Our Research Team


​​​​​​ Patrick Tyler, Ph.D., LIMHP, LPC, Senior Director, Child and Family Translational Research Center

Patrick TylerPatrick Tyler, Ph.D., LIMHP, LPC is an independent licensed mental health practitioner and licensed professional counselor. Dr. Tyler earned his doctorate from the University of Nebraska at Lincoln in education with an emphasis in emotional and behavioral disorders. He has over twenty years of experience working with youth and families in a variety of treatment settings. He has worked at Boys Town since 2001 as a clinical director and researcher in the residential and aftercare programs. His experience includes successful completion of two randomized controlled trials on an aftercare intervention called On the Way Home, which is on the California Evidence-Based Clearinghouse. He has also been involved in conducting fMRI research in the Center for Neurobehavioral Research since 2013 to understand brain function in youth with emotional and behavioral problems.

Beth Chmelka, Director of Data Support

Beth ChmelkaBeth is the Director of Data Support in the Child and Family Translational Research Center. The function of Clinical Data Support is to serve Boys Town by contributing to routine data collection and reporting activities. Beth holds a B.S. in Psychology from the University of Nebraska at Kearney. Her research experience includes measurement, survey development, database systems, program evaluation, and statistical analyses.

Kristin Duppong Hurley, Ph.D., Research Scientist II

Kristin Duppong HurleyKristin Duppong Hurley, Ph.D. is a Research Scientist at the Child and Family Translational Research Center with over 20 years of experience conducting federally-funded research focused on developing and testing interventions to support the families of students with emotional and behavioral conditions. Specifically, she is studying the outcomes and implementation of the Boys Town In-Home Family Services program; examining the impact on phone-delivered parent-to-parent support for families of students receiving special education services for the emotional and behavioral conditions; and investigating the importance of parental involvement in their child’s school and mental health services.

Jonathan Huefner, Ph.D., Research Scientist

Jonathan HuefnerJon has a Ph.D. in Organizational Social Psychology and more than 39 years of experience conducting research in a wide range of contexts. Strengths include psychometrics, research methodology, statistical analysis, and reporting and presentations. He has spent the last 21 years conducting research at Boys Town. His current research has focused on quality standards for children and adolescent residential care, negative peer contagion in residential care settings, residential care advocacy, psychotropic medication use with at-risk children, family involvement and youth outcomes, and return on investment related to residential outcomes.

Irina Patwardhan, Ph.D., Research Scientist

Irina PatwardhanIrina Patwardhan is a Research Scientist for the Child and Family Translational Research Center. She has a Ph.D. in Educational Psychology from the University of Nebraska at Lincoln, and previously held research positions at the Nebraska Center for Research on Children, Youth, Families, and Schools, and the Early Development and Learning Research Lab at the University of Nebraska at Lincoln. Dr. Patwardhan has received multiple professional honors and awards, including a Fulbright research scholarship, Max Plank research scholarship, and a scholarship from the American Psychological Association, Division 15 (Educational Psychology).

Johannah Bashford-Largo PhD, M.Ed., PLMHP, Research Scientist​

Johanna Bashford-LargoJohannah is a Research Scientist at the Child and Family Translational Research Center. She earned her Ph.D. from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln’s Neuroscience & Behavior program. With a master's degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling from Springfield College, Johannah's research focuses on utilizing neuroimaging methods to study disruptions in the brain and their associations with various mental health disorders.​

Rob Oats, M.A., Research Supervisor

Rob OatsRob Oats is a Research Supervisor​ for the Child and Family Translational Research Center. Rob has a M.A. in Educational Psychology from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and has experience with the application and evaluation of behavioral-based interventions in educational and clinical settings. Rob has been involved with projects evaluating Boys Town Well-Managed Schools, In-Home Family Services, and Common Sense Parenting®. He is the editor of the Translational Research Center Newsletter, Data News You Can Use, and the annual Translational Research Center Applied Research Bibliography.

Jay Ringle, M.A., Research Supervisor

Jay RingleJay Ringle is a Research Supervisor​ for the Child and Family Research Center. Jay has a M.A. in Developmental Psychology from the University of Nebraska-Omaha. Jay has experience as a behavior interventionist in schools, research design, database development, and multivariate statistical analysis.

Ashlee Mitchell, B.S., Research Analyst

Ashlee MitchellAshlee graduated from the Nebraska Wesleyan University with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Psychology and Communication Studies. During her three years on this campus she completed research with the University of Nebraska – Lincoln, was inducted into Psi Chi and Lambda Pi Eta Honor societies, and graduated with Highest Honors.

Josh Day, M.S., Research Analyst

Josh DayJosh is a Research Analyst for the Child and Family Translational Research Center. Josh graduated from Bangor University with a Master of Science in Psychology, graduating with distinction. Josh also holds a Bachelor of Arts in Mathematics and Psychology from Central College in Pella Iowa. Throughout these programs he had the honor of conducting multiple experiments on various topics, including aggression, group biases, and susceptibility to false information.

Jada Loro, M.P.H., Research Analyst

Josh DayJada is a Research Analyst for the Child and Family Translational Research Center. Jada graduated from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Psychology and Philosophy and received a Master of Public Health with a concentration in Global Health from The Brown School at Washington University in St. Louis. His area of focus and interest during his studies was in mental health and migration while working with international organizations set in Afghanistan and Uganda.

Colson Chupp, B.S., Research Assistant​

Colson ChuppColson graduated from Oregon State University with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Psychology and a minor in Human Development and Family Sciences. During his time on campus, he assisted in a psychology lab, developed and presented research projects, and graduated with great distinction.