Adolescent Weight Management Program Team

Program Director

Elissa Jelalian, PhD, has been a staff psychologist in the Department of Child and Family Psychiatry at Rhode Island Hospital since 1992. She is also an associate professor of Psychiatry and Human Behavior and Pediatrics at The Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University.

Jelalian is a graduate of Brandeis University. She earned her doctorate at Miami University, and did her post-doctoral training in the Department of Child and Family Psychiatry, Rhode Island Hospital, The Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University.

Research Interests

Jelalian’s research program focuses on development and implementation of innovative weight control interventions for children and adolescents, as well as evaluation of state-wide policy to promote healthier school nutrition and physical activity environments.  Her research has been supported by NIH since 1999 and has had a significant impact on the study of behavioral weight control interventions for adolescents.

Her current research investigates innovative strategies for involving parents in adolescent weight control. She is also co-PI on a NIMH treatment development grant evaluating the efficacy of cognitive behavioral intervention combined with exercise in the treatment of overweight and depressed adolescents.

Psychologist

Wendy Hadley, PhD, received her degree in pediatric psychology from the University of Memphis in 2003. She completed her internship and postdoctoral fellowship within the Brown University Clinical Consortium.

She joined the pediatric cardiology division at Hasbro Children’s Hospital in 2016 and is an assistant professor (research) in the Division of Psychiatry and Human Behavior at The Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University. During the past 12 years Dr. Hadley has worked with a variety of pediatric patients and their families, including those affected by cancer, HIV, feeding disorders, and obesity. 

Her clinical interests include adjustment to pediatric medical conditions and disease prevention. Research interests include the prevention of health risk behavior and the use of technology in the delivery of behavioral health interventions.

Medical Director, Pediatric GI Feeding Program

Dr. Cerezo is a pediatric gastroenterologist and is certified in pediatric gastroenterology and nutrition.

Dr. Kasper is certified in pediatric gastroenterology and nutrition.

Lori LaFrance, PT
Clinical Manager of Children's Rehabilitation Services
Bariatric Surgeon

Beth Ann  Ryder, MD is a surgeon specializing in bariatric surgery, surgical education, and emerging technologies for minimally invasive surgery. She is also an assistant professor of surgery at The Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University.

Ryder received her medical degree from Tufts University School of Medicine in Boston, Massachusetts. She completed her residency in general surgery and a fellowship in minimally invasive surgery at Brown Medical School and Rhode Island Hospital in Providence, Rhode Island.

Katelyn Chopy, RD
Pediatric Clinical Dietitian
Rachel Damiani, RD
Pediatric Clinical Dietitian