COTC: Investigators

Meet the Outreach and Research Translation Team


Barbara FieseBarbara Fiese, Ph.D., is a clinical and developmental psychologist whose research focuses on family factors that promote health and wellbeing in children. She holds the Pampered Chef, Ltd., Endowed Chair in Family Resiliency and is Professor and Director of the Family Resiliency Center at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, with affiliated appointments in the Departments of Pediatrics and Psychology.


Telephone: (217) 333-7772






Brenda KoesterBrenda Koester, As Assistant Director of the Family Resiliency Center, Brenda Koester’s research and outreach place a particular focus on the effects of food security policies and programs in Illinois and nationally.  A complementary focus is on policies and capacity in early childhood care.


Telephone: (217) 367-2152

Lizanne DeStefano

Lizanne DeStefano, is the director of the I-STEM Education Initiative. She specializes in the evaluation and

sustainability of innovative STEM, as well as other, educational programs; multi-site initiatives; and programs serving

special populations. She serves as the evaluator for the IKIDS project.


Telephone: (217) 333-9625