Brian Pendleton honored for research efforts


For his many contributions to advancing community health, Dr. Brian Pendleton was honored with a 2012 Outstanding Volunteer Faculty Award — presented by the Department of Family and Community Medicine at Northeast Ohio Medical University (NEOMED).

Dr. Brian Pendleton

Pendleton, a professor of sociology at UA and a research professor of family and community medicine at NEOMED, was one of six individuals honored in early June by the department. NEOMED has more than 2,300 individuals serving as "voluntary faculty members" — including physicians, pharmacists and other health professionals — to work with its students. Currently, there are 11 NEOMED volunteers affiliated with UA.

His work at NEOMED is a natural extension of Pendleton's research interests in the areas of medical sociology, epidemiology, literacy, quantitative methodology, demography and the sociology of children. Pendleton, who joined UA in 1978, has been the primary investigator or co-primary investigator for almost $21 million dollars in grant and contract monies from federal, state and local sources. He also helped launch the Decker Family Development Center in Barberton, and served for 15 years as its co-manager and director of research and evaluation.

Helping to achieve positive health outcomes

"Brian dedicates a significant amount of time in support of research initiatives of the department, the majority of which as a volunteer," says Dr. Susan Labuda-Schrop, associate director of administration and family medicine, and assistant professor of family and community medicine at NEOMED. "He plays a major role in helping with research design, data analysis and interpretation and dissemination, as well as in helping us to get grant support."

Pendleton has served as a primary investigator or co-primary investigator on several research projects with Labuda-Schrop that were focused on medical care for underserved populations, health disparities based on income, and preventive health and literacy — beginning with the "For Your Health" kiosk project. Launched in 1999, the interactive kiosks were placed in the waiting rooms of clinics for the medically underserved to provide patient education and to study the effect of the kiosk on the delivery of physician counseling in four areas – alcohol intake, exercise, smoking cessation and weight control. In 2006, the project received a Patient Care Award for Excellence in Patient Education Innovation from the American Academy of Family Physicians and the Society for Teachers of Family Medicine.

"It's very nice to be recognized," says Pendleton, who also is a recipient of both an Outstanding Teacher Award and an Outstanding Researcher Award from UA. "I love working with the people at NEOMED. Of course, this work provides additional research opportunities for UA students, in addition to the medical students at NEOMED."