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The University of Alabama at Birmingham Traumatic Brain Injury Model System (UAB-TBIMS) is currently 1 of 16 national TBI Model Systems Programs located throughout the US. Each Program is funded by the National Institute on Disability, Independent Living, and Rehabilitation Research (NIDILRR). The UAB-TBMS is currently operating via a 5 year grant (#90DPTB0029) from 2022 - 2027.

Meet the UAB-TBIMS Team

  • Robert Brunner, M.D.

    Robert Brunner, M.D.

    ProjBrunnerect Director

    Dr. Brunner is a Professor in the UAB Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation and serves as Medical Director of Spain Rehabilitation Center (SRC), Vice-Chair of PM&R Development, and Director of the outpatient clinic at SRC. He has served as Project Director for the UAB-TBIMS since 2019 and has served as the Medical Director of the UAB-TBIMS since 2004. Dr. Brunner is a practicing physiatrist, directing the TBI treatment program at SRC. His research has focused on interventions to improve recovery following TBI.

  • Jenny Marwitz, M.A.

    Jenny Marwitz, M.A.

    Jenny Marwitz

    Project Co-Director

    Ms. Marwitz is Director of Traumatic Brain Injury Research in the UAB Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation. She serves as Chair of the TBI Model Systems Data Committee and Project Co-Director for the UAB TBI Model System. Ms. Marwitz has published more than sixty peer-reviewed manuscripts with many relating to rehabilitation outcome, families, return to work, and emotional well-being.

  • Tom Novack, Ph.D.

    Tom Novack, Ph.D.

    Tom NovackDr. Novack served as Project Director for the UAB TBIMS program for 20 years prior to his retirement. He nowl works as a consultant with the UAB TBIMS, serving as Project Co-Director for a study aimed at validating methods to assess return to driving after TBI. Dr. Novack is Board Certified in Clinical Neuropsychology and was a clinician for 35 years at the UAB’s Spain Rehabilitation Center.

  • Richard Kennedy, M.D., Ph.D.

    Richard Kennedy, M.D., Ph.D.


    Dr. Kennedy is an Associate Professor in the Division of Gerontology, Geriatrics, and Palliative Care in the Department of Medicine, Associate Director of the Data Core for the UAB Alzheimer’s Disease Center, and Director of the Data Core for the UAB Udall Parkinson’s Disease Center. He has dual training as a psychiatrist and a biostatistician. His research program focuses on the cognitive, functional, and behavioral consequences of medical disorders, particularly TBI, dementia, and delirium. He has served as a co-investigator at three different TBIMS sites over the course of two decades, and is the statistician for the UAB TBIMS project.

  • Phil Klebine, M.A.

    Phil Klebine, M.A.

    PK web2Mr. Klebine has worked with the UAB TBIMS for over 20 years. As the UBB TBIMS Knowledge Translation Director, he works closely with the TBI Model Systems Knowledge Translation Center to develop, facilitate, and coordinate dissemination and knowledge translatiion activities.

  • Kay Canupp, BSN MSN CRNP

    Kay Canupp, BSN MSN CRNP

    Ms. Canupp is a TBI Research Specialist who graduated from Samford University with as BSN and MSN in nursing and then went on to be a Certified Registered Nurse Practitioner CRNP. She worked with the TBI model System until retirement and then at a time of our need in March of 2020 returned to continue working working with the UAB TBI Model systems.

  • Drew Mauldin, B.S.

    Drew Mauldin, B.S.

    DrewMauldimDrew is a TBI Research Specialist who graduated from the University of Alabama at Birmingham with a bachelor’s degree in Public Health. He has worked with the TBI Model systems at UAB since March of 2021.

  • Sarah Banasiewicz, B.S.

    Sarah Banasiewicz, B.S.

    BanasiewiczOriginally a Form I data collector for both TBI and SCI Model Systems at UAB, Sarah has moved up to working with the National Spinal Cord Injury Statistical Center as of May 2022. Sarah has shifted her focus to helping Dr. Yuying Chen and Tori Allen in the data center. Her responsibilities including but not limited to, transitioning the four new data centers into the 2022-2026 funding cycle as well as helping all centers work through the process of the upcoming non-traumatic SCI data collection through July 2023. While Sarah’s main focus is handling the day to day management of administration of the UAB Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation research group, Sarah does spend some of her time helping with data abstraction for UAB SCIMS Form I and Form II follow-up for the Virginia and Missouri centers.