Biobehavioral RIG Leaders


Greetings from the current RIG leaders:

Barbara Carlson, PhD, RN
RIG Chair

Barbara is an associate professor in the Department of Adult and Geriatric Health and the associate director of the Biobehavioral Laboratory at the University of North Carolina School of Nursing at Chapel Hill. Her program of research focuses on devising biobehavioral methods for assessing neurocognitive reserve and corresponding interventions for minimizing preclinical disability in older adults.


Debra Lyon, PhD, RN

Debra is an associate professor and chair, Department of Family and Community Health Nursing at Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond, VA. Her program of research focuses on biobehavioral responses to cancer, including genetic and epigenetic correlates of symptoms.



Jeanne Ruiz, PhD, RN

Jeanne is an associate professor at the University of Texas at Austin School of Nursing, Austin, Texas. Her program of research focuses on biobehavioral approaches to the etiologies of preterm birth using endocrine, immune and genetic parameters as well as psychosocial, and cultural risk factors.


We are looking forward to facilitating the growth of the Biobehavioral RIG.

RIG Chair: Barbara Carlson
RIG Chair-elect: Debra Lyon and Jeanne Ruiz

We would also like to recognize the past leaders of the Biobehavioral RIG.

Name School Years Served
Charlene Kruger University of Florida at Gainesville 2007-2009
Pao-Feng Tsai University of Arkansas for Medical Science 2006-2007
Rita Jablonski Virginia Commonwealth University 2006-2007
Mary Dunn* Belmont University  
Mary Hays* University of Alabama - Huntsville  
Virginia Neelon* The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill  

* Due to changes in management companies, our listing of RIG chairs prior to 2006 is probably incomplete and would ask anyone who has served as RIG chair or know of someone who served as a RIG chair but is not listed to forward the name (along with their school affiliation and years of service) to Barbara Carlson at  The Biobehavioral RIG is one of the oldest and largest RIGs in SNRS and we very much want to recognize the many stewarts that have made this RIG such a lasting success!