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Friends of the Life Span Institute
The Centers and their inception dates
The Life Span Institute is a center of centers collectively dedicated to discovering research–based solutions for the challenges of human and community development, disabilities, and aging.
Gerontology Center 1990
In the News
The KU–Children’s Mercy Hospital research and clinical center for childhood and adult obesity was launched on July 23 in Kansas City. Joseph Donnelly, director of LSI’s Center for Physical Activity and Weight Management, will direct the new center. The Center for Physical Activity, Nutrition and Weight Management will give Donnelly and his KU, KUMC and CMH collaborators an urban setting to continue research and research–based large–scale interventions to address the epidemic of childhood obesity – in Kansas 24 percent and in Missouri 32 percent. A recent example was the Physical Activity Across the Curriculum Project. The Center is located in the new Don Chisholm Hospital Hill Center at CMH. Kansas City Star story.
Glen White, director of the Research and Training Center on Independent Living, was featured in an article in the Lawrence Journal World marking the 18th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act. White offered his perspective as a person who has been in a wheelchair for 45 years.
White also traveled to Washington, D.C. to speak with policymakers about proposed changes to the landmark bill. Full story Lawrence Journal–World.
Benefit for K–CART raises public awareness, private gifts
The first graduate of KU’s interdisciplinary Ph.D. program in Gerontology has received national attention for her research on the effects of “elderspeak“ with Alzheimer’s patients. Kristine Williams, an associate professor at the KU School of Nursing who studied at LSI’s Gerontology Center, showed that talking down to seniors with dementia actually increased their resistance to being cared for.
Williams presented her research at the 2008 Alzheimer’s Association International Conference on Alzheimer’s Disease in Chicago. Several media outlets reported the study. Full story Kansas Public Radio. Full story Good Morning America. Full story Lawrence Journal–World
Williams, who remains affiliated with the Gerontology Center as a associated faculty member, earned her Ph.D. in 2001 and studied with Susan Kemper and Mary Lee Hummert. The three scientists have published several articles together on the topic of elderspeak. Kemper served as a consultant on the research Williams presented.
The Community Tool Box, a project of LSI’s Work Group for Community Health and Development, has been selected for inclusion on a new website hosted by the PBS program, NOW on PBS. The site, Your America: Democracy’s Local Heroes, features resources to bring about change in the United States, whether at the individual, organizational, community or national level.
The 7,000–web page Community Tool Box appears under the site’s Take Action section. (Scroll down to see the listing with a direct link to the Tool Box site’s resources for Developing an Action Plan.)
Christina Holt, director of training and technical support for the Work Group, was notified that the Community Tool Box had been selected in an email from NOW on PBS Executive Producer John Siceloff. “After searching hundreds of websites, we found that the Community Toolbox is particularly useful to our mission of helping interested citizens create meaningful change from the bottom up,“ Siceloff wrote.
Director of the Work Group Steve Fawcett said, "We are delighted that the Community Tool Box continues to be a resource for those taking action to improve outcomes in communities. It is a pleasure to see its continued growth and widespread use locally, nationally and globally."
K–CART, the Kansas Center for Autism Research and Training, that officially became the Life Span Institute’s 13th center on July 1, has launched its web site. The site, k–cart.ku.edu offers information for researchers, graduate students, practitioners, service providers and families. Of note is the Autism Training Program section of the site. This new K–CART/State of Kansas initiative is training Kansas professionals, paraprofessionals and parents in evidence–based strategies to improve the functional skills and social–communicative abilities of children and youth with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD). This will eventually link to ATP training modules.
The Clinical Services section of the site reflects K–CART’s affiliation with the Center for Child Health and Development (CCHD) at the KU Medical Center and features a wealth of information through an online version of a family resource guide recently developed at the CCHD as well as links to many state, regional and national resources.
The site also includes descriptions and pertinent information on those Life Span Institute research projects that are directly or indirectly concerned with the autism spectrum disorders. Affiliated researchers and contact information is another site resource.
There is also a K–CART calendar that includes local and regional ASD–related training, conferences and other events.
The Autism Training Program (ATP), a new training program directed by K–CART for Kansas providers working with children with autism is off to a busy start, with the first two training cycles completed – one in May and the other in July – in the Autism Specialist and Intensive Individual Support Provider categories.
According to Linda Heitzman–Powell, who coordinates K–CART’s training effort, the sessions drew between six and 10 trainees per cycle. Participants were trained in two sites. One was a classroom setting at the KU Medical Center, which featured discussion and practice with professional–level trainers. The sites were in actual classrooms so participants could see how the techniques are applied. “Trainees have come motivated to be engaged and seem to have absorbed a great amount of information,“ Heitzman–Powell said.
The ATP is partially funded by the Kansas Department of Social and Rehabilitation Services to train providers to support the state’s first Autism Waiver Program. The Autism Training Program provides training for other SRS supports such as respite and family support providers. In the future, additional training opportunities will be available for non–waiver providers and family members.
Training cycles will be offered again in September. For more information, visit the Autism Training Program website.
The completely redesigned LSI web site at lsi.ku.edu went live earlier this year but the LSI communications group only recently added a Resources for Investigators and Staff section that details and even gives access to many LSI resources and services online. For example, LSI investigators and staff can download commonly used forms, get answers to FAQs, check deadlines and email the appropriate staff member directly from the site.
Each LSI department/service area has its own sub–site: Accounting, Administration, Central Office, Communications, Human Resources/Payroll, Information Technology, Project Development and Research Design and Analysis. Each sub–site includes an overview and a list of services that link to more information or a staff contact email. Accounting has posted policies and relevant forms, on, for example, international travel, reimbursement for travel expenses, etc. Communications, Research Design and Analysis and the Central Office list services to connect investigators directly with staff who can assist them, as well as additional information. Human resources has links to University Payroll and HREO forms and information. Information Technology has a technical information section in addition to its new online services request form for tracking and organizing new service requests. Project Development lists new funding opportunities, policies, forms and other resources.
In addition to LSI services, Resources for Investigators and Staff also offers an A–Z list of links to LSI services as well as links to KIDDRC and BNCD investigator services.
If you have not yet explored the new LSI site, please note the calendar (and send us your events!) and the LSI directory where you can search by center and individual name. And if you need directions to our four main locations, they are at the Maps and Directions page.
LSI research and research–based intervention projects information begins at the Research page. This section will eventually have individual project pages that will be searchable by subject, PI, center, etc.
James F. Budde, founder and former director of KU’s Research and Training Center on Independent Living, retired after 38 years of service. He organized the RTCIL as an official university center in 1980 with a $2.5 million grant from the National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research. Budde began phased retirement in 2002.
Budde also served as the associate director of the University Affiliated Program and later director until 1980. Under Budde’s leadership, the center influenced public policy regarding national standards for independent living centers, training and products to help individuals with disabilities to take charge of their lives.
Budde’s leadership was instrumental in the implementation of the Developmental Disabilities Act of 1996, a state–based initiative for developing a network of local service centers.
In 1978, Budde helped establish Independence Inc., a Lawrence–based service coordination and referral center for people with disabilities, where he served two terms as president and 18 years on the board. Budde also serves on the board and has been the president of Cottonwood Inc., Lawrence’s designated developmental disabilities center.
At the national level, Budde served as president of the National Association of Research Rehabilitation and Training Centers, the National Association of University Affiliated Programs and the National Association of Independent Living.
Peter Smith, professor of Molecular and Integrative Physiology at the KU Medical Center and director of its Mental Retardation Research Center, became director of the Kansas Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities Research Center (KIDDRC) on July 1. Previously co–director of KIDDRC, Smith assumed the position formerly held by Steve Warren, now vice provost for Research and Graduate Studies. Interim LSI Director John Colombo became co–director of KIDDRC.
KIDDRC was established in 1966 as one of the original 12 Mental Retardation Research Centers administered by what is now called the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Development.
Interim LSI Director John Colombo was among the organizers and speakers at an all–day satellite workshop that preceded the 8th Biennial International Scientific Meeting of the International Society for the Study of Fatty Acids and Lipids (OSSFA) May 17–22 in Kansas City, Mo.
The workshop on Maternal–Infant Clinical Trials focused on conducting and managing large clinical trials and using new statistical techniques for evaluating and interpreting data. In additional to serving as co–planner of the workshop, Colombo chaired and spoke at a session on developmental testing. In another session, he was joined by Todd Little, scientific director of LSI’s Research Design and Analysis unit, who discussed advanced statistical methods for the analysis of change.
Supported by a grant to Colombo from Mead Johnson Nutritionals, the workshop was transmitted from the National World War I Museum in Kansas City. The 120 participants included attendees from Europe, Asia, Australia and New Zealand.
ISSFAL’s members include scientists, health professionals, administrators and educators with an interest in the health effects of dietary lipids.
Centro Ann Sullivan del Perú (CASP), LSI’s Peruvian affiliate, directed by KU Distinguished Service Citation awardee Liliana Mayo, held a four–hour seminar on pediatric disabilities to connect more than 1500 professionals and family members at 22 sites in six Latin American countries. Mayo, who pioneered a highly successful, evidence–based family–oriented model to treat children with autism and other intellectual disabilities in Perú, is focusing on disseminating knowledge throughout Perú, Latin America and the rest of the world. The conference, delivered via the Internet by a web conferencing program, Elluminate™, designed for regions with limited band–width capacity, was made possible by a one–time administrative supplement to LSI’s P–30 grant (KIDDRC) from the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development.
CEC’s Division of Physical and Health Disabilities presented Saunders with the Joan Wald Baken Award for her long–time work with children and adults with physical and health disabilities. Saunders has worked with students and adults with physical and health disabilities since 1966 and has extensive experience as a special education teacher and researcher. Saunders’ current work includes a project funded by the Kansas Council on Developmental Disabilities to encourage weight loss among overweight and obese adults with developmental disabilities. She also is working with Special Olympics International to examine the impact of screening for oral health, vision and hearing on the health and behavior of Special Olympics athletes.
The Joan Wald Baken Award was established in 1997 to honor exemplary advocacy and educational practice in direct delivery of services to individuals with physical and health disabilities in schools, hospitals, clinics, homes or in the community.
Senior scientist and Vice Provost of Research and Graduate Training Steve Warren was one of five speakers at the May 22 congressional briefing to highlight research successes of the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development.
Warren discussed the prospects and challenges of early intervention as well as the discoveries, including Steven Barlow’s development of the N–Trainer, which assesses and trains premature infants to feed orally. Barlow is an investigator with the Kansas Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities Research Center. Warren said the N–Trainer “builds on 50 years of NIH–supported research in basic neuroscience, speech–language development, biomedical engineering, by thousands of dedicated scientists.“
Read more, view presentations and see photos on SPIN, the May 2008 APA’s Science Policy Insider News.
Nancy Brady, one of LSI’s investigators who is affiliated with K–CART, is heading up a K–CART team that will participate in the October 18 Kansas City Walk Now for Autism at the Kansas Speedway. The event benefits Autism Speaks. For more information or to register, go to the event’s website.
K–CART’s username is KCART2 and the password is jayhawk.
For more information contact Brady at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Project Development (Paul Diedrich)
New Awards (not previously funded) Information
1. Rachel Freeman received a new, one–year award “Promoting Social and Academic Success Using a Multi–Tier System of Supports: Kansas State–wide Positive Behavior Support“ from KsDE that began May 1, 2008.
2. Steve Fawcett and Jerry Schultz received a new, five–year award “Implementing the ‘Health for All Model’ with the Latino Community of Kansas City“ form NCMHD that began June 1, 2008.
3. Hugh Catts and Diane Nielsen received a new, four–year award “Early Identification of Children with Reading Disabilities within an RTI Framework“ from DE–IES that began July 1, 2008.
4. Charles Greenwood and Judith Carta, in collaboration with Ruth Kaminski, Dynamic Measurement Group, Howard Goldstein, Ohio State University, and Scott McConnell, University of Minnesota, received a new, five–year award “Center for Response to Intervention in Early Childhood (CRTIEC)“ from DE–IES that began July 1, 2008.
There are a few more proposals that have a high probability of being funded, that we hope to report on next month.
Past Submissions not Previously Reported
1. Mabel Rice submitted her third–year continuation, “Pediatric HIV/Aids Cohort Study (PHACS)“ to Tulane University on May 13, 2008.
2. Steve Fawcett and Jerry Schultz submitted a new, one–year proposal “Spanish Translation of the Community Toolbox“ to the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation on May 28, 2008.
3. David Lindeman submitted his 22nd–year continuation “Active Treatment Training Program“ to KsSRS on June 1, 2008.
4. Tiffany Johnson submitted a new, one–year proposal “New Directions in Clinical Applications of Otoacoustic Emissions“ to ASHA on June 2, 2008.
5. Muriel and Richard Saunders submitted a new, 15–month proposal “Impact of Vision and Hearing Correction on Measurement of Sport and Non–sport Performance of Persons with Intellectual Disabilities“ to Special Olympics on June 6, 2008.
6. Chris Smith, Todd Little and David Lindeman submitted a new, three–year proposal “Organizational Learning, Quality and Data Overload: Creating a Replicable System for Integrating Organizational Performance Trends, Community Assessments and Strategic Plans“ to HHS/CDC on June 9, 2008.
7. Michael Wehmeyer submitted a new, one–year proposal “Implementation and Impact of the Special Olympics Athlete Leadership Program: A Multiple Method, Multi–component Evaluation“ to Special Olympics on June 13, 2008.
8. Amy McCart submitted a new, three–year proposal “Multi–Tiered Systems of Support: Implementing Effective Evidence–Based Practices in Community Agencies, Meeting the Needs of Families with Co–Occurring Behavioral and Mental Health Disorders“ to the Health Care Foundation of Greater Kansas City on June 13, 2008.
9. Katherine Froehlich–Grobe and Todd Little, in collaboration with Andrea Ely at KUMC, submitted a new, two–year R21 proposal “The Burden of Obesity among Working–Age Adults with Disabilities“ to NIH on June 16, 2008.
10. Bryan Smith submitted a new, two–year R21 proposal “Mechanisms of Weight Change in Women After Diagnosis of Breast Cancer“ to NIH on June 16, 2008.
11. David Lindeman submitted his 18th–year continuation “Southeast Kansas Respite Care Services“ to PSHTC/KsSRS on June 17, 2008.
12. David Lindeman submitted his 16th–year continuation “Dual Diagnosis of Persons with Disabilities“ to SEKRS on June 17, 2008.
13. David Lindeman submitted his 11th–year continuation “KITS – Infant and Toddler Expansion“ to KsDE on June 18, 2008.
14. David Lindeman submitted his ninth–year continuation “SEK–CAP“ to SEKRS on July 18, 2008. Four proposals, two prime and two subcontracts, were submitted to the DE–IES Special Education Research (84.324) on June 26, 2008:
15. Eva Horn and Susan Palmer, collaborating with the University of Maryland (PI Joan Lieber), and Indiana University (PI Gretchen Butera), resubmitted a three–year proposal “Children’s School Success Curriculum – Plus (CSS+): Supporting All Children’s Progress in the General Curriculum.“
16. Debra Kamps, Linda Heitzman–Powell and Kathy Thiemann, in collaboration with Ilene Schwartz at the University of Washington, resubmitted a four–year proposal “Peer Networks Intervention: Improving Social–Communication, Literacy and Adaptive Behaviors for Young Children with ASD.“
17. Judy Carta, Mary Abbott and Charles Greenwood resubmitted a three–year subcontract “Development of a Three–tired Model in Early Intervention to Address Language and Literacy Needs of Children at Risk“ to University of Nebraska at Lincoln, PI Sue Sheridan.
18. Amy McCart and Nikki Wolf resubmitted a four–year subcontract “Addressing Attitudinal Barriers to Successful Behavioral Parent Training“ to the University of South Florida, PI V. Mark Durand.
19. Wendy Parent submitted a new, one–year proposal “APBS Web Development/Maintenance“ to the Association for Positive Behavior Support on June 26, 2008.
20. Michael Fox submitted his second–year continuation “Module C: Emergency Preparedness and Module F: Expanding State Disability Surveillance Capacity in KS“ via KUMC, prime contractor to KsH&E on June 26, 2008.
21. Charles Greenwood, Dale Walker and Jay Buzhardt submitted their second–year grant performance report “The Infancy to Preschool Early Literacy Connection: Validation Studies of the Early Communication Indicator (ECI) of Growth and Development“ to DE–IES on June 30, 2008.
22. Debra Kamps, Howard Wills, Greg Hanley, Rachel Thompson and Charles Greenwood submitted their second–year grant performance report “Class–Wide Function–Based Intervention Teams: A Resource to Practice Agenda for Functional Behavior Assessment (CS: FIT)“ to DE–IES on June 30, 2008.
23. Michael Wehmeyer and Susan Palmer submitted their second–year grant performance report “Determining the Efficacy of the Self–Determined Learning Model of Instruction to Improve Secondary and Transition Outcomes for Students with Cognitive Disabilities“ to DE–IES on June 30, 2008.
24. Michael Wehmeyer submitted a new, three–year subcontract “Enhancing Life Outcomes Through Self–Determination: A National Training Initiative“ to UMKC, PI Carl Calkins, prime contractor to HHS–ADD on June 30, 2008.
25. Mabel Rice submitted her seventh–year progress report for her P30 Center “Biobehavioral Sciences of Communication Disorders“ to NIDCD on July 1, 2008.
26. Hugh Catts and Suzanne Adlof submitted their second–year progress report for their F31 “Morphosyntactic Skills of Poor Comprehenders“ to NIDCD on July 1, 2008.
27. Ann and Rud Turnbull submitted their final report on “RRTC on Policies Affecting Families of Children with Disabilities (Beach IV)“ to DE–OSERS–NIDRR on July 1, 2008.
28. Michael Wehmeyer submitted his final report for “The Impact of Interventions on Self–Determination and Adult Outcomes“ to DE–OSERS–NIDRR on July 1, 2008.
29. Linda Heitzman–Powell submitted her third–year annual performance report “Combining Technologies to Maximize Outcomes: Online and Telemedicine Training Program of Parents of Children with Autism“ to DE–OSERS–NIDRR on July 1, 2008.
30. Glen White submitted his fifth–year annual performance report “RRTC on Measurement and Interdependence in Community Living“ to DE–OSERS–NIDRR on July 1, 2008.
31. Rud Turnbull and Sean Smith, in collaboration with Daniel Davies, AbleLink Technologies, submitted a new, five–year proposal “Family Center on Technology and Disability“ to DE–OSERS–OSEP on July 2, 2008.
32. Matthew Stowe resubmitted a three–year RO1 “Disability Community Perspectives on Human Genetic Research and Technologies“ via the University of California, Santa Barbara, PI Mian Wang, prime contractor to NIH on July 5, 2008.
33. Joseph Donnelly, J. Leon Greene, Richard Washburn, Bryan Smith, John Poggio, Greg Welch, Debra Sullivan Cheryl Gibson, Matthew Mayo and Robert Lee resubmitted their five–year renewal “Prevention of Obesity in Children with PAAC“ to NIDDK on July 5, 2008.
34. Ric Washburn, Joseph Donnelly, Bryan Smith, Debra Sullivan, Heather Leidy and Janet Marquis resubmitted their five–year RO1 “Resistance Training Energy Balance and Weight Management“ to NIDDK on July 5, 2008.
35. Joseph Donnelly, Debra Sullivan, Cheryl Gibson, Bryan Smith, Richard Washburn, and J. Leon Greene submitted a new one–year proposal “Obesity Training Workshop“ to the United Methodist Health Ministry Fund on July 7, 2008.
36. Todd Little resubmitted his two–year subcontract proposal “Parenting in High–Risk Settings: Longitudinal Associations with Youth Well Beings“ to Johns Hopkins, PI Kathleen Roche, prime contractor to NIH, on July 16, 2008.
37. John Colombo resubmitted his two–year RO3 proposal “Pupil Size and Circadian Salivary Variations in Autism Spectrum Disorders“ to NIMH on July 16, 2008.
38. Dale Walker submitted a one–year extension for her contract “Evaluation Workscope of Early Communication Indicator“ to KsSRS on July 23, 2008.
39. Ed Auer submitted a new, three–year proposal “Achieving Gestural Access to the Mental Lexicon“ to NSF on July 25, 2008.
40. Sara Sack submitted her sixth–year continuation “Equipment Exchange: Increasing Access to Durable Medical Equipment“ to KsDA/KHPA on July 25, 2008.
41. Joseph Donnelly, Bryan Smith, Debra Sullivan, Cheryl Gibson, Mathew Mayo and Robert Lee submitted a new one–year proposal “Effects of Visible Cheese on Consumption of Food Groups to Encourage“ to Dairy Management, Inc. on July 25, 2008.
1. Steve Barlow (sponsor) and Meredith Estep (fellow) will resubmit their F31 “Cortical and Subcortical Contributions to Ororhythmic Behavior“ to NIH on August 8, 2008.