Jane T. Bertrand, PhD, MBA



Jane T. Bertrand, PhD, MBA serves as Director for the Center. She serves as Principal Investigator on most of Tulane’s current family planning (FP) projects. She works closely with Dr. Arsene Binanga to determine strategy, ensure effective management, and seek additional investments in FP in the DRC. She also directs specific research designed to understand contraceptive dynamics and programmatic effectiveness.




Maria Herdoiza, MPH

Associate Director


Maria Herdoiza, MPH, is the Associate Director for the Center of Reproductive Health Policy and Programs. She is responsible for the management and oversight of grant finances and administration. Ms. Herdoiza has managed grants from the Gates Foundation, the Packard Foundation, UNFPA, Merck, among others.

In addition, she works with Tulane International L.L.C (TILLC) and is the main point of contact in the U.S for the Democratic Republic of Congo (D.R.C.) office. As part of the TILLC team, she has co-directed internal audits, led personnel training, facilitated external audits, and spearheaded the improvement of financial processes. Her interests include organizational and team effectiveness, program design and implementation, and human resource development. Ms. Herdoiza is fluent in Spanish, has French working proficiency, and is completing her MBA at the Tulane Freeman School of Business (class of 2022).

Arsene Binanga, MD, MPH

Research Assistant Professor

Arsene Binanga, MD, MPH has been Tulane’s Director for Family Planning Programs in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) since April 2013. In this position, he serves as country representative for several projects: (1) The Promis-PF (a Norway funded project to extend Family Planning coverage in DRC, (2) the ACQUAL Project (funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and David and Lucile Packard Foundation), (3) the Track 20 project to improve routine information systems in the DRC and (4) the AFP project to ensure continuous Government commitment in support of FP. He is also the Advance Family Planning Representative (www.AdvanceFamilyPlanning.org). In this role, Dr. Binanga works closely with DRC officials as well as all FP stakeholders on Advance Family Planning’s agenda. 

Julie Hernandez, PhD

Associate Professor

Julie Hernandez, PhD, is an Associate Professor with the Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine, and is currently working on multiple projects funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the Packard Foundation, and the government of Norway to improve access to family planning services in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Dr. Hernandez has expertise in Geographic Information Systems, digital data collection as well as qualitative research methods. Her research interest include access to healthcare services in low and middle-income countries, community-based health interventions, post-disaster and refugee crisis, and sexual and reproductive health issues.


Anastasia Gage, PhD


Anastasia Gage is a Professor in the School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine. Her research focuses on adolescent, reproductive, maternal and child health, and on gender relations in sub-Saharan Africa. She has extensive expertise in monitoring and evaluation of health programs in Ghana, Ethiopia, Haiti, Jamaica, Niger, Nigeria, Uganda, and Zambia. She was Tulane Team Leader for MEASURE Evaluation from 2003 to 2017 and is currently Technical Director of MOMENTUM, a gender-transformative integrated family planning and maternal and newborn health model for first-time mothers age 15-24 and their male partners in Kinshasa, the Democratic Republic of Congo.


Janna Wisniewski, PhD

Research Assistant Professor


Janna Wisniewski, PhD is a Research Assistant Professor in the Department of International Health and Sustainable Development, with a secondary appointment in Health Policy and Management at the Tulane School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine. She researches health system strengthening, particularly quality improvement, health workforce, governance, and equity, with a focus on fragile and post-conflict settings. She has expertise in using mixed methods in the evaluation of the impact of complex health systems interventions and operations research. Most recently, she has conducted research in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Rwanda, and Tanzania.


Emily Sonneveldt, PhD

Adjunct Faculty

Dr. Sonneveldt is the Director of M&E and Advocacy at Avenir Health and the Director of the Track20 Project. She currently leads activities that focus on monitoring of health programs, increased data utilization at the national and global levels, and developing and applying innovative tools and models that support data-based decision-making. She has extensive experience supporting governments to develop, implement, and monitor health policies, including facilitation of goal setting and priority identification workshops that have resulted in policy and priority changes. She has performed district and national level applications of computer models focusing on family planning, safe motherhood, post-abortion care, and the impact of rapid population growth on development. She has worked implementing health programs in Africa and the Balkans and served as a technical advisor for policy, advocacy, and research activities in Africa, the Caribbean, Southern Asia, and Eastern Europe. Her primary areas of expertise are family planning and maternal health. Dr. Sonneveldt has an MPH and a Ph.D. in Public Health from Tulane University.

Franziska Pirkl, MHCM

Program Manager II


Franziska Pirkl, MHCM, is the Program Manager II for the Center for Reproductive Health Policy and Programs. She supports the center with the management, coordination, and monitoring of its programs in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). She also oversees day-to-day administrative and financial operations of Tulane and TILLC-DRC to implement programmatic activities. She is fluent in German and has elementary proficiency in French.


Wade Wootan, JD

Global Affairs and Regulatory Compliance Administrator


Mr. Wootan is a Louisiana-licensed attorney with nearly 30 years of experience advising senior leadership and personnel in the higher education and health care sectors. He has had progressive responsibilities, facilitating the creation of institutional frameworks to oversee and support high-quality research, capacity building, and learning worldwide. Wade oversees Tulane International, L.L.C., a wholly-owned multinational controlled by the University. He chairs Tulane’s two core international committees that oversee research and travel abroad. Previously, he served as Tulane’s Associate General Counsel for Research and Life Sciences where he counseled the University’s 18,500 plus faculty, staff, and students on a broad range of business and legal matters. 

Mr. Wootan oversaw the development and implementation of a full range of international policies and training used by Tulane to support international banking, cash management, payroll, and compliance. At Tulane, he works with faculty from across the University to establish educational programs and research projects around the world. He is primarily responsible for establishing and operationalizing legal structures and plans for University-related activity abroad, especially in remote and developing countries.

Francine Wood, MPH

Doctoral Candidate


Francine Wood is a research assistant on the MOMENTUM project and is currently a Ph.D. student in the Department of Global Community Health and Behavioral Sciences. She has worked on various family planning projects in the DRC, including the ASSP project. Francine earned her MPH from Tulane and completed her practicum in Ghana, developing and implementing a mixed-method baseline study for a WASH and MHM Project. Before her MPH, she worked as the Training and IEC Coordinator on an MCH Systems Strengthening Project in the Western Region of Ghana. Her interests lie in MCH and reproductive health, and her dissertation will focuses on male involvement in maternal and newborn health in the DRC.


Madeline Woo, MA, MSPH

Doctoral Student


Madeline Woo is a PhD candidate in the Department of Health Policy and Management at the Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine. She received her MSPH from the Department of International Health in the Health Systems concentration from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. Her research interests include reproductive, maternal, and neonatal health in low- and middle- income countries. She currently works as a research assistant for Dr. Bertrand in the Center for Reproductive Health Policy and Programs on reproductive health projects in the Democratic Republic of Congo. 


Kate LaNasa, MPH

Doctoral Student


Kate LaNasa is a doctoral student in the Health Policy and Management department. She completed her MPH in 2019 at Tulane University in the International Health and Development program with a certificate in Methods of Monitoring and Evaluation. As both a masters and doctoral student, she has worked with Drs. Bertrand and Hernandez on multiple research projects related to improving access to quality family planning services in the DRC.

Kate spent the summer of 2018 as a monitoring and evaluation intern in the Tulane International office in Kinshasa, DRC and completed her practicum in Humjibre, Ghana where she led sexual/reproductive health workshops for adolescent girls. She has also worked as the program manager for the Tulane Violence Prevention Institute and as an intern on the Track20 project at Avenir Health. Her research interests include monitoring of family planning programs, contraceptive supply environments, and the intersection between sexual/reproductive health and gender-based violence.


Olivia Padis

Master’s Student


Olivia Padis is a MPH student in the Department of Global Community Health and Behavioral Sciences. She previously spent five years in the Office of Population and Reproductive Health at USAID where she was on the management teams for The Demographic and Health Surveys Program, the US Census Bureau Interagency Agreement, and MEASURE Evaluation. Her interests include family planning and reproductive health, demography, and monitoring and evaluation of health programs. She currently works as a research assistant for Dr. Bertrand and Dr. Gage, supporting reproductive health programs in the DRC.