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Emma Sophia Kay

Director, Magic City Research Institute

Dr. Emma Sophia Kay (she/they) is the Director of the Magic City Research Institute, where she leads and oversees a community-engaged research portfolio that has garnered over $8 million in just two years.  With a research focus on improving health outcomes for people with and at increased risk for HIV,
including sexual and gender minority populations and people who use drugs, she is currently either Multiple Principal Investigator (MPI) or Investigator of Record (Site PI) on multiple NIH studies. She is MPI, along with Dr. Mary Hawk, on an R01 investigating the effect of harm reduction on the health outcomes of people with HIV who use drugs (1R01DA054832-01). She is Site PI on two additional R01s: CHAMPS: A randomized trial of a Community Health Worker intervention for persons living with HIV in two high priority settings (R01NR019758-01, MPI: D.S. Batey & R. Schnall) and Harnessing the Power of Social Network Support to Improve Retention in Care and Viral Suppression among Young Black Men in Chicago and Alabama: A Hybrid Type I Effectiveness-Implementation Trial of Project nGage (R01 MH 125744-01, MPI: D.S. Batey & A. Bouris), as well as co-PI on a study funded by UAB Lister Hill Center’s Pilot Grants for Health Policy Research with Dr. Tina Kempin Reuter to improve health equity for LGBTQ adults living in Alabama. She is also Co-I on a CDC-funded effectiveness-implementation trial (U01PS005229-01, PI: R. Schnall), which seeks to improve PrEP screening, counseling, initiation, adherence and persistence in Black and Latino MSM using a mobile health intervention.

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D. Scott Batey

Co-Director, Magic City Research Institute

Dr. D. Scott Batey (he/him) is the Co-Director of the Magic City Research Institute. An Associate Professor in the School of Social Work at Tulane University, Dr. Batey’s research focuses on eliminating health disparities, especially those prominent along the HIV Care  Continuum. Within this framework, he conducts mixed-methods research to answer important research questions. Informed by 26 years’ experience as a licensed social work clinician, his implementation research especially leverages the inherent skills of social workers to uniquely deliver evidence-based interventions; it is routinely community-placed and community-driven. Dr. Batey is PI, site PI (Investigator of Record), or Co-I on several ongoing NIH studies, including MPI on the NINR award, CHAMPS: A randomized trial of a Community Health Worker intervention for persons living with HIV in two high priority settings (R01NR019758-01, MPI: D.S. Batey & R. Schnall). His major scientific contributions center on implementation of promising interventions and delivery strategies that effectively and efficiently address gaps in the HIV care continuum, utilize evidence-based social work practice, reduce health-related stigmas, and optimize the primary medical clinic-community interface. Prior to his transition to Tulane in 2022, Dr. Batey led the UAB Center for AIDS Research’s (CFAR’s) community engagement efforts, and he maintains his affiliation as Scientist with the CFAR. Dr. Batey lives with his husband of 28 years, Bryan, and their two French bulldogs, Napoleon and Ollie Merle.

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Josh Bruce

Director of New Initiatives, Magic City Research Institute

Josh Bruce (he/him) is the Director of Research Initiatives of the Magic City Research Institute. Mr. Bruce has ten years of experience working with infectious diseases including HIV, hepatitis C, STIs, HPV, and more recently, COVID-19. He began his career with BAO as the Director of Education managing all aspects of HIV/STI and hepatitis C testing and worked closely with newly diagnosed individuals to link them into medical care for treatment. Alongside his experience in prevention, Mr. Bruce graduated from the University of Alabama, Birmingham (UAB) with a master’s in public health and has worked on several research studies in collaboration with UAB, Columbia University, the University of Pittsburgh, the University of Washington, the University of Chicago, HIV Prevention Trials Network, the CDC, and the NIH. Mr. Bruce’s research efforts focus on LGBTQ health and communicable diseases, with the definitive goal to improve health outcomes for marginalized communities.


Karen Musgrove
PhD, MEd, LPC​

CEO, Birmingham AIDS Outreach (BAO) 

Dr. Karen Musgrove (she/hers) currently serves as the CEO for BAO, Magic City Acceptance Center, Magic City Wellness Center, and the Magic City Acceptance Academy. BAO is the first non-profit agency in Alabama with the mission to serve HIV positive individuals.  The Magic City Wellness Center is the first LGBTQ medical wellness center in the state of Alabama, the Magic City Acceptance Center is a LGBTQ youth center, and the Magic City Acceptance Academy, opening in 2021, will be the first LGBTQ affirming charter school. Dr. Musgrove has experience in case management, grant writing, grant administration, administrating new programs, management of funding, program development, speaking on a variety of subjects, natural disaster emergency response, and community collaboration. Dr. Musgrove graduated in 2020 from the UAB School of Public Health and with a dissertation research topic, “Exploring the Physical and Mental Health Disparities in the Transgender Male Community in a Southern Community-Based Medical LGBTQ Organization”  to bring attention to the transgender medical and mental health needs. Dr. Musgrove is the UAB School of Public Health 2020 Student of the Year. Dr. Musgrove and has worked for various non-profits in the Birmingham community including Gateway, JBS Mental Health Authority and American Red Cross.  Honors include: Leadership Alabama, 2019; Leadership Birmingham, 2015; The Women’s Network; American Red Cross Mental Health Volunteer, World Trade Center 9/11, 2001; Top 40 under 40, Birmingham Business Journal, 2001; Smart Woman 2012, The Women’s Fund. Karen has served on the following non-profit boards: Sidewalk Film Festival; The Magic City Choral Society – founding board member, past chair; Crestwood North Neighborhood – board member; Central Alabama Theatre – founding board member, vice chair; Birmingham AIDS Outreach – board member and executive committee.

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