Ron Strauss, DMD, PhD | Faculty Director

Ronald Strauss

Dr. Ronald P. Strauss is University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s Executive Vice Provost and Chief International Officer. He holds joint appointments in three schools, as Dental Friends Distinguished Professor in the School of Dentistry’s Department of Dental Ecology, Professor in the School of Medicine’s Department of Social Medicine, and Clinical Professor in the Gillings School of Global Public Health’s Department of Epidemiology.

Dr. Strauss’s research has focused on the social impacts of chronic health problems, especially in HIV/AIDS. His work combines his clinical, social science, ethical, and health policy interests as they relate to research participation, HIV/AIDS, stigma, and access to healthcare. Dr. Strauss is a trained ethnographer and has utilized qualitative and survey research methods in numerous projects. He assists CFAR investigators who are conducting social/behavioral research in the community or enrolling potential subjects in social science research studies.

Caressa White, MA | Director

Caressa connects the CFAR to communities and community agencies. She actively aids CFAR investigators in translating research results back to the community, facilitates public dialogue around HIV/AIDS research, and works with organizations to build health equitable partnerships with local communities. Caressa organizes and works closely with Community Advisory Boards, coalitions, and action groups to increase the impact of CFAR.

Caressa has been working in HIV/AIDS for 22+ years. She enjoys spending time with her partner, her daughter, and her 3 dogs at her home in Durham, NC.



Dani Strauss | Outreach Coordinator

Dani Strauss

Dani Strauss received her undergraduate degree from the University of Michigan, where she studied modern dance, anthropology, and women’s studies. After a year of teaching high school in the south pacific, she decided to return to more familiar ground and returned home to this beloved town with a new sense of purpose and commitment to community health activism. Dani designs and develops the CFAR’s social, print, and web-based media strategies, and manages the CFAR’s online presence. Dani writes the CFAR newsletter, manages the CFAR services database, and assists with the CFAR’s mentorship activities.