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Remembering a Dear Friend and Colleague - Lisa Kimbrough

Tribute to Dr. Elizabeth (Lisa) Kimbrough

Assistant Professor

Center for Integrative Medicine

 

 Elizabeth (Lisa) Kimbrough Pradhan, PhD, MPH, began her career at the Center for Integrative Medicine (CIM) as a Graduate Research Assistant in 2005 and retired in the position of Assistant Professor, having built a vibrant research program in mind/body medicine.  She retired in the Spring of 2010.  Lisa’s departure from our team was untimely and caused by serious illness, we miss her greatly.  

Meditation and mindfulness are important philosophies that guide much of Lisa’s personal life as well as her more recent work.  She dedicated her career with us to investigating Mindfulness-based Stress Reduction (MBSR) and meditation, showing the positive effects these approaches could have for child abuse survivors, as well as those who suffer from depression and rheumatoid arthritis.  At the same time, Lisa was a key leader in our collaborative work on traditional Chinese medicine with the Chinese University of Hong Kong.  A gifted researcher and writer, she authored or co-authored over 75 publications beginning in 1991 and was on the review board of five peer-reviewed journals in 2008-2009.  Lisa also won many well-deserved awards and honors during her career, such as the Francisco J. Varela Memorial Grant Award from the Mind and Life Institute and the George Family Foundation New Researcher Award.

 Prior to joining CIM, Lisa worked as a Pre-Doctoral NIH Fellow at the University of Maryland’s Department of Epidemiology and Preventive Medicine for three years, while working toward her PhD in Epidemiology.  Lisa also worked as a Research Assistant and Research Coordinator for Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health while pursuing her Master’s in Public Health (MPH) there.  In the late 1980s to the early 2000s, Lisa studied epidemiological issues in Nepal.  She assisted with multiple studies in conjunction with the United States Agency for International Development and Johns Hopkins University that included prevention of malnutrition, the impact of maternal supplementation on early infant mortality rates, employment trends for women in a rural village, epidemiology of ocular trauma and evaluation of treatment options in rural Nepal, and the impact of Vitamin A supplementation on childhood mortality and morbidity in Nepal.   

                Lisa has balanced a rich career with her family life, including her 2 lovely children, Asha and Rajen, and a large circle of friends who span the globe.  Always active and fun-loving, she could often be found running through a nearby park, skiing down a mountain, deep in restorative meditation, or enjoying a glass of good wine with friends.  The 24 hour support and care she continues to receive from friends, family and co-workers, and the thousands of messages she has received on her Caring Bridge website, are testament to the love she embodies.  Lisa is sorely missed at CIM, but her work will be carried forward by her many colleagues and mentees.


UPDATE: 

This past January, the Center for Integrative Medicine lost a dear friend and colleague when Lisa Kimbrough died of brain cancer at the young age of 53. She had dedicated her career to investigating mind/body medicine and had earned both an international and national reputation for her research in this field. At the time of her death, she was studying the effectiveness of Mindfulness-based Stress Reduction (MBSR) and meditation to help victims of childhood abuse, persons suffering from depression, and those living with painful rheumatoid arthritis.

 

Lisa’s colleagues praised her intellect and wit.  Since 1991, she authored and co-authored more than 75 publications and in 2008-2009, she served on the review panel of five peer-reviewed journals. In recognition of her research, she received many awards including the Francisco J. Varela Memorial Grant Award from the Mind and Life Institute and the George Family Foundation New Researcher Award.

 

From the late 1980s until the early 2000s, Lisa studied epidemiological issues in Nepal, the birthplace of her husband. She assisted with studies conducted by the United States Agency for International Development and Johns Hopkins University such as the prevention of malnutrition, the impact of maternal supplementation on early infant mortality rates and the impact of Vitamin A supplementation on childhood mortality and morbidity in Nepal.

 

Research Coordinator Mary Bahr said, “Lisa left us many gifts such as cherished written messages, personal jewelry left for her friends, and an amazing body of work that will keep her memory alive.  Lisa understood the need to be present in ones daily life and made this a priority.  With the help of an hourly alarm on her work computer, Lisa would take a moment to breathe and re-center during the course of her usually very busy workday.  In her honor, many of us here at the Center have installed the same program and every hour on the hour we are reminded of our dear friend and her wish for peace, unity and keeping present.”

 

A memorial service for Dr. Kimbrough was held in February in Charleston, West Virginia.




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