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Meet the Team

We are a gerontology research lab which studies the unmet service needs of older adults and their caregivers. We look for new models of care to help aging families.

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Carolyn Pickering, PhD, RN


Dr. Carolyn Pickering is a geriatric nurse scientist with a program of research focused on developing innovative models of care for vulnerable older adults and their caregivers. Dr. Pickering has interdisciplinary projects which aim to identify ways of bringing together multi-sector service providers to better support older adults and their family caregivers in the community so that people can age-in-place safely and with the resources they need.


Frank Puga, PhD

Dr. Puga's research group studies the link between stress, depression, and cognitive frailty. Using a multi-system approach, we investigate physiological and behavioral processes that increase vulnerability to mental health and accelerate age-related cognitive decline. A major focus of the laboratory is to develop and test behavioral interventions that increase physiological resilience to stress, improve mental health, and delay to onset of cognitive decline.

Danny Wang

Danny Wang, MS


Danny Wang is a data analyst for the Pickering Caregiver Lab. He has a master’s degree in experimental/research psychology from the University of Texas at San Antonio. His research interest includes quantitative methods, biomarkers for psychological stress, and health-related topics. Danny plans to pursue doctoral studies in the future.


Kyungmi Lee, MSN, RN

Kyungmi Lee is a nursing PhD student and research assistant. She has a research interest in improving the quality of life of people with dementia and their caregivers in community and Long-Term Care (LTC) settings.  She is a manager in the Department of LTC Insurance, Headquarters, the National Health Insurance Service in Seoul, Korea.

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Meghan Rafford, MSN, RN

Meghan Rafford is a nursing PhD student and graduate research assistant for the Pickering Caregiver Lab. She received her master’s degree in nursing from UAB and has worked with geriatric patient populations in inpatient and home-care settings. Her research interests include caregiver stress for geriatric patients in rural settings and pressure-related injuries. 

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