Speakers Bureau

Faculty willing to give educational talks in Boston and surrounding communities about prevention, brain health, warning signs for Alzheimer’s disease and opportunities for clinical trials. To request a MADRC speaker for an upcoming event, complete this form: http://bit.ly/36Z3LwZ

Margaret O'Connor, Ph.D

Margaret O’Connor, Ph.D./ABPP is President Elect of the International Neuropsychological Society a scientific and educational organization dedicated to enhancing the international and interdisciplinary study of brain-behavioral relationships.  She has held leadership positions as Co-Chair of the Medical and Scientific Advisory Committee of the Alzheimer’s Association of Massachusetts and New Hampshire and in the Austism/Aspergers Network.  Dr. O’Connor is an Associate Professor of Neurology at Harvard Medical School. She has diplomate status in the field of clinical neuropsychology since 1999 and she is a board examiner for the American Academy of Clinical Neuropsychology.   She was the Director of Neuropsychology in the Department of Neurology at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center between 1994 and 2018. In her role as director of a busy clinical service, she was involved in clinical, administrative, and teaching activities. Dr. O’Connor has mentored the clinical and research activities of over 80 graduate students and post-doctoral fellows. She has authored over 65 papers in peer reviewed journals and 30 book chapters. Her work has involved studies of amnesia and long term forgetting with a focus on understanding neural and physiological substrates of memory. She has also focused on pragmatic areas of research relevant to the health and safety of people with dementia. She co-founded DriveWise, a driving assessment program that has provided services for over 900 individuals. In addition to clinical research she developed educational videos to assist professionals and caregivers in making decisions about driving for people with dementia as well as those with developmental disabilities. Dr. O’Connor is actively involved in public education efforts to advance research and clinical support for people with cognitive impairments.

Kathryn V. Papp, Ph.D.

Neuropsychologist, Department of Neurology, Brigham and Women's Hospital 
Research Staff, Department of Neurology, Massachusetts General Hospital
Assistant Professor, Harvard Medical School

Kathryn Papp, PhD is a clinical neuropsychologist with a primary interest in the early detection of Alzheimer’s disease (AD) using sensitive semantic and associative memory tests as well as computerized measures and digital technologies to identify and track older adults at risk for cognitive decline. She is additionally interested in modifiable lifestyle factors which may mitigate cognitive decline in older adults.

Jeremy Pruzin, MD

Behavioral Neurology Fellow, Brigham and Women's hospital

Clinical Fellow in Neurology, Harvard Medical School

Jeremy Pruzin, MD is currently finishing the second year of his behavioral neurology fellowship at Brigham and Women’s Hospital. He also does research at Massachusetts General Hospital on how vascular risk factors and physical activity affect risk for cognitive decline and dementia including Alzheimer’s disease. He earned undergraduate degrees in Spanish Literature and Biopsychology at the University of California Santa Barbara. He went on to do genetic research on Alzheimer’s disease as a research assistant at the Translational Genomics Research Institute for two years before staring medical school at the Chicago Medical School. He then completed neurology residency at Rush University Medical Center. Dr. Pruzin has a particular interest in how modifiable lifestyle and vascular risk factors in midlife affect future risk of Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias with the goal of implementing prevention strategies decades before the average age a person is at risk for cognitive decline.     

Dorene M. Rentz, PsyD

Professor of Neurology, Harvard Medical School
Departments of Neurology, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Massachusetts General Hospital

Dorene M. Rentz, PsyD, is a Professor of Neurology at Harvard Medical School with dual appointments in the Departments of Neurology at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts. She completed her degree in clinical psychology/neuropsychology in 1987 and has worked as a clinical neuropsychologist for 30 years. She serves in multiple capacities as the Co-Director of the Center for Alzheimer Research and Treatment; the Director of Neuropsychology of the Massachusetts Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center (MADRC); Director of the Outreach, Recruitment and Education Core and Clinical Core Director of the Harvard Aging Brain Study. Her research interests include early detection of cognitive and behavioral changes in preclinical Alzheimer’s disease using novel cognitive assessments as well as amyloid and tau PET imaging. On an international level, Dorene is involved in designing cognitive outcome measures for secondary prevention trials in AD and is a proponent of validating at-home computerized assessments. 

Jeffrey M. Robbins, LICSW

Clinical Social Worker, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Teaching Associate, Harvard Medical School

Jeffrey Robbins is a licensed clinical social worker in Neurology at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and a Teaching Associate in Neurology at Harvard Medical School. Jeff has spent the last 35 years counseling individuals and families living with Alzheimer’s disease and he has given multiple presentations on issues pertaining to caregivers. In 1998 he co-founded The Eleanor Robbins Community Program: Caring for Each Other; a Volunteer program for students wanting to learn about Alzheimer’s disease through weekly visits with a nursing home resident on a dementia care unit. This program became the template for a non- profit, National Alzheimer’s Buddies (NAB), an initiative involving college students who visit those living with Alzheimer’s. NAB currently has 10 colleges across the country who are participating in this program.

Joel A. Salinas, M.D.

Instructor of Neurology at Harvard Medical School and Massachusetts General Hospital

Additional Languages Spoken: Spanish

Dr. Joel Salinas is an Instructor of Neurology at Harvard Medical School and Massachusetts General Hospital. After studying the intersection of biology and sociology at Cornell University, he completed his medical degree at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine followed by neurology residency at the Massachusetts General Hospital and Brigham and Women’s Hospital. He subsequently completed a combined research and clinical fellowship in Behavioral Neurology and Neuropsychiatry at Massachusetts General Hospital. He conducts research in social and behavioral epidemiology to understand the complex neurobiological interplay between social relationships and brain health.

Martha Vander Vliet, RN

Clinical Trials Nurse Manager, Brigham and Women's Hospital

Martha Vander Vliet is a research nurse at BWH Center for Alzheimer Research and Treatment. Martha started at BWH in 1985 and has worked in various areas of research since 1990 before joining CART in 2007. Martha has been involved in 40 clinical trials in AD research and is excited to be part of CART’s growth and seeing the staff grow from 6 to 34 employees. She works coordinating trials as well as performing infusions.

 

 

 

Qing-Mei Wang, M.D., Ph.D.

Director, Stroke Biological Recovery Laboratory, Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital
Physician, Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital, Massachusetts General Hospital
Assistant Professor, Harvard Medical School

Additional Languages Spoken: Mandarin

Dr. Qing Mei Wang obtained her B.S. at Fudan University in Shanghai (1991), Ph.D. (1998) and M.D. (2004) at the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey and completed residency training in Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation at Mount Sinai Medical Center in New York (2008). She is currently an assistant professor at Harvard Medical School, attending physician at Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital (SRH), associate physician at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH), and director of Stroke Biological Recovery Laboratory at Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital. She provides inpatient/outpatient clinical care, supervises trainees, and conducts research on stroke recovery to enhance our knowledge and the quality of patient care. Dr. Wang’s research involves cellular, animal and clinical disciplines, aiming to bridge basic science breakthrough to bedside therapy, including genetic study, pharmacological intervention and non-invasive brain stimulation to promote stroke recovery. She is also active in community services reaching out to the Chinese population.

Victoria J. Williams, Ph.D.

Clinical Research Fellow in Neurology, Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School
Licensed Neuropsychologist

Victoria Williams is a clinical research fellow within the Department of Neurology at Massachusetts General Hospital in affiliation with Harvard Medical School. She completed a B.S. in Psychology at the University of Texas at Austin, followed by a Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology at the University of Houston, specializing in neuropsychology. Following her graduate work, she trained as an intern at the University of California at San Diego, and completed 2 years as a clinical research postdoctoral fellow in neuropsychology within the Boston VA Hospital. She Is currently a research-oriented postdoctoral fellow within the Interdisciplinary Brain Center, and is a licensed Psychologist in the commonwealth of Massachusetts.

Dr. Williams’ research leverages her training and expertise in both clinical neuropsychology and advanced magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) techniques to explore brain-behavior relations in aging and neurodegenerative disease. Her current line of work examines the role of modifiable systemic risk factors (such as cerebrovascular health and physical fitness) in age-related cognitive and neural decline, as well as in dementia onset and progression. Through her involvement within the Interdisciplinary Brain Center, she additionally collaborates with a strong transdisciplinary team whose work focuses on biofluid biomarker discovery in Alzheimer’s Disease and related dementias.

Hyun-Sik Yang, M.D.

Behavioral Neurology Fellow, Brigham and Women's Hospital
Clinical Fellow in Neurology, Harvard Medical School

Dr. Hyun-Sik Yang is a behavioral neurology fellow at Brigham and Women's Hospital, and a clinical Alzheimer disease research fellow at Center for Alzheimer Research and Treatment (CART) at Brigham and Women's Hospital. He is also a clinical fellow in neurology at Harvard Medical School. Dr. Yang sees patients with dementia or other cognitive problems, and his research focuses on disease modifiers of Alzheimer's disease such as genetic variations, coexisting pathologies, and medical comorbidities. Dr. Yang is also a sub-investigator for various Alzheimer's disease clinical trials at CART.

Dr. Yang graduated from Seoul National University College of Medicine, and finished his residency at Harvard Neurology Residency Program at Brigham and Women's Hospital and Massachusetts General Hospital. Dr. Yang is a recipient of American Academy Academy of Neurology's 2016 Annual Meeting Resident Research Travel Scholarship, and 2017 Alzheimer's Association Clinical Fellowship Award.

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