Alison Cernich, Ph.D. – Director, National Center for Medical Rehabilitation Research
As Director of NCMRR, Dr. Cernich oversees a varied portfolio of research projects, training programs, and rehabilitation research infrastructure network sites aimed at improving the care of individuals with physical disability who require medical rehabilitation.
Alison Cernich, Ph.D., is a Board Certified Neuropsychologist who is known for her previous work in traumatic brain injury (TBI) and computerized neuropsychological assessment. She previously served as the Deputy Director for the Defense Centers of Excellence for Psychological Health and Traumatic Brain Injury (DCoE), working with the Departments of Veterans Affairs and Defense on matters relating to these conditions. She served on multiple interagency strategic planning committees and government oversight committees for major research initiatives in both Departments.
She received her doctoral degree in Clinical Psychology from Fairleigh Dickinson University (FDU). She completed a pre-doctoral research fellowship in rehabilitation outcomes measurement at the Kessler Medical Rehabilitation Research & Education Corporation, funded by the National Institutes of Disability and Rehabilitation Research (NIDRR) and a post-doctoral fellowship in cognitive neurosciences at the National Rehabilitation Hospital (NRH) in Washington, DC.
She was previously the Director of Neuropsychology and Director of the Polytrauma Support Clinical Team at the VA Maryland Health Care System (VAMHCS). She was an Assistant Professor of Neurology and Psychiatry at the University of Maryland School of Medicine. Her research focus, supported by a Career Development Award and other support from VA’s Rehabilitation Research Development Service, was focused on the effects of aerobic exercise on cognition in multiple clinical populations (e.g., individuals diagnosed with stroke or Parkinson’s disease).
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