developed her knowledge of IRB protocols, designing questionnaires, conducting literature reviews, HIPAA, running participants, statistical analysis (SPSS and R), and writing APA-style manuscripts. In June 2019, Rachel presented some of her research at the Association for Contextual and Behavioral Science conference in Dublin, Ireland, and coauthored three other presentations for the same conference. In total, Rachel brings almost five years of research experience to ARI, where she hopes to use her knowledge and skills to assist the organization wherever she can.

Key Expertise: Literature Reviews | Scholarly & Scientific Writing | Psychological Flexibility | Mental Health | Organization

Personal Interests: Video Games | Travel | Music | Reading | Dungeons & Dragons

Erika Barse, B.A.
Research Assistant

Erika graduated cum laude from Western Colorado University in 2018, with her bachelor’s in Psychology and minor in Sociology. Erika specialized in research methodology and worked as a teaching and research assistant for three years, where she had the opportunity to lead/co-author a number of projects and assist other students in the development of research questions and protocols. She has attended and presented her work regionally and nationally for the Rocky Mountain Psychological Association and the American Psychological Society. Her work extended to the community where she served as a volunteer for GCSAPP, the Gunnison County Substance Abuse Prevention Project, a community coalition whose aim is to educate and provide programming that is data driven- informed by community data and specially tailored for the unique rural community. Erika joins ARI with an additional two years of clinical experience as a registered behavioral therapist, working directly with youth with developmental and mental challenges, including autism spectrum disorders, and offers a client-facing perspective to ARI. She is passionate about education and holistic/integrative care, and believes that data science should be relatable and approachable by all.

Key Expertise: Literature Review | Scientific Writing | Child Development | Mental Health | Behavioral Analysis

Personal Interests: Yoga | Volleyball | Food | Travel | Anime | Gaming | Dungeons & Dragons

Stu Garney, B.A.
Data Coordinator

Stuart joined ARI from Missoula, Montana with an interest in database design, development, and administration. With a graduate certificate degree in Data Analytics from Arapahoe Community College, he thus has an exceptional understanding of data science and analytics. His projects have demonstrated the cleaning and prepping of large raw data sets for further data/text mining, cluster analysis, map plotting, predictive modeling, sentiment analysis, segmentation, frequency distribution, and machine learning. He brings with him 4+ years of experience in SQL, Microsoft Access and Excel, R, Visual Basic, and Python and is fluent in their programming language. Furthermore, he specializes in Data Visualization utilizing Tableau to highlight and explain data in the simplest of ways. This skill set has enabled him to pursue web development as an additional interest. For his undergraduate degree Stuart received a Bachelor’s degree in Environmental Studies with a minor in Psychology from the University of Montana. This undergraduate background provided Stuart with a with wide range theoretical knowledge in environmental sciences and psychology, which have enabled him to understand the context of the databases he designs. With a wide variety of professional, technical, and educational experience Stuart brings a different perspective of problem solving and creativity to the table.

Key Expertise: Database design | Data Management | Database normalization & automation | Data Visualization | Programming Fluency | Web development

Personal Interests: Playing music | Soccer | Fly fishing | Hiking | Camping | Board sports