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BrainLineMilitary.org Expert Panel
The BrainLineMilitary.org expert panel provides guidance to the site by suggesting and reviewing content. They help make sure we're up to date on the latest and most pertinent military-related information and resources about traumatic brain injury.
Adam Anicich is the deputy director of the Congressional Liaison Service for the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). In this role, he is responsible for the Senate liaison office and is collocated with the Senate in the Russell Senate Office Building. Anicich, a disabled combat veteran of the US Army, and his team communicate the department's initiatives to members of Congress, provide information on all programs and services VA provides, annually receive and resolve more than 21,000 Congressional inquiries dealing from casework to policy, and act as on-site liaisons between 541 members of Congress and VA. Anicich also serves on the executive committee of VA's PolyTrauma/Blast-related Injury Quality Enhancement Research Initiative (QUERI).
Prior to his appointment with VA, Anicich worked in leadership positions for the Department of Commerce, Missile Defense Agency, and spent six years in the private sector at a number of Southern California banks. Anicich received a B.A. and M.B.A. from Saint Leo University, and is currently finishing a Doctorate in Management at the University of Maryland.
As a former army sergeant and polytrauma veteran, Anicich is uniquely qualified to identify and communicate the needs of TBI survivors and veterans to Congress.
Alison Cernich, PhD
Alison Cernich, PhD is currently the acting VA senior liaison for TBI to the Defense Centers of Excellence in Psychological Health and Traumatic Brain Injury and the director of Neuropsychology at the VA Maryland Health Care System (VAMHCS).
Dr. Cernich formerly served as the program manager for the multidisciplinary Polytrauma Support Clinic Team at VAMHCS. She is a VA Rehabilitation Research & Development Service Advanced Career Development Awardee, funded to research the effects of exercise on cognitive function in stroke. She contributes to research in mild traumatic brain injury, cognitive effects of carotid stenosis, Depleted Uranium health monitoring, Multiple Sclerosis, and Parkinson’s disease.
Dr. Cernich is an assistant professor of Neurology and Psychiatry at the University of Maryland School of Medicine. She is the lead or contributing author on many peer-reviewed articles and has multiple conference presentations, primarily focused in the areas of computerized cognitive assessment, traumatic brain injury, and stroke.
COL Jamie B Grimes, MD, MC, USA
COL Grimes has served as DVBIC's National Director since July 1, 2010. Previously, she had been the DVBIC Site Director at Wilford Hall Medical Center (WHMC) and Brooke Army Medical Center (BAMC), which are now combined as the San Antonio Military Medical Center (SAMMC).
As national director, COL Grimes oversees all aspects of the organization's mission: to serve active duty military and veterans with traumatic brain injury (TBI) through state-of-the-art medical care and care coordination, and innovative clinical research and educational programs.
With board certification in Vascular Neurology, Neurology and Psychiatry, COL Grimes leads DVBIC with integrated multidisciplinary approaches to care. While deployed in Afghanistan from March to September 2011, she served as Theater Neurology Consultant. In this capacity, COL Grimes oversaw standardization of care at 11 concussion care centers. Performing site visits allowed her to ensure that staff had appropriate training, education and resources. She reviewed cases, shared best practices, and work with theater providers to identify and close gaps in patient care.
In 2004 COL Grimes served a nine-month tour of duty as a member of 359th Neurosurgical Team in Baghdad, Iraq, during the period that included both major battles in Fallujah. She saw the highest number of neurotrauma cases and quickly became "one of the busiest members of the medical team," according to COL Rocco Armonda, Director of Cerebrovascular Surgery & Interventional Neuroradiology, National Capital Neurosurgery Consortium, Director Division of Neurosurgery, Department of Surgery at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences (USUHS) in Bethesda, Md.
COL Grimes has held multiple appointments and academic posts including neurology consultant for the Army Office of The Surgeon General (OTSG) and the Great Plains Regional Medical Command, and assistant professor of Neurology at USUHS and at the University of Texas Health Sciences-San Antonio, Texas.
COL Grimes received her MD with honors from USUHS in 1990 and was commissioned as an Army Captain. Following two years as a general medical officer in Vilseck, Germany, COL Grimes continued her training at National Naval Medical Center and at Walter Reed Army Medical Center where she completed residencies in both psychiatry and neurology.
COL Grimes is the fourth National Director of DVBIC, which is celebrating 20 years of service in 2012. A Department of Defense-funded collaboration with the Department of Veterans Affairs, DVBIC supports 17 care and treatment sites nationwide; conducts clinical research; educates service members, medical personnel and caregivers; and consolidates and reports all DoD TBI-related incidence and prevalence data.
CAPT James Hancock, MD
CAPT James Hancock, MD currently serves as the director of Medical Services, Naval Medical Center Portsmouth and serves as the Navy’s specialty leader for emergency medicine.
In February, 2009, CAPT Hancock was named to be the Navy and Marine Corps representative on the Chairman’s of the Joint Chief Of Staff, Gray Team tasked to evaluate and advise the Chairman on all facets of traumatic brain Injury treatment. Subsequently, he deployed back to Iraq and Afghanistan in efforts to optimize treatment of traumatic brain injury. CAPT Hancock continues to serve in this capacity and was a primary author of the directive type memorandum currently used in OIF and OEF. He serves as Navy’s research representative in matters of advance trauma resuscitation and TBI to Army’s Marine Corps Mobilization Command (MCMC), Defense Centers of Excellence (DCoE), and the Defense and Veterans Brain Injury Center (DVBIC). His academic appointments include assistant professor of Military/Emergency medicine and assistant professor of Neurology at USUHS.
CAPT Hancock’s personal decorations include the Legion of Merit (Combat Award), Purple Heart, Combat Action Ribbon, Meritorious Service Medal (three awards), Joint Meritorious Service Medal, Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal (two awards), and Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal (three awards).
Sherray Holland, PA-C
Ms. Holland is a Maryland native currently working as a Neuroscience Clinical Advisor with Defense and Veterans Brain Injury Center (DVBIC) within the Division of Clinical Affairs: Office of Clinical Initiatives.
Miss Holland earned her Bachelor’s of Science degree in Physician Assistant and Certificate in Primary Care at Howard University in Washington D.C. in 2004. She is board certified as a PA through the National Commission of Certification of Physician Assistants and the Maryland Board of Physicians since 2005.
Prior to transfer to Headquarters, Miss Holland worked with DVBIC at Walter Reed Army Medical Center as a clinical PA diagnosing, treating, and managing service members with TBI and anoxic brain injuries who arrived from the warfront and stateside from an ICU setting to an outpatient TBI clinic.
Wendy A. Law, PhD
Wendy A. Law, PhD is a clinical neuropsychologist at the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland. She completed her doctorate at the University of New Mexico in 1989 and for more than 20 years has worked with Military Active Duty and Veteran populations in a variety of research, teaching and clinical activities.
In her current role, Dr. Law is part of an interdisciplinary neurobehavioral healthcare team, evaluating and managing cognitive, emotional, and behavioral functioning in service members who have suffered a traumatic brain injury or other potentially neuro-compromising conditions. These patients include service mMembers recently admitted to the inpatient surgery trauma unit following medical evacuation from combat for disabling polytrauma injuries as well as those who develop neurobehavioral disturbances several months to years after injury.
Michael Wilmore, MPAS, PA-C
Michael Wilmore, MPAS, PA-C, currently serves as the director of Clinical Affairs at the Defense and Veterans Brain Injury Center (DVBIC). He practiced as a member of the traumatic brain injury (TBI) clinical team at Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington, DC from 2005 to 2008. Mr. Wilmore provided clinical care and education to active duty military and their families who had sustained traumatic brain injuries. He evaluated and cared for injured service members returning from combat zones in Iraq and Afghanistan with TBIs that ranged from mild concussions to severe and penetrating injuries. Subsequently, he served as TBI Clinical Educator and Manager of the Office of Clinical Initiatives for DVBIC.
Mr. Wilmore has held a variety of leadership, clinical, and consultative roles to support the Department of Defense, Veterans Health Affairs, and a number of civilian organizations. He has given numerous national and international TBI- and combat-related medical lectures and has served as a primary clinical consultant in the development of large training summits as well as print and multimedia TBI awareness and education materials and learning platforms.
Mr. Wilmore holds a master’s degree in Physician Assistant Studies from the University of Nebraska and bachelor’s degree from Louisiana State University, School of Health Sciences and Louisiana Tech University. He began his career as a family practice physician assistant and has extensive international medical and poverty relief volunteer experience.