Program Leadership

Jessica Rispoli Joines, MGC, CGC


Joines Jessica2Jessica Rispoli Joines is a board certified genetic counselor and is the Director of the Genetic Counseling Master's Program at Rutgers University. Ms. Joines received her Master's in Genetic Counseling from the University of Maryland. Before coming to Rutgers, Ms. Joines served as the Assistant Program Director at the University of Maryland for over ten years. She has over 15 years of clinical experience providing genetic counseling in oncology, pediatric, and neurology clinics.

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Susan Slower Brooks, MD

Medical Director

Brooks SusanSusan Sklower Brooks, M.D is a board certified clinical and biochemical geneticist. She received an MMS degree at Rutgers Medical School, MD degree at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine (now Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai) and completed fellowship training in genetics at Mount Sinai under the direction of Kurt Hirschhorn, MD and Robert Desnick, PhD, MD.

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Gary Heiman, PhD

Director of Student Research

Dr. Gary Heiman received a Master's Degree from the genetic counseling program at Sarah Lawrence College. He later obtained a PhD in epidemiology at Columbia University. He is currently an Associate Professor in the Department of Genetics at Rutgers and an adjunct professor at Columbia University. Dr. Heiman's research focuses at the intersection between genetics, psychiatry, and neurology, specifically with Tourette's disorder (TD) and Parkinson's disease. He is the PI on the Tourette International Collaborative Genetics (TIC Genetics), the largest sharing cell and DNA repository for TD. For more information about Dr. Heiman's research interests please see:

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Elena Ashkinadze, MS, LGC

Ashkinadze ElenaMs. Ashkinadze is a licensed and board certified genetic counselor who specializes in reproductive genetics. She received her genetic counseling degree from Sarah Lawrence College. She is the senior genetic counselor in her department and has been supervising genetic counseling students for over 15 years. In addition to her clinical work, Ms. Ashkinadze has played an active role in state-wide professional issues. She is the course director of the Foundations of Genetic Counseling: Reproductive Genetics course and serves on various GCMP committees.

Christina Botti, MS, LGC

Botti christinaChristina Botti is a licensed and board certified genetic counselor. She received her undergraduate degree in biotechnology at Rochester Institute of Technology followed by her master's degree in genetic counseling at Arcadia University. She currently serves at Adjunct Instructor in the Department of Pediatrics and Clinical Instructor in the Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology & Reproductive Sciences at Rutgers – Robert Wood Johnson Medical School.

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