A Research Update
March 18, 2014
Hosted by Samuel D. Brinkman, Ph.D.
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The future of dementia diagnosis and management depends on many things, not the least of which is the ongoing research regarding cause, pathophysiology, genetics, molecular processes, diagnosis, and treatment. Dr. Meharvan “Sonny” Singh will discuss these and other areas of research, pointing out what we research has taught us, where research is taking us, and how these hold the promise of a much better future for persons with dementia as well as their families.
NeuroMatters: The Brink of Alzheimer’s
Archives Available on VoiceAmerica Health and Wellness Channel
Our program is about Alzheimer’s disease and the many other disorders that can cause dementia. There are over 5 million Americans who currently struggle with Alzheimer’s disease alone, some of whom are in their 40s and 50s. Others struggle with vascular dementia, Lewy body disorder, frontotemporal dementia, Parkinson’s disease, and other conditions. This program brings together nationally recognized experts from many professional fields relevant to the dementias in order to provide current information about these disorders. These nationally recognized experts are from areas of research, diagnosis, clinical care, and management, caregiver education and support, medication treatments and drug development research, non-medication approaches to treatment, public education, and advocacy. We will give people who have been affected by Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias a forum to talk with and learn from these experts.
Samuel D. Brinkman, Ph.D.
Dr. Brinkman is a clinical neuropsychologist who has been involved in Alzheimer's disease research and clinical care for over 30 years. Research activities have included issues of diagnosis and treatment. He graduated from the University of Houston in 1980.
Dr. Brinkman has a private practice at Texas Neuropsychology Clinic, LLC in Abilene, Texas. He is on the adjunct faculty of Hardin-Simmons University Doctor of Physical Therapy Program, where he teaches a course on neuroscience. He is a member of the Board of Directors of the North Central Texas Chapter of the Alzheimer Association. He was recently co-chair of the National Delegate Assembly of the Alzheimer Association.
Dr. Brinkman is also president of Dementia Screening, Inc. He is the developer of the GrayMatters(r) screening system, a computerized, self-administered assessment procedure which provides information regarding an individual’s memory and executive functioning and likelihood of early dementia.
Dr. Brinkman has been involved in other professional activities, such as reviewing manuscripts submitted for publication to refereed journals, participating as a member of a site visit team for the National Institutes of Health, and contributing to the development of the Texas State Alzheimer Care Plan. He has published research on Alzheimer’s disease, vascular dementia, and other neurological conditions.
- 3/25/2014: Mild Cognitive Impairment Listen Now
- 3/18/2014: A Research Update Listen Now
- 3/11/2014: Lending Your Voice: Advocacy and Public Policy Listen Now
- 3/4/2014: Staying Home with Dementia Listen Now
After spending 5 years in the aerospace industry and 16 years in television, Steve Abel has been invested the last 18 years of his life protecting consumers from fraudulent and unethical business practices as president of the Abilene Better Business Bureau. Steve will discuss with the listeners the many and varied approaches that are taken to defrauding elderly individuals. The BBB is in a unique position to monitor patterns and schemes and to make this information known to the public so that the public can respond from a standpoint of knowledge and discernment. Join us for this informative supplement to our previous program. View Guest page
“Number 53 on your program. Number one on your hearts!” Jack Abendschan has loved the game of football since he was a child. He was loved by the fans. He considers it a privilege to have played professionally and is humbled by his induction into the CFL Hall of Fame. There is another part of the story. Jack sustained numerous concussions during his years of Pop Warner, high school, college, and professional football. Now he worries about the changes in his memory. He worries about how these changes affect the ones he loves. He is frustrated about having to be reminded of simple things. Does he regret playing football? Listen to Jack talk about his journey. Learn from the expertise of Dr. Jenny Johnson, a sports medicine specialist, as she discusses management of concussions and return-to-play protocols. View Guest page
Prior to arriving in Los Angeles, J.T. spent four years as the Associate Director of the critically acclaimed National Comedy Theatre in New York, of which he was also an original cast member. In addition to his work as Assoc. Director at NCT, J.T. served as a lead facilitator for WITS Teambuilding, an improv comedy based corporate training program. In 2008, J.T. also produced a highly successful production of Love Jerry as a part of the New York Musical Theatre Festival (4 Best of Fest awards and 3 Talkin' Broadway Summer Citation Awards). Film/T.V.: When In Rome, "30 Rock", "Puppy Love", "Office 2010: The Movie" (web). Theatre: Midsummer Night's Dream, Metamorphoses, Mr. Kolpert, The Spitfire Grill, Are We There Yet?. He holds a B.A. from Penn State University, an M.F.A. from the University of Texas at Austin and has been mistaken for Ed Helms more times than he can count. View Guest page
Dr. Trista Askins Bailey
Dr. Trista Askins Bailey is a board-certification as a Pharmacotherapy Specialist who joined Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center School of Pharmacy as an Assistant Professor for the Department of Pharmacy Practice – Geriatrics Division in July 2012. Dr. Bailey currently has a practice site as a consultant pharmacist for two nursing homes and an assisted living facility in the Abilene area, where she looks after around 150 patients. She also hosts monthly informational sessions over geriatric-related topics once a month at two different retirement centers in the Abilene area. Dr. Bailey received her Bachelors of Science with Honors from Texas Tech University in 2007 and her Doctorate of Pharmacy from The University of Texas at Austin/The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio dual degree program in 2011. She then went on to complete an ASHP-accredited PGY-1 ambulatory care/geriatrics focused residency with the Battle Creek Veterans Affairs Medical Center. View Guest page
Helping her Mom through Alzheimer’s was her mission from 1998 – through to her passing in 2004. As a senior level executive for a hair care company based in Dallas, Patricia Bailey managed a selling organization responsible for product distribution to corporate retail giants such as CVS, Rite Aid, Target, Walgreens and Wal-Mart. With over 52 trips a year, she was challenged to come up with solutions to help others care for her Mom while she traveled. Prior to handling sales, Ms. Bailey was Vice President of Marketing and comfortable in developing products for niche consumer groups. This same marketing expertise that she used throughout her career, dating back to 1979, was parlayed into creating posters and other products to help care for her Mom. Ms. Bailey shares her experiences with the public through her product development, writing, and public education activities. View Guest page
Dr. Jared Benge
Dr. Jared Benge is an assistant professor of medicine at the Texas A & M University Health Sciences Center College of Medicine. He completed his Ph.D. in Neuropsychology at the University of Houston in 2008 and he is a diplomate of the American Board of Professional Psychology. His intere4ests involve primarily dementia, movement disorders, and brain trauma. View Guest page
Linda Boeshart, MS, SLP
Linda Boeshart, MS, SLP has 38 years of experience in diagnosing and treating language and communication disorders. She competed her BS at Hardin-Simmons University and her MS at Texas Tech University. She has been employed for 26 years at West Texas Rehabilitation Center, where she is the clinical coordinator with specialization in stroke and other neurological disorders. She has also worked extensively In long-term care settings. View Guest page
Sheila Collier is the owner and manager of Covenant Outreach, a private professional guardianship and Care Management service. She has been serving families in the manner for nearly 20 years. Sheila is a Texas certified Guardian and a Nationally Certified Master Guardian. View Guest page
Libby Connelly began her current position as Abilene Regional Director for the Alzheimer’s Association-North Central Texas Chapter in September 2005. As Regional Director, Libby is responsible for fundraising and ensuring core services are provided to a fourteen county region in North Central Texas. Core services include telephone helpline, education and training, support groups, safe return program, research and advocacy. She also is responsible for advocacy information and actions for the North Central Texas Chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association. The Abilene regional office has been recognized nationally for its excellent work. Libby served as District Aide for State Representative, David Farabee. The Connally family moved to Abilene in 2002 at which time she served as District Representative for Congressman Charlie Stenholm until his office closed in 2004. View Guest page
Dr. David Crumpacker
Dr. Crumpacker received his medical degree from Cornell University Medical College in New York City before completing a residency in general psychiatry at the University of Texas, Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas. He then completed a two-year fellowship in geriatric psychiatry at U.T. Southwestern. Dr. Crumpacker’s research interests include Lewy body disease and ApoE ε4 (APO E4) in Alzheimer’s disease. Recognized by both D Magazine and Texas Monthly as an outstanding physician, he is the former assistant chief of the Department of Psychiatry at the Baylor University Medical Center at Dallas and is a diplomat of the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology, double-boarded in adult psychiatry and geriatric psychiatry. Recently, Dr. Crumpacker, participated as a consultant on the Texas treatment algorithm for Alzheimer’s disease. View Guest page
Jimmy DeFoor is a veteran of the Vietnam War and Operation Desert Storm. He retired from the Army Reserve as a Sergeant First Class and is a founding member of the Military Partnership Coalition of West Central Texas. After a career in law enforcement, he became the Taylor County Veterans Service Officer and has served veterans in that role for 12 years. He has also served as Chair of the state-wide County Veterans Service Officers Association of Texas. Jimmy has been passionate about serving veterans and their well-being. View Guest page
Dr. Ronald Devere
Dr. Ronald Devere is a board certified neurologist who has been in practice for 30 years. He was named one of the top three neurologists in Austin, TX in 2008 & 2009. He founded the Alzheimer’s Disease and Memory Disorders Center in Houston, TX in 1993, is appointed by the governor to the Texas Council on Alzheimer’s Disease, a member of the board for the Capital of Texas chapter of the Alzheimer Association, and chaired the committee establishing new guidelines for Alzheimer’s Disease in Texas. He is the author of Memory Loss: Everything You Wanted to Know but Forgot to Ask. View Guest page
Rick served with the Air Force for 22 years in the integrated avionics and first sergeant career fields. Rick received a BAS degree in Gerontology from Abilene Christian University in 2011. At the Area Agency on Aging Rick has been the Information, Referral and Assistance Coordinator; Income Support Coordinator; Disaster Assistance Coordinator; Assistive Technology Coordinator; and state certified Benefits Counselor. Rick left the Area Agency on Aging in September of 2012. He began working for DFPS as an APS Facility Investigator in Abilene, Texas in January 2013. Rick was promoted to In Home Supervisor for Unit 25 in July 2014. Unit 25 covers twelve West Central Texas counties including rural Taylor County with six APS In Home Specialists. View Guest page
Susan Dickinson, M.S., CGC, joined AFTD as Executive Director in February 2008. During her tenure the organization has tripled in size, with a current staff of 9 and budget approaching $1.5 million. Key accomplishments include leading AFTD in its first strategic plan, enhancing governance practices and Board recruitment, expanding services to meet the needs of FTD families, and investment in specific strategies to advance FTD drug development. Susan is a certified genetic counselor with more than 25 years of experience facilitating communications among lay, scientific and medical communities. She holds a MS in genetic counseling from Arcadia University and a BA in biology and psychology from Swarthmore College. View Guest page
Kimberly Dilts is a producing artist who works as an actor, director, choreographer, writer, and teacher. After completing Angel's Perch, Kim plans to further develop her three feature-length scripts with her partner J.T., shoot some comedy shorts, and finally learn French. Past projects include producing, writing and performing in a tour of Abby & June, a two-person play about travel and identity, and producing and performing in Mr. Kolpert, a black comedy about suburban alienation. As a theatre director, she assistant-directed The Revenger?s Tragedy (Off-B'way), and has frequently collaborated with director Elena Araoz to create visually stimulating physical theatre that has graced stages across the country. Kim is a graduate of the University of Texas at Austin MFA Acting program, and she holds a B.A. in theatre from the University of South Florida. She frequently plays evil characters and/or suicides, despite sporting super-cute dimples. She also enjoys voicing Anime View Guest page
At 59 years of age, Libby Embry was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease. Two years earlier, she was named the Regional Teacher of the Year for her work in developing advanced English classes in the middle school where she taught. Today Libby is an energetic voice on behalf of persons who have developed Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias. She has served on the Alzheimer Association Early Stage Advisory Group and has spoken nationally on clinical, research, and advocacy issues regarding the disorder. She is moving, engaging, and challenging! You will be inspired. View Guest page
Dr. Nancy Emerson Lombardo
Dr. Emerson Lombardo is a graduate of Cornell and Yale Universities. She is an adjunct assistant professor of neurology at Boston University School of Medicine. She is the Founder and President of HealthCare Insights, LLC and the Brain Wellness Services. She is the Developer of Memory Preservation Nutrition. She is a founding member of the Alzheimer Association and Alzheimer International. View Guest page
After receiving his Juris Doctor degree from Washburn University in his home state of Kansas, Brad Frigon earned his Master of Laws degree in Taxation at the University of Denver. Brad has 30 years of experience in estate planning, probate, elder law, Medicare Set Asides, special needs planning and tax matters. Brad serves as President of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys and Treasurer of the Special Needs Alliance. He is a Certified Elder Law Attorney (CELA), ans is a member of the Council of Advanced Practitioners (CAP), the Colorado Bar Association, a Fellow in the Kansas Bar Association, and a board member of the Colorado Fund for People with Disabilities. Brad is also an Adjunct Professor at Stetson University College of Law, a nationally recognized speaker and author. He has been quoted in the Wall Street Journal, MSN Money, Kiplinger Retirement Report, and Bloomberg. He is recognized as a Colorado Super Lawyer and is rated AV Preeminent by Martindale-Hubbell. View Guest page
Howard Gruetzner is the author of one of the well known books on Alzheimer's caregiving: Alzheimer's: A Caregiver's Guide and Sourcebook, John Wiley and Sons, New York. First published in 1988, the third edition of this popular book was published in August of 2001. It has been translated into German, Italian and most recently, Chinese. He has worked in the area of Clinical Gerontology for over 33 years with special interests in Alzheimer's Disease and related dementias, identifying early brain impairment and adaptation to impairment (MCI), caregiving and coping, geriatric depression, psychological trauma and complicated forms of bereavement. In March 2003 he became the Director of the first Heart of Texas Regional Office with the North Central Texas Chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association. In 2009 he became the Education and Family Care Specialist. He sees caregivers, families and persons with dementia in Waco and now in the Ft. Worth Office. View Guest page
Howard Gruetzner is the author of one of the well known books on Alzheimer's caregiving: Alzheimer's: A Caregiver's Guide and Sourcebook, John Wiley and Sons, New York. First published in 1988, the third edition of this popular book was published in August of 2001. It has been translated into German, Italian and most recently, Chinese. He has worked in the area of Clinical Gerontology for over 33 years with special interests in Alzheimer's Disease and related dementias, identifying early brain impairment and adaptation to impairment (MCI), caregiving and coping, geriatric depression, psychological trauma and complicated forms of bereavement.
In March 2003 he became the Director of the first Heart of Texas Regional Office with the North Central Texas Chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association. In 2009 he became the Education and Family Care Specialist. He sees caregivers, families and persons with dementia in Waco and now in the Ft. Worth Office. View Guest page
David Hare is the marketing director for Wisteria Place Retirement Living. He is also the host of two regional radio shows, “Age Well Live Well” and “Senior Spotlight”. He has previously worked as a hospital consultant and as a services director for a non-Medicare home health agency, Home Instead Senior Care. He has over 28 years of experience in various aspects of healthcare as a direct care provider, community educator, and business development executive. He has been on the boards of a number of state, regional, and local nonprofit organizations. David was the recipient of the Community Hero Award last year and has also been recognized through other awards for his contribution to the well-being of elderly individuals. View Guest page
Dr. Caroil Lippa
Dr. Lippa is a board-certified neurologist who has an international reputation in the neurobiology of aging and dementia. She is the developer of the DUCOM memory program. She has been recognized repeatedly for her teaching skills, research, and leadership. She has published over 130 research articles and a number of book chapters and has been awarded numerous research grants for investigation of various aspects of aging and dementia. She is a member of numerous editorial boards and has reviewed manuscripts for many refereed scientific journals. View Guest page
An occupational therapist since 2001 and a driving rehabilitation specialist since 2008, Meredith Lyons is the owner and chief operating officer of Baker Driving Rehabilitation and she serves on two older driver safety task forces in Maryland. Ms. Lyons has spoken to various groups about driver safety and driver rehabilittion. She has presented to a wide variety of groups, including the Alzheimer’s association, area high school students, a Stroke Symposium, a Driver Safety Symposium, and as a part of the Dave Serio’s You Auto Know radio program. She has also been a featured writer on TheDementiaQueen.com and iSeniorSolutions.com. Ms. Lyons has had a wide range of occupational therapy experiences with focus primarily in treating patients with neurological disorders and visual impairments. She is also an author and creator of the Multifaceted Instrumental Activity of Daily Living Performance Assessment, which she presented at an annual American Occupational Therapy Association conference. View Guest page
Hope Martin, OTR, PhD, CHT
Hope Martin, OTR, PhD, CHT is Associate Professor, Director, and Chair of the Department of Occupational Therapy at Abilene Christian University. She is a member of the Texas Executive Council of Physical and Occupational Therapy. She has published in the area of hand therapy, and she has received numerous recognition and awards for her professional work. View Guest page
Dr. Pearl Merritt
Dr. Pearl Merritt has been a pioneer in many aspects of dementia care. She helped develop and implement a nationally recognized model for community living for persons with dementia. She is now Regional Dean and Professor at TTUHSC School of Nursing. She has been recognized state-wide and nationally for her innovative applications. She is currently nominated for the very prestigious American Academy of Nursing John Hartford Award for her contributions in training, clinical services, and public policy. She has been the VP of Operations for the Sears Methodist Retirement System and the President of Buckner Retirement Services, where she brought the first Green House model into Texas as a living environment for persons with cognitive impairment. Now she has turned her attention to model programs for training of nurses. Dr. Merritt will share her experiences, knowledge, and vision with you. View Guest page
Dr. Christine Meyers
Dr. Meyers is Professor Emeritus of Neuropsychology at M.D. Anderson Cancer Center. In her tenure there she pioneered clinical research into the effects of cancer and cancer treatment on central nervous system function, in addition to having an active consultation-liaison service and pre- and post-doctoral training programs. Her extensive research includes describing the neurocognitive and psychosocial sequelae of all types of cancers and cancer therapies. She was involved in characterizing the biological and neural substrates of cancer-related neurocognitive dysfunction and identifying people who might be genetically at risk to develop adverse symptoms. This information has been used to develop pharmacologic, rehabilitative and behavioral intervention strategies to ameliorate this distressing syndrome. Her current efforts are focused on drug development in cancer and neurocognitive outcomes in clinical trials. View Guest page
Born and raised in Houston, Karen is the mother of four. She has a bachelor’s degree in Nursing from Middle Tennessee State University with a Critical Care Nursing background. She is also a Certified Yoga Instructor and teaches in her free time. She has real compassion for caregivers and families living with Alzheimer’s. Karen currently serves as the Abilene Regional Director of the North Central Texas Chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association. View Guest page
Derral Reed has been the owner and administrator of a Home Instead Senior Care franchise for over 15 years. His franchise has been recognized nationally for quality and satisfaction. He is also a member of the franchise counsel. Darrell Is the Founding Chairperson and a Current Board Member of the Home Care Association of America – Texas Chapter. He is also the past chairperson and a current board member of the aging cluster. He has been a volunteer with the Alzheimer Association for 16 years and has had local and regional board membership. He has provided educational programs, support group facilitation, and fundraising as well. View Guest page
Dr. Dean Allen Schultz
Dr. Allen Schultz completed his MD degree from Baylor College of Medicine in 1991. He has practiced medicine in the Air Force and in civilian life and has received numerous awards for both areas of practice. He has been a flight surgeon, trauma expert, and now has a primary care practice. His dedication to quality patient care has been admirable, and he will provide timely and excellent information regarding primary care and dementia. View Guest page
Marelyn Shedd is President of First Financial Bank, NA and has over 30 years in the banking industry. First Financial is recognized as one of the nation’s most financially secure banking institutions and has been named by 2014 Bank Director magazine as the Number 1 bank in the nation. First Financial is the only financial institution to be ranked nationally number 1, 2, or 3 every year for the past 5 years. Marelyn Shedd has been at the helm since September, 2014 and she has combined her wisdom and experience with her heart for the community to address the very challenging and growing problem of financial exploitation of the elderly. Marelyn will discuss this initiative in what will be an informative discussion. She will be joined by Sgt. Jeff Lafrance of Abilene Police Department. Sgt. Lafrance will discuss the Law Enforcement aspects and collaboration with the banking system. View Guest page
Meharvan “Sonny” Singh, Ph.D.
Meharvan “Sonny” Singh, Ph.D. received his BS and PhD degrees from the University of Florida. Prior to moving to the University of North Texas Health Science Center at the end of 2001, he was an Assistant Professor of Clinical Pathology at Columbia University in New York. Dr. Singh is currently Professor of Pharmacology and Neuroscience, and Interim Dean of the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences at the University of North Texas Health Science Center (UNTHSC) in Fort Worth. Dr. Singh oversees a 5.8 million dollar research program regarding hormones and neurobehavioral health. He also has an NIH-sponsored Neurobiology of Aging training grant for graduate studies. Dr. Singh trains students and postdoctoral fellows, who will make up the next generation of professionals to tackle current and future public health problems. He serves in multiple professional capacities in the national research community. View Guest page
Eddie Tubbs is the Director of Pastoral Care at Calder Woods Senior Living with Buckner International in Beaumont, Texas. He has degrees in Psychology, Religious Education, and Pastoral Care as well as specific training as a hospital chaplain. He has worked as a hospital chaplain and as a senior pastor prior to serving as chaplain at Calder Woods. View Guest page
Michelle L. Webb
Michelle L. Webb, OTR/L, RAC-CT is a licensed occupational therapist and certified resident assessment coordinator with over 20 years of experience in healthcare. Michelle has extensive management and leadership experience and is the current Director of Dementia Care Services for Pruitt Health. She has provided training and educational programs related to the provision of services for dementia care management and quality clinical programming. She has provided training to several healthcare disciplines and strives to promote an interdisciplinary approach to care. Michelle is a staunch proponent for the elderly and is an active member of the National Alzheimer Advocate Network. She has attended congressional meetings in Washington, D.C. to campaign for funding and further research. She is active in state regulatory and legislative issues and is a member of the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Aging Coalition and the Region F Aging Advisory Committee which services nine counties in North Carolina. View Guest page