Meet the Staff


Beth McKinney, MSEd, RD, CHES

Specializing in:

Beth is the Director Cornell Wellness. She received her bachelor's degree from Cornell University and her master's degree in health education from SUNY Cortland. In addition, Beth is a certified health education specialist. With previous experience in both clinical and community nutrition, Beth specializes in nutrition education and behavior change. Through Cornell Wellness, she offers cooking classes, weight management programs, and one-on-one nutrition counseling. Beth also enjoys giving presentations on stress management, smoking cessation, and humor. She tries to fulfill Cornell Wellness' mission by bringing joy, balance, and well-being to the Cornell community. Her own joy, balance and well-being comes from her husband Tim and their two children, Hannah and Jacob. Beth enjoys biking outside, hiking, knitting, and, of course, cooking. Contact Beth at

Kerry Howell, M.S., ACSM CEP, ACSM/ACS CET

Specializing in:

  • Individuals transitioning from physical therapy/injury
  • Sport specific training (running, triathlon, more)
  • Working with people who have Cancer, Osteoporosis, Cardiac concerns
  • Creating beginner, moderate, and advanced exercise routines
  • Fitness consultations
  • Physical fitness testing
  • Life Coaching

Kerry is the Assistant Director of Cornell Wellness. She uses her knowledge of exercise physiology and nutrition to help improve the lives of not just the members but all of the Cornell community. Kerry graduated cum laude with a B. S. in Fitness & Cardiac Rehabilitation/Exercise Science from Ithaca College in 1997 and received her Master's degree in Exercise Physiology in 2004. She is a certified Health Fitness Specialist through the American College of Sports Medicine, a certified Cancer Exercise Trainer through ACSM/ACS, a certified Intrinsic Coach through Totally Coached, and she has completed over 20 credit hours in the dietetic program through Central Arizona College. Kerry co-hosts two large annual fitness-based events, creates educational exercise videos, manages Wellness marketing, and lectures on and off-campus on a variety of wellness topics. In addition, Kerry helps to support the fitness goals of others through offering fitness consultations, life coaching sessions, and fitness testing meetings. Personally, Kerry enjoys running, kayaking, biking, swimming, skiing, hiking, strength training and hunting. Contact Kerry at

Ruth Merle-Doyle, M.S., ACSM Exercise Specialist, ACSM RCEP

Specializing in:

  • Prenatal/Postnatal Exercise Programming
  • Transitioning from cardiac rehab to our facilities, or returning to exercise after a cardiac event
  • Working with beginners to establish a personalized routine to fit into a busy schedule
  • Working with regular exercisers to create new workouts to combat boredom
  • Fitness Consultations
  • Life Coaching

Ruth is a Health/Wellness Specialist for Cornell Wellness. She is no stranger to Ithaca and attended Ithaca College from 1994 through 1998, earning a B.S. in Fitness & Cardiac Rehabilitation with a minor in Nutrition Promotion. While in Oregon, Ruth completed her Master's work in Exercise Physiology from the University of Oregon, as well as gained certification as an ACSM Exercise Specialist and ACSM Registered Clinic Exercise Physiologist. Recently, Ruth became certified as a Prenatal/Postnatal Exercise Specialist and finds working with those who are pregnant or returning to work after having their baby very rewarding. Ruth brings enthusiasm, expertise, and excitement to all of her individual meetings with members. At home Ruth loves being with her husband and two children, and simply enjoying life in Ithaca. And if you want to talk about the best places to eat locally, she is all ears! Contact Ruth at

TJ Massaro, B.S., CSCS, ACSM - CPT

Specializing in:

TJ is a Personal Trainer for Cornell Wellness and a graduate of Morrisville State College. He has earned an A.S. in Sports, Nutrition, and Fitness Management as well as a B.S. in Human Performance and Health Promotion. Throughout his career he has worked with a variety of populations and ages including nationally recognized athletes and clients with special needs. As a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist TJ is an expert at creating a workout plan that fits your needs and is also highly functional. In addition, he has had great success in helping people with weight loss. He is also capable of teaching both Olympic and Power lifting techniques. TJ has helped many athletes (and weekend warriors) in their recovery from injury back to performance. In addition to working for Cornell Wellness he has his own training company located on South Hill. During his free time he enjoys football, hunting, fishing and working with his hands. Contact TJ at

Erin Harner, MS, RDN, CHC

Specializing in:

  • Nutrition Counseling
  • Health Coaching
  • Culinary Nutrition
  • Healthy Eating
  • Weight Loss
  • Digestive Issues
  • Gluten Free Diet
  • Sports Nutrition

Erin is a Wellness Nutritionist with Cornell Wellness. She received her B.S. from Alfred University and M.S. from the University of Rochester in Biomedical Engineering before shifting focus to nutrition. She attended the Institute for Integrative Nutrition in New York City where she earned a Certificate in Health Coaching and then pursued a second M.S. in Human Nutrition from Colorado State University with a focus on community nutrition and wellness. Erin looks at each person as an individual and takes an integrative and holistic approach to health and nutrition. Erin has been in nutrition private practice since 2009 where she has helped hundreds of individuals to achieve their goals and overcome health challenges through nutrition education, counseling, workshops, cooking demos, group classes and programs. With Cornell Wellness, Erin offers one-on-one nutrition counseling, cooking demos, and classes for departments and groups throughout campus. Personally, Erin loves to hike, cycle, ski, snowboard, camp, shop at farmers’ markets, cook, bake, garden, eat veggies, and spend time with her husband and two little boys. Contact Erin at

Keri Johnson, A.A.S., NASM-PT, LMT, CrossFit-L1

Specializing in:

  • Weight Loss and Weight Management
  • Sports Conditioning and Injury Prevention
  • Olympic Weight Lifting & Power Lifting
  • Functional Training & Crossfit
  • Yoga & Pilates
  • Group Fitness
  • Fitness Consultations

Keri is a Health/Wellness Specialist for Cornell Wellness providing individual fitness & life coaching consultations, lectures & workshops, and coordinating the Healthy Living Program. She has 15 years in the health and wellness industry. Keri holds an associates degree in Applied Sciences and Integrated Health Care, plus she is a NYS licensed massage therapist, personal trainer, and aroma therapist. Currently Keri is continuing her education, part-time, at Cornell University. One of her passions is group fitness and over the years she has acquired many certifications and taken several workshops - these include becoming a: registered yoga teacher, certified Stott Pilates Instructor, CrossFit level 1 instructor, and Tac Fit Commando trainer, along with becoming a certified intrinsic life coach. Her  personal philosophies on training include "nothing is impossible, it just takes dedication" and "the body can only achieve what the mind believes, keep it positive!". Contact Keri at


Shelly Marino, B.A., AFAA - CPT

Specializing in:

  • Strength training
  • Pilates and other forms of core conditioning
  • TRX suspension training
  • Group fitness

Shelly is a fitness consultant and AFAA-certified personal trainer for Cornell Wellness. A Cornell graduate with a B.A. in biological science, she began leading group fitness classes in the 1990s, expanding her teaching repertoire to include myriad cardio, strength and flexibility formats. She currently focuses on developing fun, safe and effective training programs tailored to help each client achieve her fitness goals. Her certifications include Spinning, Pilates, TRX and many more, and she currently teaches classes for CFC and Healthy Living Program, where her motto is, "Every exercise is a core exercise." Having retired from her IT job in 2016, she is now able to devote more time to her passions:  wellness, hand weaving and trail running. Contact Shelly at

Debbie Gatch

Specializing in: 

  • Customer Service
  • Membership Registrations and Renewals
  • Database Management

Debbie is the administrative assistant for Cornell Wellness and the entire Recreation Services department. She graduated from the Elmira Business Institute and has been working in Helen Newman Hall’s main office for 29 years. Debbie is the first point of contact when signing up for a Recreation Membership, whether it is in person or online, and she is the main source for Cornell Wellness information. She prides herself in making people feel welcome and comfortable no matter what the request. Outside of work, Debbie enjoys baking, working outdoors, and spending time with her husband Tim, and their two children, Sarah and Nathan. Contact Debbie at