Lab Alumni

Many wonderful people have been a part of the Huettel Lab and have now moved on to new places.

Adrienne Taren, MD, PhD
Emergency Medicine Physician, PGY-3, University of Oklahoma
Her current research interests are Neural Mechanisms of Stress & Protective Effects of Mindfulness Training; Resilience in Healthcare Providers; Mindfulness for Performance Enhancement. Website
Alexander Breslav
Behavioral Scientist at Spotify 
Alex’s research is best described as computational psychiatry. He investigates the applicability of neural and mathematical models, derived from cognitive neuroscience, to questions in clinical domains. His experimental work utilizes reinforcement learning tasks to examine cognitive processes implicated in obesity. Additionally, Alex uses computational modeling and machine learning to examine dysfunctional cognitive processing in disordered eating and ADHD. Please check out his personal website and connect with him on LinkedIn.
Allison Scott
Lead UX Researcher 
Allison applies qualitative and quantitative research methods to web and software development, designing studies and providing recommendations to ensure that product teams are building the right solutions the right way for the right user audience. She is currently managing a group of usability researchers at a startup accelerator in Boulder, Colorado. LinkedIn
Amanda Utevsky, PhD
Senior Behavioral Researcher, Center for Advanced Hindsight, Duke University
Amanda applies behavioral economics principles and quantitative research methods outside of the laboratory and to everyday decisions. Working with the lab’s partner organizations, her research focuses on how to help increase people’s financial health and decision-making. LinkedIn
Amy Winecoff, PhD
Data Scientist at the Center for Information Technology Policy
Amy Winecoff was a graduate student in Psychology and Neuroscience. She studies aspects of social and affective behavior and the neural mechanisms that underlie these functions. In one of her major research areas, Amy explored how regions of the brain associated with reward processing respond to emotional information and how these responses are altered by conscious emotion regulation. Amy’s other research focus involves elucidating the relationship between changes in reward system function and altered social behavior in individuals with eating disorders.

View Amy’s CV here.


Andrea Kiss, PhD
Postdoctoral Fellow at Carnegie Mellon University

Andrea is a recent graduate from the Department of Economics Ph.D. program. She is currently doing her post-doc at Carnegie Mellon University. Her research involves experiments to answer research questions in behavioral and labor economics. You can connect with her on her website.

Ana Raposo, PhD
Assistant Professor of Psychology, University of Lisbon
Ana is interested in the cognitive and neural bases of human memory. Her research combines behavioral and fMRI methods to gain a better understanding of the mechanisms that support the retrieval of past experiences and the expression of knowledge. Website
Christopher Coutlee, PhD
Data and Market Analyst / Statistician II, Prospect Research, Management, and Analytics, Duke University Development
Chris completed his Ph.D. with the Huettel lab in 2014 and transitioned to an analytics role within Duke’s fundraising department. He now applies quantitative reasoning skills developed in the Huettel Lab to new challenges –including database-reporting, dashboard-building, and business-intelligence – with the goal of increasing financial support for Duke University’s educational mission. He loves using statistical models to explore and understand data in order to answer questions and guide decision-makers to evidence-based outcomes. LinkedIn
Dave Smith, PhD
Assistant Professor of Psychology, Temple University
Dave’s lab uses functional magnetic resonance imaging and noninvasive brain stimulation to study the neural mechanisms that shape our decisions for social and economic incentives. They also study how these mechanisms are disrupted in healthy aging, mood disorders, and substance use. Lab page, CV
David Muñoz
Senior UX Researcher
David is researching low-income families’ familiarity with technology and their approaches for learning about children’s health. Based on these insights, he will design and develop the appropriate technological tools to aid these parents in keeping track of their children’s development. LinkedIn
Dharol Stevens
Release Train Engineer
Dr. Dharol Tankersley Stevens received her Ph.D. in Philosophy and Cognitive Neuroscience from Duke University in 2008. Her dissertation is titled, The Neurobiological Foundations of Altruism. She currently works for P2 Energy Solutions. LinkedIn
Dianna Amasino, PhD
Postdoctoral Fellow with Dr. Joël van der Weele, University of Amsterdam
Dianna uses behavioral modeling, eye tracking, and neuroimaging to examine how context modulates value in decision-making. Her research has two main areas of focus: 1) understanding the interactions of attention and value during the choice process, and 2) investigating the neural underpinnings of social influences on motivation and valuation. Website
Edward McLaurin
User Services Specialist, Duke University
After spending time at Duke doing research, Edward transitioned into a split managerial and IT-related role, eventually moving into a full-time IT position. He hopes to use his experience working with sensitive data to focus on network and data security. He leaves a lasting legacy in the Huettel Lab, with some saying he was the best to ever do it simply because he never forgot about Dre. LinkedIn
Ellie Beam
MD/Ph.D. Candidate, Stanford University
The goal of Ellie’s Ph.D. research is to engineer a data-driven ontology of human brain function through computational meta-analyses of the neuroimaging literature. Website
Jacob Young, MD
Resident Physician, Neurological Surgery, UCSF
Jake_picture Jacob is interested in neurosurgical oncology. His clinical research focus is on optimizing functional outcomes and minimizing complications after surgery for intrinsic brain tumors, specifically by understanding the interaction between functional neural pathways and malignant cells. LinkedIn
John Clithero, PhD
Assistant Professor of Marketing, University of Oregon
John’s research employs both behavioral and fMRI experiments to understand the cognitive and neural mechanisms of individual decision-making. Website
Kelsey McDonald, PhD
Data Scientist at Covance
Kelsey is a recent graduate student from the Psychology and Neuroscience Ph.D. program. She uses computational models and Bayesian statistics to study strategic decision-making and neuroeconomics. She applies these methods to behavioral, neuroimaging, and electrocorticography (ECoG) data in humans. You can connect with her on LinkedIn (and check out her links to her CV and personal github page).
Khoi Vo, PhD
Technical Client Consultant at iMotions A/S
Khoi (LinkedIn) is a PhD student in the Cognition and Cognitive Neuroscience Program in the Department of Psychology and Neuroscience. He is interested in utilizing interdisciplinary approaches to study the processes and [neural] mechanisms underlying human decision-making. Specifically, Khoi is interested in understanding the interplay of reward and attention and their influence on choices and behavior.
Lawrence Ngo, MD, PhD
Associate Adjunct, Duke University Medical Center
Lawrence is in his last year of radiology residency. He currently works on several projects in applying deep learning to problems in radiology. LinkedIn
Libby Jenke, PhD
Assistant Professor, Department of Political Science, University of Houston
Libby studies the motivations and causal processes behind voters’ decisions using mouse tracking and eye tracking in addition to more traditional experimental methods. Website
Nichole Lighthall, PhD
Assistant Professor of Psychology, University of Central Florida
The goal of Nicole’s research program is to develop a neural model of decision processing that can be used to identify age-related vulnerabilities and pathways to compensation. She is particularly interested in how age-related changes to cognitive and affective components of decision-making impact decision processing and quality. Lab page, UCF profile page
Nikki Sullivan, PhD
Assistant Professor, Department of Management, London School of Economics
While in the Huettel lab, Nikki’s work focused on understanding and developing interventions for social, dietary, and financial decision-making using a range of techniques including fMRI, eye tracking, and mouse tracking.
CV,  Website
O’Dhaniel A. Mullette-Gillman, PhD
Asst Prof., Dept of Psychology, NUS | Asst Prof., Neurosci & Behav Disorders, Duke-NUS Grad Med School
Investigating human decision making and valuation – what are the neural and cognitive mechanisms of value to utility transformations?
Faculty page, LinkedIn, Facebook page
René San Martín, PhD
Associate Professor and Director of the Center for Neuroeconomics of the Faculty of Economics and Business of the Diego Portales University.
René San Martín was a Ph.D. candidate in the Psychology and Neuroscience Department at Duke University. He is interested in the neural substrate of individual differences in economic and social decision making, and particularly in how humans use information about past outcomes to optimize choice behavior. His research examines these processes using EEG recordings while people participate in economic experiments. René joined the Huettel Lab after earning a BA in Psychology from Universidad de Valparaíso and a MA in Cognitive Studies from Universidad de Chile. René is also a Fulbright grant recipient and a faculty member at Universidad Diego Portales, Chile, where he has established the first center for the study of neuroeconomics in Latin America.

View René’s CV here.

Visit René’s faculty page here.

Rosa Li, PhD
Assistant Professor, Department of Psychology and Neuroscience at UNC-Chapel Hill

Rosa is a former graduate student in the Huettel Lab, now a Postdoctoral Associate in the Duke Center for Interdisciplinary Decision Science (D-CIDES). She is interested in how children, adolescents, and adults make decisions.

View Rosa’s CV here, and view her personal page here.

Steve Stanton, PhD
Associate Professor of Marketing, Oakland University

Steven Stanton received his BA (2002), MS (2006), and Ph.D. (2008) from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. Upon completion of his Ph.D., Dr. Stanton joined the Center for Interdisciplinary Decision Sciences at Duke University as a postdoctoral research scientist to work with Drs. Scott Huettel and Kevin LaBar. Dr. Stanton’s research focuses on the psychological and physiological factors that influence economic decision-making and consumer behavior. Dr. Stanton has authored over 20 academic journal articles and book chapters in a variety of interdisciplinary publications such as Psychological Science and PLoS ONE, and he has presented his research at numerous domestic and international conferences. Dr. Stanton’s research has been featured in television, radio, and print outlets including the New York Times, National Public Radio, CNN, Newsweek, and Scientific American. 

View personal page here.

Vinod Venkatraman, PhD
Associate Professor, Marketing and Supply Chain Management (MSCM), Fox School of Business, Temple University
Vinod’s research focuses on human decision-making and the factors that can influence those decisions, such as mood, temperament, physiological state, and preferences related to decision-making strategies. Vinod uses behavioral, eye-tracking, and neuroimaging techniques in his research. Website
Youngbin Kwak, PhD
Assistant Professor of Psychological and Brain Sciences at University of Massachusetts Amherst
Youngbin joined Huettel’s lab as a Postdoctoral Associate to extend her training on economic decision making, a human behavior heavily influenced by the dopaminergic system. After joining the lab, her research interest expanded to decision-making in a social context. In particular, her current work studies pro-social behavior and inter-group relationship using a decision-making paradigm she developed in the lab. Most of her studies involve both adults and younger children with an aim to understand the developmental trajectory of decision-making.

View Youngbin’s university profile here.