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Meet the IWC 2018 Speakers


 

Dr. Dorothy Pekmezi, UAB Department of Health Behavior, School of Public Health

Dr. Dorothy Pekmezi, UAB Department of Health Behavior, School of Public Health

Session: Exercise — Why it Matters, How Much is Enough and How to Get the Unmotivated Moving

Dori Pekmezi is an Associate Professor in the Department of Health Behavior, School of Public Health at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. Dr. Pekmezi is involved with several University-Wide Interdisciplinary Research Centers at UAB, as an Associate Scientist with the Nutrition Obesity Research Center, Comprehensive Cancer Center, and Minority Health and Health Disparities Research Center and as a Scientist with the Diabetes Research and Training Center. She obtained a B.S. in Psychology at the University of Alabama and Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology at Louisiana State University. Her primary research interests include chronic disease prevention and health communication. Her research thus far has focused on underserved populations and involved designing, implementing, and evaluating home-based physical activity interventions, grounded in the Social Cognitive Theory and Transtheoretical Model, for low income African Americans and Latinas.

Dr. Justin Thomas, UAB Department of Epidemiology

Dr. Justin Thomas, UAB Department of Epidemiology

Session: When, How, Where, and Why We Need to Sleep Better

Dr. Justin Thomas is a clinical psychologist with specific expertise in health psychology and behavioral sleep medicine (BSM). He graduated from the University of Alabama (UA), completed clinical internship at the University of Florida (UF), clinical fellowships in BSM at UA and UF, and a two-year post-doctoral research fellowship on sleep and hypertension at the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB). Dr. Thomas is an Assistant Professor in the UAB Department of Psychiatry and maintains clinics in the Department of Psychiatry, as well as a BSM Clinic integrated in the UAB Sleep/Wake Disorders Center. He serves on both the Practice and Education Committees of the Society of Behavioral Sleep Medicine, an interdisciplinary organization committed to advancing all aspects of the field of BSM. His research is translational, spanning basic, clinical, and population science and focuses on circadian and sleep mechanisms underlying health, as well as disparities in health.

Dr. Karen Gamble, UAB Psych-Behavioral Neurobiology

Dr. Karen Gamble, UAB Psych-Behavioral Neurobiology

Session: When, How, Where, and Why We Need to Sleep Better

Dr. Karen Gamble is a neuroscientist with specific expertise in chronobiology and sleep timing. She graduated from Georgia State University, and completed a five-year post-doctoral research fellowship at Vanderbilt University. She joined the Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) School of Medicine, Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Neurobiology as faculty in 2009. Dr. Gamble is an Associate Professor in the department and was named the Tate Jordan Thomas Professorship in Psychiatric Medicine in 2016. She has served on numerous external boards and committees, including the National Sleep Foundation Drowsy Driving Consensus Workgroup and the Society for Research in Biological Rhythms Professional Development Chair and Trainee Day Director. Her research is both basic and translational, focusing on circadian clock regulation of the neurophysiology of nerve cells as well as how the circadian clock and sleep timing are disrupted in shift workers and patients diagnosed with neurological and psychiatric disease.

Julie Price, UAB Sustainability Manager

Julie Price, UAB Sustainability Manager

Session: Sustainability & Living Well: Meeting the Needs of the Present without Compromising the Needs of Future Generations

Julie Price is UAB’s first sustainability manager, a program designed to focus on environmental, social and economic sustainability initiatives in curriculum, research and operations of the university and hospital. She holds a BS in Natural Resources from Sewanee: The University of the South, a MS in Horticulture from Auburn University, and a PhD in Biology from UAB. She serves on the Board of the Freshwater Land Trust and the Homewood Environmental Commission, and is a past board member of the Birmingham Botanical Gardens. Julie lives in Homewood with her husband, Jay, a veterinarian, 2 young sons, and many pets.