Our Staff

Our experienced clinical research team will streamline the process of starting your study, and assure that your study is conducted with the utmost efficiency and accuracy.

Jeremy Whitson, BS

Jeremy Whitson, BS, CCRA, CCRP

Research Operations Director

Mr. Whitson is an experienced Research Operations Director who manages Southeast Renal Research Institute (SERRI). He came to SERRI with over 10 years’ experience as a Clinical Manager, CRA Line Manager, and Monitor in the Contract Research Organization (CRO) environment. This includes managing and monitoring Phase I – IV trials on the Local, National (US), and International (Global) platforms.

Cindy Yancy-Spurgeon, BS, CCRC

Cindy Yancy-Spurgeon, BS, CCRC, CCRP

Managing Clinical Coordinator

Mrs. Yancy-Spurgeon has been a Clinical Research Coordinator for over 16 years. Her therapeutic areas of experience include ESRD, Hospital based studies, GERD, erosive esophagitis, constipation, hormone
replacement therapy, pelvis pain, erectile dysfunction, chronic kidney disease,
vaccines, and many others. Cindy has been a Clinical Medical Assistant since 1995, and received her Bachelor of Science from Bryan College in 2010.  Cindy has been certified as a Clinical Research Coordinator (CCRC) from the Association of Clinical Research Professionals(ACRP) as well as Society of Clinical Research (CCRP).

Kim S. Norwood, CCRC

Senior Clinical Research Coordinator

Manager, Regulatory Affairs and Quality Systems

Mrs. Norwood is a Certified Clinical Research Coordinator and joined SERRI in November 2011. In June 2012, she became the Quality Assurance Regulatory Affairs Manager for SERRI. She brings 16 years of clinical trial experience to our team. Kim obtained her certification through the Association of Clinical Research Professionals (ACRP) in October 2000, and has an extensive background in many therapeutic areas including Gastroenterology, Infectious Disease, Internal Medicine, Nephrology, Neurology, Pediatrics, Pulmonology, Rheumatology, Urology, Vaccine, and Women’s Health.

Kim has completed CITI, OSHA, and IATA training and is BLS certified. She participates in the local UT Research Coordinator Forums and obtains the required CEU’s to maintain her ACRP certification. Kim enjoys spending time with her three girls and family.

Gina Harris, CCRC

Senior Clinical Research Coordinator

Ms. Harris joined SERRI as an ACRP Certified Clinical Research Coordinator in July 2012. She has been a coordinator since 2002 with ACRP certification in 2006. Gina has an extensive background in Gastroenterology studies including indications such as GERD, Pediatric GERD, IBS-D, IBS-C, Erosive Esophagitis, Chronic Idiopathic Constipation, Opioid Induced Constipation, and Gastroparesis, as well as health topics including Type II Diabetes, Hypertension, Women’s Health, Gout, Diabetic Nephropathy, and most recently Sleep Studies in Dialysis Patients.

Gina has completed CITI Training, OSHA training, and IATA training and remains active in the local UT Research Forum Coordinators group. Gina is credentialed at Erlanger, Memorial, and Parkridge hospitals. Prior to working in research, Gina was a Certified Procedural Coder working in general, orthopedic, and spine surgery. She is also a former Certified Dental Assistant. Gina enjoys hiking, rafting, reading, and walks in the park with her chocolate lab, Jake. 

Donna Bunten, CCRP

Senior Clinical Research Coordinator

Managing Hospital Coordinator 

 Mrs. Bunten is a Certified Research Professional and joined SERRI July 2013.  Donna brings 15 years of Clinical trail experience.  She  obtained her certification through Society of Clinical Research Professionals and has extensive background in Phase I-III and Managing hospital trials.  Her therapeutic area include, Internal Medicine, Nephrology, Rheumatology, Endocrinology, Mental Health, Infectious Disease, Cardiology, Chronic Pain and Women’s Health.  

Donna has completed CITI,OSHA and IATA training and is BLS verified.  She is currently credentialed at Erlanger, Memorial and Parkridge Hospital.

Brett Jennings, PhD

Clinical Research Coordinator & Translational Scientist

Dr. Jennings moved to Chattanooga in 2013, after completing his post-doctoral training in the Department of Pharmacology at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center in Memphis, TN. He obtained his PhD in 2008 from Deakin University in Geelong Australia; the focus of his graduate research was vascular biology. Dr. Jennings has extensive lab-based research experience in the field of hypertension, and its relationship to cardiovascular and renal pathophysiology. He is now working as a scientific reviewer and clinical research coordinator at SERRI, and as an adjunct professor in the chemistry department at the University of Tennessee in Chattanooga. He assists in the coordination of hospital based studies; data collection, verification, and entry, and regulatory compliance as well as aiding in the processing of laboratory samples. Dr. Jennings also provides recruitment support for the trials, by searching our patient database for possible study subjects, as well as reviewing study protocols for upcoming clinical trials. 

Jessica Goins, BS

Research Office Manager/Executive Assistant

Jessica earned a B.S. in Education with a concentration in English from the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga and joined the SERRI team in 2013.  She currently lives in Trenton, Georgia with her husband Anthony.

Kathy Brown, CCRC

Data Entry Specialist