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September 2002

News for the investigators, staff and associates of the Schiefelbusch Institute for Life Span Studies

Karen Henry, editor

The Life Span Institute at the University of Kansas

1052 Dole Human Development Center

1000 Sunnyside Avenue

Lawrence, KS 66045-7555 (785) 864-4295 TDD (785) 864-5051

LSI web site:



Annual LSI Investigators and Staff News Meeting

Life Span in the news



In Memoriam: Carmen Collins

Administration News & Announcements

Administration Unclassified Evaluation Performance Task Force report; KU Lawrence voicemail system tip

Communications New LSI Web site reminder; LSI Annual Report on web

Project Development August/September update

Research Design & Analysis New computer configuration services

Annual LSI Investigators and Staff News Meeting

Steve Warren reviewed the last year, his first as director, and presented future opportunities and challenges during the September 25 meeting.

Selected Highlights:

The Biobehavioral Neurosciences in Communications Disorders Center funded by a NIDCD core grant to be directed by Mabel Rice.
The full integration of the Center for Physical Activity and Weight Management, directed by Joe Donnelly, as an LSI Center
Mike Wehmeyer’s appointment as director of the KUCDD.
Todd Little’s appointment as scientific director of the RD&A core.
Glen White’s appointment as director of the RTC/IL Center.
Janet Marquis’s appointment as director of Information Technology Services.
The Technology Task Force report after more than a year of meetings, review, and comments available at:
First LSI annual report available in print and at
Affiliated Centers completed strategic plans

Selected Challenges:

Warren sees the two major challenges to the Institute as the state revenue crisis and the risk presented by some contract-funded projects.

He reported that KUCR had a $506,000 budget cut in June 2002, a $132,400 reduction in August as well as a reduction due to putting $140,860 in reserve at the direction of the Provost. Further reductions are possible and will probably be made in January.

KUCR has and will follow strategic, not across the board budget reductions, to preserve programs that further the KU research mission measured in terms return on investment, i.e., programs that are federally funded and which garner prestigious awards. Public service programs will be lower priority if they are not truly excellent or require major subsidies. There is a possibility that LSI could take a cut in its state budget in January or in July of 2003.

Warren said that LSI will take a more conservative approach to projects funded through non-federal and foundation contracts/grants as several such projects have proven to be high-risk and problematic over the past three years.

New Opportunities/Initiatives:

Exploring this more business-like model for the support cores of the LSI, Warren has asked the cores to develop business plans. He will also initiate an LSI-wide development program with KU Endowment and will request all Centers to make cases for potential support.

Warren was selected to help steer KU’s role in the regional Life Sciences Initiative. This initiative may influence the Institute’s direction in the near future.

He pointed to the recent recruitment of Todd Little from Yale, a partnership with the Psychology Department, as a successful model that he will pursue to the extent possible with academic departments.

Life Span in the news

Mathews interviewed for Time article on older homeowners who share homes with roommates Time magazine reported that older homeowners who share their homes with younger roommates appear to be satisfied with the arrangement, based on a survey conducted by R. Mark Mathews, associate director of the Gerontology Center. Full story at

Hart and Risley study discussed on NPR’s Fresh Air Some federal officials are misunderstanding and misusing the findings from LSI researchers Betty Hart and Todd Risley’s influential 1995 study on the vocabulary of children from welfare families according to by Geoff Nunberg, a researcher at Stanford Center for the Study of Language and Information and commentator on NPR’s Fresh Air. Read the transcript at:


Travis Thompson, director of the Institute for Child Development, was presented with the American Psychological Association, Division on Mental Retardation and Developmental Disabilities, Edgar Doll Award for his research and scholarly contributions on August 23. His acceptance speech was entitled The Genie is Out of the Bottle: Genes and Behavior in Developmental Disabilities.

Virgil Adams received the W.T. Kemper Fellowship for Teaching Excellence, which comes with a $5000 monetary award, on August 22. Adams, assistant professor of gerontology and psychology, researches well-being, quality of life, and aging issues in the African-American family. Full story:


Gerontology Center researcher David Ekerdt was tapped to edit the Encyclopedia of Aging, published by Macmillian Reference USA, the first standard reference for the public and academic alike that addresses all aspects of aging through the disciplines of biology, medicine, economics, law, psychology, sociology and history, as well as spirituality and ethics. Ekerdt assembled a panel of associate editors who selected leading scholars from around the world to write original articles on topics ranging from ageism to life span extension, financial planning and the status of older people in tribal societies. Among those chosen was KU Gerontology Center researchers Susan Kemper and Virgil Adams, and KUMC researchers Sarah Hughes, Susan Jackson (Hearing and Speech), and Mercedes Bern-Klug (Center on Aging).

A June conference convened by Director Mabel Rice of the Merrill Advanced Studies Center for scientists from regional public research universities resulted in Science at a Time of National Emergency, a white paper on strategies for aiding the country in its war on terrorism. The presentations from that conference now are available to the public online and in print. Online, the compilation of presentations can be viewed at Bound copies are available from the Merrill Center, 3031 Dole Human Development Center. Full story at:

In Memoriam: Carmen Collins

Carmen Collins, a longtime LSI staff member, died on Thursday, September 12, at the age of 49 after what her physician called a truly valiant struggle with cancer. She joined the Institute in 1990 as a research aide and worked first with the Computer Applications Unit and then with the Kansas University Center on Developmental Disabilities, and most recently with the Beach Center on Disability.

Carmen never met a stranger. She was known and valued by her colleagues as a slightly larger-than-life figure, who was legendary for her zest for life, fierce devotion to the LSI, family and friends, her intelligence, and tough-mindedness. She will be sorely missed.

From Beach Center Research Assistant Professor Susan Bashinksi:

A memorial fund, in Carmen Collins' honor, has now been established at Capitol Federal Savings. The purpose of this fund is to support her son, Brent, in their mutual dream for him to have the opportunity to earn a college degree. Appropriately, the account has been titled the, "Brent Crouse Education Fund".

Donations to this fund, as well as the interest earned by the monies in the account, will be used solely to support Brent's education. The fund will be co-managed by Linda Heitzman-Powell and Susan Bashinski. Linda and Susan will oversee disbursements to Brent, to cover any educational expenses he incurs--for example: tuition, books, tutoring costs, educational testing fees, admissions / application fees, campus parking, etc.

We hope that you might be interested in making a donation to this fund, on Brent's behalf. It is our goal to collect enough money to be able to fully support his expenses when Brent begins college in the fall of 2003.

Checks should be made out to:
Brent Crouse Education Fund.

We are told that, eventually, checks may be mailed directly to Capitol Federal Savings, without a deposit slip. For the time being, however, (until the fund gets into the Capitol Federal electronic database), we would prefer that checks be sent or hand-delivered to either Linda or Susan, who can deposit the money in person and ensure it gets into the proper account.

Thanks so much for your consideration of this opportunity to remember Carmen in a way that we believe would please her, so very much!

Administration News


Unclassified Performance Evaluation Task Force Update

The Task Force is finalizing a prototype evaluation form that will be sent to selected supervisors of unclassified professional staff for comment. The new form is intended to be used to evaluate the scientific as well as other research and unclassified research support and technical staff. The Task Force is also creating a position description menu to help supervisors write new descriptions, reflect annual changes in existing position responsibilities during evaluation and increase consistency throughout the Institute.

Voicemail Storage Restrictions

Cindy Roberts reports that the KU Lawrence campus J-Talk system only stores new voicemail messages for eight days and saved voicemail for five days unless you contact NTS and get these restrictions waived.


Karen Henry, Communications Coordinator

LSI Website Reminder

We’ll soon send out a second email from Steve Warren about LSI investigator profiles on the upcoming LSI website. That email will have a URL that will take you to a secure form on the Internet with information about you that we have collected from your most current CV in our possession and other sources. Please take time ASAP to update your profile through that form so that when we make the new site live this fall, your information will be current.

Again, please consider getting an official photograph done. See how to do this at the University Relations web at ( Unfortunately, at this time LSI cannot pick up that cost ($41).

Coming up very soon, the center and project web pages. I will draft a “popular” version for each project for which I have some description/abstract. If we don’t have anything, we will be contacting the PI for a description.

We are also looking into the feasibility of putting biosketches or complete CVs on the website in a form that could be easily updated yet secure.

LSI Annual Report on LSI website

The annual report in PDF format is on the LSI website by clicking the link at the top of the homepage at Please also let us know if you need extras for events, visitors, or recruitment.

Project Development

Paul Diedrich, Associate Director for Project Development

Past Submissions not previously reported

1. Judith Carta submitted a six-month continuation proposal “Metro-Wide Compensation Pilot Project Evaluation” to the Mid–America Regional Council on August 7, 2002.

2. Diane Loeb submitted a new, two-year proposal “Project CIRCLE 2: Creating Indian Resources to facilitate Communications skills in Learning Environments” to the Department of Education/OESE for their Indian Professional Development competition on August 22, 2002.

3. Rachel Freeman submitted a new, one-year proposal “Topeka School-Wide Positive Behavioral Supports for Safe and Drug-Free Schools” via the Topeka Public Schools ñ USD 501 (prime contractor) for the State of Kansas - Office of the Attorney General’s competition–Governor’s Discretionary Portion of the Federal Safe & Drug–Free Schools and Communities Act” on August 30, 2002.

4. Steve Warren and Judith Carta submitted their third-year continuation “Clarification of Neglect as a Construct” to the University of Notre Dame (prime contractor to the Robert Woods Johnson Foundation) on August 30, 2002.

5. Jim Budde and Glen White submitted their fifth-year grant performance report “Research Information Center on Independent Living” to USDE/OSERS/NIDRR on August 31, 2002.

6. Steve Warren, Marc Fey and Nancy Brady submitted a one-year supplement for their grant “Is Prelinguistic Communication Intervention Necessary?” on August 31, 2002.

7. Ric Steele and Dennis Grauer, in collaboration with Patricia Garvie @ St. Jude’s Children Hospital, Dennis Drotar @ Case Western Reserve University, and Mary Ann Jackson @ Children’s Mercy Hospital, submitted a new, three-year proposal “Predictors of Non–Adherence to Pediatric ART” to NIMH on September 1, 2002.

8. Kathleen Olson submitted a new, two-year proposal “Kansas Mobilizing for Change: Comprehensive Workforce Development Initiative” via the University of Minnesota (prime contractor) to the Kansas DD Council) on September 5, 2002.

9. Steven Mills submitted a new, twelve–month proposal “School Isn’t a Place Anymore: Boosting the High School Curriculum with Asynchronous Learning Networks” to The Spencer Foundation on September 13, 2002.

10. Rhonda Montgomery submitted her sixth-year continuation “Program Evaluation–Data Collection, Analysis and Reporting” to HHS/AoA on September 16, 2002.

11. Rachel Freeman, Chris Smith and Donna Wickham submitted their second-year continuation “Kansas Institute for Positive Behavioral Support” to the Kansas SRS on September 20, 2002.

12. Vincent Francisco, Stephen Fawcett, Jerry Schultz and Roderick Bremby submitted a new, four–year pre–proposal “Evaluation of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s National Diabetes Initiative” on September 30, 2002.

Upcoming Submissions

1. Sue Kemper will submit her tenth–year continuation “Speech Accommodation by and to Older Adults” to NIA on October 1, 2002.

2. Yolanda Jackson will submit a new, five–year proposal “Mental Health, Stress and Protective Factors in Foster Children” to NIMH on October 1, 2002.

3. Mabel Rice will submit a five–year supplement “Advanced Statistical Methods Core” for her newly funded Center – “Biobehavioral Neurosciences in Communication Disorders” to NIDCD on October 1, 2002.

4. Matthew Stowe, H.R. Turnbull and Ann Turnbull will submit a new, three–year proposal “A Framework for Disability Perspectives on HGP” to the National Human Genome Research Institute on October 1, 2002.

5. Steve Warren and Judith Carta will submit a new, five–year proposal “Neglect in High-Risk Mothers” via the University of Notre Dame (prime contractor) to NICHD on October 1, 2002.

6. Dean Williams and Gregory Hanley, in collaboration with Michael Perone @ West Virginia University, will submit a new, three–year proposal “Laboratory Models of Maladaptive Escape Behaviors” to NICHD on October 1, 2002.

7. Troy Zarcone and Stephen Fowler will submit a new, two–year proposal “Behavioral Consequences of Amphetamine Dependence in Mice” to NIDA on October 1, 2002.

New Awards (not previously funded) Information

We have five proposals pending we hope to report on next month when we receive the award documents.

Research Design and Analysis and Information Technology Services

Janet Marquis, Co-Director

Let us configure your new computer

Let us help.

If you would send us your new computers to setup and configure before they go to the end user, it will you money (and save us time).

A new computer does not come ready to go. Putting on the latest Operating System (OS) patches and, more importantly, the latest security patches is a necessity. It takes about 2 hours to do a Windows 2000 system and about an hour for a Windows XP system. This includes the OS patches and service releases, security patches for the OS and Internet Explorer, Outlook, some miscellaneous software to enhance the computer, and the NetWare client so you can login to our server. We can also install any extra software you want.

Also, we can probably save you time and money when configuring your new computer systems. Edith Bond and Gerald Hazen make every effort to keep up with the ever-changing world of electronics in order to help LSI Investigators and staff get the best equipment for their needs. They will give you advice for all your computing needs––peripherals and software, as well as computer systems. They can look at the items on your specification sheet and determine compatibility problems, offer money saving tips and often just get better pricing quotes (Note: Edith’s really good at getting lower prices).

In short, we’re here to help you with your computer needs; please give us a call if we can assist you.

Comments and questions to:

The University of Kansas prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, ethnicity, religion, sex, national origin, age, ancestry, disability, status as a veteran, sexual orientation, marital status, parental status, gender identity, gender expression, and genetic information in the university’s programs and activities. Retaliation is also prohibited by university policy. The following persons have been designated to handle inquiries regarding the nondiscrimination policies and are the Title IX coordinators for their respective campuses: Executive Director of the Office of Institutional Opportunity & Access,, 1246 West Campus Road, Room 153A, Lawrence, KS 66045, 785-864-6414, 711 TTY (for the Lawrence, Edwards, Parsons, Yoder, and Topeka campuses); Director, Equal Opportunity Office, Mail Stop 7004, 4330 Shawnee Mission Parkway, Fairway, KS 66205, 913-588-8011, 711 TTY (for the Wichita, Salina, and Kansas City, Kansas, medical center campuses).