CARE Affiliates

Research Faculty

Barbara Bowers

Professor, Associate Dean for Research, CARE Founding Director

Barbara Bowers’ research is with frail older adults in both community and residential settings. She is interested in how nursing staff and long-term care systems impact quality of life and quality of care. In her dual capacity as a professor at UW–Madison School of Nursing and Founding Director of the Center for Aging Research and Education, she has worked with state and federal government bodies to develop, implement, and evaluate public policies affecting older adults. (Academic Bio) (Profile)

Lisa Bratzke

Assistant Professor

Lisa Bratzke studies cognitive impairment of patients with coronary heart disease, who, according to health data, suffer from concentration or memory difficulties. With coronary heart disease on the rise—40 percent of the U.S. population is projected to have some form of it by 2030—she is examining ways to slow deteriorating cognitive function in this population, thereby improving quality of life for individuals with chronic heart failure. (Academic Bio)

Andrea Gilmore-Bykovskyi

Assistant Professor

Andrea Gilmore-Bykovskyi’s research program focuses on health service delivery, health disparities and outcomes for persons with neurodegenerative dementia by developing, testing and translating into practice interventions to improve identification of dementia and individualized care during high-risk points in the care continuum. (Academic Bio)

Barbara King

Associate Professor, CARE Director

Barbara King is a former special advanced fellow at the William S. Middleton Memorial Veterans Hospital Geriatric Research, Education, and Clinical Center (GRECC) in Madison. Her primary research examines the functional decline and loss of independent ambulation in older adults during hospitalization. Her second line of research focuses on older patients’ transitional care from hospital to nursing home. (Academic Bio)

Kristen Pecanac

Assistant Professor

Kristen Pecanac’s research focuses on how conversations between healthcare professionals, patients and their families shape treatment decision-making. Her goal is to reduce stress and suffering for patients and their family members by improving communication. (Academic Bio)

Tonya Roberts

Assistant Professor

Tonya Roberts’ research aims to improve the quality of life for frail older adults who require long-term care. She is particularly interested in enhancing the personalization of care in ways that allow older adults to achieve their individual life and care goals, and in developing interventions that activate and engage older adults in their own care and long-term care environments. (Academic Bio)

Clinical Faculty

Liz Collins

Clinical Instructor

Liz Collins worked as a staff nurse at Duke University in the Medical Intensive Care Unit and then later practiced as a traveling nurse in Minneapolis, Dallas, Washington DC, and Florida. She worked in the Surgical Intensive Care Unit @ Landstuhl Army Medical Center in Germany. She is a Certified Critical Care Registered Nurse (CCRN) and Certified Nurse Educator (CNE). Liz enjoys teaching in programs such as the UW–PEOPLE Program that supports broadening diversity in the nursing workforce.

Sarah Endicott

Clinical Professor

Sarah Endicott is a board-certified geriatric nurse practitioner with experience in adult medicine and memory diagnostic centers. Her current clinical practice is in rural skilled nursing facilities. She teaches in the adult/gero nurse practitioner program at the UW–Madison School of Nursing and serves as a preceptor for primary care students. Her interests include advanced care planning and the education and support of caregivers for people living with dementia. She serves as the faculty liaison to the CARE Steering Committee. (Academic Bio)

Paula Jarzemsky

Clinical Professor

Paula Jarzemsky teaches first-year nursing students on a busy surgical unit serving patients at UW Hospital. In recognition of the increased number of older adults in all health care settings, Paula engages an inter-professional faculty group to offer an annual falls prevention program for seniors in the Madison community. She is a fellow of the Minnesota Hartford Center Facilitated Learning to Advance Geriatrics Program. (Academic Bio)

Sarah Kruger

Clinical Professor, Emerita

Sarah Kruger’s clinical area of interest is diabetes care. She focuses on older adults, including those with diabetes and those with neurological conditions. She is interested in developing different teaching modalities for students. She is an advanced practice registered nurse.

Paula Woywod

Clinical Instructor

Paula Woywod has taught as a clinical instructor for medical-surgical, and cardiac and thoracic surgery, heart and lung transplant units. Her focus includes best practices in older adult care and transitions of care. She partners with the Goodman Center Older Adult Program to enrich nursing students’ educational experience. (Academic Bio)

Adjunct Faculty

Lauren Bishop-Fitzpatrick

Assistant Professor, School of Social Work

Lauren Bishop-Fitzpatrick, MSW, PhD has a program of research that aims to characterize health disparities in and improve the health and well-being of adults with autism spectrum disorder and other developmental disabilities. Her research uses both prospective data and large, administrative data sets to test mechanisms underlying health disparities in adults with autism spectrum disorder and other developmental disabilities. The overall goal of this research is to find the best ways to help adults with autism spectrum disorder and other developmental disabilities live long, healthy, and self-determined lives in their communities.

Beth Fields

Assistant Professor, Occupational Therapy Program, Department of Kinesiology

Beth Fields, PhD, OTR/L has a program of research that examines animal-assisted approaches for aging adults with chronic conditions, and systems and methods designed to improve person and family-centered geriatric care. She hopes to grow her interdisciplinary collaborations to help transform quality geriatric service delivery. As a post-doctoral fellow at the University of Pittsburgh, Fields was an affiliate of their Center for Caregiving Research, Education, and Policy.

Hossein Khalili

Director, Center for Interprofessional Practice and Education

Hossein Khalili, PhD is the Director of the UW–Madison Center for Interprofessional Practice and Education (CIPE). His research and scholarship focuses on designing, implementing, and evaluating interprofessional education and collaborative practice initiatives, including simulations and patient engagement and partnership. He co-founded and co-leads InterprofessionalResearch.Global, an international network advancing interprofessional knowledge, theories and research.

Kristin Litzelman

Assistant Professor, Human Development and Family Studies

Kristin Litzelman, PhD is an Assistant Professor in Human Development and Family Studies at the UW–Madison School of Human Ecology and a State Specialist with UW Cooperative Extension’s Family Living Programs. Her research centers around how illness impacts families, primarily through the lens of family caregiving. She is particularly interested in the ways that caregivers and care recipients influence one another’s health and well-being, and how we can help caregivers take care of themselves so that they can take care of their loved ones.

Kimberly Mueller

Assistant Professor, Communication Sciences and Disorders

Kim Mueller, PhD researches the neural mechanisms and behavioral aspects of speech and language changes across the spectrum of normal aging, preclinical Alzheimer’s disease, Mild Cognitive Impairment, Alzheimer’s disease, and other forms of dementia. Her work utilizes naturalistic speech-language samples as one means of analyzing and understanding subtle changes to communication. She is also interested in the design and testing of identification methods of early cognitive change in the presence of AD biomarkers, and multimodal therapeutic interventions to address cognitive-communication difficulties in MCI and dementia due to neurodegenerative disease.

Tracy Schroepfer

Professor, School of Social Work

Tracy Schroepfer, MSW, PhD researches strategies for meeting the psychosocial, cultural and spiritual needs of terminally ill elders, as well as strategies for reducing health disparities faced by medically underserved communities in Wisconsin. Her current projects include: 1) developing an instrument to assess the psychosocial, cultural and spiritual needs of terminally ill elders, 2) gaining a deeper understanding of the wish to hasten death (WTHD), 3) determining the role control plays in the dying process of terminally ill elders, and 4) exploring the barriers and facilitators regarding the participation of Wisconsin African American, Native American and Latino communities in biomarker research.

Sue Wenker

Assistant Professor, School of Medicine and Public Health

Sue Wenker, PT, PhD, MS, is a geriatric certified specialist, an assistant professor with the UW–Madison School of Medicine and Public Health and a faculty associate with the Doctor of Physical Therapy Program. Clinically, she has been a member of interprofessional teams in both community settings and hospital and skilled nursing facilities. Wenker is currently conducting research focused on teaching and learning interventions for physical therapy students regarding dementia and related diseases.

Nicole Werner

Assistant Professor, Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering

Nicole Werner, PhD is a Human Factors Engineer who is interested in modeling the sociotechnical systems in which medically complex patients and their network of informal caregivers perform the “work” of healthcare. Her research seeks to (re)design those systems toward a human-centered, smart and connected patient journey. Her current work focuses on designing and implementing health information technologies as interventions to support medically complex patients and their network of informal caregivers in performing healthcare “work” in the home and as they transition across healthcare settings, with the overall goal of improving patient safety, care quality and well-being.