Meet the Staff
Suzanne Avila, M.A.Grant Specialist/IACUC Coordinator
Phone: (626) 815-6000, Ext. 3344
Suzanne Avila is a grant specialist and also serves as the Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC) coordinator. She is a fourth-generation Azusan, her family residing in Azusa since 1920. Avila has years of experience writing, managing, and implementing community improvement grants, securing millions in federal, state, and private grant funds. She holds a bachelor’s in geography from California State University, Fullerton, and a master’s in leadership and organizational studies from Azusa Pacific. Raised in an environment that honors and respects community service, Avila also serves as a commissioner on the city of Azusa’s Planning Commission.
Marta Cenac-Mehedinti, M.Sc.Director of Sponsored Research
Phone: (626) 815-6000, Ext. 3343
Marta Cenac-Mehedinti serves as the director of sponsored research, giving special attention to pre-award processes. Marta focuses on encouraging and supporting university faculty in their pursuit of external grant support, and oversees university-wide initiatives to improve external funding.
Mark Eaton, Ph.D.Director
Center for Research on Ethics and Values
Phone: (626) 815-6000, Ext. 2075
Mark Eaton seeks to promote faculty engagement and scholarship around ethics and human values and their applications to contemporary society. Eaton leads the effort in identifying excellent faculty projects to be awarded special CREV fellowships each year. The CREV faculty fellowships amount to one or two course releases for up to three persons per year, and the highly desirable Beverley Hardcastle Stanford Fellowship provides a one-semester release from all teaching for one faculty member. Eaton is a professor in the Department of English, and earned a Ph.D. in English from Boston University. Learn more about Eaton. Download CV (PDF)
Verónica A. Gutiérrez, MFA, Ph.D.Director of Undergraduate Research
Phone: (626) 815-6000, Ext. 3134
As director of undergraduate research, Verónica A. Gutiérrez seeks to strengthen the culture of scholarship at APU by promoting, facilitating, and celebrating excellent research among students and faculty mentors throughout all undergraduate disciplines. Gutiérrez facilitates APU’s internal programs through which undergraduate students apply for research travel grants and special research experiences with faculty in the summer. She is also an associate professor of Latin American history in the Department of History and Political Science. She earned an MFA in Creative Nonfiction from Pennsylvania State University and a Ph.D. in Colonial Mexican History from UCLA. Learn more about Gutiérrez. Download CV (PDF)
Donald Isaak, Ph.D.Executive Director
Phone: (626) 815-6000, Ext. 3796
As executive director, Donald Isaak provides leadership and vision for the Office of Research and Grants while he seeks to (a) promote a culture of scholarship at APU, (b) advance faculty scholarship, research, and publication, (c) expand external funding for research, scholarship, and special programs, and (d) celebrate accomplishments among the APU community of scholars. Isaak has a Ph.D. in geophysics from UCLA. He chaired APU’s Department of Mathematics and Physics for 10 years and served as associate dean and interim dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences for nine years. Download CV (PDF)
Alexander Jun, Ph.D.Qualitative Research Consultant
Phone: (626) 815-6000, Ext. 5723
Alexander Jun is a professor of higher education at Azusa Pacific. He teaches courses in qualitative research methods and diversity and social justice. Full-time APU faculty are encouraged to contact Jun regarding individual or group qualitative methods consultation. Download CV (PDF)
Yvonne RodriguezAdministrative Assistant
Phone: (626) 815-2082
As administrative assistant to the Office of Research and Grants, Yvonne Rodriguez plans, advertises, and manages all luncheons, events, workshops, and retreats. She also coordinates graduate student travel grants and tracks financial activities for the office.
Joanie StudeInstitutional Review Board Coordinator
Phone: (626) 815-2036
Joanie Stude assists faculty and students preparing to conduct research involving human subjects. She provides guidance for researchers to ensure they have the information needed to be in compliance with federal regulations.
Josephine (Jody) Wong, MBA, CRADirector of Grants Management
Phone: (626) 387-5820
Josephine (Jody) Wong assists APU faculty members and researchers in administrating their sponsored grants and contracts. For the past year she has been assisting project investigators and project directors in managing more than 30 sponsored projects endowed with more than $25 million in funding from federal and state governments, the private sector, foundations, and foreign countries. She holds a Master of Business Administration, as well as bachelor’s degrees in accounting, computer information systems, and psychology, from Arizona State University. Download CV (PDF)
Chong Ho (Alex) Yu, Ph.D.Quantitative Research Consultant
Phone: (626) 815-6000, Ext. 2749
Chong Ho (Alex) Yu, Ph.D., is an associate professor in the Department of Psychology, part of the School of Behavioral and Applied Sciences. His research has resulted in multiple publications and presentations on the philosophical foundations and best practices of quantitative research, in addition to many contributions in his area of expertise, the psychology of religion. His specialties include data mining, exploratory data analysis, and psychometrics. Full-time APU faculty are encouraged to contact Yu regarding individual or group quantitative methods consultation. Download CV (PDF)